Frequently Asked Questions
Here are some of the frequently asked questions about TaxiCall, but please contact us if there are other questions you have.
What type of Group can use TaxiCall?
TaxiCall has been in constant development since 2005, keeping up with changes in the way Taxi Groups of different types work. We believe that no two Groups that use TaxiCall operate in exactly the same way! The key to any Group is that it and the drivers must be licensed. TaxiCall will then work for any combination of Hackney, Private Hire, or Mixed Group – using an Office, Virtual Office (workers at home), or Direct to Driver (when allowed) – and organised as a Limited Company, Partnership, Co-Operative, Sole Owner, or even under an informal agreement between friends.
Can Private Hire Drivers take Direct to Driver calls?
Private Hire drivers who hold a Single Vehicle Operator’s Licence are licensed to take bookings for themselves. So a group of one-man Operators could work together as a TaxiCall circuit, each taking bookings under their own licence. Each Operator would be responsible for complying with the conditions of his or her licence, including maintaining the record of bookings taken*. In some cases, drivers may not be able or may not want each to take out a single vehicle Operator’s licence. In this case, one member of the group may take out a Multi-Vehicle Operator’s Licence to cover bookings taken by other drivers who only hold a Private Hire driver’s licence. In this situation, the individual holding the Multi-Vehicle Operator’s Licence is taking on the additional responsibility of keeping records of all the bookings taken* by drivers under the licence, and of the licences of those drivers and their vehicles.
Some Licensing Authorities have a standard condition for a Multi-Vehicle Operator’s Licence that the Operator must have suitable premises for an office, complete with planning permission for use as an office and sufficient parking. However, such conditions are required by law to be ‘reasonably necessary’ and this is not so in the case of a TaxiCall circuit since it can hardly be reasonable to require an Operator to have an office if it is not needed. It is advisable to check with your Local Licensing Authority. We are always available to be contacted if yours raises any issues.
* A UK Local Licensing Authority now accepts the details and recordings of every incoming call or booking held by the TaxiCall system for a minimum of one year instead of a written record – saving a huge amount of work.
Do Hackney drivers need a private hire operator's license to take phone bookings?
The short answer is – no. The principle was established in 2004 in the High Court case Brentwood Borough Council vs Andrew Ernest Gladen. Since then, licensing officers across the country have agreed that licensed hackney carriage drivers may take bookings through a central telephone number. This means licensed
hackney carriage drivers can operate a TaxiCall service with no additional licence required.
Can we use our existing telephone number with TaxiCall?
Absolutely no problem.
Can we join the Taxicall Network and still use an existing system?
Absolutely no problem. TaxiCall can work alongside existing staffing arrangements and systems.
How do drivers log in and out of the system?
Logging in and out of the system is done from the Driver’s phone or App, takes just a second or two, and it’s free. If you call in by phone the TaxiCall system recognises your number and logs you in or out, but it doesn’t answer the call so there is no charge. Drivers using the Driver App can just change the tick on the “Available For Jobs” box with a single touch.
What if a customer calls again to re-schedule or cancel a pick-up?
With the optional Repeat Call feature, customers that call again from the same number within a specified period (normally 30 or 60 minutes from the original call) are put straight through to the same person that they talked to before. Instead of the normal announcement, you hear the message: “Repeat Call” and are connected to the customer immediately. For regular callers, such as clubs and restaurants who might genuinely want to book several taxis in quick succession, you can selectively turn off the Repeat Call option.
Do drivers need any special equipment?
Only a Smartphone (Android or iPhone).
How is the service managed?
When a group or association of drivers signs up to TaxiCall, we give the organiser an account number and a PIN for logging in to our secure Web pages, where they can check account status, view a history of all the calls received, add new drivers, and update drivers’ mobile numbers. The organiser has complete control over your TaxiCall circuit.
What is the contractual commitment to TaxiCall?
The only commitment is to pay for the service you have used. For years we have relied on our ability to keep our customers happy – but if for any reason they find they no longer need us, there is no further commitment.
How are TaxiCall payments collected?
Each month, a few days after the day of the month on which your account was set up, we send the TaxiCall circuit organiser an invoice that includes a detailed statement of how much each driver owes. The organiser is responsible for collecting individual driver contributions and for settling the invoice, or we can collect on your behalf from each individual driver by direct debit. Organisers can pay: By direct debit, by card using our secure online payment page, or by direct bank transfer, using internet or telephone banking.
How much does TaxiCall cost?
Each Driver and Office phone number registered to Log In to TaxiCall costs £1 per week.
Customer bookings received direct from the Customer App or entered for dispatch on your Job List cost 10p.
Customer calls handled and dealt with by TaxiCall but not answered by one of your phones cost 4p.
Customer calls answered by one of your phones and recorded cost 15p.
TaxiCall is a service provided by Cambridge Tele.com Ltd.
Invoices are sent 4 weekly and payments collected by Direct Debit.
VAT is charged at the standard rate. VAT Reg’n No. 776 127411