Become a Licensed Taxi Driver

To become a licensed taxi driver in East Herts there are a number of requirements that must be met first.

Types of Licence

East Herts issues two types of driver's licenses:

  • Dual Driver (can drive both Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles); or
  • Private Hire Driver (you can only drive a Private Hire vehicle and cannot drive a Hackney Carriage. You will need to work for or be an east Herts licensed Private Hire Operator).

East Herts Council has limited the number of Hackney Carriage Vehicle licences it issues following the results of an Unmet Demand Survey. As there are currently all the Hackney Carriage vehicle licences are issued, it means that new Dual Driver’s will be unable to licence their own Hackney Carriage vehicle. Exceptions to the vehicle limit will be considered for fully Electric or fully wheelchair accessible vehicles and each case will be considered on its own merits.

The limit is reviewed every three years following a survey to establish if there is any unmet demand for Hackney Carriages within the District.

A New Dual Driver could drive an already licensed Hackney Carriage/Private Hire vehicle or licence a new Private Hire vehicle. This should be taken into consideration when deciding which type of driver’s licence to apply for.

What will it cost me to get licensed?

Often people's first question to us is 'What does it cost?'

To help answer this question we have put together the indicative figures below as a guide to the minimum that becoming licensed will cost. Please bear in mind that if you fail any of the testing you will have to take it again at your own expense, some of the costs are set by third parties so can go up at any time and that all the fees are likely to rise on the 1st April each year.

Fees charged for Dual Drivers Licence (to drive both hackney carriages & private hire vehicles) and Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licences



Dual drivers licence (3 years)




Enhanced criminal record check (DBS)


English competency test


Driving proficiency test


Training day and knowledge test


Total driver cost


Hackney Carriage vehicle licence (1 year)


Plus the cost of having a meter and 'For Hire' light fitted, MOT and vehicle compliance test (VCC)


Total vehicle cost


Minimum cost of obtaining dual drivers badge and licensing a hackney carriage vehicle


Fees for Private Hire Drivers Licence, Private Hire Vehicle Licence and Private Hire Operators Licence



Private Hire drivers licence (3 years)




Enhanced criminal record check (DBS)


Driving proficiency test


English competency test


Training day and knowledge test


Total driver cost


Private Hire vehicle licence (1year)


Plus the cost of MOT and vehicle compliance test (VCC)


Total vehicle cost


Private Hire Operators licence (5 years)


Plus the cost of a base within East Herts District


Total operators cost*


Minimum cost of obtaining dual drivers badge and licensing a hackney carriage vehicle


*If you work for an Existing East Herts licensed Private Hire Operator you will not need your own operator’s licence or base.


Requirements for holding a Licence

To establish whether an applicant is 'fit and proper' to hold a driver’s licence the council requires applicants to do the following:

  • Be eligible to work in the UK.
  • Attend a driver training day and pass knowledge test.
  • Pass the council approved driving test.
  • Pass the council approved English competency test.
  • Undergo a medical assessment.
  • Undergo a check of their DVLA driver’s licence.
  • Undergo a DBS enhanced criminal record check (and register with the DBS Update Service).
  • Meet the tax conditionality criteria.
  • Fully complete the application form.
  • Provide a recent passport photograph.
  • Pay the required fee.

Taxi & Private Hire Handbook

All the Policies and information regarding the licensing of Hackney Carriage and Private Hire vehicles, drivers and operators is contained in this one document. If you are thinking of applying for a licence or already hold one then you should refer to the Taxi & Private Hire Handbook so that you understand the obligations that are placed on you as a licence holder. The handbook also contains a variety of information to help and support licence holders in running a successful and safe business.

Apply for a NEW Driver's Licence

Once you are satisfied you can meet the above requirements you should then complete our Taxi Driver's Licence Application.

Eligibility to work

The Immigration Act 2016 and Right to work checks

The Council is under a legal obligation to check an applicant's right to work in the United Kingdom on any application to renew an existing licence driver’s licence or for the grant of a new licence. To prove your right to work you will need to provide suitable documents. Examples of the documents that can prove you right to work in the UK include: 

  • A British Passport, or Passport / National Identity Card from a European Economic Area country or Switzerland
  • A birth or adoption certificate issued in the UK, Channel Islands, IOM or Ireland
  • An official document showing your National Insurance number
  • A current biometric immigration document issued by the Home Office
  • A current passport endorsed showing that the holder is exempt from immigration control, can stay either temporary or indefinitely in the UK, has right to abode in the UK, or has no time limit to on their stay in the UK. (If these are not in a current passport you will need to apply to the home office to transfer the conditions into your current passport. If you have temporary leave to stay your licence will be granted so it expires on the same date as your right to work)
  • A certificate of application issued by the Home Office (If this is the case we will need to undertake Home Office verification and a licence can only be issued for a Maximum of 6 month licence)

Your application will be refused if you do not have the right to work in the UK. You can check what documents you need to produce to prove you're eligible to work in the UK on the website.

