Working as a Black Cab Driver

Black cabs are everywhere in London and if you live there then you might have considered becoming a black cab driver.

If you have considered this career move then below is a guide to help you get started, including the things you’ll need as well as the pros and cons of the job.

What you need

  • A taxi drivers licence – In order to work as a black cab driver, you’ll need to get the right type of taxi drivers licence. In this case you’ll want to apply for public hire taxi drivers licence since black cabs can be hailed from the street and display a ‘taxi’ sign. Private hire licences are for mini cab and Uber drivers.
  • A vehicle – Of course you’ll need a vehicle in order to work. You can either rent or own your cab depending on your preference and financial situation.
  • Taxi insurance – You’ll also need to get the right type of taxi insurance. There are two main types of taxi insurance – public hire and private hire taxi insurance. As a black cab driver you’ll want to get public hire insurance.

Pros

  • You meet new people all the time – If you’re a sociable person and love meeting new people then working as a taxi driver could be the perfect job for you. You’ll meet new people all the time and from all walks of life.
  • You’re not stuck behind a desk – Another big pro of working as a black cab driver is that you’re not stuck behind a desk for 8 hours a day. That being said you are sat down for the majority of the time so it wouldn’t necessarily be considered an active job although you get a lot more stimulation that simply working at a computer.

Cons

  • Can be a stressful job – It probably goes without saying that driving for a living in London can be quite stressful at times. Despite the dedicated bus and taxi lanes, there’s still plenty to contend with so you have to have your wits about you at all times.
  • The costs can mount up – The costs of working as a taxi driver can be quite high when you take into account maintenance costs, fuel and taxi insurance.

Insuring a Fleet of Trucks

When you have a fleet of trucks that you need to insure then you want to get the best policy possible.

The type of cover you need will depend on the type of trucks you need to insure. For example if you have gritter lorries then you’ll need to get a gritter lorry insurance policy.

One thing that’s for certain is that when insuring multiple trucks, by far the best way of doing it is by getting a fleet truck insurance policy. Fleet truck insurance is beneficial for a couple of key reasons. Firstly it’s much simple to insure all your trucks on one policy than getting separate policies for each. Secondly – fleet insurance nearly always works out cheaper than getting individual policies.

Cover options

Below are some of the main cover options you can get with a truck insurance policy –

  • Third party – Third party insurance works the same way with trucks as it does with cars. With third party cover, your vehicles will be road legal but will only be covered if another party is to blame for the collision. If one of your drivers is to blame for a collision then your truck will not be covered.
  • Comprehensive – Comprehensive insurance will cover your vehicles for all types of collisions, including those that your drivers are liable for. Fire and theft is usually included as part of a comprehensive policy.
  • Public liability – Public liability insurance is always recommended when you own a fleet of trucks. If a member of public were to be injured or killed due to negligence on behalf of one of your drivers then a liability claim would very likely follow. You need to be prepared for such a scenario and having public liability cover is the best way to do this.
  • Breakdown assistance – Breakdown assistance is a must when you have a fleet of trucks. Even if you already have it then it’s still worth enquiring how much it would cost to have it included in your policy.

How to get fleet truck insurance

By far the best way to get truck fleet insurance is by using an online comparison service, such as Multiquote Truck. Such sites enable you to easily get quotes from a panel of truck insurance providers by filling in one simple form.

Working as a Freelance Courier

Couriers are in incredibly high demand now, in no small part due to how massive internet shopping has become.

If you want to take advantage of this and start making money as a freelance courier then below are some of the most important things to know.

Do you need a van?

One of the first things people want to know when thinking of becoming a courier is whether or not they’ll need to buy a van. The truth is that while you don’t absolutely need a van to work as a freelance courier, it will certainly help you get more work. A lot of freelance courier jobs require you to have your own van due to the size of the parcel being transported.

Where to find work

Easily the hardest part about getting started as a freelance courier is finding work. There are websites you can use where people post freelance courier jobs so it’s certainly not an impossible task but your aim should always be to secure long-term clients who need repeat work. The best way to do this is by doing an excellent job and proving yourself to be reliable.

Getting insurance

In order to work as a freelance courier you’ll need to get a courier insurance policy. Below are some of the most important things to get included in your policy –

  • Road risks – You will of course need to get cover for road risks in order to be able to drive legally. If you want the cheapest type of cover then a third party only policy is what you need. For more protection then consider adding fire and theft or getting a fully comprehensive policy.
  • Goods in transit insurance – You will certainly want to get goods in transit cover with your policy too. This will ensure that if any of the items you were transported were damaged or stolen that you’d be fully compensated.
  • Breakdown assistance – Breakdown assistance can also be added to a courier insurance policy for an extra fee.

You can get courier insurance quotes from a site such as Insure The Courier.

Paying tax

When you work for yourself, you’ll also need to take care of paying your own tax. If you’re uncertain exactly how to go about this or aren’t great with numbers then it’s never a bad idea to hire an accountant to help you out.

Buying Your First Minibus

Owning a minibus comes with some unique benefits. Being able to transport many passengers makes them great vehicles for large families and also means you’re able to help out your local community or even work as a taxi driver.

