The UK’s most expensive cities for taxi drivers

Written by Zego

Published on

We recently carried out a study to find the most expensive places to work as a taxi driver in the UK.

We looked at lots of different factors, including startup costs, fuel costs, the average cost of taxi insurance, the initial cost of a DBS certificate, and the average cost of a taxi licensing fee.

As you might expect, London tops the list, but there are a few locations in the top 10 that may surprise you.

Let’s take a look.

The top 10 most expensive cities in the UK for taxi drivers

  1. London
  2. Wakefield
  3. Bradford
  4. Coventry
  5. Edinburgh
  6. Nottingham
  7. Luton
  8. Southampton
  9. Manchester
  10. Wigan

The chart below shows the breakdown of average costs within each location:

The UK’s most expensive cities for taxi driver

London tops the study as the most expensive UK city for taxi drivers, with an average set up price of £1,856, which doesn’t include any actual vehicle costs, either. The licensing fee for a taxi driver for three years in London is around £261.55.

Wakefield is the second most expensive city in the study, with a total startup cost of around £1,828 and a cost of around £642 for a three-year taxi licensing fee. The average price of petrol per litre in Wakefield is £1.40.

In third place is Bradford, where it costs a total £1,714 to start up as a registered taxi driver. The cheapest taxi insurance quote found in Bradford for a taxi driver is £1,471, and a three-year licensing fee is £199.

The rest of the top ten is rounded off by Coventry, Edinburgh, Nottingham, Luton, Southampton, Manchester and Wigan.

The cheapest UK city to become a taxi driver is Inverness in Scotland, with an average total startup cost of around £853.

Hereford is also amongst the cheapest cities for setting up, with an annual taxi insurance cost of around £708.

So, how do the costs compare with your city?

A few tips to help you save money as a taxi driver

1. Choose a smart insurance policy

Most traditional insurance policies are priced on average driver factors – things like age, location and claims history. But they don’t take into account how well you drive on a day-to-day basis.

Smart policies, like Zego Sense, are different. Sense uses app-based technology to measure how you drive. When you drive safely, you build a high driver score in the app. And that means lower prices when you renew.

As a taxi driver, you cover a lot of miles on a regular basis. So by choosing a policy like Sense, you can earn discounts when you drive well, helping you to save a significant amount of money on your private hire taxi insurance.

2. Drive for fuel efficiency

Maintaining efficient driving habits can help to reduce your fuel consumption.

By accelerating smoothly, maintaining a steady speed, planning your routes to minimise mileage, and avoiding unnecessary idling, you will notice the difference in your fuel spending.

3. Look after your vehicle

As a taxi driver, you rely on your vehicle for your income, so a mechanical or engine failure can cause you real problems.

To help you avoid costly repairs, follow the manufacturer's recommended maintenance schedule, check tyre pressure regularly, and keep up with oil changes and other essential services.

4. Get to know your tax deductions

As a taxi driver, there are tax deductions specific to your profession. So, it’s a good idea to keep track of all your expenses related to your business and your vehicle – things like fuel costs, vehicle maintenance and insurance premiums.

And be sure to speak with a tax professional to make sure you’re taking advantage of all eligible deductions.

5. Shop around for insurance

Always shop around for the best insurance deals and don’t just automatically renew with the same provider without checking elsewhere.

Look for policies that offer the coverage you need at the most affordable rates.

Looking to get a quote for taxi insurance? We’ll give you a personalised price in minutes.