The Ultimate Van Driver Guide to Get on the Road Quickly & Cost-Effectively

Getting your van on the road in Ireland can be a long process. In this blog, Insure My Van put together a step-by-step Van Driver Guide to walk you through what needs to be done to get behind the wheel of your van quickly and cost-effectively. We cover everything from buying your first van to getting the best value van insurance on the market.  

van driver guide

Deciding to lease or buy a van | Van Driver Guide

If you’re on the hunt for a new van, you might be contemplating a variety of options. The most popular choice people must make is whether to lease or buy your new van. When you buy a van, it means you need to have the disposable income in its entirety immediately. So, this either means applying for a loan or forking up the cash. The benefit of buying a van is that it belongs to you, and you can make any upgrades or modifications to it. It is also an asset. When leasing a van in Ireland however, you do not own it. Instead, you pay a monthly fee for the privilege of using the van. However, with leasing options you can pay a lump sum at the end of the term in order to purchase the van outright. 

van driver guide

Tips for buying a second hand van 

Buying a secondhand van is an effective way to manage costs, however there are some things that you should look out for before parting with your money. The first thing you need to identify is the purpose of purchasing the secondhand van. Identifying what your van will be used for will determine what type of van you should be looking for in terms of size, shape, and engine power. You could choose to buy your secondhand van privately or through a van dealership. In general, the cheapest option is usually to purchase the van privately, however that comes with its own risks. It is strongly recommended to avoid any side-of-road type sales when purchasing secondhand vehicles.   

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Keeping on top of van maintenance | Van Driver Guide

Once you have secured your dream van, keeping your vehicle in good condition is the key to its long-term performance. Neglecting regular maintenance on your van could result in a hefty fee from a garage or it could even result in an accident. Regular servicing of your van is essential. One of the most common pitfalls with van maintenance is failing to adhere to regular servicing. When you don’t get your van serviced regularly, you leave yourself open to large financial costs and increased downtime. It is also extremely important to regularly check your tyres if your van is constantly on the road. We want to stress the importance of having the appropriate van insurance. Sometimes despite all our regular maintenance, our vans suffer a fault or a breakdown. 

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Do I need van insurance?

Van insurance is something you don’t want to be caught without if disaster strikes. No one can predict the future but it’s better to be prepared for the worst scenario than to be sorry. Insurance is something most of us don’t think about very often, but can you really afford to be inadequately covered if things go wrong? Most of us can’t and that’s why it’s important to make sure you have the right cover. If you spend a lot of time on the road, then your risk of a collision is automatically higher. You don’t want to incur a major financial loss so it’s vital to invest. 

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What van insurance do I need? | Van Driver Guide

It can be difficult to know what type of insurance you need. There are different types of insurance available on the market but it’s all about finding the right cover for your own specific needs. There are two main types of van insurance available to van owners, private insurance and commercial insurance. Private insurance is strictly for personal van use. Private van insurance is for social use and will cover you if you use your van for things like hobbies, visiting friends or classic van shows. On the other hand, commercial insurance, as the name implies, is for business use. 

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How does company van insurance work? 

If you use your van for any commercial purpose, for example, haulage or carrying goods for hire, then you will need to get business van insurance. Similarly, if you use your van for purposes that involve payment, for example, if you work as a mobile gardener or a mobile hairdresser, then you will need commercial van insurance. If you use your van to sell products/services at events, for example a local market, you will need commercial van insurance. If you drive your van to your place of work, this would also be described as business use, therefore you would need a business van insurance policy. Lastly, if your van is registered in the name of your limited company, you will need to get commercial van insurance. 

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Is van insurance expensive?  | Van Driver Guide

If you’re new to van driving, or are a young or inexperienced driver, you might find that the cost of van insurance is higher than you expected. People often make the mistake of comparing the price of their car insurance policy to their van insurance policy. However, a car insurance policy and a van insurance policy are very different. A van insurance policy typically provides more cover but also takes extras into consideration when calculating the premium. It is also worth noting that while cars are primarily used for independent travel and private use, vans are often used for a variety of business-related tasks that other vehicles cannot perform. 

van driver guide

How to make a van insurance claim? 

Making a claim on your van insurance policy for the first time can be an intimidating task. The first thing you should do is stop. The second thing you should check is that you, your passengers and all other parties involved in the accident are safe and out of danger. At this point, you should exchange information with any third party involved. Similarly, you should give the above information on your behalf to the third party. Get in contact with whichever insurance company your van insurance policy is with. If you are not sure which insurer your van insurance policy is with, check your insurance certificate to confirm with the insurance company. Provide the policy number and details of the accident to the representative. Once the claim is registered, make sure you receive the claim number from the representative.   

And just like that, you are all set for the road! We hope our ultimate Van Driver Guide has cleared up most of your questions! If you need more help and support with finding the right van insurance for your needs, contact the customer support team today for a van insurance quote!