How much deposit do I need?
A deposit of £500 is required when you collect your PCO car rental.
In order to keep your upfront costs as low as possible, this deposit is used toward the excess on your rental policy.
Providing that the car is returned to us undamaged at the end of the rental period, your deposit will be refunded within 30 days of its return. Alternatively, we can apply the deposit to the hire of a new vehicle if you would like to change the make or model of your rental.
Who can hire a private hire car?
To hire one of our PCO vehicles at Ivy Rent-A-Car, we will need you to provide us the following documents:
- Your PCO License (paper copy and badge)
- Your DVLA Driving License
- Two forms of additional identification which list your name and address (must be from a recognised body i.e. bank statement, council tax, utility bill).
Can you deliver a car to me?
Absolutely. If needed, any of our PCO cars can be delivered, with charges for this service based upon the delivery address and any other relevant costs.
Who pays for the upkeep of the vehicle?
Your PCO car hire fee includes MOT, servicing, insurance and tyre wear and tear. Damage to tyres caused by the client is not included in this cover.
What happens if I get a ticket while driving my PCO hire car?
Any tickets incurred during your hire period will be transferred to your name with the addition of a £10 + VAT administration handling fee. Any non-transferable tickets will be charged for.
What is the mileage limit?
150 miles per day are included within your rental with additional miles charged at £0.10 per mile.
What if I damage the car?
While we know that all of our clients will do their utmost to avoid damaging their vehicle, sometimes accidents do happen. If the vehicle gets damaged during your rental period we ask that you call us straight away. We’ll arrange to assess the vehicle and make sure that it is still roadworthy, ensuring you don’t risk any future issues with your PCO licence.
What is the returns process?
We require 72 hours notice prior to the date of your renewal if you intend to return your vehicle. On the day of return the car should be brought to the pick-up address between the hours of 9am and 12pm midday. The car should be returned clean and with the same level of fuel that it had at the beginning of the hire period.
Fees may be charged if these requirements aren’t met.
Cleaning cost - £20
Late return - £50
How much will I be charged for damage?
When damage happens, we try to treat our clients as fairly as possible. This means not overcharging for damage or inflating prices. We charge the cost price of repairs, which takes into account our trade discount with local mechanics.
What is the minimum hire period?
The minimum period of hire for a PCO vehicle is 12 weeks.
Do you provide breakdown cover?
Yes! Despite it being a very rare occasion that you’d need it thanks to our high-quality vehicles, breakdown cover is included in all our rentals. Your rental documents will list a number to call in case of breakdown and our emergency contact number is always available - so you’ll never be left stranded on the roadside.
I’ve been in an accident. What do I do?
We sincerely hope that none of our clients is in a traffic accident, but if you do, these are the steps to follow:
- Park in a safe place if possible
- Exit the vehicle safely
- Call an ambulance/police if required (999)
- Write down the registration, make and model of the other vehicle
- Get contact and insurance details from the other party
- Gather evidence by taking photos and taking details of any witnesses
- Don’t admit liability or discuss it with the other party
- Call us as soon as you can
How to become a private hire driver
To begin receiving fares from Uber you need to be licensed for private hire by Transport for London. This is a requirement for all drivers, whether you work for Uber, chauffeur or provide your own private service.
Transport for London runs the Public Carriage Office, which is the department responsible for issuing PCO licences. In order to make sure that the transport services offered to London’s residents and visitors is of the best quality, they require any applicants to meet certain criteria before being issues with a PCO licence.
Private Hire Driver Licence Requirements
There is a list of requirements that you must first meet in order to be considered for a PCO licence. If applicants satisfy the following criteria they can proceed to the next stage of the process.
- Be at least 21 years of age
- Have a minimum of 3 years driving experience
- Have a valid driving licence from the UK, the European Economic Area (EEA), or a Member State of the European Community (EC).
- If the applicant has a licence from the EEA or EC it must be accompanied with a UK counterpart document (available through the DVLA).
The Application Process
If you meet all of the criteria set out above you are eligible to apply for a PCO licence. You will be required to fill out several forms, all of which are available to download or complete online on the Transport for London website.
Note: Applications submitted online will be processed quicker.
There is a charge of £250 for your application to be processed, £150 of which is non-refundable.
The overall financial cost of applying for a PCO licence, including all relevant checks and applications, can total £600-650, while the process can take anywhere from 3 to 4 months.
All London taxi, Uber and private hire drivers are required to be medically sound as per the criteria for a DVLA Group 2 licence.
A Medical Declaration form (TPH/204) must be completed by both you and your GP or another registered medical practitioner who has access to your full medical history.
This examination takes around 30 minutes and depending on your borough will cost between £80-120.
The Enhanced Disclosure and Barring Service Check (DBS) is used to ensure that you are a trustworthy person who obeys the laws of the land.
A DBS check is a way of displaying to potential employers that you do not have a criminal record, or that what convictions you do have do not make you a risk to members of the public. This process will flag anyone who has a background of committing a sexual or violent crime as unsuitable for a PCO licence.
Living & Working Abroad Form
If you have lived outside the UK for more than a 3 month period during the last 3 years, you will also be required to complete the Living & Working Abroad Form.
This check is similar to a DBS check in that it examines your background and criminal convictions, but while the DBS is based on your time in the UK, this form applies to the country you lived in previously.
Topographical Skills Certificate
Making your way around a city like London is no small task but with advances in technology the only requirement you need is the ability to read a map. This skill is known as topography, and is important for any private hire driver.
You must pass a Topographical Skills Assessment in order to receive a PCO licence and this can either be arranged directly through Transport for London, or through a TFL approved programme - Uber Ignition is one such program.
English Language Requirement
In order to provide an adequate level of service and to keep up to date with information, Transport for London require all drivers to have a good standard of English.
This can be proved by holding a:
- UK GCSE/O Level (or equivalent) certificate
- UK A-Level/AS-Level certificate
- UK NVQ/B Tech/City & Guilds qualification
- UK HNC/HND qualification
- SELT certificate at B1 level or higher from IELTS or Trinity College London
If you do not hold one of the above you’ll need to pass a B1 English Language certificate at an approved centre, this will cost approximately £200.
Have a question which isn’t answered here? Get in touch.
Alternatively, you can also visit TFL website regarding Apply for a private hire driver licence, https://tfl.gov.uk/info-for/taxis-and-private-hire/licensing/private-hire-driver-licence