Dacorum is one of the most expensive places in Britain to take a short taxi ride - and that is official.
But local cabbies say they are actually ‘feeling the pinch’, don’t have any say on the prices and that they are ‘not as high as you might think’.
New research by Private Hire Taxi Monthly has looked at the cost of a two-mile ride in a Hackney carriage in every part of the country.
Dacorum was in the top fifth, with a two-mile ride costing £6.30.
And taxis were even more expensive for anyone travelling from neighbouring areas. Watford is the second-most expensive area in the country, with a two-mile journey costing £8.40, and in Hertsmere the same trip costs £7.
Yet down in Welwyn and Hatfield the same journey can be travelled for £5.70.
Steve Garelick, a branch secretary for professional drivers at the GMB union, said: “It’s only when you start looking at other councils nearby that it’s not as particularly high as you might think.
“My drivers are actually really feeling the pinch, because they have to pay for tax, regular maintenance and insurance on the vehicles.
“If a driver gets a £12.40 job in one hour, once you take all those costs of running the vehicle off, then they are actually earning about the minimum wage.”
And Tabrez Khan, the outgoing chairman of the Dacorum Private Hire & Hackney Carriage Association, added: “The prices in Dacorum are actually set by the licensing department, taxi drivers have no say. All private hire vehicles and hackney carriages in Dacorum are fitted with a meter so nobody can abuse the system.”
The most expensive taxis in the country are at Luton Airport at £9.20 for a two-mile trip - almost three times as much as the same journey from South Kesteven in Lincolnshire, at just £3.50.