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In the car world, TLC has nothing to do with how much respect you show yourself or someone else. The Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC) of New York City is an entirely viable option for those who want to make transportation their career (or even just a second source of income.) Find out more about what it’s like to drive for them in a professional capacity, and how you can best use the special license to make money.

More Doors Are Opened

Technically, if you want to drive for major companies like Uber or Lyft specifically in the city, you’re considered a part of the TLC’s black car services and are considered as driving for the TLC. This means that you need to earn the TLC license before you even think about setting up the apps on your phone. This license includes taking a defensive driving course. Once you get it, you’ll need to decide whether or not you want to get the stickers, or choose to get a standard yellow cab or limo and start driving around to see who needs rides. However, if you do change your mind to switch over at some point down the line, you’ll have either option open to you.

The TLC Is Fighting for You

There is no doubt there is a lot of tension between traditional taxi drivers and the ride-hailing apps of today. In places without a thriving taxi business, there hasn’t been quite as much animosity. NYC has seen a major disruption to the natural order of getting visitors and locals alike from one destination to the next in a city full of car-less people. The TLC has been the first to point out that the saturation and the competition drags down the prices, which means that they’re fighting for those who do driver for the TLC to get the wages they deserve, and the business they need to stay afloat. The executive directors have supported making at least $15 an hour, both to keep people out of poverty and to give drivers the respect they deserve. You will see no such fights from Uber or Lyft for these types of guaranteed wages.

You’re Safe from Debates

Driving for Uber or Lyft, while entirely your own choice, is definitely something that’s up for debate in terms of details. State legislators everywhere are still trying to figure out how employees are classified, what liability drivers have, how much fault the ride sharing service should shoulder, and whether or not their payment schedules are fair. Technology has opened up a variety of questions to a government that has long relied on delay and endless debate before making decisions. However, when the powers that be finally do come to a conclusion, you may be more affected than you think. When you drive for the TLC, an established commission for many years, you can take some comfort in the safety of your position. This doesn’t mean that things can’t change, but it does mean that those changes might not be as drastic.

More Support

Along with designated lobbyists working on behalf of you, you’ll also get additional support. Under the black-car designation, drivers are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits, courtesy of the New York Black Car Operators’ Injury Compensation Fund. Uber and Lyft have been notoriously mute when it comes to helping their drivers in sticky situations, and the TLC is more well known for stepping to the aid of its people in a variety of circumstances. Their encouragement of safety measures like defensive driving courses and traffic schools has served to make the city, drivers, and passengers safer when on the road.