Advantages and disadvantages of working as a taxi driver

June 22, 20237 min read

The profession of taxi driver does not really need to be described any more, a taxi driver transports people in a vehicle to a certain destination for a certain fee.

For the commercial transport of up to 8 persons in one vehicle, a special driving licence is required, the so-called passenger transport licence. Anyone wishing to transport more than 8 persons requires a more extensive permit, which will not be explained in detail here.

Taxi drivers are either self-employed with their own taxi, or they drive on behalf of a taxi company. The number of taxi drivers has increased, and more and more people are driving taxis on the weekends as a sideline and have discovered a lucrative source of extra income. Outside the big cities, especially in rural areas, taxi drivers’ main business is at weekends.

During the week, ambulance services often account for most of the passengers, in addition to the usual locations such as airports, railway stations and other central points.

Taxi drivers are legally obliged to follow certain rules. For example, a taximeter and the name and address of the taxi operator must be visible in the taxi. A registration number on the rear window and a roof sign are also compulsory.

Salary as a taxi driver
The salary of taxi drivers varies greatly. For salaried employees, there is a legal regulation according to the Bavarian collective agreement law, according to which at least 40% of the earned transport remuneration is paid or a minimum wage of 1610 EUR gross per month. However, this only applies to full-time employees on at least 22 working days per month. Part-time employees are paid pro rata according to the number of hours they work.

Self-employed drivers are often connected to taxi companies for a fee, which then send them the orders by radio.

Training and further education as a taxi driver
If you want to become a taxi driver, you do not need to complete any training. Only certain certificates are required for this job. In any case, taxi drivers must have a valid driver’s licence; without a driver’s licence, the profession will logically not work.

In addition, every driver must prove that he or she has a passenger transport permit, which is only issued to persons over the age of 21. The local knowledge test is also an important component for permission to work as a taxi driver.

Digitalisation is having a major impact on this profession. From tracking systems to passenger counters to services like Uber & Co. Taxi drivers have a difficult future ahead of them. Especially the prospect of mass self-driving cars in 5-10 years is no utopia.

The driving licence for passenger transport, the so-called taxi licence, is issued by the municipal authorities, or the local public order office or the driving licence office. The application has to be made here, which is associated with costs. There are costs for the eye test, certificate of good conduct, processing fee and occupational health certificate.
wolverhampton taxi license

Qualities and skills
Taxi drivers are service providers with customer contact, and here, too, it is important to keep or gain regular customers. Good communication skills should therefore be among the qualities, as should customer-oriented behaviour.

In addition to these qualities, they should have a good sense of direction and be able to find their way around unfamiliar cities. Losing your driving licence, for example due to excessive speed, can threaten your existence, so it is especially important for taxi drivers to respect the road traffic laws.

Applying for a job as a taxi driver
Job advertisements are rare and proper applications, with cover letter and CV, are even rarer. Most taxi drivers recruit through personal enquiry and introduction. It is not uncommon for part-time drivers to become full-time drivers.

If a company wants a written application, the same standards for application documents apply to taxi drivers.

However, since most people in this profession are self-employed, an application is of course not necessary in this case.

More tips on how to apply!

Trends and developments in taxi
Taxi drivers have a bad reputation and are considered poor road users. They often drive in a rowdy and selfish manner and not infrequently pose a danger to road traffic. These are all prejudices, but they are often confirmed.

Especially at rush hour, when they can handle a lot of customers quickly, they don’t take the traffic rules very seriously. Actually, you can’t blame them here, because everyone who earns their money in the transport business knows the pressure, it’s no different with bus drivers, lorry drivers or courier drivers.

But the taxi business will experience a huge change in the next few years, digital tracking mechanisms and control devices in the vehicles will bring every sinner to justice.

So far, the profession has been relatively crisis-proof, but if the middle class in the UK continues to collapse, this will also be felt in the taxi sector. Many medical trips, which are financed by the health insurance companies, could be eliminated in the future.

However, there is a threat of major competition from services such as Uber and others, which, however, are not permitted in this country. What will bring about serious changes in the near future, however, is the development of self-driving cars. This is no longer a fiction, but only a matter of time.

The taxi industry has also faced significant competition from car-sharing providers in the cities.

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