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Van-hire-comparison.co.uk presents your complete guide to hiring a van.
 
Welcome to your free ebook from van-hire-comparison.co.uk! As well as offering the best deals on van hire, we have piled our complete industry knowledge into this handy guide. We have crammed in just about everything to help you get a handle on hiring a van; from the reasons why you should consider van hire, how to hire and drive a van as well as how to deal with the unforeseen. We’ve even included expert tips for a hassle-free load and a special section dedicated to help you move house like a professional! There is also a glossary of the different vans you can expect to hire and how to pick the right one to suit you.
 
Whenever you decide to book a van visit van-hire-comparison.co.uk to check the prices in your area. We take the time to compare the offers from every major van hire company to make sure you get the best possible deal every time.
 
Contents
 
Van hire made easy
 

  • Why hire a van?
    1.      Practical reasons why hiring a van might come in handy
  • Can I hire a van?
    1.      A simple overview of what is needed (and what to look for) when hiring a van
  • Can I hire a van as a student?
    1.      A short introduction to van hire for students

 
Driving
 

  • How to drive a van?
    1.      Practical advice for when you get behind the wheel
  • What should I do if there is a problem?
    1.      A troubleshooting guide for any issues you might encounter en-route

 
Loading
 

  • How to load a van
    1.      Useful tips from industry experts to loading the best way
  • How to move house like a pro
    1.      A complete walkthrough for house movers

 
Useful Information
 

  • Van Specifications
    1.      A list of the most common and useful types of van
  • Compare Van Hire Companies
    1.      A chart detailing each company, their requirements and restrictions
  • The Knowledge
    1.      A glossary of van hire and related jargon, explained

 

Van Hire Made Easy
 

  • Why Hire A Van?

 
Hiring a van at a competitive daily or even hourly rate can be a practical solution for any number of circumstances. It can often be cheaper than you think, especially in todays market where there are many van rental companies to choose from, so they often aren’t shy of offering a great deal.
 
Modern vans are robust enough for almost any delivery challenge, and can be just as easy to drive as a car. Here are some of the reasons you should consider hiring a van. If you want to see how the van rental companies stack up in your area, compare their prices now on van-hire-comparison.co.uk.

 

  • Prevent damage to your car

 
Carrying large, bulky items in your car can cause any number of problems. Especially considering the state of Britains roads with all the bumps, pot-holes and speed-humps. It’s not uncommon to cause damage to the undercarriage or more sensitive areas like wheels, axels or suspension when driving with heavy goods in the back of a small car.
 
Modern cars might be sturdy but they are not designed to carry the type of heavy load that a van can. Plus, depending on your car, there might not be enough room.
 
The load doesn’t have to be heavy to cause damage. If you stuff the back seats with rough, sharp or dirty items then tears, rips and stains to the fabric are inevitable. Bulky items can even shatter window glass if they are wedged tight against the doors or move in transit.
 
You can consider loading items onto the roof of your car, although the cost of the equipment (if you don’t have a roof rack) might not be worth it, especially for a one-time job. Scraping the paintwork is a likely hazard as well as the danger of having the load coming undone when you are driving – which can cause an accident at worst, or damage your items at best.
 
By hiring a van you can avoid all of these pitfalls, allowing you to deliver the goods with complete peace of mind.

 

  • Moving House or Transporting Goods

 
You can save hundreds or even thousands of pounds by packing and moving yourself. It’s practically inevitable that you will move house at some stage, and almost any household can fit within a practically sized Transit or their larger cousins such as the high-roof or long wheel-base versions. A Luton van can be loaded with even more. Instead of paying through the nose for a removal company, you can save money and make sure that your precious items are handled with care.

 

If you are looking to haul particularly large or long objects, or a large number of goods at one time (or both!) then a van is your ideal solution. Check our ‘How to move house’ guide further on in this ebook for fantastic tips for a hassle-free relocation.

 

  • Impulse Buys or a Big Days Shopping

Spotted something at an auction, market or car boot sale that won’t fit inside your car? Hiring a van means you don’t have to lose out, especially with most companies offering same-day services. This is a terrific option to avoid the hassle of home delivery, which can be expensive or mean a serious delay in getting your item home, not considering any awkward delivery times. By taking the initiative you can hire a van to get your new treasure home without delay, and usually for a fraction of the cost.

