Booking a taxi in the UK

Taxis in the UK

Taxis are a direct way to travel in the UK, picking you up from your location and taking you straight to your destination. For this reason taxis are considerably more expensive than public transport.

In the UK many taxis queue at taxi ranks, which can often be found outside train stations, at airports and in town centres. There are taxi ranks on the University of Kent's Canterbury and Medway campuses. During your time in the UK you may wish to use taxis that are waiting in taxi ranks (for example for times when you have not pre-planned a journey) and it is important that you make sure the vehicle is licensed and to take sensible precautions. The taxi licence is located at the front and rear of the vehicle, and you should also ask to see the driver's ID badge. When you are aware of a journey in advance, we advise you to pre-book a taxi.

Before getting in the taxi check the driver knows the address of where you want to go and confirm how much it will cost to get there (if you have agreed on a price when booking the taxi then confirm this cost). If you are travelling alone it is usual to sit in the back of the taxi.

Travelling from the airport to the University

If there are three or more of you who wish to travel from the airport to the University it will probably be cheaper to share a taxi. If you have a lot of luggage and plan to arrive at night time, it may be easier and safer to book a taxi to take you directly to your accommodation. If you wish to travel by taxi from the airport to the University, then you should pre-book as soon as you are aware of your flight times.

Travelling from a London airport to the University of Kent (Canterbury or Medway) you can expect to pay in the region of £75 - £125. The cost will vary depending on which London airport you arrive at and how many passengers are travelling (you may need a bigger vehicle). You should make sure you have the amount available in British Currency (notes or coins) and you should pay the driver at the end of the journey.

Tipping is not mandatory, but if you are pleased with the service then you can leave the driver a tip. How much you decide to tip is at your own discretion - tipping in the UK is generally 10%.

How to book a taxi from the airport

You can book a taxi by telephone or email. We would recommend that you do so by email, so that you have written confirmation of the details of the booking. We recommend that you print this email and keep it in your hand luggage. It is important to have the driver's contact details and the address of your destination written down if you are not a proficient speaker of English. You can use the following information as a template for your email:

Personal Details:

  • First Name
  • Last Name
  • Contact Telephone Number (remember to include your country telephone code)
  • Do you require specific transport arrangements due to a disability? If so please specify
  • Number of passengers travelling
  • How many suitcases you will have.

Flight Details:

  • Your flight number
  • Airport and city of departure (eg. JFK International Airport, New York)
  • UK airport and terminal of arrival (eg. Heathrow Airport Terminal 3)
  • Time of arrival (eg. 15:20)
  • Date of arrival (DD/MM/YY).


  • Address of your destination (eg. Parkwood, University of Kent, Canterbury Campus, Kent).

Questions to ask the driver:

  • How much will it cost?
  • Where will they meet you? (Usually the driver will meet you in the arrivals hall of the airport terminal and will be holding a card with your name on it)
  • Ask the driver to confirm their contact details
  • What is the cancellation policy? (The taxi driver will usually ask you to cancel the taxi at least 24 hours before the time of the travel. If you do not cancel the booking, you may be liable to pay the full fee).

Please note: The taxi driver will have your flight details and will receive live updates of your flight status. Therefore if your flight is delayed they will be aware and will adjust their arrival time at the airport accordingly. We would still advise you to keep in contact with your driver if you experience severe delays or flight cancellations.

Taxi companies

The University uses the services of the following taxi companies:

Canterbury: Cab Co, Cab Line 6 Ltd, Canterbury Galaxy Taxis, Canterbury Taxis, Croft Cars, Longley's Private Hire, Longport Taxis, Wilkinson Taxis Ltd

Medway: ABC Taxis, Computer Cabs, Express Cars, HWS Taxis, Star Taxis, Vokes Taxis