What is taxi insurance?
It is a specialist vehicle insurance policy designed to cover cars used for commercial hire.
If you work as a taxi driver, a regular car insurance policy will not be enough to protect you, your car and your customers.
Do you need taxi insurance?
Yes. It is a legal requirement to have a valid taxi insurance policy if you drive a taxi for a living.
You will need a specific taxi insurance policy depending on what type of taxi you drive:
Public hire taxis
Public hire taxis can be hailed down by customers on the street, and do not need to be pre-booked.
They can display a taxi sign, and include London black cabs. Only public hire taxi insurance will cover you to pick up customers without a booking.
Private hire taxis
A private hire taxi must be pre booked in advance, and includes most minicabs and large multipurpose vehicle (MPV) taxis like people carriers.
Private hire taxi insurance will not cover you to pick up customers without a booking from places like train stations or taxi ranks.
Who can get taxi insurance?
Many taxi insurance providers will only offer cover if you:
When you apply you will need to confirm your operating area. You may not be covered to work outside of this.
Have lived in the UK for at least five years
Have held a valid driving licence for at least three years
Work as a taxi driver full time only with no other jobs
Are over a certain age, usually 21, but some specify you must be at least 25 years old
Have held a taxi badge for at least 12 months
You may also need to pass the Driving Vehicle Standards Agency (DVSA) taxi driving test depending on your local council.
Read the eligibility criteria carefully first to save a wasted application.
The level of cover you can get may be restricted by the area you work in. Some policies only offer fully comprehensive cover if you are registered in certain areas so check your policy carefully.
What cover do you need?
Taxi insurance offers the same three levels of protection as standard motor cover: fully comprehensive, third party, fire and theft and third party only cover. You can find out which level is right for you here.
There are other cover options specific to taxi insurance you should consider including:
Public liability insurance: This protects you if a customer suffers a personal injury or property damage while in your taxi, and it will cover any legal or compensation claims that occur as a result. Most taxi insurance policies will include this cover as standard, but check the policy carefully as not all do.
Personal use cover: You will need this in place if you plan to use your taxi for day to day use when you are not working. If you also want your partner to use the vehicle check that your local authority allows unregistered drivers to drive plated taxis, as not all do.
Unlimited mileage: As a taxi driver you will drive a large number of miles each year, so an unlimited mileage policy will ensure you will not be charged for driving too much. Look at how many miles you drive on average each year to work out whether this cover is worth it.
How much does taxi insurance cost?
Taxi insurance is on average more expensive than standard cover because:
You will drive more miles each year
You will carry more passengers, increasing the risk of personal injury claims
Taxi cabs are larger than average cars, so will sit in a higher insurance group
The price of your taxi insurance will depend on the same factors as standard car insurance including the vehicle you drive, where you live, where you keep your taxi and your driving record.
You can find a full list of all the things that can affect the cost of your cover in this guide, and compare taxi insurance policies in our comparison.
How to reduce the cost of your cover
The best way to find affordable cover is to shop around and compare quotes. Most regular car insurers do not cover taxis, but you can find specialist companies that do with our taxi insurance comparison.
You can also reduce your premiums by building up a no claims history, choosing a sensible vehicle, and by installing security features like CCTV into your taxi cab. This guide covers more ways that could help keep the cost of your taxi insurance down.