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What are these green and yellow cards on the windscreen of a London taxi?

If you've ever wondered about the significance of the green and yellow cards displayed on the windscreen of London's iconic black taxis, we have the answers. These cards serve as licence IDs that provide vital information about the type of taxi driver operating in the city.

London's taxi drivers are required by law to prominently display their licence IDs in the front and rear windscreens of their vehicles. The colour of these cards—green or yellow—determines the geographical area in which the driver is authorised to operate.

The green licence card indicates that the taxi driver is licensed to operate throughout the entire Greater London area, making them an All London taxi driver. These drivers have undergone extensive training and possess in-depth knowledge of the city's geography, transport network, regulations, and landmarks. Green cardholders are authorised to pick up passengers from anywhere within London, allowing them to offer their services across the city's 32 boroughs.

On the other hand, yellow licence cards are issued to taxi drivers who possess a Suburban taxi licence. These drivers are permitted to operate only within specific suburban areas surrounding London. While they may not have the same level of familiarity with Central London as their green-card counterparts, they are well-versed in the local suburban areas and are authorised to work in those specific locations.

To become a London or suburban taxi driver, individuals must meet specific requirements set by Transport for London (TfL). These requirements include passing a rigorous examination known as 'The Knowledge,' which tests drivers' knowledge of London's streets and landmarks.

The green and yellow licence IDs have become a familiar sight on London's roads, providing reassurance to passengers about the legitimacy and expertise of their taxi driver. So, the next time you hail a London taxi, take a moment to notice the colour of the licence ID on the windscreen—it's your window into the expertise of your cabbie.


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