All drivers must obtain a TLC For Hire Vehicle (FHV) Driver’s License to drive on one of the many popular ridesharing apps including Uber, Lyft, and Via. Below is a detailed list of steps and links to help you obtain your TLC FHV License today.
Step 1: THE DMV. Obtaining a Class-E DMV License or CDL License.
Do you currently have a NYC Class D license (your standard operator driving license)?
Yes, I do. You are a few short steps away from driving for your favorite ridesharing app and making money today!
If you have a standard driving license, then the first thing you need to do is convert your Class D license to a Class E license (the license for for-hire-vehicle, taxi, livery, and limo drivers). To make this change to a Class E license you will need to download this this form and bring it to your local DMV.
No, I don’t. Not to worry, you are a few extra steps away from driving for your favorite ridesharing app and making money soon!
To begin driving, you will need to apply for a driver’s permit and take a written test. You will be applying for a Class E license.
Quick tip! To find the DMV closest to you please visit http://dmv.ny.gov/offices and enter your zip code. Many DMVs will tell you to make an appointment in advance, but this is not true. Most DMV’s will allow walk-ins, but they fill up fast. Show up early with your forms for same day service!
Step 2: THE TLC. Apply for a TLC FHV License. (Appx. 15-20 minutes)
Now that you have completed the DMV section of the process you will need to register with the NYC Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC).
This simple process begins by completing the online FHV License Application Part A & Part B. Visit https://www1.nyc.gov/lars/ and click on “Apply for New License” and follow the steps. Once you are complete, print the form and sign it.
There is a $84.00 fee which you can conveniently pay online using your credit card, debit card, or checking account.
Quick tip! The TLC’s website only gives you a maximum of 20 minutes to complete the form. After 20 minutes, your session will expire and you will need to enter your information all over again. To avoid this, we recommend that you have all your information ready before you sit down to complete your application.
3. GETTING TOUGH. Complete a Defensive Driving Course (Appx. 6 hours)
The TLC requires every drive to complete a defensive driving course.
For a full list of courses both online and in the classroom please visit https://transact.dmv.ny.gov/pirp/.
Quick tip! Many courses are available online for $20 - $40 with no final exam. Find a course that works for you and avoid the classroom!
If you decide not to become an FHV driver, these courses can still help you save money and lower points on your license. In NYS you will receive a 10% discount on the base rate of your auto and motorcycle insurance premiums for 3 years. Additionally, you can reduce up to 4 points from your NYS driver's license.
4. THE TLC APPOINTMENT. (Appx. 1 hour)
After you submit your application to the TLC (completed in Step 2), the TLC will send you an e-mail within 10 days to schedule an appointment.
To be ready for your TLC appointment, review the TLC Checklist and bring all of your documents with you to your appointment. These documents include:
A printed and signed copy of the TLC application (Part A & B)
Original and photocopy of your Social Security Cae
Your DMV Class-E License of CDL
A credit card or other form of payment to pay application fee (~$100)
Your Defensive Driving Course Certification
You will also need to watch this video required by the TLC before you attend your appointment.
Step 5. FIND A CAR AND DRIVE.
Now that you have successfully received your license, you are ready to find a car and drive!
Over 70% of New York City’s drivers rent vehicles to drive. While there are many cars, it can be extremely difficult for new and experienced drivers to find affordable cars to rent.
Quick Tip! Many drivers are using sites like Craigslist and NYCityCab to find vehicles. We do not recommend finding your car on these sites. Among other issues, there are application fees, minimum rental periods, and large deposits. To avoid these issues, use Fleet Market to find reputable owners with sensible rates.