There are two types of taxi that operate in the borough:
(1) Hackney Carriages – these are black and will have a WHITE taxi licence plate displayed at the rear of the vehicle, with a smaller version displayed inside the vehicle.
(2) Private Hire Vehicle (minicabs) – these are normal passenger vehicles and must display a BLUE taxi licence plate at the rear of the vehicle.
Private Hire Vehicles carrying any other colour plate, or not carrying a plate at all are not licensed by Milton Keynes Council.
Do not get into a Private Hire Vehicle unless you’ve booked it in advance. It is illegal for drivers of Private Hire Vehicles to ply for trade and pick up passengers who haven’t pre-booked – and they won’t be insured for the journey. Only drivers of Hackney Carriages are permitted (and insured!) to carry passengers who have hailed them on the street or at a taxi rank.
All taxi drivers are issued with an ID card (their Operators Badge), which must be on display at all times either on their person or at the front of the vehicle where it can be seen by passengers. If you cannot see the driver’s ID card then ask them to show it to you – if they can’t, or won’t then do not get in the vehicle!
When booking a Private Hire Vehicle to collect you (especially when out for the evening) ask for the driver’s name, and the make and colour of the car. When the car arrives ask for the driver’s name and company and the name of the passenger they have come to collect. Always check the driver’s ID card. Then check its BLUE taxi licence plate that must be displayed at the rear of the vehicle. If there is no taxi licence plate on display or if it is out of date or if the details on it do not match the vehicle, then do not get in – walk away and arrange for another taxi no matter how much inconvenience this causes you.
Make a note of the Private Hire Company you are using, and its telephone number, and if possible leave it with a friend
If you are travelling alone in a taxi, sit in the back seat behind the driver
If you feel uneasy at any point, ask to be let out in a well-lit area where there are a lot of people
If you have any doubts about using a particular taxi, make an excuse and do not get into the vehicle
Do not hesitate to report any incident where a driver has been rude or made you feel uncomfortable and the incident cannot be classed as trivial. Make a note of the driver’s name and the taxi licence plate details then complain to the council taxi licensing team on 01908 253599. Please note that you can only complain to the council licensing team if the taxi and driver in question are licensed by Milton Keynes Council.