Sometimes Habib has to write emails as part of his job as a self-employed taxi driver. Read an email from Habib, answer questions and write your own email.


Hi Ali, 

(a) Thanks for your email asking me about becoming a self-employed taxi driver in the UK. (b) It’s great that you asked for advice as I didn’t receive any help before becoming a taxi driver. I found out myself. (c) I’ve been self-employed for almost 6 years now. 

(d) This is what you need in London: 

- a clean UK driving licence that is at least 3 years old 

- a car that has more than 2 doors 

- a car that is no more than 5 years old 

- a driving assessment for taxis/private vehicle hire 

- if you want to be a black cab driver, ‘The Knowledge’ (see the web link at the end of this email) 

(e) On a typical shift, I work nights. During a shift I meet many different kinds of people including a lot of drunken people, especially at the weekend. (f) Some are very nice but some can be very aggressive, it depends. That’s the one downside but if they’re aggressive, I just ignore them. It’s the best way to deal with it because, as you know, I’ve got kids. 

(g) My base is in Holloway Road. I go there first and wait in a queue for a job. (h) The areas I cover in London are Archway, Holloway, Camden, Kentish Town and Highgate. It’s a radius of about 6 miles. (i) Sometimes, I get jobs where I travel further. The longest journeys are usually to airports. I once went to Birmingham. 

(j) The thing I like the most about my job is that it gives me free time to spend with my children. Also, there’s no-one watching you or saying what time you have to start work, what time you can go. You are your own boss, really. 

Well, I hope this helps… 

Good luck! 



Task 1 - synonyms

A synonym is a word with a similar meaning, e.g. synonyms of ‘job’ are occupation, work, trade, profession, career, employment, position, post, vacancy, role.

The 8 sentences below are adapted from Habib’s email. Choose the best synonym for each of the words in bold. You can use a thesaurus to help.


  • Have you written an email asking Habib some more questions? Can you post it in the comment section below?