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Cost of putting a taxi on the road for newer drivers can be over €26,000 a year, says NTA

The NTA said it regularly monitors the cost of operating a taxi when it undertakes a fare review process.

Image: Wanderley Massafelli/Rollingnews.ie

THE RUNNING COSTS to newer drivers in the taxi industry can be as high as €26,000 a year, according to a report from the National Transport Authority (NTA). 

While it notes that the cost can vary considerably as the “circumstances in which taxi operators offer their services vary widely”, it acknowledges that the cost of insurance is one of the “most significant” for taxi drivers.

The NTA said it regularly monitors the cost of operating a taxi when it undertakes a fare review process.

It said the data it had available to them suggests the average taxi covers around 32,600km a year while in-service, but some taxis cover more and some less, and its estimates exclude any private mileage an operator may incur.

While some costs are fixed, such as the prices of a licence, spending on insurance and fuel are variable depending on the driver, the NTA noted.

In terms of fuel, a newer saloon vehicle would require €1,720 if it covered the average of 32,600km.

For an eight-seater taxi, however, it would cost the driver roughly €3,000.

Other costs can include professional valeting, and mechanisms to make it wheelchair accessible.

For insurance, the NTA said the “single biggest factor” regarding the cost is the insured history of the driver.

Last month, TheJournal.ie reported of a case where a driver who was newly entering the industry was quoted €17,000 for insurance.

“The difference between insurance costs for new entrants as compared to experienced taxi drivers is so significant that it leads to a wide difference between both in the costs of operating a taxi, as the table clearly demonstrates,” the NTA said.

For a standard one-year-old eight-seater taxi, a young, inexperienced driver could be expected to pay €26,015 a year to cover all the costs of running a taxi. This drops to €23,515 for an experienced driver.

The difference is more pronounced for a one-year-old medium sized saloon.

An inexperienced driver is estimated by the NTA to pay €20,678, while an experienced one would pay €16,211.

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Sean Murray

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