Temporary Operating Permit (TOP)
Need extra vehicles to meet an urgent temporary demand? Taxi, limo, shuttle and other passenger directed vehicle operators can apply for a Temporary Operating Permit (TOP) that allows you to increase the number of vehicles in your fleet for up to 92 days, depending on the type of TOP.
There are three types of TOP and each requires a different application:
- Regular TOP (taxis, limos, shuttles, and other passenger-directed vehicles)
- Festive Season TOP (taxis)
- Peak Season TOP (limos, shuttles, and other passenger-directed vehicles)
Note: Ride-hail and inter-city bus operators are not eligible for TOPs.
For more information on each type of TOP, see below.
If you want to permanently expand your fleet, you must submit an amendment application to the Board to add taxis or add limousines. The Board does not approve standard TOPs when an amendment application in process. However, it will consider festive season TOPs for taxis and peak season TOPs for limousines and other PDVs.
Regular TOP (taxis, limos, shuttles, and other PDVs)
If you have an urgent and temporary increase in demand (e.g., conferences, special events, transportation of dignitaries, or unexpected peaks in demand for service), you can apply for a regular TOP to temporarily add vehicles to your fleet.
A regular TOP allows you to increase the number of vehicles in your fleet for up to 92 days. You have four options when you apply:
- 1 to 14 days TOP
- 15 to 30 days TOP
- 31 to 60 days TOP
- 61 to 92 days TOP
Applicants for regular TOPs should submit information that supports the “urgent and temporary” need for the permit. This information may include:
- Contracts to provide service at a conference or special event
- Written confirmation of additional bookings for a very limited time period (e.g., less than one month)
- Fleet usage data that shows year-over-year trends, plus daily trip bookings for the whole fleet for the permit period requested
You may also want to describe your fleet management strategies, or explain how you avoid accepting bookings that exceed your vehicle supply.
Festive Season TOP (taxis)
The demand for taxis often increases significantly from mid-November through to mid-January (the “festive season”). To meet this demand you can apply for a Festive Season TOP to temporarily add taxis to your fleet.
With a Festive Season TOP, you can apply to cover a period of up to 60 days between November 15 and January 15. You do not need to provide more evidence of temporary and urgent need.
Fees for Festive Season TOP applications are the same as regular TOP applications.
Read the Festive Season TOPs policy for more information about when you start operating under a TOP and the maximum number of temporary vehicles you can add.
Peak Season TOP (limousines and other PDVs)
Limousine and other PDV operators often experience spikes in demand during the year. These spikes may occur during the festive, grad, ski, or summer season. To meet these demands you can apply for a Peak Season TOP to temporarily add vehicles to your fleet.
A Peak Season TOP allows you to increase the number of vehicles in your fleet for up to 92 days. You have three options when you apply:
- Three 30-day PS TOPs
- One 60-day PS TOP and one 30-day PS TOP
- One 92-day PS TOP
You do not need to provide additional evidence of a temporary and urgent need for more limousines or other PDVs.
Fees for Peak Season TOP applications are the same as regular TOP applications.
Read the Peak Season TOPs policy for limousines and other PDVs for more information about when you start operating under a peak season TOP and the maximum number of temporary vehicles you can add.
Allow time for processing
The Board and the Registrar aim to process TOP applications in a timely manner. However, if you know that you want to apply for a TOP, do not delay sending your application. Processing times cannot be guaranteed.
During application processing, the Board may ask you to provide more information. The Board may refuse an application if circumstances justify it, such as applicant fitness.
Things to remember
TOPs are not intended to be used for the following purposes:
- Obtaining authority to use a recently purchased vehicle while you wait for the Board to approve your application for additional vehicle(s)
- Establishing public need for additional vehicle(s)
- Bypassing the application process for additional vehicle(s)