Top tips for first-time van drivers

04/11/2013

So, you've done the easy part and chosen Berkshire Van Hire to rent your vehicle...but the hard part starts when you turn out of our forecourt and hit the road for the first time!

Let's be honest, driving a van is not the same as a car and you need to be aware of that when you get behind the wheel so we've come up with a few top tips to help steer you in the right direction.

First things first...when it comes to driving a van, size really does matter! Most vans are a good two metres taller than your average family car so think twice before you head for low bridges or car parks...many vans will not pass under a car park barrier and you don't want to find out the hard way or make yourself unpopular by creating a queue when you realise too late. Take time to familiarise yourself with the height, width and length of your van.

Take your time, go slowly and carefully when you take corners in a van. They tend to be less stable than a car and can tip over more easily at speed. Your load can also shift with sudden movements which can impact on the way the vehicle handles.

Linked to that...remember the dreaded stopping distances we all learned to pass our driving test? They really do count and it is important to realise that longer and heavier vans need more time and space to come to a halt. Drive slowly and carefully!

Another driving test mantra - use your mirrors! It's essential when you're driving a van to utilise your larger than average wing mirrors since they don't have rear view mirrors or back windows to aid your vision. Pay particular attention to those on cycles or motorbikes.

Van speed limits are lower than car speed limits on dual carrigeways and single carrigeways with national speed limit by 10mph. Don’t be caught out and find the savings you made by hiring from us are spent on a speeding fine!

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