Applying for a Hackney carriage or private hire drivers licence
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Applying for a Hackney carriage or private hire drivers licence

By becoming either a Hackney carriage (taxi) or private hire driver you can play a part in delivering safe, reliable and integrated transport to everybody who lives, works or visits Leeds.

Application forms to become a taxi or private hire vehicle driver are available to download from the Documents section of this page, along with the relevant guidance notes. 

If you are renewing your licence please go to the 'Taxi and private hire trade information page', found in the Related Pages section.

A list of our current prices can be found within the Documents section of this page.

There are specific requirements that you must meet in order to progress with an application, please see 'A guide to obtaining a licence' for more information on the criteria. In addition:

  • you must 21 years of age to be a Hackney carriage driver
  • you must have held a full DVLA, Northern Ireland or European Economic Area (EEA) state driving licence for at least three years

All licences are issued for a period of 12 months. Once strict criteria are met, you may be eligible to apply for a 3 year drivers licence. Please refer to the guide to obtaining a licence and our three year licence policy which are available to download from the Documents section.

You must attend the licensing office in person to make an appointment to begin the application process and pay the fee (via cash, debit card or cheque). All cheques should be made payable to Leeds City Council. 

You will be given a half hour slot with a licensing officer to process your application. Missed appointments may result in an administrative fee being applied.

Applications remain valid for a period of 12 months. If you do not pass and complete all of the required tests within this time period, your application will be cancelled. The fee is non-refundable.​​​​​​

Click to expandHow do I renew my driver licence?


It is your responsibility to ensure that your licence is renewed before its expiry date.

A completed renewal form must be submitted in person at the Taxi and Private Hire Section prior to your current licence expiring.

In order to proceed with the renewal, you must:

  • Produce both counterparts of the DVLA driving licence or a paper licence
  • Ensure the renewal form is stamped by your Operator
  • Produce your current drivers badge
  • Pay the applicable fee payable by cash, debit card or cheque made payable to Leeds City Council

As applicable, you must also have undertaken your enhanced DBS check and/ or registered for the DBS update service. You will receive a written reminder 3 months prior to your expiry date if this is required.

You may renew your badge six weeks before your renewal date.

IMPORTANT - If you do not renew on time, your licence will expire and you will be treated as a ‘new’ applicant and you will need to go through the same procedure as that specified for the grant of a licence.​

Click to expandDo taxi and private hire drivers need to pass a knowledge test?

All licensed taxi drivers in Leeds must have an in depth knowledge of the road network and places of interest in the city. You will need to be able to demonstrate a range of route finding skills such as map reading and route selection, which allow you to plan a journey.

As part of Leeds City Council’s commitment to increasing the level of professional service offered to the public using private hire vehicles, we have developed a training package for all private hire drivers. Please see the ‘private hire knowledge test guidance’ which is available to view and download from the Documents section.

Click to expandDo I need to prove my medical fitness?

Taxi and private hire drivers are professional drivers carrying passengers for hire and reward. Because of this, if you apply to be licensed, we will ask you to prove your medical fitness by having a group 2 medical examination with your GP.​

Click to expandI have a conviction, will this prevent me from getting a licence?

The Council must be satisfied that the drivers it licenses are safe, honest and trustworthy – ‘fit and proper’ to hold a licence. 

Every applicant must have a criminal record check before they can have a licence.  This is done by asking you to get an enhanced criminal records check from the Disclosure and Barring Service. We will also look at your driving licence to see if you have any driving convictions.

Having a driving or criminal conviction will not necessarily prevent you from becoming licensed - it depends what the conviction was for, the sentence imposed and how long ago it was.

It is very important that you read and understand our policy on driving and criminal convictions before you apply. ​

Our criminal convictions policy is available to view and download from the Documents Section.

Click to expandHow much does it cost?

A full list of fees and prices are available within the 'Current prices' document which can be found in the Documents section on this page.

Click to expandWhy do I need to pay £5 for a DVLA mandate?

The paper counterpart to your DVLA licence is no longer valid & these are no longer issued by the DVLA.  We must have access to your licence history and we do this by asking you to sign a mandate to access your DVLA records online.  Please refer to the guidance in the documents section.

Click to expandI was born outside of the UK, can I still apply for a licence?

Here at the Taxi and Private Hire Licensing Section of Leeds City Council, we receive applications for private hire driver and Hackney carriage driver licences from a range of nationalities. 

Please refer to our Fit and Proper Person policy available to download in the documents section to understand our requirements. ​

To view documents in PDF format you will require the free Download Adobe Reader Adobe Acrobat Reader

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