26th June 2019

The Fees Effect: Changes to Private Hire legislation

By Oliver Greaves
Account Handler

The Chauffeur and Private Hire industry is ever-evolving and staying up to date with these changes can be hard. The most recent changes to be aware of are that and the Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) has come into effect in central London.

Congestion Charge:

Not many people realise the costs/fees that come with the job. An extra £11.50 a day may not sound like a lot to some people, but it adds up. Let’s say on average, as a private driver or chauffeur you work 280 days a year and for 230 of them you must enter the congestion zone. That’s an extra £2,645 in fees a year. Larger companies will obviously have a more significant cost for having more vehicles on the road, and that’s on top of the two extra MOTs needed a year plus the licencing fees.

These extra costs are just some of the reasons Aston Lark don’t charge admin/processing fees. We care for all our clients, from the big private hire companies to the smaller one vehicle policies. We want to help alleviate additional costs and help maintain the industry as being one of the leading trades in the UK and London.

Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ)

The Ultra-Low Emission Zone (ULEZ) is operational every day of the year in Central London (within the same area of London as the Congestion Charge). And it’s not just big vans and lorries being hit by this. Most vehicles, including cars and motorcycles, need to meet the ULEZ emissions standards. If their vehicle doesn’t they must pay a daily charge to drive within the zone. £12.50 for most vehicles, including cars, motorcycles and vans (up to and including 3.5 tonnes). Transport for London has introduced this new charge to “help improve air quality”.

The TfL website defines these standards as:

• Euro 4 (NOx) for petrol cars, vans, minibuses and other specialist vehicles.

• Euro 6 (NOx and PM) for diesel cars, vans and minibuses and other specialist vehicles.

Have you checked that your vehicle meets these standards?

Whether you’ve already got yourself a new vehicle or you plan to purchase one soon, this will be an expensive time of year for most chauffeurs due to the executive vehicles you require.

Some may argue the introduction of ULEZ will not solve the issue but move it. What will happen to all the vehicles that don’t meet the standards set by TfL? Most executive private hire vehicles will go to nearby cities such as Birmingham, Chelmsford and Reading, and this will mean these cities emissions will increase exponentially.

Aston Lark's Chauffeur team like to stay up to date with all these changes in the private hire industry so if you have any questions on any of the new charges, please don’t hesitate to call us on 0330 008 5039 or email chauffeur@astonlark.com for more information.