 

If you’ve planned a grand day out shopping and know you’ll be buying a lot, this can often mount into extravagance. Especially if you’re shopping for furniture, at places like IKEA or a garden centre, you might find yourself with more than you bargained for. By hiring a van for the day you can start that renovation or life in a new home immediately, without the headache of a return journey or reliance on home delivery.

 

  • Urgent or Unexpected Transportation

Sometimes you just have to move something from A to B unexpectedly, or with little notice. Your car might be getting repaired or maybe your simply don’t have one, or it isn’t suitable for the job at hand. Small businesses might suffer this more than your average person, but by hiring a van you can take the weight off your mind and your hands with a decent daily deal or even at an hourly rate.

 

  • Can I hire a van?

If you are over 21 years of age, hold a full driving license for over 1 year and have a major (Visa, MasterCard) credit card, then YES!
 
You are spoiled for choice for van rental in the U.K. with many reputable companies. However, depending on your circumstances, choosing the right company for you might be key to an enjoyable van hire experience.
 
Some van rental companies have requirements for vehicle renters. For example, there may be age restrictions (over 25’s only) or driving license criteria (held for more than 3 years, or no endorsements) may limit your options. Or some companies might not operate from a location near where you want to pick up the van.
 
We have included a handy comparison chart at the end of this ebook. This chart is an overview to all of the major van hire companies and their individual requirements, number of locations and options that they offer. Here is a useful list of the general details that all van hire companies ask for:
 

  • A credit card is always required. This is necessary for proof of identity and often for payment (some companies allow different payment options, such as a debit card).
  • The credit card must always be in the name of the main driver.
  • If you are under 25 then a young driver surcharge will apply. This should be included in every quote.
  • All van hire quotes include basic insurance, and you can include additional coverage which will limit your excess for an extra cost (optional).
  • Check what your refuelling options are. If you leave the refuelling to the partner you will pay a premium.

 
Check the prices before you book – visit van-hire-comparison.co.uk and get yourself the best deal possible.

 

  • Can I rent a van as a student?

 
Students can rent a van AND enjoy some extra money-saving deals with certain providers. As long as you can satisfy the age and driving license criteria, and have a major (Visa, MasterCard) credit card, you can look for special student offers at the below companies.
 
Unfortunately if you are below 25 then a young driver surcharge will be included in your rental quote. This is an additional fee that is required by law.
 
The rental companies who offer van rental to the younger age groups are:
 

  • Thrifty (21+). Restrictions: SWB (short wheel base) vans only below 25 years, driving license held for 1+ year
  • Sixt (21+). Restrictions: SWB (short wheel base) vans only below 25 years, driving license held for 1+ year
  • Europcar (22+). Restrictions: driving license held for 3+ years
  • Budget (23+). Restrictions: driving license held for 1+ year
  • Hertz (23+). Restrictions: driving license held for 3+ years

 

Driving
 

  • How to drive a van

 
Many people make the mistake in thinking that driving a van is difficult. It’s a common misconception that puts a lot of people off from taking the wheel.
 
Today’s modern vans are just as easy to drive as cars. You’ll have modern conveniences like power steering and electric mirrors and windows at your fingertips, a gearstick where you expect it to be, a familiar dashboard and a responsive, powerful diesel engine. You’ll also benefit from the lofted driving position that most medium sized vans (such as a Transit) have.
 
It’s sometimes easy to forget you’re driving a van once you’re in the driving seat. No matter how easy it is to drive, try to remember that the van is wider, taller and heavier than most cars (especially with a full load). Use good judgement when you are on the road and you’ll have a great driving experience. Here are some general tips to keep in mind:
 
Use less speed. A van will take longer to come to a stop due to its weight.
 
Take it easier around corners and roundabouts. You don’t want to topple over on the road.
 
Adjust your mirrors. The view from your rear-view mirror might be blocked when you are loaded, and some vans don’t have one at all. Keep a closer eye on your wing mirrors to be sure of what is going on around you.
 
Here are some more tips you’ll find useful.
 