Training day and knowledge tests

New applicants will be required to attend virtual training which will include knowledge tests at a cost of £98.00, which must be paid at the time of booking. Places cannot be guaranteed without payment. The training is delivered virtually and is divided into two half day sessions.

At the time of booking the training and knowledge tests you should download the comprehensive handbook available from this page which will contain all the information a new applicant will need to pass the rules and regulations test along with other useful information. This document will be referred to throughout the training and a hard copy can be provided upon request. The content for the training will be:

  • Rules and regulations
  • Driver safety
  • Customer service
  • How to report safeguarding concerns (Adult and Children)
  • Test of route knowledge
  • Rules and regulation test
  • Disability awareness training

The training will be the same for both Dual Driver (to hold both a Hackney Carriage and Private Hire drivers’ licence) and Private Hire driver applicants but the routes test will differ. Applicants will be given the result of their tests within two working days.

Routes test

Dual Driver applicants - 25 topographical questions based around either Hertford and Ware or Bishop's Stortford and Sawbridgeworth.

Private Hire Driver applicants - 12 topographical questions based on 30 locations across the whole of East Herts District. The 30 locations will be provided to applicants at the time of booking a test.

Rules and regulations test

All applicants - 25 multiple choice questions, 15 on rules and regulations, 5 on the highway code and 5 maths questions. 


The training and testing are delivered virtually so please contact the Licensing Team for the next available dates and to book yourself on:

Where an applicant fails any part of the training day and testing, they will be required to take that part again at additional cost.

CANCELLATION & REFUND POLICY: When booking a course please be aware that you can transfer your booking to another date (if available) up until 14 days before the course. After that time, you are unable to transfer to a different date and you will not be entitled to a refund should you fail to attend.

Driving test

The standard taxi assessment must be passed before a driver's licence is issued and the cost of the test must be paid by you directly to the provider. East Herts currently recognises two providers for this test which can be booked online using the following links:

English competency

From the 1st June 2021, following the Department of Transport issuing its Statutory Taxi & Private Hire Vehicle Standards, new applicants for drivers’ licenses are required to pass the council approved competency test in written and spoken English or provide proof of exemption (evidence of passing an equivalent level English test). The nominated test is ‘Versant 4 Skills’ and details of the testing can be found here: Pearson professional English tests but if you wish to book a test this must be done by contacting the Licensing Team.

The test is delivered virtually and can be taken at home on a laptop or PC. If you do not have the facilities to access the test at home, then please contact the Licensing Team to arrange to take the test in the office.

If you have a diagnosed medical condition that you believe would negatively impact your ability to pass the test, which includes speaking, listening, reading, and writing, then please contact the Licensing Team. This will allow us to assist you and make suitable adjustments where appropriate.

Medical fitness

Medical examinations must be conducted by a GP at the practice where you are registered or by a Doctor on the Council's approved list. The Doctor carrying out your medical must have access to all your previous medical records. Applicants are responsible for paying all medical fees direct to the surgery or clinic involved.

The standard of the medical examination must be to the Group 2 standard applied by the DVLA to PSV and HGV drivers. Both forms detailed below must be completed by the Doctor carrying out the medical and returned to the Licensing Team.

Medical certificates can be issued for different lengths of time depending on your age.

  • If you are under 45 years of age, the Doctor may issue a certificate which is valid until age 45. 
  • Between 45 years and 65 years of age, the maximum length of a certificate is 5 years.
  • If you are over 65 years of age, the maximum length of a certificate is 1 year.

If there is a doubt as to your standard of health, the Doctor may require a more frequent examination. You are responsible for paying all medical fees.

Licensed drivers must also be fit to undertake the duties of the role including:

  • Providing reasonable assistance to passengers with luggage - so be capable of lifting weights of up to 15 kg.
  • Transporting an assistance dog accompanying a passenger if requested.
  • Assisting and transporting a wheelchair bound passenger (if driving a wheelchair accessible vehicle).

