In New York City, taxicabs come in two varieties: yellow and green; they are widely recognizable symbols of the city. Taxis painted canary yellow (medallion taxis) are able to pick up passengers anywhere in the five boroughs. Those painted apple green (street hail livery vehicles, commonly known as "boro taxis"), which began to appear in August 2013, are allowed to pick up passengers in Upper Manhattan, the Bronx, Brooklyn, Queens (excluding LaGuardia Airport and John F. Kennedy International Airport), and Staten Island. Both types have the same fare structure. Taxicabs are operated by private companies and licensed by the New York City Taxi and Limousine Commission (TLC). It also oversees over 40,000 other for-hire vehicles, including "black cars", commuter vans and ambulettes.
Taxicab vehicles, each of which must have a medallion to operate, are driven an average of 180 miles per shift. As of March 14, 2014, there were 51,398 individuals licensed to drive medallion taxicabs. There were 13,605 taxicab medallion licenses in existence. By July 2016, that number had dropped slightly to 13,587 medallions, or 18 lower than the 2014 total. Taxi patronage has declined since 2011 due to competition from rideshare services.