MQT on 2017-06-22
Session date: 
June 22, 2017
Question By: 
Caroline Pidgeon
Liberal Democrats
Asked Of: 
The Mayor


Reading Council recently prosecuted two TfL licensed private hire drivers for plying for hire by showing their availability on the Uber App to be instantly hired.  The judge deemed that this showed the drivers were waiting unbooked and soliciting for hire.

Do you agree with the court decision that Uber drivers are plying for hire and do you intend to take any action to tackle this issue amongst drivers licensed by TfL?


Answer for Uber

Answer for Uber

Answered By: 
The Mayor

Transport for London (TfL) is in contact with Reading Borough Council regarding the matter.

Defining plying for hire and pre-booked services is a national issue that affects all licensing authorities within England and Wales. As the law stands, plying for hire is difficult to prove and requires significant enforcement resources. As such, it is crucial that Government introduces a statutory definition which will ensure a consistent approach is taken across the country - something TfL is lobbying for. The offence of plying for hire will depend on the facts of each case, but where there is evidence that a private hire vehicle driver is plying for hire, appropriate enforcement action will be taken.

In 2016, I announced TfL would recruit 250 additional Taxi and Private Hire Compliance Officers by September - 225 are now in place, alongside the exiting 82 Compliance Officers.