The Transport for London (TfL) Board met on Wednesday 5 February 2014 and approved a number of changes to taxi fares and tariffs in London.
The changes to the taxi fares and tariffs come into effect this Saturday - 5 April 2014 so you need to have your taximeter updated on this date or as close to this date as possible.
At its meeting the Board approved an increase to taxi fares of 0.7%.
The Board also approved:
• An extension of the fuel price extra which would see a 40 pence additional charge for all taxi journeys implemented if London retail diesel prices (as measured by the AA fuel price report) reach the threshold figure of 175.48 pence per litre
• A charge of £2 for taxis booked using mobile applications, any application software or the internet (an extension of the already existing telephone booking fee)
• Changes to the card payment surcharge when passengers pay by credit or debit card so that there is a maximum surcharge of £1 or 10% of the fare (previously 12.5%). In addition, in order to ensure compliance with the Consumer Rights (Payment Surcharges) Regulations 2012 drivers must not charge passengers more than it costs them to accept credit or debit card payments.
• A reduction of the Heathrow Airport passenger extra from £3.20 to £2.80
• Approved revised fares for fixed-fare, shared-taxi trips from the
Wimbledon Tennis Championships to different areas of London
• Delegated to the Managing Director of Surface Transport the authority to approve new, and amend existing, fixed-fare, shared-taxi schemes with a maximum limit of £20.00 for the fares that can be approved
• The Christmas and New Year extra being automatically added to the taximeter from December 2016
The Board also:
• Endorsed a review of card acceptance in taxis and supported card acceptance being mandated so that passengers can pay for taxi journeys by credit or debit card in all licensed taxis
• Requested a review of the Heathrow Airport Passenger Extra and asked for fixed-fares for taxi trips from Heathrow Airport to central London to be further explored
• Endorsed a review of the date when taxi fares and tariffs are increased and this date being aligned with bus and rail fare increases (January)
Card payment surcharges and card acceptance in taxis
In order to ensure compliance with the Consumer Rights (Payment Surcharges) Regulations 2012, taxi drivers must not charge passengers who wish to pay for a taxi journey by debit or credit card more than it costs the driver to accept credit or debit card payments.
The regulations cover taxi passengers who pay by debit or credit card and have been introduced following a consultation by the Department for Business Innovation and Skills. A copy of the consultation outcome, the regulations and guidance on the regulations are available on the Inside Government website here and more information is available in TPH Notice 15/13.
The maximum charge that can be passed onto the passengers who pay by debit or credit card will now be £1.00 or 10% of the metered fare, whichever is greater. Even if it costs a driver more than £1.00 or 10% of the metered fare to accept credit or debit card payments they cannot charge passengers more than this.
Where it costs drivers less than £1.00 or 10% of the metered fare to accept credit or debit card payments then the amount it costs the driver is the maximum charge that can be passed on to the passenger.
For example if it costs a driver 50 pence to accept credit or debit card payments then the maximum charge that can be passed onto the passengers who pay by debit or credit card is 50 pence.
Fares at Heathrow Airport and London City Airport
The Board considered a request for a new extra charge for passengers taking a taxi from London City Airport to be introduced however, they did not support this and so no extra charges for taxi passengers at London City Airport are being introduced.
In addition to the Heathrow Airport extra being reduced the Board also asked for this extra charge to be reviewed and recommended that it be removed
completely. A review of this extra charge will be conducted in 2014 with the intention that any further changes are submitted to the Board for consideration at its meeting in September 2014.
Christmas and New Year extra
From December 2016 the Christmas and New Year extra must be added to the fare automatically by the taximeter. The reason for choosing this date and not making the change sooner is that from October 2016 there is a statutory requirement that all taximeters must be certified to be compliant with the Measuring Instruments Directive (MID). This requirement will involve changes being made to some taximeters and, in some cases, additional testing being conducted and new approval from TfL or BSI being required.
As there is a statutory requirement that all taximeters must certified to be compliant with the MID from October 2016, it was felt appropriate that both changes should be introduced at the same time to avoid increased costs as a result of making changes at different times and also avoid higher costs being passed on to drivers and then ultimately passengers.
03 April 2014 Interim General Manager
For previous TPH Notices visit tfl.gov.uk/tph London Taxi and Private Hire