  • When picking up the van
       

    • It is standard procedure for you to be shown around the van to inspect it for damage (both interior and exterior). If this is not offered, ask.
    •  

    • If you are unfamiliar with any of the features don’t be afraid to ask questions (such as the tail-lift on a Luton van, or the refuelling procedure).
    •  

    • Make sure you can see around the van by adjusting your wing mirrors before setting off.
    •  

    • Make sure you fully understand your insurance coverage and the excess value.
    •  

    • Refuelling costs should also be agreed in advance. Some providers offer different refuelling options, with the most costly option returning the van for refuelling at the depot.

     

  • When driving
  •  

       

    • Always check your wing mirrors before changing position.
         

      • Be aware of the road and any other motorists (especially motorbikes).

       

    • Don’t drive as fast as you normally might in a car.
      •  

      • Keep more space between the van and any vehicle in front of you.
    • Plan your stops and cornering a little more in advance.
    • Double check before driving into areas with width or height restrictions (such as a parking garage, a narrow alley or a bridge).
      • Many hire companies label the dashboard with the van’s height so refer to this if in any doubt.
    • Know your speed limit. Speed limits are usually lower for vans than for other vehicles:
      • Single Carriageway: 50mph
      • Dual Carriageway: 60mph
      • Motorway: 70mph

 

  • Refuelling
       

    • Most vans need diesel Confusing the engine with regular petrol can be a costly mistake!
    • Restarting a diesel van that has run out can be a lot more hassle than a petrol engine. Try to make sure you do not run out of fuel.
    • The filler cap can usually be found on the front half of the van, unlike most cars.

 

  • Parking
       

    • The bigger the van, the bigger the blind spot. Mirrors are your best friend – use them constantly, especially when manoeuvring into tight spaces.
    • If you have a passenger with you, allow them to get out and guide you into position.
      • If not, a passer-by might be willing to help.
    • Your turning circle will most likely be wider than you are used to.
    • Take your time. Don’t be afraid of giving an extra inch if you are unsure.

 

  • What happens if there is a problem?

 
Most van hire experiences go off without a hitch. However, it is inevitable that someone, somewhere, will experience some kind of problem. There could be an accident or breakdown, or something else unforeseen.
 
If you find yourself in situation, don’t panic. Here is a list of the most common problems that can come up during your van rental, and your solution for them.
 

  • Breakdown
       

    • Before you set off take down the details of the breakdown service. All van rental companies provide a complete breakdown and recovery service. Call the breakdown service and they will come to help.
    • In case the problem cannot be fixed at the roadside, you will be provided with a replacement van. Alternatively, you and your load will be taken to your final destination and back again, free of charge.

     

  • Accident
       

    • If you should get into an accident, don’t worry. Exactly the same rules apply to vans as to cars.
         

      • If it is a minor accident, collect the contact and insurance details of anyone else involved. You should also take pictures if possible as these will help in the event of an insurance claim.
           

        • If necessary you should also call the police.

         

      • If it is a serious accident and / or another car is blocking the road, call the police immediately (dial 999 or 101).

       

    • What should I do if I get a puncture?
         

      • You should have a spare wheel and tools to change provided with the van. The procedure for changing a van wheel is usually the same as changing a car wheel. If it does not, or you are not comfortable doing it, call the breakdown and recovery service.
      • If the van has twin rear wheels, or is a large (7.5 tonne) truck, do not try to change them. This needs specialist equipment and should be done by professionals.

       

    • Fill-up with petrol instead of diesel
         

      • As soon as you have realised the mistake, stop and call the breakdown service provided. They will need to pump out the fuel and supply you with enough diesel to get to the next garage. This call-out may be charged for as a separate cost.
    • Speeding
      • If you are caught speeding in a hired van, the hire company will provide your details to the police and you will receive the standard penalty.
    • Pulled over
      • Exactly the same rules apply to van renters as car drivers. Seatbelts must be present and in use, lights and tyres must be in correct working order and the vehicle should be safely loaded within its limits. Help the police as much as you are able to be swiftly on your way again.

Loading

  • How to load a van

Loading a van usually isn’t as easy as throwing everything into the back. Loads can move around during transit even when driving carefully, and a tight turn or a speed bump can cause breakage. If you are planning to move a lot of items, or if the load contains fragile cargo, you will want to pack everything properly to prevent damage or accidents.

With a bit of preparation you can avoid any damage to your goods.

