Taxis and private hire


Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)

Applicants are required to have read the DBS Enhanced Check Privacy Policy before making an application and applicants will be asked to declare they have read and understood how the DBS will process their personal data on their application form.

The Council strongly encourages all licensed drivers to sign up to the DBS Update Service as it makes the driver renewal process easier.

Please read and/or download the Revised Code of Practice for Disclosure and Barring Service Registered Persons prior to your application.

Please see our The Licensing Partnership Policy statement on the secure storage, handling, use, retention and disposal of Disclosures and Disclosure Information

Before Applying

On this page you will find information you require to either renew or apply for a taxi, vehicle or operator licence. We have a statutory duty to licence all:

  • Hackney carriages
  • Private hire vehicles
  • Operators
  • Drivers

These powers are granted under two acts. The Town Police Clauses Act 1847 and the Local Government (Miscellaneous Provisions Act) 1976.

If you're planning to be a taxi driver, you should read through our Licensing Policy. This'll give you information on what you can and can't do, and what you're entitled to as a driver.

Apply for a new licence

Before you start

To apply for a Hackney, Private Hire or Dual drivers licence you must:

  • Have held a full UK driving licence or acceptable non-UK driving licence for at least a year
  • Have passed our test

Before taking the test

You must provide evidence demonstrating your right to work in the taxi and private hire sector.

If you don't you can't take the test.

The test

You need to correctly answer questions on:

If you're applying to be a Hackney or Dual driver you'll also need to know the Byelaws.

You should watch this safeguarding video before you take the test.

Routes

The Bank of Routes is only a sample of the routes that may come up in the test. It doesn't have all of them. It's your responsibility to ensure your knowledge of Maidstone is broad enough to pass that part of the test. We encourage you to read through our frequently asked questions, study a map or local A-Z.

Booking the test

Contact Sevenoaks District Council on 01732 227001, make payment of £33 and then email your receipt to our Licensing Team. One of our Licensing Officers will contact you to confirm the date and time of your test. If you fail the test three times you won't be allowed to resit the test again for six months. This is to give you more time to develop your knowledge to the level needed to pass the test.

Each test has 63 randomly picked questions. To pass you must score more than 80% in all categories. You have to score 100% in the compulsory and safeguarding category.

View our information booklet about Maidstone Private Hire Policy and Law.

After the test

After successfully completing the test you'll need to complete the following:

Apply for a new taxi licence

You'll need to bring them with you to the Maidstone Link when you complete your DBS application with one of our officers.

If you're applying for a Hackney or Dual licence you'll also need to take a wheelchair test with:

We check all drivers are medically fit, have a thorough knowledge of Maidstone and are fit enough to hold a licence. We also check all licensed vehicles on a regular basis to make sure they are safe. All licensed vehicles have a licence plate which must be fixed to the back and drivers are given a photographic ID card which must be worn at all times while driving.

How long does the licence last

New licences ares issued for three years. We can issue a yearly badge in the first year of applying if requested. Yearly licences can also be given on medical grounds.

Renew your taxi licence

Existing licensed drivers must apply to renew their licence a minimum of 14 days before it expires. Not doing so may mean you have to apply as a new applicant instead.

You must give us your completed medical examination within six weeks of making your renewal application.

To renew your licence you'll need to complete the following:

You can apply online using our online application form.

Renew your taxi licence

You must also make an appointment with a member of the licensing team to complete the following:

Once you're ready to make your application please email licensing@maidstone.gov.uk or call 01622 602000 to make an appointment to meet with an officer.

How long does the licence last

Licences may be issued for up to three years depending on your immigration status and/or medical history. Each application is dealt with on its own merits.

Apply for a vehicle licence

Before applying for a licence, you must read our Taxi Licensing Policy and Our licence fees.

You will also need to supply your:

  • Vehicle registration document/log book (V5C)
  • Insurance certificate
  • Your insurance must allow you to apply for either a taxi driver or private hire operator licence

Your vehicle will need to be booked in for a compliance test. To book this, contact the Licensing Partnership on 01732 227004.

Apply for a licence

How long does the licence last

New licences are issued for one year, and are renewed yearly.

Tariffs

Tariff one

This tariff applies from 6am to 12am. On 24 December and 31 December it applies up to 6pm.

Distance Traveled Time Traveled Fare Head
The first 598.5 metres (654 yards) The first 3 minutes and 5 seconds of waiting time £2.80
Every additional 140.4 metres (153 yards) Every additional 37.2 seconds of waiting time 20p

On 24 December up to 6pm tariff one applies. On 31 December up to 6pm tariff one applies.

