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Taxi & Private Hire Car Licensing

In terms of the Civic Government (Scotland) Act 1982, Aberdeen City Council requires all vehicles operating as a Taxi or a Private Hire Car to be licensed.  Drivers of these vehicles also require to hold a separate Taxi or Private Hire Car Driver's Licence.

There are two categories of vehicle currently licensed by the City of Aberdeen Council:

  • Taxis and,
  •  Private Hire Cars (PHCs).


There is currently a limit on the number of taxi  licence.  The limit is set at 1079.  Anyone wishing to apply for a Taxi Licence will require to register their interest in writing only using the Form of Registration of Interest and should refer to the Guidance Note - Applications for the Grant of Taxi Licences.

Taxis bears a numbered identification plate at the rear. The majority of these rear plates are yellow and are for City zoned taxis.  About 147 vehicles bear a green plate and are airport zoned taxis.  Approximately 45% of taxis are wheelchair accessible vehicles.

Taxis can be hailed on the street or at taxi ranks. They can also be pre-booked.

Private Hire Cars (PHC)

There are approximately 210 private hire cars in Aberdeen. These vehicles do not carry roof signs and have a red identification plate at the rear and a smaller red identification plate at the front.

Private hire cars cannot be hailed on the street or collect passengers at taxi ranks and must be pre booked.


All taxis and most private hire cars carry calibrated taximeters and the maximum fare that can be charged for a journey within Aberdeen is set out in the Taxi Fare Tariff set by the Licensing Committee.  A copy of the Tariff is available in each vehicle for the information of the travelling public.

Fares are calculated using a calibrated meter according to the City of Aberdeen approved tariff.  PHCs with a meter may charge less than the approved fare table indicates.  For taxi journeys outside of Aberdeen, or PHCs without a meter, the fare must be negotiated before the journey commences.

For more information please visit our  Taxi Fares page.

Wheelchair Accessible Vehicles

Vehicles for approval as wheelchair accessible (WAV) need to be examined against our specification at the taxi depot (details below). Applicants should download the application form and guidance notes, complete the form and send to the taxi depot with the fee and appropriate documentation. An appointment will then be given for the vehicle to be examined.

All new applicants must provide a Wheelchair Accessible Vehicle.  The Licensing Committee resolved that the fleet will be 100% wheelchair accessible by 2017.


All taxis and private hire cars must be driven by licensed drivers.


Should you wish to lodge a complaint regarding taxis or private hire cars please contact the Licensing Team, Legal Services, Corporate Governance, Aberdeen City Council, Business Hub 6, Level 1 South, Marischal College, Broad Street, Aberdeen, AB10 1AB or e-mail:

Further Information

If you require advice on any of the following categories please contact the Licensing Team directly at:

  • How to Obtain an Operator's Licence
  • Wheelchair Access
  • Taxi Inspection Centre
  • Vehicle Inspections and Substitutions
  • Reviews of Supply and Demand for Taxis
  • Taxi Fare Review
  • Taxi/Private Hire Car Review

Back to the Licensing home page.