  • Load heaviest to lightest. Your heaviest boxes should be packed inside the van first, with lighter boxes and items placed on top.
  • Pack sturdy or square items as flat as possible (i.e. lying down). If they must be packed tall, it is best to secure them with straps or rope against the side of the van to prevent toppling over.
  • Protect furniture by using sheets, blankets or packing blankets over and underneath them. This will prevent scratches and bumps in transit.
  • Remove any drawers and pack them separately. If this is not possible, tape them closed to prevent them sliding out while moving.
    • You can also use drawers for additional storage space (clothes, small items etc.).
  • Any furniture or items with wheels (especially chairs or cabinets) should be secured using straps or rope.
  • Use bubble-wrap or tea towels to wrap fragile objects like such as glass or porcelain. Newspaper can be used to protect them against scrapes but this will not prevent breakage from bashes or heavy contact.
  • Don’t over-stuff boxes. It is better to use another box than to pack a box to breaking point.
  • Pack electronics separately. If you have their original boxes, use these as their polystyrene inserts will protect and hold them in place. If you don’t have these, you can wrap them in bubble-wrap or blankets to prevent any intrusive dust or scratches.
  • If you are loading the entire van make sure to secure the whole load by using straps. This will reduce the chance of the weight of the load pushing against the rear doors.
  • Before driving off make sure the rear doors are closed and locked securely.
  • If you are driving a Luton van, make sure you secure the roller door by using a padlock. The rear roller door will not lock with the van’s locking system. The tail lift provides some security when it is closed and fastened, but additional security is recommended.

 

  • How to move house

Moving house is hard work, especially if you are doing it all by yourself. However a little organisation can go a long way, and ensure the move goes as quickly and smoothly as possible, with no loss or damage to your items.

To start, get some of these vital supplies. These can help to organise and protect your household during the relocation.

  • Moving boxes
  • Coloured marker pens or stickers
  • Newspaper
  • Small plastic bags (like freezer bags or sandwich bags)
  • Bubble-wrap
  • Cling film
  • Bin bags
  • Plastic storage bin

Professional house movers swear by the following tips. Here we have collected them for you to make your house move as easy as possible.

  1. Have a clear-out

You might come across items you no longer want while you are packing. Here are some great ideas to help get rid of unneeded items and lessen your load.

  • Let any friends or family you’ve enlisted to help have first-dibs on anything you no longer want.
    • Doing this will also lessen any last-minute cancellations when it comes to moving day.
  • Sell it online
    • If you don’t want to just give away, you can put it up for sale. Selling on an auction website like eBay, or listings like Craigslist however may take some time. You can reach out to your Facebook friends if you don’t have much time to spare. Facebook also has a number of second-hand pages you can subscribe to which can be very handy for making quick sales.
  • Donate it to charity
    • Charities are always looking for donations and a lot of local charity shops are willing to come and pick up any items that they can sell for a good cause. The karma bonus will be worth it and might bode well for your new start.
  • Recycling
    • If you have paper, plastics or other reusable items, recycling is a far more ecological option than throwing them out.
  • Trash
    • Anything that isn’t wanted and can’t be sold, given away or recycled should undoubtedly end up as landfill. It is a better option than taking it with you.

 

  1. Packing up

Packing your entire life into boxes is a necessary chore. As is having to piece them back together again at your brand new home. If you use a bit of strategy in the way you pack, it can help a lot further down the line when it comes to loading and unloading the van, as well as saving a lot of time and effort when unpacking at your new abode. Here are some more professional tips to consider:

