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Apply for a new vehicle licence

Apply for a new vehicle licence

We encourage you to apply online rather than attending the Citizen Service Point (CSP).

Email your application and scans / photographs of the supporting documents to licensing@bristol.gov.uk.

A member of the Licensing Team will then contact you via telephone to make payment.

We still need to see the original Medical and DBS certificate. This may change dependent on any future government advice.

If you do need to come in to the CSP we’re only open from 10am to 12pm, we will not see anyone outside of these times.

Apply for a new private hire vehicle or hackney carriage

If you want to apply for a new private hire vehicle or hackney carriage you must follow the steps below.

1: Check if a licence is available: hackney carriage only

You should contact the Licensing Team before purchasing a vehicle to ensure there are still hackney carriage vehicle licences available.

This is because the Public Safety and Protection Committee agreed on 28 February 2017 to impose a limit of 795 on the number of licences issued.  

2: The vehicle: hackney carriage only

If applying for a licence for a hackney carriage the vehicle must:

  • be an Ultra Low Emission Vehicle (ULEV)
  • have European Community Whole Vehicle Type Approval (ECWVTA)
  • be wheelchair accessible

The vehicle must also meet all other elements of the hackney carriage vehicle policy (pdf, 239KB) (opens new window) .(opens new window) (pdf, 157k) (opens new window)

3: The conditions and standards

You should read the documents and vehicle restrictions below before you apply for a new vehicle licence.

The hackney carriage and private hire inspection standards include important information on vehicle specifications and should be read along with the correct vehicle policy.

Vehicle restrictions

Toyota Auris 

  • The internal dimensions of the current model of Toyota Auris doesn't comply with the Private Hire vehicle licensing policy. This is because the seat measurements are too small. 
  • All new applications will be referred to the Public Safety and Protection Committee with a recommendation for refusal.
  • All existing licensed Toyota Auris’ will continue to be licensed, maximum 10 years from date of first registration, providing they comply in all other respects of the Vehicle Licensing Policy.

Lexus IS300

  • A Lexus IS300 will only be considered for the carriage of up to 3 passengers.
  • The measurements of the middle rear seat do not comply with the vehicle standards policy.

Vauxhall Zafira 

  • The Vauxhall Zafira will in most cases only be considered for the carriage of up to 4 passengers.
  • The measurements of the back row seats don't usually comply with the vehicle standards policy.

We're aware that some models of the Zafira may now comply with the vehicle standards policy with regard to the back row seats.  Where this is the case a licence for 6 passengers may be issued. 

4: Your documents

You must bring the documentation below to:

Citizen Service Point at 100 Temple Street, Bristol BS1 6AG

or you can post them to:

Licensing Team (100TS), Bristol City Council, PO Box 3399. Bristol BS3 9FS

We can't accept a vehicle inspection check if it was carried out more than six weeks before your application date.

If you want someone else to discuss your application or licence with us on your behalf, you’ll need to give us written permission.

How much it costs

A new private hire or Hackney Carriage licence costs £187.

We can't accept the vehicle inspection check if you send it to us more than six weeks before your application date.

Important information

Find out more about our licences and policies.

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