As New Year's Eve approaches and people make plans to go out to celebrate, Transport for London (TfL) and its policing partners are urging Londoners who intend to use cabs to ensure they get home safely by committing to only using black taxis or a pre-booked minicab.
London Taxis will only charge an extra £4 per journey from 8pm. Only London Taxis (Black Cabs) can be hailed on the street but due to the extensive road closures that will be in place this may be quite difficult. The best advice if you wish to travel by Black Cab is to walk outside the pedestrian zone and hail a Taxi or use many of the Radio Circuit or App booking services:
TFL Road closures...
Many minicabs will increase their fares by double, while some app based PH companies will increase by much more due to their 'Surge Pricing' structure.
All minicab, or private hire, operators must be licensed by TfL and bookings must be made for all journeys - minicabs lined up outside pubs and clubs are breaking the law if they accept a fare without a booking being made through the operator first.
TfL and partners are urging Londoners not to approach minicab drivers directly - and reminding revelers that any minicab driver that approaches someone on the street is acting illegally. Only black taxis can be stopped by customers to pick them up off the street.
If a bouncer hails a minicab on the street, or if a person approaches a minicab directly - even if it has a TfL licence sticker - it's not booked and it's not safe.
Steve Burton, Director of Enforcement and On-Street Operations, said:
'We want everyone to get home safely on New Year's Eve. If you decide to take a cab home, please do not use an unbooked minicab - they are not safe and they are not insured.
'All minicabs need to be pre-booked with a licensed operator, either in person at a minicab office, over the telephone, or via a cab booking app. Any minicab that picks someone up off the street, whether they offer you a cab or you approach them, is acting illegally.'
Officers from TfL's funded Roads and Transport Policing Command, City of London Police (CoLP) and TfL's Taxi and Private Hire compliance officers will be stepping up enforcement activity to deal with unbooked minicabs at hotspots across London, to help keep the public safe as they travel home at night.