Choosing your Private Hire Vehicle

Once you’ve got your PCO Licence you will want to start working and earning as soon as possible and obviously you’ll need a car for that but you can’t just jump in any old car as all vehicles used for private hire need to be licensed by the Public Carriage Office but don’t worry as there are several options open to you which are detailed below.


As you’re starting a completely new career you should seriously consider renting your first minicab to avoid having to spend a large outlay on something you are only just getting into. This will allow you to avoid the licensing process as the car will already be licensed, and also avoid other costs such as MOT, insurance, breakdown cover, etc.

Many operators offer their cabbies the chance to hire directly from them with costs of around £150-£200 per week or £35 per shift. This is a great way to settle into private hire and also gives you the luxury of trying out different models of car and seeing which one you maybe want to purchase in the future.


Buying a car is expensive no matter what you’re intending to do with it, but if you’re considering driving as a full-time career then it’s definitely something to consider. There are certain restrictions on the type of vehicle you can use for private hire work and new vehicles or vehicles new to licensing must be no older than 5 years and meet the Euro 4 standards for emissions at time of licensing. You will also have to take the car to be licensed and there is a cost of £100 for a 12 month period.

Other factors to consider are maintenance costs,repairs,devaluation, etc that come with buying a new car plus if you’re covering a lot of miles then expect your resale value to be lower. Before buying it’s also worth getting a quick car insurance quote and these can vary depending on the vehicle.

You can of course buy second hand and if you buy a car already licensed then it could be up to 10 years old as they get grandfather status of already being licensed before the new rules can in force in 2012. Use the PCO licence checker to see when they were licensed.

Using Your Own Car

You can use your own car but as with above they can’t be older than 5 years old.