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UK cab trade debate and advice
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 13, 2024 2:11 pm 
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However, I'd hope Glasgow doesn't use the London model of 'approved' terminals - that seems to have created a fresh set of problems down there.

Agree, and while I'm strongly in favour of compulsory card readers, on the other hand there's regulation and over-regulation...

Not really aware of the London debate these days, but well recall a few years ago when they were in the process of mandating automated payments in Liverpool. There were lots of complaints about how compulsory terminals situated in the rear compartment would end up vandalised, or stuff like that.

I think the council eventually backed down and made the specification less prescriptive.

But that's often the way things work out, and one reason I don't get involved in this kind of stuff - the worry is that things will turn out worse rather than better.

'Be careful what you wish for', I think a current in vogue phrase is :-$


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PostPosted: Sat Mar 16, 2024 1:47 am 
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Episode 3 now online -

https://shows.acast.com/talking-taxis/e ... rivers-tal

Not sure I took a lot from this one but interesting all the same


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 19, 2024 6:12 pm 
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XH558 wrote:
Episode 3 now online -

https://shows.acast.com/talking-taxis/e ... rivers-tal

Not sure I took a lot from this one but interesting all the same

I took the fact that when Glaswegians laugh loudly they might as well be speaking Swahili. 8-[

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2024 1:27 am 
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One interesting point was that many drivers who had to change their work patterns for Covid generally haven't reverted back. Not sure if that's just their lifestyle choice or different passenger habits.


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 20, 2024 7:44 am 
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Clearly many drivers decided that normal life has its plus points.

But maybe the nighttime economy isn’t what it once was, and the daytime economy is doing ok.

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PostPosted: Sat Mar 23, 2024 2:21 am 
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Episode 4 is now online -

https://shows.acast.com/talking-taxis/e ... ecruitment

Subject is joining the trade, including the compulsory SVQ and Glasgow topographical test.

I found the Glasgow knowledge test moderately difficult, despite living and working here all my life. Mainly because of the time limit (100 questions in 45 minutes) and that at least two of the answer options will be fairly close. Like the podcast panel, I can recall a few questions which were strictly wrong. But passed anyway so meh.

I'd agree the test is still valuable. I still use a satnav now - its handy for out-of-town, any streets you just don't know/cant remember and the approximate point where a particular street number is (really good for one-way streets so I hit them right). But it won't always get you there - its sometimes just wrong and doesnt know the local stuff you just need to get your head round.


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2024 7:25 pm 
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Glasgow is an area that spreads out and spills into towns without even knowing you have entered them.
Knowing that knowledge is an achievement .


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 24, 2024 8:08 pm 
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I haven't listened to the latest edition, but I will in the next few days.

However, concerning the knowledge requirements, I'm not sure there is a line/flood of folks waiting to join the hackney trade if the level of knowledge tests was diluted. Maybe London could be an exception.

I'm also not convinced people are being put off entering the hackney trade by a knowledge test. In many areas it's multiple choice, so a rabid dog will get 25% if there are 4 options, or 33% if there are 3.

Prospective drivers are being put off by their criminal history, their medical condition, their driving ability, the fact that there are numerous other employment options available, the need to not work unsociable or crazy long hours, and the fact that many of them have got to give half of their earnings away to some mush sitting at home watching the telly.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2024 2:32 am 
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Agree - the panel mentioned the benefit of 'deciding your own working hours' but then described starting around 5am :? Personally, I'm staying in bed at 5am and not going anywhere for a while.

A taster of the Glasgow test -

https://www.glasgowworld.com/lifestyle/ ... nd-4252743

(Click past the register/sign-up invites - do it later)

Pretty sure I got one of the questions on my real test:

19. Where is Hotel Du Vin?

A Hughenden Lane / Great Western Road
B Great Western Road / Hyndland Road
C Great Western Road / Kirklee Road
D Shelley Road / Great Western Road

Think I went for B, based on map position. But it's actually on Devonshire Gardens - was a bit puzzled that wasn't an option.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 25, 2024 10:41 pm 
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I listened today and agree with the participants that delays to prospective drivers during the application process are putting off those drivers, and the council needs to be far more efficient in dealing with new entrants. That I suspect applies in my other licensing areas.

