PCO Licence Requirements
All applicants should check to make sure they meet all the PCO Licence requirements before they consider sending off their PCO Licence Application. These requirements are in place to ensure that all drivers provide not only a professional service but also that the public are in safe hands when entering into a Private Hire Vehicle.
If you don’t meet all the PCO Licence requirements, please give us a call. In certain circumstances, if there is a major drawback to your application we will advise you not to proceed. This advice is very important as it could save you time and money. Please note, in addition to the PCO Licence requirements listed below all applicants must be able to speak, read and understand English so that they are able to serve the diverse population of London and its many visitors. If we feel your application is going to be refused don’t be disheartened, we will advise you on all the options available to you.
To be a licensed driver you must be at least 21 years of age and there are no exceptions to this rule. There is no upper age limit though, provided you meet the other licensing requirements, so you can look forward to a long career in the private hire business.
To ensure that the drivers are safe, honest and trustworthy you will have to undergo an Enhanced Disclosure Check from the Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) before being licensed. Having a record won’t necessarily prevent you from getting licensed as it depends on what type of offence it was and how long ago it was. TfL will also look at your driving license to see if you have any driving convictions but again this won’t necessarily discount you from the application process. If you have a criminal record(s) or cautions please feel free to contact us to discuss your options.
Private Hire Drivers are professional drivers carrying passengers for hire and reward and so TfL requires that you need to have a similar medical check-up to those required for drivers of large vehicles (buses, coaches and HGV’s). These standards are based upon meeting the DVLA Group 2 license requirements.
It’s difficult to cover all possibilities, but certain conditions such as epilepsy, poor eyesight, insulin treated diabetes and serious heart problems could result in your application being refused. If possible, please make this aspect of the application your priority as an underlying condition could mean there is no point in continuing with the application process. Once again if in doubt please pick up the phone and give us a call.
Route Finding Skills (Topographical Test)
You won’t need the same knowledge and skills as a London Taxi Driver because Private Hire journeys are pre-booked so journeys can be pre-planned. However, you will still need to demonstrate some degree of topographical skills which allow you to plan a journey including map reading and route selection.You will have to provide evidence of your Topographical Skills from a TfL Approved Topographical Test Centre. We are officially approved by TfL to carry out Topographical Tests. Naturally we also provide independent Topographical Training. Please read our Topographical Test Package offer here.
All applicants must have a full UK or European Economic Area (EEA) driving licence. In order to be issued a PCO Licence, the applicant must have held a full licence for a minimum of three years (for UK licences, this includes the 2 year probationary period). TfL will not consider granting a PCO Licence until the applicant has held it for 3 years.
Anyone outside the UK or EEA will not qualify for this 3 year period until they have either passed their driving test in the UK or EEA country AND held it for a full 3 years. If you have any questions please give us a call.
All Non-UK licence holders will still be required to provide a copy of their EC/EEA driving licence with their application.
The full list of EC/EEA states is:
Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia,Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway.
English Language Requirement
All applicants new or renewal are required to prove their competency in the English Language. For further details please contact us.