Taxi drivers are used to working long and unsociable hours, transporting their customers from A to B. On top of this, they’re also sat down for long periods of time, which can have both short and long-term effects on their health and wellbeing.

The good news is there are many things that taxi drivers can do to ensure their health stays in check.

If you operate a fleet, it’s important you encourage your drivers to lead healthy lifestyles – for their sake mainly, but also because healthy employees mean happy and productive employees!

Keeping an eye on wellbeing is just one way to look after your drivers. Another is by having the right level of taxi fleet insurance in place.

Taxi Insurer has plenty of experience helping taxi fleet owners find comprehensive policies that cover all their vehicles and suit their individual requirements, all for a price that won’t break the bank.

We can provide policies for all types of vehicles, including people carriers, coaches and minibuses, covering businesses in most areas within the UK.

So, how can you and your drivers stay healthy? Let’s take a look…

 

Make time for exercise

A rack of weights at a gym

Everyone needs to exercise – the NHS recommends at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise each week for adults, but this really is the minimum.

Of course, when you’re a taxi driver, getting lots of exercise is easier said than done – no doubt you feel exhausted after a day’s (or night’s) work.

If you need to ramp up your exercise, these tips may help:

  • 75 minutes of intense activity (like running, martial arts or sports such as football or rugby) offers similar health benefits to 150 of moderate activity. So consider one of these activities if you’re strapped for time.
  • Make the effort to get up and walk around during work breaks – even a 10-minute stroll can be beneficial.
  • Be as active as possible on your days off – whether that involves walking to the supermarket, taking the dog for a long walk or going on a bike ride with your kids.
  • Find an exercise, sport or class you really enjoy as this will inspire you to stick at it.
  • You might want to head straight to bed after a long shift, but a brisk walk will help you to wind down and get your circulation moving.

 

Develop good eating habits

Various vegetables on a table that have just been washed

Exercise is just one part of the healthy-living equation; you need to combine it with a nutritious and balanced diet.

Speaking to Commercial Fleet, dietician and nutrition consultant Susan Bury says that it’s vital for drivers to have five servings of fruit and veg per day.

These foods are associated with combating feelings of depression and anxiety.

They can also protect against diseases and improve cognitive function.

She offers some specific advice for taxi fleet managers, too:

 

  • Ensure drivers have breakfast, as they can’t be alert without fuel. Encourage them to get up a little earlier and enjoy a nutritious meal (like oats or fruit and yoghurt) before starting their shift.
  • Skipping meals often leads to drivers making unhealthy food choices, so encourage them to get out of the car for at least half an hour over lunch to enjoy a proper meal (either a healthy packed lunch or meal at a cafe).
  • Drivers might limit fluids so they don’t need to visit the loo as much, but tests have found that mild dehydration can have the same impact on the brain as being drunk. Staying adequately hydrated means drinking eight cups of fluid during a shift.

 

Learn how to manage stress

A person relaxing in-front of a fire with a hot cup of tea

There’s no doubt about it: driving for a living can be extremely stressful!

On any one day you could find yourself dealing with tricky customers, gridlock traffic or faults with your vehicle – you need to learn how to cope with stress triggers.

These pointers could help:

  • Take regular breaks during your shift – as mentioned, it’s important you get out of the vehicle and walk about.
  • Rise above rude customers or inconsiderate road users, as reacting to them will only increase your stress levels. Instead, take a few deep breaths and think happy thoughts!
  • We all deserve a break. Make sure you don’t work too many days on the trot and always use up your allocated holiday allowance.
  • Always leave plenty of time for jobs, as rushing to pick up a client can cause unnecessary stress.
  • End your shift with something that will de-stress you – take a walk, listen to an audiobook or enjoy a hot bath.

 

Don’t underestimate the importance of rest and sleep

An alarm clock next to a bed and a cup of tea

It’s important you and your drivers are up to speed with rules on driver hours in the UK.

Under GB domestic rules, for instance, you must take a break of at least half an hour after five and a half hours of driving, or alternatively at least 45 minutes in breaks within a period of eight hours and 30 minutes.

You must also take 24 hours off duty every two weeks.

Of course, 24 hours off every two weeks is hardly a sufficient break from your work. Because driving a taxi is mentally and physically taxing, you should really aim to have two days off a week, similar to a weekend on a typical working week.

Getting enough rest also means getting enough sleep. The Sleep Council recommends at least seven to nine hours per day for people aged 18-65.

 

Rest easy with taxi fleet insurance from Taxi Insurer

Daffodils covering a patch of grass in-front of Big Ben at dawn

Taxi fleet insurance arranged through Taxi Insurer can provide cover for a minimum of three vehicles.

We also offer mixed fleet policies and any driver cover (subject to age and experience). The benefits of our policies may include:

  • Cover for cars, MPVs and minibuses
  • Cover for private and public hire
  • 24-hour claims management services
  • Option to pay in instalments
  • Mirror NCB from other insurance policies (terms and conditions apply)
  • Support from our UK-based call centre

So, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with our specialist team today and let us find the perfect taxi fleet insurance policy to suit your needs and budget.

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