The advantage of being a taxi driver is that you enjoy a great deal of independence while providing a service for a diverse clientele.
The freedom to set your own working hours
Taxi drivers enjoy an unparalleled freedom of movement which allows them to adapt their working hours to fit in with their private lives.
Providing a service that's rewarding
The job requires a taste for making business contacts and providing a service. It's a lively job where you come into contact with a variety personalities and establish rewarding contacts. A job where work and commitment are rewarded. Being able to speak a foreign language is a bonus as it means you can carry foreign passengers. You also get the opportunity to drive a top-of-the-range vehicle.
... and demanding
It entails long working hours and requires organisational skills and the ability to adapt to different situations, different types of customer, and city traffic; you also need to be patient, keep your composure and remain alert.
Advantages that only taxi drivers enjoy
Taxi drivers have the choice of joining a bookings service or not. They can be roaming taxis or join a taxi rank. They can use bus lanes, work on so-called "car-free" days, and do medical transport. Remuneration is dependent on tariffs, and it's essential to have a taxi driver's license.
A few statistics
There are 55,000 taxis in France, 19,000 of which are in Paris, divided into 4 distinct occupational categories:
Taxis operate under the authority of the mayor for each municipality, except Paris taxis which come under the authority of the Prefect of Police for the City of Paris.
Getting into the profession
In order become a taxi driver you have to pass a professional exam, after which you will be issued with a certificate of professional competence as a taxi driver. You also have to purchase a parking permit from an independent driver or a company that's gone out of business, or rent one.
To sit for the exam, you must have held a type B driving license for at least two years and have a first aid diploma (or a certificate for attending first-aid training), be educated to at least CAP - BEP level (vocational qualifications, NVQ level 2 equivalent), and have an unblemished criminal record.
To acquire your Certificate of Professional Competence, you must complete a 3-month training course.
You will find all the information you need at:
Paris taxi fares
The tarif set by the prefecture is applicable to all taxis and incorporates journey time and distance. The cost for the journey is automatically calculated by the taxi meter in the vehicle. The rate is reviewed annually in accordance with a ministerial decree.
See Paris charges
Area served by Paris taxis
Paris taxis cover departments 75, 92, 94 and 93, except for the following towns:
Chaville, Garches, Marnes-la-Coquette, Meudon, Rueil-Malmaison, Saint-Cloud, Sèvres, Vaucresson, Ville-d'Avray, Aulnay-sous-Bois, Le Blanc-Mesnil, Clichy-sous-bois, Coubron, Gagny, Gournay-sur-Marne, Livry-Gargan, Montfermeil, Neuilly-Plaisance, Neuilly-sur-Marne, Noisy-le-Grand, Le Raincy, Sevran, Tremblay-en-France, Vaujours, Villepinte, Ablon, Boissy St Léger, Chennevières-sur-Marne, Perigny-sur-Yerres, Le Plessis-Trevise, La-Queue-en-Brie, Santeny, Sucy-en-Brie, Valenton, Villecresnes, Villeneuve-le-Roi, Villeneuve-Saint-Georges et Villiers-sur-Marne.