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Apply for a private hire vehicle operator’s licence

If you run a business operating private hire vehicles in the Vale of White Horse district then you will need a private hire vehicle operator’s licence.

All applicants and licence holders need to ensure they are familiar with our Joint Taxi Licensing Policy which details the requirements for licensed operators and the conditions that would be attached to any licence granted.

How to apply for a licence

To apply, please download and complete a private hire vehicle operator’s licence application form. Please read the notes and guidance carefully before you complete the form. This form should be used for all application types.

If you wish to change your operator base, increase the number of vehicles you operate, or add a new licence holder we recommend you include a covering letter explaining the changes required.

For renewals, we suggest you apply at least 6 weeks before the expiry of your licence. If your licence does lapse, you will be unlicensed and you must not accept any bookings until you have received a new licence.

What do I need to submit with my application?

When you submit your application you need to include the following:

  • your completed application form
  • your disability awareness and safeguarding training course certificate dated within the last three years
  • your public liability insurance – only where you have an office open to the public, minimum cover £5m.
  • the application fee – the amount depends on how many cars you wish to operate. For portal applications there is a drop down list from which you must select the correct fee. If you pay the wrong fee, the application will be rejected.

If you do not hold a driver licence issued by us then you will be required to:

  • provide proof of your right to work in the UK – to see what documents we can accept see the last two pages of the Home Office right to work guidance – this may need to be checked at a face to face appointment
  • submit a basic Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS) disclosure with your application, and every year after that. You can apply for this on the Government website. See guidance on the form for company and partnership applicants.

You may also need to apply for planning permission for your business, for advice we recommend you speak with our Planning Department before submitting an application.

How to submit your application

Once complete, you will need to scan the form and any supporting documents. If you do not have access to a scanner, you could take a photograph of each page but please note it must be clear and legible or we will not be able to process it.

When you have all your documents ready, please submit your completed application through our online application portal. The portal should work via any smartphone, tablet, laptop or PC with internet access and you will be able to pay the required fee with a debit or credit card.

If you are having trouble accessing our online portal please email your application to us using the details below. These applications will take longer to process as an officer will have to call you to take payment.

We recommend you do not apply by post.

What happens next?

Before we issue an operator’s licence, one of our licensing officers will need to inspect the operating base that you intend to use. This will include a check of any waiting area for customers, your facilities for communication and record keeping.

If you do not hold a driver licence issued by us, we will also contact you to book the knowledge test that you are required to pass before we will issue an operator licence.

We will review your application, and if we need any additional information or documentation, we will let you know. We may also carry out additional checks for relevant information held by other authorities.

For details on how we use data relating to licence holders and applicants, please see our privacy notice for licence holders and applicants.

Once your licence has been approved, you may wish to apply for a private hire vehicle licence for each of your vehicles.

Contact us - Licensing

01235 422556
(Text phone users add 18001 before dialing)

Vale of White Horse District Council
Abbey House
Abbey Close
OX14 3JE