  • Pack an overnight bag
    • An overnight bag packed with essentials can keep you going if, after the move, you can’t find the energy to discover where things are (and perish the thought of unpacking everything on the first day!). An overnight bag with a change of clothes, necessary toiletries, snacks and plastic or paper plates and cutlery can make all the difference. It can also be handy to keep your mobile phone or laptop in there, for protection and easy retrieval later.
  • A plastic storage bin for unpacking essentials
    • Use a clear plastic box or bin for storing all of your unpacking essentials. These are items like: A sharp knife or box-cutter, tools, a torch, chargers, toilet paper, eating and cooking utensils, gloves, medication and anything else that is important. Having these in a plastic box means they are easy to find within the hordes of other boxes you will have.
  • Store fragile items inside clothing
    • A cheap no-nonsense alternative to expensive bubble-wrap is to use chunky clothing (like jumpers, sweaters etc.) to wrap glass, porcelain or other breakables.
    • You can also use socks to provide some extra padding.
  • Pack plates vertically (like records).
    • By doing this your plates will be far less likely to break. Also avoid over-packing any boxes with plates and glasses. It’s better to pad out any space with bubble-wrap or socks (as mentioned above) or even tea towels.
  • Cover the bottles and open lids of toiletries and similar items with cling film. Then put the tops back on.
    • This will keep your toiletries from leaking should they should break open during the move.
  • Use small plastic bags (such as sandwich bags, freezer bags etc.) for holding any small parts, screws, power chords, wiring and similar items. This is particularly useful for keeping the mountings for flat screen T.Vs safe.
    • You can also tape the bag to the back of the item they correspond to. This keeps the items safe and secure and prevents any unnecessary frustration in case they are lost.
  • Take a photo of how your electronics are connected
    • This is especially handy for complex home cinema or stereo systems, or computer networks. Doing this can literally remove hours from the setup time.
  • Pack roll-able suitcases with books
    • Books and any other media like DVDs, video games or documents can be very heavy. Clothes for the most part, are not. Use your suitcases to pack these heavy less damageable items and make it easier to carry (or roll) to and from the van.
  • Pack your clothing into bin liners, laundry hampers or baskets
    • Use black bags instead of expensive moving boxes and keep your move cost-effective. These are easy to carry and can take a weight of clothing without breaking. Any unused hampers or baskets can also be filled with clothes
    • If you have a vacuum sealer, this can vastly reduce the space taken up by your clothing too. You’d be surprised at how much room air can take!
  • Colour code your boxes
    • Use markers or coloured stickers to select a colour per room in your new house. This can make the unloading and unpacking much more efficient.
    • Label each box on the SIDE rather than the top. This means you know where each box should go at a glance without having to unstack them first.
  • Use cotton balls to protect your mirrored cosmetics
    • Place a cotton ball or pad inside your powder cosmetics. This can prevent the glass from breaking.
  • Defrost your fridge a few days before
    • An easily forgettable action that could result in your move going soggy. If you have no ice build-up this can even be done the day before.

 

  1. Moving out

You are all packed and organised and it’s time to go! Here are some simple steps to check and make sure nothing else is left behind.

  • Make sure your packing is complete before your van turns up.
    • Try to have everything ready for when the time comes. It will add to the chaos if you are still preparing and packing last-minute.
  • Apply your colour coding at your new home
    • Use stickers or non-permanent marker to colour-code each room in your new house. This way you (and your movers) will know where to put your boxes and items.
  • Renters – take pictures
    • Landlords can often be unscrupulous when it comes to returning a deposit intact. Take some photos to avoid unnecessary cleaning or repair fees.
    • You can also take photos of your new place, especially if there is any unsanitary conditions or damage when you are moving in.
  • Change your address
    • This can be an easily overlooked point once you move to a new home. As well as the usual utilities like television, internet and your bank, also consider subscriptions like eBay, Amazon and of course, your new local council.

 

Useful Information

  • Van Specifications

Often van makers measure their vehicles differently. Understanding just how wide or how long the van body or the storage area is can be a difficult thing to get your head around. If you don’t know your millimetres from your inches, or your cubic feet from your cubic metres, we have just the thing for you.
 
We’ve listed the most popular van types by size, with their respective storage measurements in an easy metres-big format, and carrying weights by kilogram (kg). We’ve also indicated the passenger seating and fuel economy for your costing.
 
This guide should represent as an indication. As new van models are released, measurements and fuel efficiency may change. If you have any concerns regarding the size or weight limits of your van, it’s best to speak to the van hire partner to confirm.
 
Additional: The space between the rear wheel arches will also be narrower than the given interior width (by approximately 40 centimetres).
 
Look before you book! Compare the prices for van hire in your area and get yourself the best deal – visit van-hire-comparison.co.uk
 
Compact Vans
 
Compact vans are deceptively small, with most no bigger than a hatchback. They can however carry a surprising amount, and are not daunting to drive, especially for squeezing around the city. Perfect for light deliveries and shuttle-runs. If you are moving many smaller objects or one or two medium sized pieces, a compact van would be your best bet.
 
The most popular examples of compact vans are actually the same vehicle. Branding and engine variety are the only difference.
 
