Drivers who are found to be making a profit from dropping someone off could be penalised under a little-known rule. Making even the smallest profit could see motorists classed as private hire vehicles, which would require drivers to have the correct licence.
“Something as simple as charging a mate for a ride could mean you fall foul of the law and is certainly worth knowing about.”
The illegal taxi offence hit the headlines in 2018 when Dorset Police raised awareness of some online groups.
A Facebook group had been set up in order for people to share unlicensed lifts around Bournemouth and Poole.
Legally, drivers can accept petrol money for the lifts but any extra income generated from the journey could land drivers in trouble.
“Please consider an alternative journey home, either by contacting a trusted friend or relative, catching a bus or using a licensed taxi.
“Before offering a lift in exchange for money you should speak to your insurance company as this could invalidate your insurance.
|[It] may result in your vehicle being seized by police, a fixed penalty notice or prosecution resulting in a fine, points on your licence or disqualification from driving.”