London Taxis Congestion Charges
Here at InstaCab we have our finger firmly on the pulse of Taxis in the London area. Whether that be an airport transfer to Heathrow, Gatwick or Stansted, or simply a way to get around the city, we are able to help you to make sure that you pay the best price possible for your journey. Not only this, but we also keep our eye out for anything that could possibly mean that your taxi journey costs more than usual. One piece of news that we have picked up of late is that private hire operators travelling to, in and around London are now going to have to pay congestion charges.
The changes to London congestion charges
Since its introduction, the congestion charge has not applied to those who are driving a private hire vehicle around London. However, on the 8th
April this is set to change. Those who drive minicabs, private hire vehicles and those who drive Ubers too, will no longer be exempt from the daily charge for driving around the capital. Currently this is set at £11.50 per day.
Why have these changes been put in place?
The reasons for the congestion charge being introduced 15 years ago were and still are clear. The idea was to ensure that a charge was applied to any vehicles who are not zero-emission when entering certain areas of London. This was to ensure that the air in the capital, particularly in those high congestion areas, was much cleaner and better to breathe in. These charges worked and in fact, since they were introduced there have been around 30% less cars entering those parts of London every single day. The majority of those that were left driving around those areas were private hire vehicles. This has worked for some time, however, it was seen that things needed to change. Especially with the air in the capital actually being recognised as causing a major public health crisis.
What are the possible disadvantages to implementing this charge?
Of course, we all want to take better care of our planet and the air that we breathe, but there are going to be some negatives, or drawbacks to implementing this particular additional charge to those who are trying to make a living in the capital. The first is for the drivers themselves, the London taxi industry is a competitive one and there are a wealth of different drivers all trying to make a living. With so many people trying to earn money, it makes sense that there are going to be those who are not doing as well as others. The charge might not seem too much of an issue for those who have high earnings, especially since it is only £11.50 per day. But for those who are already struggling to make ends meet, despite working hard, this charge could be the make or break between profit and loss. Of course, it isn’t only the taxi drivers themselves that are going to feel the pinch with the introduction of this charge. There is a good chance that this will have an impact on the customers who use the airport transfers or private hire services too. The main impact that it is likely to have on customers is that the price of taxis is going to rise, which then directly comes out of their pocket. Another problem that could arise, particularly in the long term, is that the number of taxi drivers in these particular areas of London are going to decrease. This will make it harder to get a taxi and in turn, much harder to get around. Only time will tell how much of an impact the introduction of this additional congestion charge will have on the world of taxis in London. However, we can promise you that we are going to keep our eye on the developments. Whilst we fully support the idea that cleaner air in the capital is incredibly important, we also see some of the drawbacks that could come with implementing this charge. As always, here at InstaCab we are going to be dedicated to making sure that you always pay the best price on your journey. Whether that is getting around the capital, perhaps taking in a show or heading out for dinner. Or maybe travelling to one of the many airports in the area, to head off on holiday and have some fun. So, why not use our website and see if we can help you to save some money when you need to get around?