If you are like most people, you probably have spent time on a minibus at one point or another. These vehicles are ideal for transporting a relatively large number of people. Whether you are going on holiday with your loved ones or getting ready to move to a new house, having one of these vehicles on hand can make it easy to get wherever you need to go. Before you get behind the wheel of one of these vehicles, however, it is important to educate yourself as much as possible about the art of driving a minibus. That means not only learning how to drive the minibus itself but also learning what the legal requirements are to drive one.
Who Is Allowed To Drive A Minibus?
As long as you have a full car license for driving a car, you can drive a minibus. With this type of license, you are automatically allowed to drive minibusses. You should be able to find detailed information on the back of your driver’s license that outlines the types of vehicles that can be driven. Be sure to double check this information before deciding to rent a minibus to make sure that it is legal for you to drive one.
Along with needing to have the right type of license, you also need to follow the specific rules when it comes to maximum occupancy and any fees that you may decide to charge. Depending on the situation, that means that you may need to obtain additional permits.
Rules of Driving a Minibus
There is one important thing that you need to keep in mind. Unless you have a specific type of license, you can’t charge money for giving people rides. Instead, you can only drive a minibus if you are driving it for personal use. Even then, you can’t transport more than 16 passengers at a time without obtaining a special license.
Driving a minibus in London is an experience unlike driving in any other city in the UK, so you can imagine that driving an HGV through it Is even more challenging, especially as there are a number of London HGV restrictions.
There are also some additional requirements that you must meet, even if you are giving people rides for free. First, you need to be at least 21 years old and you have to have been licensed to drive for a minimum of two years. You also need to be able to meet the criteria for the ‘group 2’ medical classification. The minibus can’t weigh more than three tons altogether. Additionally, you can’t use the minibus to tow a trailer. If you are over a certain age, you may need to pass a medical exam and submit a special application before being allowed to drive a minibus.
What Permits are needed?
Giving people free rides isn’t always possible or practical. After all, minibusses can be expensive to hire. Additionally, you have to consider the cost of fuel and other travel-related expenses. Even in situations where you are just transporting people that you know, you may want to accept money toward the cost of the rental and travel expenses. Before you do this, however, you need to obtain a minibus permit. You can get one of these permits by submitting an application through the DVSA. Keep in mind that you have to be a minimum of 21 years old to have your application accepted. If your application is approved and you are granted a permit, the minibus can only be used for the group of people that was specified in the application. That means that you can’t give rides to the general public. The minibus itself also needs to hold anywhere between 9 and 15 passengers.
What if I Want to Drive for a Profit?
If you are planning on driving a minibus for profit, you need to be properly licensed before you can give rides to the general public. You will need to apply for a Passenger Carrying Vehicle (PCV) license. Additionally, you also will need to get a Public Service Vehicle (PSV) license. These licenses are easier to obtain than you might think. All that you have to do is take a training course, drive a minimum number of hours, and pass a test. Once you have your license, you can drive a minibus professionally. The license shows that you have been trained on how to operate one of these vehicles safely. As long as you are properly licensed, you can begin charging passengers for rides. That means that you can start a part-time or full-time business driving a minibus for profit.