Below are some of the most important aspects of buying your first minibus.

Where to buy

When you’re looking to buy a minibus, the decision you have to make is whether you’ll buy new or used. Buying new is obviously the best choice in an ideal world but it’s not an option for everyone. There are plenty of places you can find used minibuses online so you shouldn’t have any trouble finding a used vehicle that’s suitable for you needs.

Some of the best places to buy a used minibus are –

  • eBay
  • Auto Trader
  • Gumtree

Things to look for

When buying your first minibus, below are some of the most important things to consider –

  • Price – The price of the minibus is obviously going to be important. Think about the budget you have and how you will pay for the vehicle. If you buy from a garage then you’ll usually have the option to spread the cost which means you’ll be able to buy a higher value vehicle.
  • Condition – The condition of the minibus is also very important. You should always view any vehicles you’re considering in daylight so you can check for any external damage to the bodywork. You should also check things like the engine, electricals, wipers etc.
  • Size – Another thing you need to consider is the size of vehicle you want to get. Minibuses can vary in size quite considerably – some hold 9 passengers while others go all the way up to 17. The size of minibus you need will depend on what you intend to use it for.

Getting minibus insurance

When you own a minibus, regular car insurance won’t cut it. Instead you need to get a special minibus insurance policy that will cover you for all the risks that come with owning a minibus. The type of policy you need to get will vary depending on how you intend to use your vehicle. You can get minibus insurance quotes very easily online so you should have no problem finding a policy for a reasonable price.

Adjusting to Life Once You Have a Criminal Conviction

If you have a criminal conviction then you are likely worried about how it’s going to affect the rest of your life. There is no point in pretending that a criminal conviction won’t change certain aspects of your life because it mostly likely will but that doesn’t mean you can’t make the necessary adjustments.

When it comes to criminal convictions, one of the most important things to be aware of is whether your conviction is spent or unspent.

Spent vs unspent convictions explained

The purpose of spent and unspent convictions is to give people who have been convicted of less serious crimes a chance to rehabilitate completely and not have to be burdened by declaring their conviction to insurance providers and employers for the rest of their life.

When a conviction is ‘spent’ you no longer have to declare it. The amount of of time before a conviction is spent will depend on the severity of the punishment you received. Some convictions, for example those that come with extended prison sentences, will never be spent. Check this guide for a detailed explanation of the ROA and spent and unspent convictions.

Finding work

One of the biggest worries that people with a conviction have is being able to find employment again. This is certainly not an unfounded concern since most employers will do background checks and be able to see if you have any criminal convictions. Generally the best policy when it comes to employers is to be as honest as possible and explain the circumstances around your conviction and how you’ve moved on since. This isn’t guaranteed to work of course since some employers will be put off by the notion of hiring somebody with a criminal conviction but there are those who will be prepared to give you a chance, particularly if your conviction was for a less serious crime.

Getting car insurance

When it comes to getting car insurance when you have a conviction, the best idea is to seek out quotes from specialist convicted drivers insurance providers. The good news is that getting quotes is incredibly quick and easy, especially when you use a site such as Conviction Insure. Getting a lot of quotes is one of the best ways to save money and the good thing about getting cover from a specialist provider is that they’ll take your unique circumstances into account and be able to offer you a policy at a fair price.

Having You Ever Dreamed of Starting a Limousine Company?

If you’ve ever dreamt of starting your own limousine company then chances are you’ve thought about all the reasons it isn’t realistic – you don’t have enough start-up cash, the industry is too competitive, it’s too risky.

Although these are certainly valid concerns, the truth is that anyone who starts their own business takes a risk. Without risk-taking, the biggest businesses on the planet today wouldn’t exist.

If you do decide you’re brave enough to try and start your own limousine company, below are some of the fundamental things you’ll need to do.

Investing in vehicles

The most obvious thing you will need to start a limousine company is the limousines themselves. The big decision to make here is whether you will buy or rent your limousines.

Unless you have a lot of start-up investment, you’ll almost certainly need to rent rather than buy. However renting does come with its own issues that can complicate things. A third option would be to sub-contract the business you bring in to a company that already has their own limousines. Although this might not be too appealing in principal, it can be a way to get your feet wet without taking the risk of investing in your own vehicles.

Finding drivers

Image result for limousine driver

Once you have your limousines taken care of, you’ll then need to find drivers. Limousine drivers are quite a rare breed so it might be quite challenging to find drivers with a lot of experience. However you shouldn’t let this deter you as even drivers who don’t have previous experience driving a limousine can be trained.

Getting limousine insurance

Another vital aspect of running a limousine company is getting limousine insurance. Limousine insurance will cover you for road risks as well as things like liability claims – both from the public and your employees. It’s always a good idea to get limousine insurance from a specialist provider since they will have the experience necessary to deal with the unique nature of a limousine company.

Marketing your business

When it comes to marketing your business, there are plenty of creative marketing techniques you can utilise that require little-to-investment.

Due to the nature of a limousine company, you want to try and create as much buzz and excitement as you can to get the word out. You might consider hosting a special event where your limousines are on display for example. There’s nothing quite like seeing a limousine up close so this can be a great way to generate buzz.

