If you use cabs to travel around, there are simple steps you can take to prevent falling victim to crime. Here is some advice from Transport for London on staying safe in minicabs.
Never get into an un-booked minicab, not even if:
You are approached by a driver on the street
It is offered to you by someone with a high vis jacket and clipboard
The minicabs are lined up outside a pub or a club as they are still breaking the law if they accept your fare directly without a booking (i.e. by phone) being made legally through a licensed minicab operator
You have flagged it down
The driver says his booked passenger has not turned up
You get in with a group of friends
Do not get into an unbooked minicab, it is illegal, dangerous and puts you at risk of attacks including sexual assault and robbery.
Do not risk taking an unbooked minicab
Always use a booked and licensed minicab, taxi, Night bus or the Tube to get home.
You can download Transport for London's free Cabwise app on your smartphone to book your nearest minicab or black cab. If you ahve an iPhone search Cabwise in your app store. Or click on your Smartphone and bookmark the page.
Know the difference between a Taxi and a Minicab
Taxi (black cab)
Taxis (black cabs) have a light on the front displaying the word 'TAXI'
Taxis can be:
Hailed in the street
Booked in advance
Found at marshalled ranks
Found at designated ranks
Taxi fares are displayed on the taxi metre and paid at the end of the journey
While it is tempting after a night out to jump into the first 'minicab' you see, without a booking there is no record of your journey or driver.
No booking means you could be putting yourself in danger.
By booking your minicab this means your trip will be carried out by a licensed, insured driver in a licensed, insured vehicle.
A record of your journey, driver and vehicles will also be logged so in the event of any problems the driver can be traced.