There is a very famous quote about London which goes like, “A bad day in London is still better than a good day anywhere else.” London, a place that vibrantly dances with positive vibes of frenetic energy, noise and ideas, is a megalopolis with a diverse population. London is the largest city in England and the United Kingdom, and the UK’s capital city. A charming city with centuries of cultural heritage, resident monarchy, fashion, politics and trade, the city tops the charts, to be one of the the most popular cities for travellers to visit in the world.
One of the things that makes London special and distinct is its black “hackney” taxis with their distinctive shape and yellow light which indicates if they are available to be flagged from the street.
But other than these taxis, there is also an overflowing abundance of private hire cars. What are they? Commonly termed minicabs and introduced in the 1960s to offer a substitute and cheaper means of transportation in the UK, these cars are licensed by the Public Carriage Office (PCO) in order for them to be considered applicable to hire.
Unlike the black cabs on the streets, they can’t be hailed or flagged down and must only be pre-booked through a Private Hire Operator for a fixed fare. Other than that, they also have far less obligations to follow or abide by such as the drivers may or may not take the Knowledge Test, or the car may or may not be equipped with a taximeter. As of the most recent statistics and figures, there are more than 40,000+ private hire drivers and 22,000+ taxis in London alone, which is enough to highlight how big a demand and scope this industry has. Obtaining a private hire car driver license:
To become a licensed PHV driver , an applicant must;
* Be 21 years of age
* Have a DVLA, other EEA or Northern Ireland driving license that is at least three years old.
* Permission to live and work in the UK
* Have taken the ‘enhanced’ criminal records check to ensure you are of good character
* Be medically fit to operate a vehicle
* Take a topographical skills assessment test Obtaining a PHV vehicle license:
To qualify for a Private Hire Vehicle License, the vehicle must meet the following requirements:
* Whether new or old, it must not be older than 5 years.
* Must be licensed by the authorities
Mostly, the cars used by private hire operators and agencies include charter buses, limousines, tour buses, mini buses, people carriers, and other vehicle models which differ from company to company.
With so many firms competing amongst themselves, it often becomes difficult to keep track. To ease this difficulty, many saw this as an opportunity and websites like minicabit and others came into existence. Today, these websites hold information about thousands of real time minicabs providing transit services in London. Just with a few clicks, passengers can find out about minicabs fares offered by different private hire operators and choose the best among all for their journey.
Lastly, the benefits offered include:
* Less time consuming
* Authentic information