Fleet Insurance Explained

Types of cover

  • Family fleet insurance – If you have a family with multiple vehicles and you want to insure them together then you can do this by getting a family fleet insurance policy. This can be a very good way for younger family members to make insurance more affordable.
  • Commercial fleet insurance – The most common type of fleet insurance is commercial fleet cover. There are countless businesses who use fleet insurance to cover their vehicles, including taxi firms, trucking firms, supermarkets etc.

Cover options

  • Road risks – Every fleet policy should include cover for road risks. In order to make the vehicles in your fleet legal, there must be third party only cover in place at a minimum. If you want to get more protection for your own vehicles then you can also get a third party policy that includes fire and theft cover, or a fully comprehensive policy.
  • Liability claims – Liability claims are something that every business should be prepared for. Taking steps to reduce the likelihood of a claim occurring is a good idea but you still need to have cover in place just in case a claim went against you.
  • Breakdowns – It’s always a good idea to get breakdown cover when you’re insuring multiple vehicles, especially when they’re part of your business. The majority of fleet insurance providers will give you the option to have breakdown assistance added to your policy.

Saving money

  • Hire low risk drivers – When you’re getting fleet insurance to cover commercial vehicles, one of the best ways to keep costs down is by hiring drivers who are low risk. Typically low risk drivers are those who are over 30, have a lot of driving experience with the type of vehicles you’re insuring and who do not have any driving or criminal convictions.
  • Pay annually – If you’re able to afford to pay for your policy on an annual basis rather than monthly then you’re usually able to make a significant saving on the total cost of the policy.
  • Get quotes online – Getting quotes online is very easy to do and can help save you a lot of money on fleet insurance.

Starting a Taxi Firm in Hampton Hill

Setting up an type of business can be a challenge and this is especially true for a taxi firm. You’ll need to be very motivated in order to make the business a success but that doesn’t mean it can’t be done.

Below are some of the main steps you need to take in order to start a taxi firm.

Getting an office

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In order to run a taxi firm, you’ll first need to get an office. Some start up taxi firms will run their office from home though it’s usually not practical to do this in the long term and is better if you can get a proper premises.

When looking for a location for your taxi office, you should find somewhere that’s on high ground and that’s ideally located in an area that has plenty of passers by that’s easy to find. It’s a good idea to rent any office first so you can decide if you’re happy with it before making a more long-term commitment.

Finding reliable drivers

The most fundamental part of running a taxi firm is finding good drivers. The drivers you employ will make or break your business so it’s extremely important to be selective with who you hire. Below are some of the main criteria to consider when hiring drivers –

  • Their age – It’s always a good idea to hire drivers who are over the age of 25. Firstly it will help keep the cost of your taxi insurance to a minimum and secondly older drivers tend to be more responsible and better equipped to deal with the challenges of the job.
  • Their employment history – The employment history of any drivers you’re considering is also very important. Ideally they will have plenty of previous experience working as a taxi driver or at least driving for a living in some capacity.
  • Their attitude – Experience is always important but so is attitude. Your drivers are going to be who your customers interact with after all and if you hire drivers with a bad attitude then it can easily damage your reputation. Therefore it’s always important to take attitude into account when interviewing drivers.

Getting insurance

You may choose to get owner drivers who have their own insurance but if you’d prefer to buy and insure your own vehicles then you’ll need to get the necessary cover. By far the best way to insure your taxis is to get a taxi fleet insurance policy by getting quotes from a site such as https://www.cheapfleet.co.uk/

 

Starting a Business in Hampton Hill

Running your own business comes with a lot of challenges but for most people the upsides make it worth it – You don’t have to answer to a boss and you’re free to make your own decisions regarding your future.

If you’re thinking of starting your own business then you should find the information below very useful.

Business types

Image result for restaurant

Below are some of the types of business you might consider starting –

  • A restaurant – Restaurants are notoriously difficult to make a success, with the majority of them failing in the first year. Therefore opening a restaurant is not for the feint of heart and probably not a good idea unless you have previous experience in the industry and are confident you can make it a success.
  • A shop – There are many types of shops that you can open but unless you have a good amount of experience in a particular industry, then an all-purpose shop, such as newsagent can often be a good place to start.
  • Car sales – Buying and selling cars can be an excellent way to make money, providing you have a decent amount of knowledge about what models are popular and how to get the best deal when buying. You can ever start out from home when you first start selling, although you’ll need to think about getting a premises and motor trade insurance policy if you want to scale your business up.

Making your business a success

  • Do what you know – It might seem like obvious advice but one of the best ways to make a business a success is by sticking to what you know. If you have experience in a particular area then you’re much more likely to be successful than if you started a business in an industry you know very little about.
  • Invest in a good premises – A good business premises should be in a good location that’s easy to find. It should also be secure and come at a reasonable price that you can afford to pay.
  • Make your business secure – Make your business secure is a must if you want to keep insurance costs down and prevent incidents that could put you out of business. Strong shutters, CCTV and security alarms are excellent ways to make a business more secure.