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How Much Do Taxi Drivers Earn?

Do you think about being a taxi driver and want to know how much taxis drivers earn? New tax checks come into effect for all taxi drivers in April 2022 across the UK. Therefore, this is the best time to discuss the opportunities in this industry. Interestingly, the total number of licensed taxis and private hire vehicles dropped by 15.9% in 2021. This decrease can be largely attributed to the Coronavirus pandemic. Subsequently, this could present an opportunity for new and existing drivers to take advantage of the demand for taxi drivers.

Acorn Insurance is a specialist provider of taxi insurance since 1982. This guide allows you to explore how much taxi drivers earn across private hire, hackney, and rideshare drivers alike.

Taxi driver salary UK

Firstly, how much you can earn as a taxi driver depends on several factors. A UK taxi driver can earn from £14k to £40k per year. This can depend on their location, the volume of work and level of experience. However, the average salary for taxi drivers is around £24k per year or £415 per week. Finally, due to the lack of demand for drivers in small towns their earning potential is significantly less than black cab drivers in busy cities such as London. *

This breaks down to an hourly rate between £9-15. Low pay scale drivers would need to work around 60+ hours weekly to achieve an annual salary of approximately £30k. Therefore, by working strategically, at peak times, in high volume areas you could achieve a higher salary per annum. Additionally, you would need to work fewer hours to achieve this.

Example taxi driver earnings

Below is a sample of UK locations and the average earnings taxi drivers could expect to earn there.

  • Aberdeen: With 60% of Aberdeen taxi drivers now over 60, becoming a driver in Aberdeen is potentially rewarding for years to come. With a 50% drop of taxi drivers returning to work after lockdown Aberdeen has only 500 cars servicing 230,000 people.
    Aberdeen drivers can earn between £8-£11 per hour meaning an average take-home of between £950-£1,200 per month.
  • Belfast: With average earnings of 8% lower, Belfast cab drivers can expect to earn between £18k-20k based on a 30–45-hour workweek. This is due to a decrease in demand for inner-city taxis since the introduction of the Glider Bus service. This service conveniently links east Belfast, west Belfast, and the Titanic Quarter with the city centre
  • London: Generous peak tariffs, increased demand, and a higher cost of living. All these factors mean that London drivers can earn on average 45% more than other UK drivers. Entry-level drivers can earn approximately £21k per annum, whilst more experienced drivers can earn a salary of up to £41k. This supports an hourly rate of around £12-18, with the capacity to work long hours for greater earnings.
  • Manchester: Unsurprisingly, as a bustling metropolitan hub Manchester’s demand for taxi services is high. This is reflected in the average monthly driver earnings of between £1400-1600. The average salary in Manchester ranges from £19k to £48k approximately.

How do taxi drivers get paid?

There are many ways taxi drivers can get paid. Payment methods include card, contactless, and cash payments. Additionally, with an 83% majority of drivers being self-employed, all money earned during journeys (fare and tip) goes directly to them. Furthermore, rideshare apps now enable passengers to prepay for rides directly from their mobile phones, and the payment could be received the same day.

With most taxi drivers being self-employed they will be expected to provide their own vehicle, fuel, and pay for other expenses such as toll road payments from their pocket. These costs can prove significant if not managed and considered sensibly. For fuel-saving tips check out our blog “How to save fuel”. Shopping around for your fuel and driving a fuel economic vehicle whilst driving sensibly can all help towards saving you money long term.

Income tax, national insurance, and road tax are also essential costs that need to be factored in as a self-employed taxi driver. You retain the freedom to work family-friendly hours as a self-employed driver, allowing you to make your schedule and be your own boss. This is an ideal career choice for those who like to be on the road, enjoy their own company, and an ideal source of additional income as a second occupation. This means your earnings can fluctuate depending on how many hours you choose to work that day/week/month.

Where can I buy taxi insurance?

With 40 years of experience in the insurance industry, we assess each taxi driver’s policy individually and specialise in providing dedicated taxi cover for each customer. We consider all drivers, even if you have a past conviction or points on your licence. We will endeavour to help you, no matter what your driving background or history.

Get a dedicated, specialist taxi insurance quote today!

Click Get a Quote for a no-obligation online quotation now! At Acorn, we will do everything we can to make sure your taxi insurance policy is tailored to your needs and is right for you.

*All figures correct at time of writing 24/01/22

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