Compact van models
 
Citroen Nemo
 
Peugeot Bipper
 
Fiat Fiorino

 

Typical Specifications:
 
Load Space
 
Length: 1.5m
 
Width: 1.4m
 
Height: 1.2m
 
Carry Load: Up to 600kg
 
Seats (inc. driver): 2

 

Small Vans
 
Upgrading to a small van would be for you if you are moving slightly more bulky items like a washing machine, or a collection of household items. Most of these are the size of a small to medium saloon car and can even handle like one, even with a full load. They are also very easy to get your hands on, with the Ford Connect and the Volkswagen Caddy particularly popular with van hire companies.
 
Small van models
 
Ford Transit Connect
 
Volkswagen Caddy
 
Vauxhall Combo
 
Renault Kangoo
 
Citroen Berlingo
 
Peugeot Partner
 
 
 
Typical Specifications
 
Load Space:
 
Length: 1.7m
 
Width: 1.5m
 
Height: 1.2m
 
Carry load: Up to 900kg
 
Seats (inc. driver): 2
 
40 – 50mpg

 

Medium Panel Vans
 
Variety is the spice of life, and no more so than when it comes to the category of medium vans. A medium van can maximise the capacity of your budget, and as often as not, they cost not so much more to rent than a small van.
 
They might seem to be more difficult to drive but with advances in motoring technology, most modern vans handle like an large saloon or estate car. You can stuff the contents of a small flat inside a medium sized van, or more with the “high-roof” variants. Access is made easy with a side sliding-panel door as well as the ones at the rear. And with an extra seat allowing 3 people (including driver) to sit in the cab, you can bring your friends to help unload.

 

Medium SWB van models
 
Ford Transit SWB
 
Mercedes Sprinter SWB
 
Volkswagen Transporter
 
Vauxhall Vivaro
 
Renault Trafic
 
Mercedes Vito
 
Citroen Relay SWB
 
Fiat Ducato SWB
 
LDV Maxus SWB

 

Typical Specifications
 
Length: 2.4m
 
Width: 1.7m
 
Height: 1.4m or 1.65m (with medium roof)
 
Carry Load: Up to 1200kg
 
Seats (inc. driver): 3
 
30 – 40mpg

 

Long Wheel Base Vans
 
If you need to move a lot of stuff, or anything larger or heavier than a smaller van can take, a long wheelbase (LWB) van is probably the one you need. Most have a high roof and you can carry away a medium sized household inside. A little more care should be taken when driving one of these as they are larger than most other road vehicles, so use a little less speed around bends and secure your items inside with straps. Most come with large wing mirrors and power steering so driving should not be any more difficult than a medium van.

 

Long wheelbase van models
 
Ford Transit
 
Mercedes Sprinter
 
Renault Master
 
Citroen Relay
 
Fiat Ducato
 
LDV Maxus

 

Typical Specifications
 
Length: 3.4m
 
Width: 1.7m
 
Height: 1.7m
 
1500kg
 
Seats (inc driver): 3
 
30 – 40mpg

 

Extra Long Wheel Base Vans
 
As the name suggests, the extra-long wheelbase class (XLWB) van is an extended version of the long wheelbase version. Few other vans are available to drive without a special driving license, and while they have a tremendous haulage capacity, their overall carry-load is slightly smaller than a long wheelbase van (due to their own weight). This is made up for by having a huge internal space, fit for carrying almost any household size in a single trip.
 
Extra-long wheelbase van models
 
Mercedes Sprinter
 
Ford Transit Jumbo

 

Typical Specifications
 
Length: 4.1m
 
Width: 1.7m
 
Height: 1.8m
 
1500kg
 
Seats (inc driver): 3
 
28-35mpg

 

Luton Vans
 
The name “Luton van” is derived from the town in which it was first designed and built. This term refers to all box-body vans where the loading compartment is fitted onto the chassis. Unlike other vans, the load compartment is directly above the carriage which loses none of the loading space. Due to their wider-than-cab body they can be more tricky to drive and awkward to park. However, they offer the biggest load capacity. For moving home, you can take all of your belongings, the kitchen sink and probably your neighbours too.
 
If you are considering hiring a Luton van it would be worth it to also consider a tail lift. Some of these vans do not have this as standard, which could cause problems when it comes to loading heavy items due to the height of the loading bay from the ground.

