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Wiltshire Council issues advice on taxi charges in the county

Following concerns that some taxi drivers in Wiltshire are adding extra charges to fares to help meet rising costs, Wiltshire Council has issued advice to all taxi users about what drivers can charge.

Published 25 July 2022
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Following concerns that some taxi drivers in Wiltshire are adding extra charges to fares to help meet rising costs, Wiltshire Council has issued advice to all taxi users about what drivers can charge.

Hackney carriages can only charge based on the schedule of fares and tariffs published by the council, and customers should check they are only being charged what is displayed on the fare sheet shown in the cab. However, a hackney carriage can also agree a fare for the journey before it begins, but this fare cannot be more than the metered fare. If a fare is not agreed to prior to the journey starting, drivers must charge what is shown on the meter and no more. A hackney carriage can only charge more than the metered fare when the journey ends outside the district that licensed the hackney carriage; and the higher fare is stated and agreed before the journey starts.

No other charges, such as fuel surcharges or additional charges for clean air zone areas, can be added to the total, and drivers who are found to have overcharged could be reported to the licensing committee, which could revoke or suspend their licence.

The council is also working to help taxi drivers and operators with soaring fuel prices, and has just completed a consultation with all hackney carriage licence holders in the county on proposals to increase the tariff 1 fare rate, from 6am to 10.30pm, by 10%. All other tariffs would remain as they are under these proposals.

Cllr Dr Mark McClelland, Cabinet Member for Transport, said: We've had some reports of taxi drivers adding charges to the tariff as a way of meeting rising costs, and it's important for passengers to understand that they cannot do this.

However, we do recognise the cost pressures faced by taxi drivers, and that's why we have recently completed a consultation with drivers on whether to raise the fare rate from 6am to 10.30pm by 10%. We'll know the results of this consultation soon and will take action once we have considered the feedback.

Part of our Business Plan mission is to have vibrant, well-connected communities and growing economies, and a thriving public transport network is part of that. It's for this reason that we're listening to the views of hackney carriage licence holders here in Wiltshire, while also ensuring that taxi users are charged according to the law.

If people have any questions about taxis in Wiltshire, they should contact fleet.licensing@wiltshire.gov.uk (opens new window), or people can register complaints at www.wiltshire.gov.uk/licences-permits-transport.

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