Taking a taxi is a great way to ensure you get yourself home safely.  East Devon taxi and private hire drivers and vehicles must be licensed by the council.  Drivers have to adhere to a strict safety policy and undergo regular checks to ensure they are fit and proper to drive members of the public around.  These checks include criminal records checks, driving record checks and medical checks amongst others.    It is important to make sure the taxi or minicab you are using is properly licensed, and here are some important points to help you identify this.

How to tell if a Taxi or Private Hire Vehicle is licensed with East Devon District Council?

Taxi and Private Hire Drivers

  • Licensed drivers will be wearing an East Devon District Council badge with their photo, badge number, name and expiry date.

Taxi Vehicles 

  • have a yellow and red roof light with the word TAXI on
  • have a blue & white plate affixed to the rear of the vehicle with details of the licence number, vehicle registration and the East Devon District Council crest
  • will have a tariff card available on their dashboard or somewhere in the front of the vehicle.  This will show the licence number and the fare prices  
  • can be flagged down and can be found at the ranks in East Devon
  • can also be pre-booked in advance with the taxi company or owner

Private Hire Vehicles

  • have a yellow plate affixed to the rear of the vehicle with details of the licence number, vehicle registration and the East Devon District Council crest
  • are not permitted to display a roof sign
  • must be pre-booked through a licensed operator

Benefits of pre-booking a Taxi/Private Hire Vehicle

You can catch a taxi at the rank, hail them in the street or prebook one.  All should be licensed and face the same safety checks. However you may wish to prebook your journey if possible and this will mean that you:

  • know a taxi is available and have arranged safe travel home without having to wait if there aren’t any taxis on a rank
  • are able to choose a safe meeting point to be picked up at
  • can enquire at the time of booking what the fare is likely to be
  • know who you will be travelling with

Be aware

Things to avoid:

  • if a driver approaches you directly
  • the car does not have a plate on the rear
  • the driver does not have an ID badge or will not show you his Iicence

This could mean the driver or vehicle is unlicensed which is illegal, uninsured and potentially dangerous

Be safe

  • Confirm the booking with the driver when the vehicle arrives
  • Ask the driver to show you their badge before you start the journey
  • Note the licence number down from the plate on the rear of the vehicle or from the tariff card inside the vehicle
  • Let someone you trust know details of the journey you are taking
  • Trust your instincts. If you feel worried or threatened, ask the driver to stop so you can get out
  • You can report any concerns to the police and your local licensing authority