Guidance on applying for taxi driver’s or private hire car driver’s licence

Individuals who want to operate as a Taxi Driver or Private Hire Car Driver within the Aberdeen City Council boundary can apply for a licence using the application form available from Licensing Application Forms.

A licensed Taxi Driver can operate any Taxi or Private Hire Car licensed by Aberdeen City Council.

A licensed Private Hire Car Driver can operate any Private Hire Car licensed by Aberdeen City Council.

What are the minimum requirements for applying?

Before you can apply for a Taxi Driver’s or Private Hire Car Driver’s Licence you must meet these minimum requirements:-

  • Be able to work legally in the UK;
  • Be fit to drive (to DVLA Group 2 medical standards) and
  • Have held for a period of 12 consecutive months prior to the date your application is lodged either a UK Driving Licence issued by DVLA or an equivalent EAA Driving Licence.

Important change for taxi, private hire and scrap metal license holders or applicants:

As of 2 October 2023, any individual, company or partnership must now complete a tax check when:

  • Renewing a licence;
  • Applying for the same type of licence previously held, that stopped being valid less than a year ago; or
  • Applying for the same type of licence already held with another licencing authority.

This tax check is to confirm you are registered for tax (where applicable). You will be asked questions about how you pay any tax that may be due on income you earn from your licenced trade. 

Once you have completed the tax check, you will be given a 9-character code which you will need to give to the licensing team along with your licencing application. Our team cannot process your licence without this code and your application will be returned to you until this is complete. 

You can complete the tax check at the following link - Complete a tax check for a taxi, private hire or scrap metal licence - GOV.UK (

For the avoidance of doubt, Aberdeen City Council do not receive any of your tax information, only confirmation that you have completed the relevant check. 

How do you apply?

To apply for a Licence you should complete the appropriate application form available from Licensing Application Forms and submit it to the Licensing Section by email to . Your application must be accompanied by the required supporting documents set out in part 6 of the guidance.

The relevant fee must also be paid via the Aberdeen City Council Payment Portal at the same time the application is submitted.

List of all licencing fees

Frequently asked questions

Depending on your circumstances you can apply for one of three types of application.
If you do not currently hold a licence with this Council you can apply for the following:


If you do not currently hold a licence you can make a Grant application. This type of licence lasts for one year. You will be required to pass Aberdeen City Councils’ Street Knowledge Test. You will not be licensed to operate as a Taxi Driver or Private

Hire Car Driver until the licence is granted. Street Knowledge Test application forms are available Online. The cost of each application is £15 and this covers one test. There are no limitations on the number of test sat however you must submit a new application and pay the £15 fee for each test. The fee must also be paid online.


You can apply for a temporary licence that lasts for a period of no more than 6 weeks (you will still be required to pass the street knowledge test). You will not be licensed to operate as a Taxi Driver or Private Hire Car Driver until the temporary licence is granted.

If you lodge a grant application for the relevant licence prior to the expiry of your temporary licence, you can continue to operate beyond the expiry of your temporary licence whilst the grant application is being considered.

If you currently hold a licence with this Council you can apply to renew the licence before it expires.


Your renewal application must be lodged no later than the expiry date of your current licence. You cannot submit your renewal application more than two months before the expiry of the licence. As long as your renewal is lodged before the expiry of your current licence you can continue to operate whilst the application is being considered.

Driving licence

A copy of your current Driving Licence (front & back) issued by DVLA must accompany the application.

Copy of current driving licence record held by DVLA

When lodging your application you will need to provide a copy of your current electronic Driving Licence Summary record held by DVLA. You can do this by using the ‘View or Share your Driving Licence Information’.

This service allows you to share your Driving Licence information by creating a one page summary of your record which details the following information:

  • your details
  • vehicles you can drive
  • penalties and disqualifications

The single page summary of your driving licence record must be produced no more than five days prior to the date your application is lodged with the licensing department.

Both taxis and private hire cars can be pre-booked.

The main difference is that a taxi can be ‘hailed’ in the street or from a recognised taxi stance;  a private hire car can only pick up passengers who have pre-arranged a booking.

All applicants must provide evidence of their right to work in the UK you can find out more on the UK Government website.

A 28 day consultation period begins on receipt of your application. Any person can object to your application at this stage.

During this period your application will be sent to Police Scotland. The Police may object or make a representation to the application if they do not consider you a ‘fit and proper person’ to hold a licence. The Police may also charge you with an offence if you have made a false statement on your application form or failed to declare convictions.

The application may also be passed to UK Visas and Immigration if we need to confirm your immigration status and/or right to work in the UK.

Once the 28 day consultation period is complete, we will review your application.

If the Council has a concern regarding your fitness to drive, we will normally ask you to undergo a medical examination at this stage. The Council will pay for this examination.

If no adverse comments have been received and there are no other issues with your application, it will then be considered ‘straightforward’ and placed on a list of applications to be granted. We will then contact you, in writing once the application has been granted.

If there is a problem with the application such as a Police Objection we will refer the application to a meeting of the Licensing Committee for a decision. It this happens you will receive a letter requesting your attendance at the meeting and explaining the reason you are being called. Although you are not legally required to attend it is recommended that you do so. We will contact you, in writing, after the meeting to advise you of the Committee’s decision.

Yes. There are standard conditions attached to all Taxi Drivers and Private Hire Car Drivers Licences. A copy of these conditions is provided with the licence. As a licensed driver you will be expected to comply with every condition. Failure to do so may result in the Council suspending your licence.

You will receive an email advising that your application has been granted. The  email will include your licence and licence conditions and will explain how you collect your identification badge and include the appropriate form.

You will receive an email advising that your application has been refused. You have the right to appeal the decision at Aberdeen Sheriff Court provided you were in attendance at the relevant Licensing Committee meeting.

The Council is allowed six months to consider your application but we aim to deal with all applications as soon as possible.

Applications which are not straightforward (e.g. Police Scotland object to the application) have to be referred to the Licensing Committee and can take up to 6 months to process.

The fact that you have certain convictions does not prevent you applying nor does it guarantee that you will be refused. Every application is considered on its own merit.

The fact that you have a medical condition does not prevent you applying nor does it guarantee that you will be refused.

The Council expects driver of Taxis and Private Hire Cars to be fit to the Group 2 Standards adopted by DVLA.

If you have a medical condition you must declare this on your application form. You will then be referred for medical examination to assess your fitness to Group 2 Standards; the Council will pay for this medical.

If you have any further questions about the application process the Council’s Licensing Team will be happy to assist you. Please note that whilst the Licensing Team can provide guidance, the team cannot offer you legal advice.
You can contact us in person or by phone or email.

Licensing Team:                        
Marischal College                         

01224 522878 or 522879


For advice or to submit an application, contact the Licensing team

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