 

Luton van models
 
Ford Transit
 
Mercedes Sprinter
 
Renault Master
 
Fiat Ducato
 
Citroen Relay

 

Typical Specifications
 
Length: 4m
 
Width: 2m
 
Height: 2.2m
 
1200kg
 
Seats (inc driver): 3
 
20-30mpg

 

  • Van Hire Company – Requirements

 

Company # U.K. Locations Minimum Age Driving License (years) One Way Hire International Hire Optional Extras Unlimited Mileage Payable Online Hourly Rates
Enterprise 370 25 1 Yes No No Yes Yes No
Europcar 174 22 3 Yes Yes Yes No (300 per day) Yes Yes
Hertz 85 25 1 Yes No No Yes Yes No
Budget 21 23 1 Yes No Yes Yes** Yes No
Sixt 128 21 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Thrifty 95 21 1 Yes Yes Yes Yes Yes No
Zipvan 3 21 (*19) 2 No No Yes No (60 per day) Yes Yes
National 170 25 1 Yes No No Yes Yes No

 

*If joining an affiliated business or university membership
 
** Depending on location

 

  • The Knowledge

Our easy lookup table to the jargon you might encounter when hiring a van.

Term Meaning Description
CDW (also DLR) Collision Damage Waiver An insurance included as standard on most van rentals. Reduces your financial liability for damage to the vehicle in an accident.
LWB Long Wheelbase Wheelbase is the distance between the centres of the front and rear wheels. Long wheelbase usually means a bigger van with more carrying capacity. LWB vehicles may carry driving license or age restrictions.
SWB Short Wheelbase Wheelbase is the distance between the centres of the front and rear wheels. Short wheelbase vans are usually smaller and can be driven with a standard driving license. Additional age restrictions may depend on the provider.
Luton van A type of large van A Luton van is a 3.5t van with a box body that extends over the cab. These have a bigger, more flexible load space than a panel van (see below) and are ideal for large scale household moves.
Panel van A type of medium van A common medium-sized Transit-type van, usually with a sliding side panel for easy loading.
MPG Miles Per Gallon An indicator for the fuel efficiency of any vehicle. As a rough guide – the smaller the van the larger the MPG.
Unlimited Mileage The term used when you have no restriction on the amount of miles you can cover during your rental period.
One way A common type of rental agreement One way van hire means you can pick up your van from a location, and drop it off in another location.
Excess The financial liability of any insurance The excess is the amount of money you will need to pay in the event of damage to or theft of the van.
(Maximum) Laden weight The weight limit of the vehicle including its load. This is the total weight allowed for the vehicle.
7.5t / 7.5 tonne This is the weight category of some large trucks / small lorries The maximum laden (loaded) weight.
Barn doors Twin rear doors on most vans Each door opens to the side like traditional barn doors.
Box van A van with a box body Vans with box bodies are usually referred to as Luton vans.
Crew Cab The place where additional passengers can sit within a van A van or pickup with a crew cab has two rows of seats.
Dropside The sides of an open load area that can be released The side panels are known as “dropsides” because they can be unfastened and opened outwards.
Load Space The internal capacity for a vans cargo area This is the space in a van that can be used to carry a load.
Panel van A Transit-style van A van with a panelled body, similar to a car body.
Payload The weight a van can legally carry The maximum weight of a load a van is legally permitted to carry.
Pickup A type of van with an open carry space. Any vehicle with an open rear load area, with fixed vertical sides and an opening tailgate.
Roller door A type of rear van door An alternative to barn doors. A sliding door that covers the whole of the rear of the van.
Shipping Dimensions Length, height and width measurements of a vehicle These measurements are required most commonly when transporting the van e.g. on a ferry or train.
Single Cab The place where passengers can sit within a van The single row of seats for passengers inside a van.
SLD Side Loading Door The sliding side door on the side of many panel vans.
Tail lift A hydraulic platform at the rear of a van More common on Box or Luton vans, this platform allows the easy loading/unloading of heavy goods.
Tailgate The rear of an open load area that can be released The rear vertical panel of a pickup that can be opened.
Unladen weight The weight of a vehicle without passengers or load This is the raw weight of the van.
Wheelbase The distance between the front and rear wheels of a van. Used to indicate the size of the van.