Livery 101: What’s the Difference Between a Taxi and Other Livery Services?

By Joseph Lalla, Account Executive

Georgetown Insurance Service, Inc.

Silver Spring, MD

Livery vehicles are for-hire vehicles that are used by businesses to generate revenue by transporting people. Think taxicabs, limousines, buses, van pools and even hotel shuttles. However, not all commercial passenger vehicles are the treated the same, especially when it comes to insurance coverage and other requirements.

Here are some the differences between these vehicles:

  • Taxis – A taxicab (taxi) is essentially a vehicle that is hired along with a driver to carry passengers to and from specific destinations for a fee. This fee, which is assessed using a taximeter, is based on the time and distance it takes to complete a person’s ride. They don’t provide pre-arranged transportation but are rather hired (or hailed) by individuals or dispatched to specific locations on an as-needed basis.
  • Other Livery Services – While limousines, shuttles, buses and vans also drive customers from place to place, they are very different from taxis in one major area – all trips are prearranged and scheduled with specific pick-up and drop-off locations that are known in advance. In addition, limousine companies usually consist of luxury sedans, SUVs and other upscale vehicles that set them apart from taxi companies. Shuttles, van pools and buses are also treated like limousines since they operate on a fixed, prearranged schedule as well.

So, why exactly do these differences matter? Well, when it comes to insurance, taxis and other public livery services are not treated equally. As the owner of a limousine, shuttle, van or bus company, you need commercial auto insurance to ensure your passengers, employees, and vehicles are taken care of in the event of an accident. Aside from that, you also must ensure your insurance policies meet the appropriate federal guidelines and adhere to specific requirements set forth by airports and city authorities. In addition to a commercial auto insurance policy, it’s beneficial to supplement that coverage with these programs:

  • Increased liability limits, up to $25 million
  • Driver training program
  • Driver motor vehicle record program
  • Workers compensation program for livery operators
  • Drug testing
  • Driver monitoring systems

At Georgetown Insurance Service, our livery program is tailored specifically to the unique needs of limousines, buses, shuttle buses and van pool businesses. Due to the specialized nature of these public livery services, taxi cabs and dispatches are not included.

Whether you work for yourself, operate your own fleet or work for airport, our agents can help you find the right insurance solutions for your situation.

Have questions about your personal or commercial insurance? Contact us to speak with a licensed insurance professional.


Disclaimer: All data, information, and opinions provided on this article, newsletter, or blog is for informational and educational purposes only. While every caution has been taken to provide readers with the most accurate information and honest analysis, please use individual discretion before making any decisions based on the information in this article, newsletter, or blog. Georgetown Insurance Service, Inc. is not responsible if its readers happen to experience loss, injury, or damage resulting from its display or use. All information is provided on an as-is basis. This article, newsletter, or blog does not represent the thoughts, intentions, plans, or strategies of any specific Insurance Carrier, Georgetown Insurance Service, Inc. partner or affiliate.
Have questions? Contact Us to speak with a licensed insurance professional.

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