Apply for a taxi driver licence
Our new online process makes applying and renewing taxi and private hire licences quicker and easier. As part of the ongoing modernisation of our taxi and private hire licensing service, you can now create an online account. This means that if you're a taxi and private hire driver, or applicant, you can apply for or renew and existing licence and track its progress during the application process.
How to apply
If you want to apply, you can start your application by registering online. Details of the criteria to be met can be found below.
You will be asked to provide some personal details so we can create an account for you and allow you to complete your online application or request an application pack.
Please note, TfL requires that all given names on any official identity documents are displayed on your taxi driver's licence.
We strongly recommend that all your identity documents match. Our expectation is that all official documents have a consistent spelling and are in the correct order. This will prevent any queries in regards to your identity during the course of your licence or application.
As part of your application, you will need to provide a photograph of yourself. See our guidance on the type of photograph we will accept.
Alternatively, please email us at email@example.com to request an application pack.
If you have ever lived in a country other than the UK for one or more continuous periods of three months please download the 'Living and working abroad' form and submit this with your application.
Before you can start learning the Knowledge, you need to apply to be a licensed taxi driver and have your application approved.
The time it takes to become a licensed driver depends on whether you choose to learn the All-London Knowledge or a Suburban sector.
To apply for a licence, you will need to meet the following criteria:
- You must be at least 18 years old at the time of applying (although you cannot be licensed until you are 21 years old). There is no upper age limit, as long as you meet the other licensing requirements
- You must hold a full DVLA, Northern Ireland, or other European Economic Area state driving licence
- You must have the right to live and work in the UK
You must meet our character and medical requirements.
You must be of good character. To establish this you will be required to undertake an 'enhanced' criminal records check from the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) through our authorised service provider.
Your original DBS certificate must meet TfL's strict criteria to be accepted for a licence application, including the declaration of any variations of identity that may appear on official I.D. documents.
Please see the guidance document on ensuring your DBS application is completed correctly:
The Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) has an online subscription service that lets applicants keep their DBS certificates up to date.
You must be medically fit which means meeting the DVLA Group 2 medical standards. In most cases, this will mean that you will have to undergo a medical examination with someone who has access to your full medical history.
HMRC Tax Check
From 4 April 2022, HMRC introduced new tax checks for all taxi and private hire drivers, as well as PHV operators. As a licensed driver, you should be registered to pay any tax that may be due on income you earn from your licensed trade.
You will need to complete a tax check with HMRC (using your GOV.UK Government Gateway ID and password). You must then obtain a unique 9-character tax check code which confirms your registration to pay tax. The tax check code will then need to be provided to TfL as part of your application to renew your licence.
Guidance is available on GOV.UK to help you complete the tax check.
- You will need to ensure that you provide the correct tax check code for the type of licence that is being applied for, i.e. a taxi or private hire driver's licence
- A tax check code is only valid for 120 days from when it is obtained from HMRC. Please bear this in mind when submitting your application. If the code has expired, we will be unable to complete the check and your application will be incomplete
- Please ensure that you record the tax check code clearly and correctly on your application form
Should a tax check code be required, but it is not provided, then your application will be deemed to be incomplete. Your application cannot then be fully processed until the required tax check code has been provided and a check undertaken by TfL.
Guidance for EU/EEA nationals
Please see the document provided for information on the requirements for EU/EEA nationals to demonstrate their right to work in the United Kingdom.
All applicants are expected to undertake the onilne Safeguarding Awareness training course. This course contains important information on protecting children and vulnerable adults at risk from harm and abuse.
How much will my application cost?
Payment can be made via all major credit or debit cards by completing the appropriate section in the application form. Other payment options are available via the Post Office® 'Check and Send' service.
The table below highlights the typical cost of an application. However, some costs may vary.
|DBS disclosure application||£52 (online)
|Licence application fee (non-refundable)||£120|
|Grant of licence fee||£180|
|Knowledge of London written examination
(All London only)
|Knowledge of London appearance
(One off payment)
|DSA Hackney Carriage driving test (payment to DSA)||£92.94 (normal hours)
£112.34 (evenings and Saturdays)
£50 (wheelchair test only)
|Post Office® Check and Send||£7.15|
(Payable to your GP who can advise you of the cost)
Becoming a licensed taxi or private hire driver is open to all. If you're a disabled person and interested in becoming a driver, there are some things to consider.
We try to ensure that everyone has an equal opportunity to get through the application and assessment process. However, there are some medical conditions that, for public safety reasons, will mean you can't be licensed, so it is important that you discuss your situation with your GP before you apply. For full information on medical guidelines please refer to the DVLA Group 2 guidelines.
Some licensed taxis and private hire vehicles have modifications made to them to enable people to drive them.
Vehicle adaptations include:
- Steering wheel ball
- Hand-operated braking controls
- Hand-operated accelerator controls
- Reconfigured foot pedal controls
- Infra-red control panel for operating vehicle lights, indicators and horn
Drivers who use vehicle adaptations will need to be assessed by a medical professional and driver assessor. They will recommend what adaptations are needed and exactly what equipment must be fitted to ensure the driver has full control of the vehicle at all times.
The recommended adaptations and equipment must be fitted by an authorised Motability installer. Documentary evidence that the installer is authorised is required. Before you have any equipment fitted or adaptations made to your vehicle, you should first contact our licensing team.
Convictions and exemptions
Disclosure and Barring service check
If you have completed a enhanced disclosure including both barred lists under the workforce code of 'Other' in a relevant occupation, in the last four months, you are exempt for requiring a further check.
Applicants are exempt from completing a medical form as part of their application if they:
- Hold a DVLA Group 2 licence (full or a provisional licence issued since January 1998)
- Have an active application with us, have completed our medical and are under the age of 45
Active applicants or existing licensees must have a medical exam if over the age of 45 and the last medical was done more than three years ago, or you're subject to providing an age-related medical.
To apply for any of the above exemptions email us at firstname.lastname@example.org stating the exemption you want to apply for. We will email you the correct form.
If you have any of the following convictions, it's unlikely that your application will be successful. Before submitting an application, please consider:
- Any conviction for a major violent offence (murder, manslaughter etc)
- Whether you have more than one conviction of any type of violent offence in the last 10 years
- If you are still serving a custodial sentence, even if you have been released early on licence or the sentence was suspended
- If you have been convicted, cautioned or subjected to any other penalty for a serious sexual offence (rape, indecent assault, trafficking, possession of indecent images etc)
- Whether you have been convicted, cautioned or subjected to any other penalty for more than one sexual offence of any type, irrespective of age
- Whether you are listed on either the Children's or Adults' barred list
- If you have been convicted, cautioned or subjected to any other penalty for touting in the last 12 months or have more than one penalty for touting in the last five years
This is not an exhaustive list, licensing decisions are made on a case by case basis.
Taxi and private hire driver policy
Policies, advice and guidance on licensing taxi and private hire drivers in London.
Taxi and Private Hire Driver Policy