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TfL Push Back Language Test Deadline

Thursday, February 9, 2017


Drivers now have until September to prove they can speak English – long enough to find a better solution says union.

GMB scored ‘a victory for common sense’ after TfL agreed to delay the deadline for their private hire English language test.

Drivers originally had until March to prove they have an GCSE and produce the certificate – or face a day-long language test under belittling classroom conditions costing a whopping £180.

The new rule caused outrage among workers – particularly those who were born and raised in the UK who had been asked to shell out to show they can speak their own mother tongue.

But following a hard fought campaign by GMB, the union for private hire drivers, and pressure from an ongoing court case, TfL has moved the deadline back to September.

This will allow plenty of time to find a cheaper, more suitable alternative and GMB urges private hire drivers not to book the expensive test.

Steve Garelick, GMB's professional drivers’ secretary, said:

“This represents a victory for GMB and a victory for common sense.

“TfL’s plan to force drivers to shell out for £180 to prove they can speak English was misguided at best.

“Now, following our campaign, drivers have some breathing space while we find a more sensible way forward than this foolish test.”


Contact: GMB Press Office on 07958 156846 or at

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