Melissa is a mother of 2, lives in Utah, and writes for a multitude of sites. She is currently the EIC of HarcourtHealth.com and writes about health, wellness, and business topics.

Becoming a taxi driver is very appealing for many people. As a way of taking much greater control of your working hours and allowing for the flexibility to manage your home life more easily, it’s hard to beat! At a time when so many people are unhappy with their current profession, the appeal of this career choice is steadily growing. With the possibility to earn a good salary and the freedom of the open road, if you’re thinking about becoming a taxi driver, then you will no doubt have a variety of questions. If you’re bored of the regular 9-5 routine and you’d be far happier exploring your local city, then here’s everything you need to know about becoming a taxi driver.

Qualifications and skills

What you need to qualify as a taxi driver will vary from state to state. Even different countries have different criteria. There are also different requirements for those that opt to work for a private taxi company and those choosing to register with Uber. You will need a special permit that is more extensive and detailed than a standard driving license. You will also benefit from:

  • Local knowledge of your area
  • No faults on your license
  • People skills
  • A good level of physical fitness

This is an excellent career no matter your level of education. As an added bonus, you will no doubt end up knowing the tips and tricks of being a taxi driver, as well as accumulating plenty of funny stories about passengers and other road users.

Hours of work

Although taxi drivers can have a lot of control over the hours that they work, the fact remains that the unsociable hours can be the most profitable. Late nights and weekends are the busiest periods for taxis, which can have a massive impact on your social life or responsibilities. However, the fact that you will have so much control over your working hours means that it’s not that difficult to find a compromise. Working 40 hours a week with split shifts is perfectly manageable, and may not have a drastic impact on your own personal time as well.

What does a taxi driver need?

The entry requirements for being a taxi driver will vary depending on where you are, but the majority will require some form of operators license. These can be straightforward to get, although some places make the process much harder. Obviously, you’re going to need a driving license as well, preferably with no penalties on it! You will also have to pay for specialist taxi insurance, as standard car insurance is very different. Look at the insurance packages for taxi drivers available from places like Acorn Insurance who can make sure that you have the right policy, no matter what kind of vehicle you use as your taxi.

What will my income be as a taxi driver?

The majority of taxi drivers are self-employed as independent contractors. That’s why the smartest taxi drivers find the best times of day to work and make sure that they are ready to go at the busiest times. Being productive during busy periods can transform your take for the day. Your annual salary will depend on how many hours you work and where you are based. Taxi drivers earn starkly different amounts in New York than they do in London.

Working as a taxi driver gives you flexibility and variety, and it’s also a career choice that’s open to most people. If you’re bored of the 9-5 and you’d like to take a little more control over your life, then perhaps it’s time to look closer at being a taxi driver.