screen-shot-2016-09-26-at-2-35-32-pmThe New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission announced on Monday  it will soon begin to issue a single license for both yellow and green taxi drivers that you hail from the street, and for-hire vehicle (FHV) drivers, such as livery drivers, including ride-share businesses such as Uber and Lyft that you have to call for in advance.

When taxi and FHV drivers go to renew their license cards, they will receive a new, combined license: (see below)

So, how will this impact drivers of Uber and Lyft? Will it allow street-hail cab drivers to cut into their profits or vice versa? Well, it’s hard to say, just yet, as New York City has a taxi-driving ecosystem that operates unlike any other city, as far as competition and even pricing (which most times is comparable between both yellow taxis and FHV drivers).

Since New York City has the lowest rate of private car ownership in the nation and the highest utilization of for-hire services, every day hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers and tourists take trips in for-hire vehicles, relying on them to get to work, school, medical appointments, to and from the airports, and other destinations. The same holds true for those who live or work in Manhattan and find it much quicker to simply hail a cab on the fly. Both types of services play a strong role.

When taxi and FHV drivers go to renew their license cards, they will receive this new, combined license. (However, there is no need to obtain a new license card until renewal).

The landscape of ride share service has changed considerably over the past three years due to the rise of app-based e-dispatch services, such as Uber and Lyft, that allow customers to request vehicles on their smartphones. However, TLC regulates New York City’s for-hire vehicle services as well. Now, the distinctions that yielded differential regulatory treatment across black and yellow cars are less relevant. So it was only a matter of time that a card would make it official.

For more information on the TLC Driver License, please visit www.nyc.gov/tlcdriverlicense

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