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Taxi insurance – An overview
With the huge rise in the number of Uber drivers on UK roads, more and more individuals are looking for taxi insurance and what it means for them. And that’s why it’s important – if you drive passengers around for a living – to understand exactly what type of insurance you require, and how to find the best deal on it.
Many Uber drivers may be confused by the fact that, although their standard personal insurance policy may include ‘business cover’ that doesn’t actually refer to their taxi. That’s because being paid for transporting people or goods means you’ll require a more detailed type of insurance policy and which is called Hire and Reward cover (we’ll go on to discuss this below).
Meanwhile, how much should taxi insurance cost? Well, most brokers reckon you shouldn’t pay more than £1800 a year for it; with some policies costing as little as £1300.
Hire and reward insurance
This is an essential insurance cover for both taxi and Uber drivers. In fact, it’s also required if you use your care for ridesharing, delivering food, or regularly driving schoolchildren to a prom/guests to a wedding for which you get paid.
You’ll need this if you run a pre-booking service for a minicab or have a car you use for rideshares.
Public hire insurance
This is for a traditional taxi service i.e. a vehicle that you can hail on the high street, at a taxi rank or by phone booking
As its name suggests, this is to insure you against any ‘gaps’ in the cost of an equivalent vehicle as yours (in terms of age and condition) if your own is written off or stolen and worthless money. Essentially this means you don’t have to keep paying for a car that you no longer own.
If driving a taxi or minicab for you is more than being a one-man band i.e. it’s your full-time business and you actually own a fleet of taxi vehicles, then you’ll definitely be looking for taxi fleet insurance cover. It allows you to save money on your insurance policy by covering all vehicles under one policy. It may also be an idea to get the all-driver cover too, insuring any of your drivers to operate any of those fleet cars.
Public liability insurance
If a ride you’ve picked up later makes a claim against you for a personal injury or lost belongings etc then you’ll want to be covered for any court costs and possible compensation. Most taxi insurance policies in major cities such as London, Birmingham, Cardiff, Liverpool, Leeds or Manchester have it – but not all, so it’s worth reading the small print.
Loss of earnings cover
If, after an accident, you can’t drive (and therefore earn) then you could still be paid if this is in your policy.
Personal injury cover
If you’ve damaged your back or legs etc in an accident and returning to driving a cab is simply impossible, then you will still receive money with this type of cover.
How to go about getting a cheapest quote?
As well as being covered for driving a black cab (the LCI TX1, TX4 or FX), passenger van, (Ford Galaxy, Mercedes Vito & other) or saloons like Audi, Vws and Mercs, there are other bonuses a 9-seater or a standard 5-seater taxi insurance policy can have. This includes being covered for your iPhone, laptop and other electronic equipment if it goes missing from the car.
Since taxi driving happens to be your livelihood you will also want your cover to include a similar replacement vehicle to allow you to continue working. To find add-ons like these, as well as some of the best quotes around either carefully shop around yourself or use a comparison like ourselves (we’ve done most of the hard work for you).
Tips on getting the cheap taxi insurance
- Always pay your insurance off in one go; paying monthly results in your having to fork out extra interest
- Get a high category Thatcham 1 or 2-rated security alarm or immobiliser system Alternatively fit a CCTV camera to your taxi. This way your insurance premiums will be lowered.
- Sign up for breakdown cover when getting taxi insurance as you’ll get a reduction for buying both at the same time
- You can expect a lower premium from a company that specialises in taxi insurance
- If you have low annual mileage, then definitely let your insurance company know since they’re likely to reduce the cost for you
- Always shop around since taxi insurance quotes can vary markedly depending on how particular companies calculate certain factors
- The safer the driver you are, the lower your taxi insurance premiums will be
Taxi insurance FAQs
Q – What’s the difference between ‘policy only’ cover and ‘named driver’ cover?
A – With the latter, only the person whose name is on the policy will be insured to drive the vehicle while further names can be added to ‘policy only’ insurance (although each additional name will put up the cost)
Q – My taxi has recently been adapted so that it now has disabled access for wheelchairs. Should I let my insurance company know?
A – Yes. In the event of an accident, the taxi repair bill could come to a lot more than if you didn’t have the disabled access. Not declaring this type of modification could result in your insurance being invalidated.
Q – I’ve been driving a car for my own use for several years now and have an impressive no claims bonus. Would my taxi insurance take this in to account?
A – Most taxi insurance companies will take your clean record into account when calculating your final premium but, by law, you can’t simply ‘transfer’ a personal no claims bonus to your working taxi insurance
Q – My son keeps on at me to use my taxi to take him to pubs and clubs when out with his mates. But I tell him this would invalidate my insurance. He says I’m wrong.
A – This is a bit of a grey area. It really depends on your specific insurance policy since some don’t allow you to use the vehicle privately when not working, while others are perfectly fine about it…