Licensed vehicles can only be driven by holders of 'private hire' or hackney carriage drivers' licences.

All of the hackney carriage vehicle licences available in York are currently allocated - please write to out Taxi licensing team if you would like to be added to the waiting list.

Applying for a vehicle licence

Complete and return a private hire vehicle licence application form.

  • Vehicles must comply with the specifications detailed in the guidance notes.
  • Vehicle licences are renewed annually:
    • hackney carriage vehicles on 1 June
    • private hire vehicles on 1 November
  • Apply at any time of the year, but there is no reduction for licences issued part way through the year

Vehicle testing

Arrange a date and time for a vehicle inspection at Hazel Court depot with a member of our taxi licensing team once you receive your driver's licence.

You need to ensure:

  • your vehicle is mechanically sound
  • your vehicle is in a clean and tidy condition
  • you have the vehicle registration document, MOT test certificate and normal insurance documents with you
  • private hire/public hire insurance must also be produced before vehicle licences can be issued

Vehicles are tested annually before the start of the new licensing year (1 June for hackney carriages and on a rolling year for private hire vehicles, with the date determined when vehicle is first licensed).

Vehicles older than 5 years must have a vehicle safety examination approximately 6 months after the initial grant or annual inspection at a date determined by us.


Vehicles fitted with approved taximeters (these are compulsory for hackney carriages but optional for private hire vehicles) must also submit the meter for a test by the Taxi Licensing Office. Meters are only tested after the vehicle has been licensed.

Hackney carriage vehicle licences

We currently restrict the number of hackney carriage vehicle licences we issue.

There is a waiting list for people who would like to apply for a hackney carriage vehicle licence, should any further vehicle licences be released.

The waiting list operates on an 'accumulating points' system giving preference to those already holding a hackney carriage or private hire driver's licence. Please write to us if you wish to apply to join the waiting list.

Smoking in licensed vehicles

The law requires public transport to be smoke-free. Work vehicles are required to be smoke-free if they are used in the course of paid or voluntary work by more than one person, regardless of whether they are in the vehicle at the same time.

It is the legal responsibility of anyone who drives, controls or manages licensed vehicles to prevent people from smoking in them.

Anyone who does not comply with the smoke-free law is committing a criminal offence and individuals who smoke in a smoke-free place are liable to a £50 fixed penalty notice.

For more information, please visit our webpage on smoke-free businesses.

'No Smoking' stickers must be affixed to hackney carriage and private hire vehicles.

Further information

Get more information on taxi driver's licences and licence fees.

Pay licence invoices.

Also see

Comment on this page