The tariffs, or fares, charged by taxis that you catch from a taxi rank (controlled taxi-cabs) are regulated by the States. Rank taxis must not charge more for passengers with wheelchairs than any other passenger.
The tariffs charged by private hire taxis (restricted taxi-cabs) – ie. those that you phone up and arrange for them to pick you up from home or another location – are not regulated by the States. Private hire taxis can set their own charges but they must clearly display those charges on a tariff card inside the taxi. The tariff card shows what tariff is charged at different times of the day or on particular days such as Christmas Day. If a private hire taxi expects to charge a higher rate for passengers with wheelchairs they would have to state that on their tariff card.
The taxi driver should set the meter in accordance with the tariff shown on the tariff card and charge the passenger the amount showing on the meter at the end of their journey. The only exception would be for journeys over 1 hour when the meter does not need to be used by private hire taxis or rank taxis. In these circumstances the passenger would need to agree the journey cost up front.
All taxis are subject to an annual inspection by the Transport and Technical Services Department’s (TTS) Traffic Officers, this includes checking that a tariff card is clearly displayed. TTS has confirmed that no current tariff cards provided by the taxi-cab companies display additional or different charges for passengers using wheelchairs. Traffic Officers will continue to check all tariff cards to see if passengers with wheelchairs are being charged higher rates. If this should be the case they will consider how this can be resolved.
If any passenger who is a wheelchair user believes they are being charged a higher rate for their journey than a passenger who does not use a wheelchair they should:
- ask for a receipt that shows the amount charged
- make a note of the taxi’s number
(this will be displayed on a plastic card on the dashboard and is also shown on a yellow, white or red plate on the rear of the taxi)
- make a note of the date and time of the journey, plus details of pick-up and drop-off points
- contact the taxi-cab company and speak to the manager, explaining your concerns and seeking redress
If the company does not help or the passenger still has concerns, contact the Driving and Vehicle Standards team on tel: 448600; email email@example.com who will look into the issue on their behalf.