Taxi Travel overview
Many taxi companies now offer wheelchair-accessible vehicles.
Wheelchair-accessible taxis are usually black cabs, wheelchair-adapted vehicles, people carriers, minibuses or converted small vans. They may have a ramp or a passenger lift to assist the wheelchair user with getting into the vehicle, which is far easier than transferring from a wheelchair to a car seat and dismantling the wheelchair for the journey.
As wheelchairs are carefully designed to support a disabled person, wheelchair-accessible taxis allow disabled people to stay in the position that is best for their body and posture.
Wheelchair-accessible taxis must be equipped to secure the wheelchair when the cab is in motion. Seat belts or lap belts should be available to keep the wheelchair user steady.
Wheelchair-accessible taxis are also adding different forms of lighting to help the visually impaired.
All the equipment in a wheelchair taxi should be regularly tested by the driver to ensure it remains in good repair.
Selected Accessible Taxi Companies
A1 Taxi’s website
01582 40 40 40
Luton Taxi’s and Minibuses
Luton Taxi’s and Minibuses website
Bedford Fast-Line Taxi’s
Bedford Fast-Line Taxi’s website
01234 811 811
Hackney carriages are wheelchair accessible vehicles, although drivers may not be able to carry all types of wheelchairs.
These vehicles generally look like London style cabs and all have an illuminated TAXI sign on the roof. Taxis can be hailed in the street or they can be hired at taxi ranks. All drivers will perform a risk assessment for less standard wheelchairs to establish if they are able to transport them safely.
Planning a journey
When booking a taxi from a firm which is not a wheelchair specialist, ensure you mention at the time of booking that you will need an accessible vehicle.
The law states that to comply with The Equalities Act 2010, licensed drivers are under a legal duty to carry wheelchair users, guide, hearing and other prescribed assistance dogs in their vehicles without additional charge. The law expects drivers:
- to carry the passenger while in a wheelchair
- not to make any additional charge for doing so
- if the passenger chooses to sit in a passenger seat, to carry the wheelchair
- to take such steps as are necessary to ensure that the passenger is carried in safety and reasonable comfort; and
- to give the passenger such mobility assistance as is reasonable
All taxi and minicab drivers must make sure they do not discriminate against disabled people and should not treat them less favourably than non-disabled customers. They should also make reasonable adjustments to ensure you receive the same services, as far as this is possible, as someone who is not disabled.
If a taxi driver does discriminate against you, you should complain to your local authority’s Licencing Department.
Any advice or information given by the Hubs Mobility Advice Service is impartial and correct at the time it is provided. However, as operators may change their services or equipment prior to your journey or booking, you are strongly advised to check any details directly with them shortly before you expect to travel.