How giving your friends a lift can lead to a hefty fine

How giving your friends a lift can lead to a hefty fine
Drivers face £2,500 fines and may even invalidate their insurance policy – simply by taking money in exchange for giving lifts to friends.

Giving lifts is, of course, perfectly legal in most cases – but any driver adjudged to be turning a profit via lift-sharing faces a fixed penalty notice and prosecution if caught.

The warning has been issued by Dorset Police, who exposed an illegal lift-sharing system based in Bournemouth and Poole earlier this year, with over 5,000 members on Facebook.

5 Star RAC Car Insurance Plus

Get cover for less than £165 (that’s what 10% of our customers paid) **

While drivers are allowed to receive payment for fuel costs, anyone found to be making a profit, or advertising online, could be charged with illegally operating as a taxi.

Drivers deemed to be profiting from lifts face a hefty fine, penalty points on their licence and could even have their vehicle seized.

READ MORE: 10 driving offences you didn’t know were illegal

Those who charge passengers could also end up invalidating their insurance policies, as most providers won’t cover motorists who are illegally making a profit.

A Dorset Police spokesperson told the Bournemouth Echo that illegal lift sharing services are a risk to the personal safety of passengers and could lead to prosecution.

“We are aware of several Facebook groups which have been created in order to share lifts in and around the Bournemouth and Poole area.

SEE ALSO: Safe driving with health issues: from pregnancy to old age

“When getting into a vehicle with an unlicensed and unvetted stranger, you have no knowledge of their background and risk your own personal safety.

“Before offering a lift in exchange for money, you should speak to your insurance company as this could invalidate your insurance and may result in your vehicle being seized by police, a fixed penalty or prosecution resulting in a fine, points on your licence or disqualification from driving.”

Copyright Press Association 2018. Motoring News articles do not reflect the RAC's views unless clearly stated.

Did you know, you can get fined for moving out of the way of an ambulance?

Want more useful content like this sent straight to your inbox?

** 10% of all customers buying Car Insurance Plus with us from 1st January 2018 to 30th June 2018 paid less than £165. Based on comprehensive Car Insurance Plus, purchased direct, excluding any additional products and upgrades, with payment on an annual basis. Your premium will depend on your circumstances and the level of cover you choose.