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Booking Service Providers

As part of the recent reforms for the commercial passenger vehicle industry, accreditation for Booking Service Providers has been introduced. This replaces accreditation for Network Service Providers and has a broader definition. It includes businesses or individuals providing booking services for all commercial passenger vehicles such as taxis and hire cars.

The Taxi Services Commission (TSC) will initially contact any organisations that offer, or intend to offer, high volume booking services to discuss accreditation.

  • High volume is over 200 taxi and hire car bookings per day.

At this stage, all other organisations should not apply for accreditation unless requested to do so by the TSC.

Existing accredited Network Service Providers will be deemed to be Booking Service Providers, and do not need to apply for a separate accreditation.

Further information will be provided on accreditation for organisations—both high and low volume—in late 2017.

Information on this page

What is a Booking Service Provider?

A Booking Service Provider is defined as a business or person that:

  • receives requests for prospective customers to be provided with taxi or hire car services
  • arranges or facilitates acceptance of those requests by or on behalf of drivers of commercial passenger vehicles.

Please note that not all Booking Service Providers need to be accredited at the moment—see the section below.

An individual, company or association can be a Booking Service Provider. The booking service can be provided through an automated or semi-automated electronic system, including an application or website, through a phone service or any other means of communication.

A Booking Service Provider can accept payment for the service on behalf of the driver, or have a payment made directly to the driver. Commercial passenger vehicle operators and individual drivers have the choice to subscribe to one or more accredited Booking Service Providers.

Booking Service Providers can be organisations based within, or outside of, Victoria.

Who needs Booking Service Provider accreditation?

While all businesses or individuals which receive and arrange bookings for commercial passenger vehicles will be Booking Service Providers, only a subset need to be accredited with the TSC. The TSC will initially focus on contacting specific high volume organisations about accreditation.

  • Booking Service Providers or new applicants should not contact the TSC for accreditation at this stage.

Bookings for vehicles a Booking Service Provider owns or operates

Accreditation is not required if a driver is only taking and accepting bookings for themselves, or if an operator is only receiving and accepting bookings for licences or vehicles owned by that operator. Operators or drivers can set up their own booking services for their own licensed vehicles, or for vehicles they own or operate—including advertising a booking number, web address or other contact method.

Existing accredited Network Service Providers

Existing accredited Network Service Providers will be deemed to be Booking Service Providers and do not need to apply for separate accreditation. These businesses will receive a confirmation letter and a new Booking Service Provider accreditation certificate from the TSC several weeks after the new legislation has been introduced.

Bookings for vehicles a Booking Service Provider does not own or operate

Businesses or individuals providing booking services for taxis or hire cars that they do not own or operate will need to apply to the TSC for Booking Service Provider accreditation later in 2017 or as requested.

  • Applications from Booking Service Providers are not required at this time.

The requirements of a Booking Service Provider

The requirements for a Booking Service Provider are contained in the Transport (Compliance and Miscellaneous) Act 1983, Commercial Passenger Vehicle Industry Act 2017 and the Transport (Buses, Taxi-Cabs and Other Commercial Passenger Vehicles) (Taxi-Cab Industry Accreditation and Other Matters) Regulations 2017. These requirements include managing a complaints handling process and keeping certain records.

When should I apply for accreditation?

Organisations should not apply for accreditation unless requested to by the TSC.

The TSC may require certain Booking Service Providers to become accredited in specific circumstances and will contact them directly.

The TSC will publish further information for applicants later in 2017.