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London minicab drivers must fork out over £100 each on tests introduced by TfL

New private hire driver tests introduced by Transport for London (TfL) could cost applicants over £100 to sit and complete.

The cost relates to changes on how the regulator assesses applications for new or renewed private hire vehicle (PHV) driver licences. The changes have come into effect on 1 October 2021.

The key changes focus on the introduction of a new Safety, Equality and Regulatory Understanding (SERU) requirement. There’s also a new assessment on a PHV driver’s ability to meet the existing English Language Requirement (ELR) and some changes to the Topographical testing process.

Each of these three tests will cost applicants £36 each. Should the applicant fail it will cost £16 to re-sit each test.

According to a taxi and minicab sector notice released by TfL: “It is essential that PHV drivers have an appropriate understanding of safety, equality and regulatory requirements that apply to them. This helps ensure public safety and will also enhance customer service for passengers.

“These improvements were originally considered in 2016, when Transport for London (TfL) conducted a wide-ranging review of PHV regulations. Following feedback from that review, TfL has developed a new Safety, Equality and Regulatory Understanding (SERU) requirement.”

Other new tests effecting both taxi and PHV drivers is a new online Safeguarding Awareness course. The course is free and has been specifically designed for all taxi and private hire licensees who are in a unique position to identify and help take steps to prevent the abuse, exploitation or neglect of children and vulnerable adults.

TfL expect all licensees to undertake the Safeguarding Awareness course at the ‘earliest opportunity’ and it can be completed on a laptop, desktop, tablet or smartphone.


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