Name: Becoming a Taxi Driver
Description: Becoming a Taxi Driver
Skip to content Accessibility access to: Home page Accessibility access to: Accessibility

Becoming a Taxi Driver

Knowledge Test Information
Driver Application Criteria
Apply for a Licence

Knowledge Test Information

All licensed Hackney Carriage and Private Hire drivers operating in the Borough of Dartford are required to have passed the DBC “Knowledge Test” before they can apply for a licence. The test examines the applicant’s knowledge of the Borough’s streets and key locations together with other skills you will need as a taxi driver, including English proficiency and numeracy
You must be 21 years or older in order to apply. Prospective driver licence applicants should not proceed with any of the application steps until they have passed the Knowledge Test. Doing so could lead to a pass certificate expiring before the remaining application requirements are met and result in the knowledge test having to be re-sat and passed.
There are no specimen tests to view or study. This is because we want our licensed drivers to have a genuine and thorough knowledge of the subject areas being tested and we do not consider this can be properly achieved or gauged where applicants are able to memorise a select number of questions and answers. We do however provide a Knowledge Test Information Pack PDF, 783.14 KB giving an overview of the content to assist applicants in preparing for the test.

Driver Application Criteria

Listed below are the which must be met to become a Hackney Carriage or Private Hire Licensed Driver:

  • Be aged 21 years or older
  • You will need to have passed the appropriate knowledge test within the last 12 months.
  • Medically fit:
    The DBC medical form must be completed by your own doctor or a doctor with access to your full medical records, to fully assure the Licensing Authority that you are medically fit to drive a licensed vehicle. The appropriate medical form will be given to you once you at your DBS appointment. The medical form contains a statement of fitness that must be completed and certified by the examining doctor and stamped showing the doctor’s practice details. The applicant is responsible for arranging the medical at their own expense. The medical form must be fully completed and produced during the application process; you cannot be licensed until this form is returned. We will not accept medicals from other Authorities that are over three months old and do not contain a Statement of Fitness signed by the doctor.
  • Fit and Proper:
    You will need to be assessed as a “fit and proper person” ie: of good character and temperament. This will be required to be supported by an enhanced disclosure and barring check (DBS), a DVLA check and two written personal references:
  • DBS Check
    When submitting an application for a licence to drive a hackney carriage or private hire vehicle, you are required to declare all convictions or cautions you may have or previously have had. All Hackney Carriage and Private Hire Drivers are exempt from the Protection of the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974. This is referred to under Statutory Instrument 6 No.441, the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 (Exemptions) (Amendments) Order 2002. The information you give will only be taken into account in relation to your application and will be treated in confidence. If you have not been a resident in the UK for the last 5 years then a certificate of good conduct must also be provided together with a copy which has been officially transcribed into the English language and certified by an appropriate embassy official. You will need to provide a certificate for each country of residence during the declared 5 year period.
  • Driving Licence Information:
    You will have held a full driving licence for a motorcar for at least 36 months on application to become a driver. The onus is on applicants to make enquires through the GOV.UK website or DVLA, about their right to drive in Great Britain and/or whether they qualify for an exchange of their licence, for a GB driving licence.
    You will have held a full driving licence for a motorcar for at least 36 months on application to become a driver. The onus is on applicants to make enquires through the GOV.UK website or DVLA, about their right to drive in Great Britain and/or whether they qualify for an exchange of their licence, for a GB driving licence.

    A check is also made on the driving history at the application stage with the DVLA. Driving offences (past and present) will be taken into account on assessing whether the applicant is considered fit and proper.
  • Immigration check:
    You will need to provide one document which shows you are in the UK lawfully and are permitted to work as a private hire or hackney carriage driver
  • Certificate of Driving Ability:
    All new drivers will be required to successfully complete the Taxi Assessment of Driving Ability. This is an advanced driving assessment, during which a professional driving examiner will mark your driving ability and style, as well as your ability to perform various manoeuvers common to taxi driving, including identifying safe stopping points at which to pick up or set down passengers. You will also be asked a number of driving theory questions, including some on the law around taxis and private hire vehicles.
  • Certificate of English Proficiency.
    Any person applying for the first time to the Licensing Authority for a Driver’s Licence must provide proof of their oral competency in the English language. All applicants will be required to undertake an assessment of their communication skills. Applicants who can demonstrate (by producing the original certificate and/or examination transcript) that they have previously passed a relevant English-language qualification at a suitable level, which was assessed by a recognised and accredited qualification awarding body, will not be required to take the speaking and listening assessment.
  • Disability Awareness Course:
    You will be required to attend a DBC approved Disability Awareness course (at the driver’s expense) or produce evidence of attending the same within the last 2 years to get an exemption from taking the course.
  • Additional Training:
    You will be required to undertake the DBC training modules for Safeguarding, Prevent and Legislation. This is a one day training course provided by DBC and Kent Fire and Rescue.

Apply for a Drivers Licence

Once you have passed the knowledge test and if you meet all the criteria detailed in the Driver Application Criteria section you can apply for your Private Hire or Hackney Carriage Licence online.

The guidance for new driver  PDF, 161.14 KBand DBS application guidance  PDF, 164.28 KBwill assist you in completing the process.

In order to complete the form you must have your driving licence, national insurance number and either a debit or credit card, the form cannot be saved once the process has started.

New Applications:

Hackney Carriage Driver Licence New Applicant - Apply online

Private Hire Driver Licence New Applicant - Apply online


Renewals:

You will have received a code with your renewal letter you can apply for you Private Hire or Hackney Carriage Licence online using the correct link below

Hackney Carriage Driver  Licence Renewal - Renew online

Private Hire Driver Licence Renewal - Renew online

In order to complete the form you must have your driving licence, national insurance number and either a debit or credit card, the form cannot be saved once the process has started.

The renewal guidance notes  PDF, 150.49 KB and DBS Renewal guide  PDF, 168.91 KB will assist you in completing the application process.

What Next?
Once you have completed the form please contact the Licensing Department to make an appointment to have your documents verified.

Last Updated: 12th November 2018 Print Link

Share Facebook Share Twitter