What I did think did the trade no favours was the willy waving of the new drivers. I couldn't care less how much they earn. The more you earn the better, but it doesn't make you a better driver. Do they really want those numbers out there, encouraging the thugs and thieves that treat our trade as easy pickings? Do they really want more and more drivers joining the trade on mass? Will that help pay your mortgage, or the £1,500 a month you have in expenses?

I suspect the answer is no, so may I suggest you carry on doing a good job, earning good money, but keeping your gob shut. :-#

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2024 2:03 am 
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Maybe a bit harsh... anyone thinking about joining the trade wants a rough idea of potential earnings/expenses before they commit. I didn't hear it as willy waving so much as trying to be positive for anyone thinking about it.

Personally, I worked out my minimum weekly take-home and asked another owner-driver if it was doable (albeit privately, not in a podcast). I knew before that conversation that renting wouldn't work for me. It's ok for the least initial outlay and the ability to walk away, but the idea of constantly chasing a weekly rental payment would do my head in.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2024 3:41 am 
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Sussex, the Driver Recruitment podcast is a driver recruitment pitch for Glasgow Taxis Limited :wink:

Which partly explains the 'willy-waving', but only just.

And the particular problem with the figures cited is that, as per usual, they're presumably fares or takings rather than profit after expenses.

Of course, to an extent that's explained on the audio, and the likes of readers on here will understand that. But as regards the likes of the council, journalists or any member of the public listening, they'll probably just hear the figures as top line, money in the pocket, sort of thing - the taxi drivers' equivalent to a salary or wage packet....

(Or, at best, maybe like these numpties who say, for example, that because a run will only cost £1 in fuel then you can afford to give them a half price fare... :roll: )


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2024 3:43 am 
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But, aye, I'm obviously in the wrong job :-o

I suppose the warning signs were there when the ex-polis chap (I think) said he was disappointed when he'd waited on the rank 25 minutes for his first ever run and only got an £8 job :-o

Sounds like a good shift to me :lol:

Or the ex-joiner (I think) who said his first ever job was just a wee run up to the passport office, but then he said he got a run back to the station, and he'd clocked £20? :-s

(Or maybe I misheard them.)

But, I mean £200-£250 for what sounds like a ten-hour day? :-o

Or almost £100 for three hours in the morning to 10.30am? :-o

If I went out during that period in the morning I'd think myself lucky to get a fare at all :?

To be fair, I'm an independent driver relying on our tumbleweed ranks here in NE Fife and running a cheap Skoda rather than a £70k LEVC, but I'd guess anyone listening to that around our manor here would be in for a very rude awakening if they came into the trade thinking they'd be earning anything like the numbers in the podcast...


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2024 3:44 am 
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Anyway, it'll be interesting to see how they're getting on in ten-years time, although to be fair the older chap says he's 53 (I think) and hopes to retire at 60 (just at the age I've taken out a 5-year HP deal on a new motor :x ), so even if it does start to grind him down a bit (and it will), by that time he'll have the retirement light at the end of the tunnel anyway :? And no doubt his police pension will help soften the blow if he does feel the need to wind down a bit because he wants to spend more time with his wife and young kids :-s

(All very well being able to save hundreds in childcare costs if you and your wife can arrange their shifts accordingly, but when then does he actually see his wife and kids together? Although, to be fair, maybe being able to avoid the wife is why he's so chipper about it all :badgrin: )


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 26, 2024 7:00 am 
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You also have to question the sense of the retired chap on a pension working full time in the trade.

I mean paying tax at 40% on a significant amount of your earnings. :-k

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