Tariff two

This tariff applies on 24 December and 31 December from 6pm to 12am.

Distance Traveled Time Traveled Fare Head
The first 598.5 metres (654 yards) The first 3 minutes and 5 seconds of waiting time £4.20
Every additional 140.4 metres (153 yards) Every additional 37.2 seconds of waiting time 30p

For hirings  between midnight and 6am and all day Sunday and Bank Holidays 50% above tariff one rate except where tariff three applies. From 6pm to Midnight on 24 December tariff two Applies, from 6pm to Midnight on 31 December Tariff two applies.

Tariff three

This tariff applies from 12am on 24 December and 6am on 27 December.

Distance Traveled Time Traveled Fare Head
The first 598.5 metres (654 yards) The first 3 minutes and 5 seconds of waiting time £5.60
Every additional 140.4 metres (153 yards) Every additional 37.2 seconds of waiting time 40p

For hirings between Midnight 24 December and 6am on 27 December tariff three Applies and Midnight on 31 December and 6am on 2 January 100% above tariff one rate.

Extra charges

For vehicles hired by more than two passengers, an extra 10p per person will be charged.

Fares for time

If a Hackney Carriage is hired by time the fare will be agreed with the customer at the time of the hiring.

Taximeter

Apart from extra charges covered in the tables above, drivers aren't allowed to charge more than the fare displayed on the taximeter.

Contamination fee

An additional £50 will be charged if a passenger or animal has soiled or fouled in a Hackney Carriage during the journey.

Apply for a private hire operator licence

If you want to provide pre-booked work for example airport transfers, hen/stag nights etc, you'll need a private hire operator licence.

If you're planning to run the business from home, you may also need to apply for planning permission. For more information about planning, visit our Planning for Business pages.

Before applying for a licence, you must read our Taxi Licensing Policy.

Apply Online

Before making your application you may need to download The Disclosure and Barring Update Service (DBS) & ID Checklist.

If you already hold a current taxi driver licence you can make the application without this.

How long does the licence last

New licences are issued for one year and are renewed yearly.

Apply for a private hire licence

Other ways of applying

Apply by post

You'll need to download our guidance notes to drivers and fill in the private hire, hackney carriage or dual driver licence application form and send it to:

Licensing Partnership
PO Box 182
Sevenoaks
Kent
TN13 1GP

Apply in person

Please call 01622 602000 to book an appointment to see one of our Licensing Officers in The Link in King Street. They'll also be able to answer any queries that you may have about your application.

Fees

Knowledge Test

The knowledge test costs £34 per test.

Hackney Carriage and Dual Drivers

Application

Application type Three year cost One year cost
Initial application £326 £136
Disclosure barring service search fee £40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
£40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
Total (including DBS) £366 £176

The monitor has been removed from the fees.

Renewing

Application type Three year cost One year cost
Renewal £318 £120 for medical or age reasons
Disclosure barring service search fee £40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
£40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
Total (including DBS) £366 £160

Renewing includes £23 towards the Demand Survey and £8 for maintenance of TV monitors.

Private Hires Drivers Licence

Application
Three year cost One year cost
Initial application £249 £149 
Disclosure barring service search fee £40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
£40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
Total £289 £189
Renewal
Three year cost One year cost
Renewal £244 £131 due to age or medical reasons
Disclosure barring service search fee £40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
£40 every one or three years depending on the licence.
£13 online.
Total £288 £271

Hackney Carriage Vehicle Licence

Application typeCost
New and renewals £301

Renewing includes £23 towards the Demand Survey and £8 for maintenance of TV monitors.

Vehicle testing fees have been removed from our fees and are now paid directly to the Garage.

Private Hire Vehicle Licence

Application typeCost
New and renewals £279

Vehicle testing fees have been removed from our fees and are now paid directly to the Garage.

Private Hire Operators Licence

TypeProposed
5 year application £509
5 year renewal £425
3 year application £356
3 year renewal £289
1 year application £205
1 year renewal £136

Other costs

TypeProposed
Change of ownership of licenced vehicle £73
Replace external vehicle plate £25
Replace driver badge £11
Replace internal plate holder £1.75
Copy of existing paper licence £12
Change of address for a replacement licence £12
Change of name for a vehicle or operators licence £12
Change of name and address for a drivers badge £22
Vehicle exemption certificate or general admin fee £47
Vehicle re-test Testing fees are now paid to a garage.