Safer Travel at Night

CPOS Enforcement Officer helping a customer at night

We’re working with the Metropolitan and City of London Police to help you stay safe when travelling around our city. 🌇

London is known for its wide variety of attractions and incredible nightlife. When going out and enjoying yourself, it’s important to plan your journey home in advance. We’ve pulled together our top tips and information for safer travel at night. 🚕 

Important travel and safety information

👌 Plan your journey in advance 

👌 Get a taxi (black cab) 

  • Black taxis (with the orange ‘taxi’ light) can be hailed off the street.
  • They can also be booked by phone or app. Every taxi has a card machine so, if you don’t have cash, you will be able to pay using credit, debit, contactless or mobile payments. If you are paying for your taxi journey via card or contactless only do so using the device fixed in the rear passenger compartment.

👌 Book a minicab 

  • Minicabs cannot be hailed off the street.
  • They must be booked with a licensed minicab company over the phone, online, using an app or in person at a minicab office. You will always receive a booking confirmation, that contains the minicab driver and vehicle information, via the booking app, paper receipt or text. 
  • A minicab driver who accepts a fare without a booking via a licensed minicab company is acting illegally and any journey will be uninsured.  
  • Even if your minicab has a licence sticker, unless you have booked it with a licensed minicab company, your minicab is illegal and unsafe. 
  • When your minicab arrives, make sure you check that the vehicle and driver details match the booking confirmation you received and keep a record of this.

Our Safer Travel at Night operation

Every year, the safer travel operation, involving police and TfL enforcement officers, runs to help people get home safely by taxi, minicab or public transport. Officers are out engaging with the public about safer travel options and cracking down on illegal and unsafe activity in taxis and private hire vehicles, and on public transport. 

Officers will be: 

  • Engaging with the public about getting home safely and the dangers of unbooked minicabs. 
  • Checking taxi and minicab drivers and vehicles to ensure that they are licensed and safe. For minicabs, they will also be checking the journey has been booked via a licensed minicab company. 
  • Providing a visible presence across the transport network to reassure the public and deter illegal activity. 
  • Engaging with local bars, clubs and businesses to raise awareness on safer travel at night and promote key travel and safety messages. 

Importance of booking your minicab journeys 👇

For legally booked minicabs you should expect:  

ℹ️ Booking confirmation  

You must receive a booking confirmation. It will include the driver’s name, TfL licence number, vehicle registration and, where possible, a photo of the driver. 

ℹ️ Pick up  

A TfL licensed minicab driver and vehicle will be sent to pick you up. Your driver will have been through police background checks. 

ℹ️ Record  

A record will be kept of your journey, your driver and the vehicle they used. The driver can be traced in case of any problems. 

ℹ️ Check  

If the driver and vehicle picking you up is not the same as in your booking confirmation, do not get in the vehicle – it isn’t safe. 

ℹ️ Reporting 

The majority of taxi and minicab journeys goes without incident. We take passenger safety extremely seriously. If you experience any inappropriate driver behaviour during your journey you should report it. 

Reporting a sexual offence

TfL funds around 3,000 police, police community support officers and TfL enforcement officers dedicated to policing the transport network in order to keep everyone safe. Activities include high visibility policing, covert patrols with plain-clothed officers, targeted action against offenders and encouraging more people to report offences.    

If you experience any behaviour of a sexual nature from a minicab or taxi driver, please report it by calling 101 or by reporting online

You can report any behaviour that makes you feel uncomfortable even if you think is not necessarily a crime. Call TfL on 0343 222 4000 (Monday to Friday 09:00-17:00) or contact us online.    

Find out more about sexual harassment and how to report it


👎 Myth

It’s safe to get in a minicab without a booking if:

🙅‍♀️ It has a TfL licence sticker in the window

🙅‍♀️ You approach a driver directly or the driver approaches you

🙅‍♀️ A bouncer or member of staff takes you to a minicab

👍 Fact

🚕 If it’s not booked then it’s not safe. Minicabs that are not booked are illegal and not insured to carry passengers. 

🙋 Only taxis (with the orange ‘taxi’ lights) can be hailed on the street or hired at a rank without a booking.

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