What you need to know
A small passenger service (SPS) operates for hire or reward, and carries 12 people or fewer, including the driver. Examples include taxis, app-based services, shuttles, private hire, dial-a-driver and facilitated cost-sharing.
In 2015, we undertook a review of the SPS regulatory environment to consider if it was fit for purpose and flexible enough to accommodate new technologies. New SPS rules came into effect on 1 October 2017 as part of the Land Transport Amendment Act 2017, as did 3 related Land Transport Rules ̶ Operator Licensing 2007, Work Time and Logbooks 2007 and Driver Licensing 1999.
The work to date
Act passed and rules come into effect
Changes to the rules affected taxis, shuttles, private hire vehicles and app-based passenger services. There were also specific changes for dial-a-driver, carpool operations managed by a third party and for large passenger services ̶ that is, vehicles with 13 seats or more, including the driver.
Amendments consulted on
The consultation asked for feedback on 3 options for setting a cost-sharing rate for facilitated carpooling, and 3 new offences and penalties regulations needed to support the proposed Land Transport Rule amendments.
Bill introduced to Parliament
Changes to SPS Rules were introduced to Parliament, as part of the Land Transport Amendment Bill.
International report released
The International Transport Forum (ITF) released a report looking at principles for regulating app-based ride and taxi services. These recommendations and principles endorsed the changes the Government announced in April 2016.
SPS overhaul announced
Based on the review and public consultation, the Government announced it would simplify the SPS rules, but maintain a focus on safety for passengers, drivers and vehicles. This meant the same rules would apply to all services that connect passengers with customers, including taxi, private hire, ridesharing, and dial-a-driver services.
Review results consulted on
For the public consultation we provided a paper that set out the results of our review and identified 5 broad approaches for the future rules to govern how the SPS sector operates.
SPS framework and sector reviewed
Our review considered the SPS regulatory framework contained in the Land Transport Act 1998 and Land Transport Rule: Operator Licensing 2007. We worked with the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency and the police to review the SPS sector.