London Chauffeur Observations of a London Chauffeur

17Mar/11Off

Fuel Price Increases Affecting The UK Chauffeur Industry


Fuel prices are going through the roof this year, as if you hadn't noticed and it's on the cards that the government may up fuel duty to pile on the misery. There is much coverage of this throughout the media and much speculation as to what may or may not be done about it.

I was surprised this week to hear that Ed Balls put forward the idea of reducing VAT on fuel back down to 17.5% with the idea that this would boost the UK economy. Agreed, it would save the man in the street money, yes but as I see it, the most damaging aspect of  high UK fuel prices is the impact it has on commercial vehicles which in turn puts up the cost of moving freight and people around the country. As a London Chauffeur, I fall into the latter of these two categories.  This in turn drives up costs which are then passed down to the consumer. A large amount of businesses however can claim back VAT on fuel which would water down this proposal considerably. It's the ex VAT cost that is causing the problem to business not VAT.

This motion was in fact defeated in the commons yesterday and quite rightly so; partly due to some of the reasons above and possible legal problems with the EU as far as this is concerned.

As far as I'm concerned the main problem is the huge tax imposed on fuel by successive governments which is due to be increased in April 2011. Political unrest in the Middle East has sent the price of crude oil soaring but this can't be legislated for. Unfair government taxation can be though.

Fair Fuel UK are doing a sterling job on fighting the cause of the motorist and associated industries. I urge you to visit the Fair Fuel UK website to  learn more and lend your support and help stop the April fuel duty increase.

22Feb/102

Major roadworks on London’s Thames Bridges


Who thinks these things up?????

Currently Albert Bridge is closed for long term roadworks, Hammersmith Bridge has weekend closures, Blackwall tunnel South is closed at night, Southwark bridge has a contraflow, Waterloo Bridge has lane closures and Borough High Street is closed southbound causing congestion to the south of London Bridge.

Who on earth plans this stuff? Come on Boris you really need to  get a grip of this nonsense. It doesn't matter how many bikes you introduce into London if most of the traffic stationary pumping out carbon.

Visit  BBC London for traffic updates

21Feb/102

New UK tax policies are creating a worrying trend for London Chauffeurs.


As a London Chauffeur, I neither purport to be a financial nor political expert but I do have some interesting conversations with the people I drive and have noticed a worrying trend of late i.e. foreign businesses and individuals (non-domiciliaries or non-doms) who are planning to exit the UK due to the recent hike in tax rates and the introduction of taxes on bonuses for financial institutions. Whilst researching I found this article at International Adviser backing up what I've been hearing along with this news item about drinks maker Diageo at the BBC.
One multinational client of mine is looking into moving it's European Headquarters from the UK to another more tax friendly European Country (I'm deliberately being vague from a confidentiality perspective here).
Another Russian businessman is considering moving away from the UK and basing in Dubai and another is leaving the UK after 11 years to work in Germany. All of these examples contribute substantially to the exchequer through various forms of taxation and subsequently the revenues of other UK businesses to which they patronise and I wonder if we can really afford to lose them.
Other countries are waiting for the with new tax incentives of their own as our foreign nationals begin looking for more tax friendly territories in which to reside.
All of this as a direct result of the government's recent tax changes.
London in particular has benefited hugely from the influx of money that the outgoing tax incentives have brought over the last few years but as I see it, the government has decided to go for short term revenues and to appease the less privileged voters without considering the bigger picture i.e. a decrease in private investment and the effect on Property Prices, high end retail sales, hotels, restaurants etc. and of course my own industry UK/London Chauffeur Services.
As a chauffeur service provider I'm concerned that many of our regular users will begin to disappear. After all, these three examples just come from me. There are many thousands of chauffeurs out there. What if they all had the same experiences as me?
Just for the record I have no interest in Party Politics, I would feel the same whoever introduced these tax changes.
Wow......... I never thought I would be so political in my first blog. I hope somebody reads it and even possibly sparks a debate.

Non-domiciliaries