If you have concerns over these requirements discuss them with your GP' in the first instance who may request exemption from these duties on medical grounds which will then be considered by the Council.

Doctors authorised to carry out medical examinations

  • A driver's own GP wherever they are registered
  • All General practice surgeries in East Herts District (but they will generally only undertake medicals for patients registered at their surgery)
  • Cotswold Medicals Ltd who have a Clinic at the Thremhall Park, Start Hill, Bishops Stortford, Herts, CM22 7WE call 01454 317436 or 0870 609 1540 to book a medical. you can also email:

If your medical is not carried out by your own GP then you have an obligation to inform the Doctor carrying out of any relevant, or potentially relevant, medical history. Once licensed you have an ongoing obligation to inform us of any change to your medical circumstance.  

DVLA driving licence check

You will be required to produce your driving licence and share the details of your driving history with us. This can be done online by providing us with a code via email (print-outs of the details will not be accepted) or when you visit our office.

You’ll need:

  • your driving licence number
  • your National Insurance number
  • the postcode on your driving licence

View and share your driving licence details on the website

Criminal records check

Each case is considered on its own merits, but the council has a Suitability Policy relating specifically to new and existing licensed drivers. If you have any sort of criminal conviction, caution, warning, etc. in your past please consult this Policy.

For more information please view our Taxi Licensing Suitability Policy, which is contained within the Taxi & Private Hire Handbook.

Please note that the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 does not apply to taxi driving as an occupation. As a result, any conviction, regardless of how old it is will show up on the enhanced criminal records check and be given due consideration.

If you have ever had a conviction, caution, warning, etc. then please contact the Licensing Team to discuss it as this may save you time and money in the long run.

The Enhanced criminal records check (DBS) is done at our Wallfields office, Hertford at a cost of £94.00. You must book an appointment to do this and pay the fee for the check a minimum of 2 days prior to the appointment. You will be required to have the following original documents available during the appointment:

  • at least 3 proofs of ID (normally including passport and DVLA drivers’ licence).
  • 2 separate proofs of your current address (utility bill or bank statement, not mobile phone bills, etc.) and your address history for the last 5 years.
  • An original document with your national insurance number on it.

Failure to disclose any relevant matters at any point during the application process will be likely to result in your application being refused.

It is mandatory that all licensed drivers register with the DBS Update Service and maintain that registration throughout the life of their licence. We advise that drivers register immediately to the DBS update service

at the time that they receive their DBS Enhanced certificate as you can only register within 28 days of the certificate being issued. 

Failure to register with the Update service (annual coat £13.00 per year) will result in a driver being requested to carry out Enhanced DBS checks every six months at a cost of £98.00 per check. 

Confirm your tax responsibilities

As a New applicant you must confirm that you are aware of your Tax responsibilities. More details can be found on the Government website

Renewals of existing licences

If your licence is due for renewal, please complete the online application. Please don’t leave making your application until the last minute as we need time to process the application and issue licences.

Correspondence and documents should be submitted to If you cannot email documents, then they can be sent via the post or dropped in through the letter box at Wallfields, but this may cause some time delay. Make sure that you do the following in good time before your current licence expires:

  • Submit the application and pay the fee.
  • Criminal record checks:  These are now required every 6 months. If your Enhanced DBS check becomes due then please provide us with access to the DBS Update Service or contact us via email to arrange for a new Enhanced DBS check to be carried out.
  • Medical checks: Please ensure you book this in plenty of time so that it is provided before your current licence expires.
  • Update course. You will need to complete this before your current licence expires.
  • English Competency. If you didn’t take the test when your licence was first granted you will either need to pass the required test or prove your exemption from testing before the renewal of a driver licence is granted.
  • Tax conditionality. We must carry out checks on applications from individuals, companies, and any type of partnership to make sure they have completed a tax check. We will not be able to accept renewal applications unless we are provided with a valid Tax check code. You will be able to Complete a tax check for a taxi, private hire or scrap metal licence on the Gov.UK website using your Government Gateway account.  

If your current licence expires before your renewal application is valid then you will be required to make a new application which may incur additional time and expense.

Do you still have some questions? 

The Licensing Team can be contacted via or on 01992 531503. Face-to-face meetings can be arranged using the details above, there is no facility to walk in and see a Licensing Officer without prior arrangement.