Taxi drivers To become a taxi driver you must be licensed. To renew or licence or obtain a new one, you will need to go through an application process. Private hire vehicles A private hire vehicle cannot apply for hire or stand on a rank. Unlike hackney carriages all private hire vehicles must be pre-booked with a private hire operator. Hackney Carriages A hackney carriage can only be driven by the holder of a hackney carriage driver licence. Private Hire Operators All private hire vehicles must be pre-booked with a private hire operator.