Taxi driver

private hire vehicle driver cab driver cabbie

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Jobs forecast

This information is supplied by LMI For All, where data is currently available for Scotland.

What's it like?

You would pick up passengers and take them to their destination by the quickest and safest route.

Taxis are an important part of any town or city's transport system. Taxis can be either a ‘black cab' or a licensed saloon car. Both types have a licence plate and roof sign that states they are a taxi.

The other type of passenger transport around town is a private hire vehicle that runs through an operator.

When working in a taxi or private hire vehicle, you would:

  • Take job details over the radio from the operator at the office or by an in-car computer
  • Help to load and unload passengers' luggage
  • Help passengers to get in and out of the vehicle if needed
  • Take payments
  • Keep the vehicle clean and roadworthy
  • Keep accounts and records, if self-employed

As a taxi driver you might be booked in advance, wait on an official taxi rank or pick up passengers while on the move, for example in a busy shopping area.

If you work as a private hire driver you would only collect passengers that have pre-booked through your operator. You cannot be flagged down in the street.

You could combine normal 'pick-up' jobs with contract work such as school runs. You might also make longer-distance trips such as taking people to airports, or to and from concerts in other towns.

Working conditions

Hours

This job allows you to choose your hours, but you will find more work in the evenings and at weekends. Friday and Saturday evenings would be your busiest times. You would work between 40 and 60 hours a week if full-time.

Environment

You would spend most of your time on the road, sometimes in heavy traffic.

Travel

You would be constantly on the move.

UK employment status

Full-time

Part-time

Self employed

Here are some of the skills that people in this job would be most likely to have:

  • Communicating with people
  • Helping customers
  • Being tactful
  • Time management
  • Working with numbers

Build your skills

Your skills can help you choose the career that’s right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at what are my skills?

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Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Qualifications

There are no formal qualifications required to enter this role, however a good general education may be useful.

You will also need

You will need a special licence to be a taxi driver or private car hire driver. You will apply to your local authority for this licence and each may have their own criteria which may include:

  • normally, to be 21 years old
  • to have a clean current driving licence
  • to have been driving for at least 12 months

You may need to pass a test of knowledge about the local area.

If you are using your own vehicle, it will also need a special licence. These licences need to be reviewed and the timescales of this depends on the local authority.

You may need to pass a medical examination.

You need to be approved for membership of the Protecting Vulnerable Groups (PVG) Scheme run by Disclosure Scotland

Helpful to have

Many employers value additional driver training which could include the Advanced Driving Test offered by the Institute of Advanced Motorists (IAM).

Qualifications and experience that show helping customers, time management and local geographic knowledge will be of value. 

Evidence of basic mechanical skills, such as Skills for Work Automotive Skills (SCQF level 4), would also be welcome.