Private Hire drivers are allowed to pick-up and drop-off their passengers on most red routes as long as they are displaying the proper sign in their car which will let police, CCTV, etc know that you’re licensed to do this. This sign isn’t the same as your badge and instead must be applied for by PCO operators which in turn can then be passed onto driver for free. If you are stopping on red routes without a sign then you can expect to receive a penalty of £130 so it’s worth getting one especially as they don’t cost anything. The 580 km of red routes in London are constantly policed as unlicensed infringements could cause the roads to backup and stand still.
What are red routes?
Red routes are busy sections of road where stopping restrictions are in place and this is due to the fact that although red routes only account for 5% of the roads in London, they can carry up to 30% of the traffic. You can download maps of the red routes here. You will notice red routes by the continuous red lines painted alongside the road.
Apply for a sign
As mentioned it’s only licensed operators who can apply for these special red route signs so they will need to make the application by completing this form and returning it to: Private Hire Red Route Team, 4th Floor, Green Zone, Palestra, 197 Blackfriars Road, London SE1 8NJ or faxing it to 020 3054 3160.
The application allows for registration of up to 36 vehicles but more applications can be submitted if needed. If the operator has a very large fleet of cars then TfL also provide a Microsoft Excel version of the form to complete which can then be emailed to email@example.com.
The form will need to have the operators name, license number, and also the car numberplate registrations of the vehicles which will be using the signs which avoids misuse.
Where should the signs be displayed?
These stickers are placed on the outside of the glass so they they can be viewed correctly and one sticker should be on the front windscreen directly below your PCO license and the other must go on the rear windscreen on the bottom right-hand side. Don’t worry about them getting blown away as they are very secure and in fact take quite a bit of work to remove! They are tamper-proof so if they do get damaged then simply get your licensed operator to request a free replacement.