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An Increase In Online Shopping, Means Even More Delivery Vans.

Thursday, 3 June 2021 at 16:52

An Increase In Online Shopping, Means Even More Delivery Vans.

Were you aware that it takes more than 400 delivery vans to distribute all the toilet roll used by the people of London every day? – this figure highlights how important the delivery van has become to today’s way of life.

And no matter what else is happening in the economy – concerns regarding relations with China, Brexit – COVID19, one thing is certain, the UK van market will only continue to increase at a rapid rate.

All the growth in the van market is coming in the panel van sector, such as the 2.5t - 3.5t market.

In fact, the van market has practically doubled in numbers over the past 10 years

This dramatic growth is due mainly to the massive increase in online shopping & home delivery services.

The demand for home delivery service has driven growth in the 3.5-tonne delivery van market, the Luton van market and even to some extent the 7.5-tonne vehicle sector, where retailers of white goods such as fridges, freezers and washing machines have seen growth.

For many delivery companies, all that’s required is the good old fashioned Ford Transit or Mercedes Sprinter type van, or similar.

Refrigerated vehicles & multi-compartment vehicles are on the increase too, mainly because of the grocery market. These vehicles allow them to carry out the delivery of frozen, chilled and ambient goods, all on the same vehicle.

One thing that the majority of home delivery vehicle owners now want as standard on their delivery vehicles, is an automatic gearbox. This is mainly due to the stop-start nature of the job.

Online grocery customers tend to pick the heaviest items for home delivery – cans and bottles, so there is a concerted effort to strip vans of non-essential items such as passenger seats and trim, to give them more load capacity.

Electric Powered Vehicles

Electric vehicles are very useful when carrying out delivery in built-up areas. In recent years many Couriers in the Manchester area also have become more sustainable, by using fleets of 100 per cent electric vehicles.

Electric vehicles are good for short to middle distance work, such as home deliveries in built-up, residential areas, while diesel models can offer a better distance range.

One downside to electric vehicles compared to the diesel version is the extra weight added to the van. This isn’t a big problem for couriers carrying out a regular parcel delivery, but it is a deal-breaker for the supermarket chains such as Tesco & Waitrose, where weight is at a premium.

The Shift From Delivery Trucks To Courier Vans

Another contribution to the growth in the number of couriers using panel vans on the road is the change in driving licence regulations. New drivers are now unable to drive 7.5-tonne lorries on a regular driving licence.

Approximately 20 years ago 7.5-tonne vehicles accounted for 20,000 vehicles a year – this number has decreased to about 5,000, which is a result of the change to driving licences in 1997.

Car drivers could drive a 7.5 tonner on their car licences under grandfather rights. Now a category C licence is required, therefore, courier companies are using heavier vehicles, or even downsizing to 3.5-tonne panel vans.

Transport companies have opted for heavier vehicles, right up to 18-tonne vehicles, the top weight for a two-axle vehicle.

However, a 7.5-tonne vehicle is still the appropriate option for many transport companies and has much to offer.

Here at Greg Paulson Same Day Couriers, we have access to all the above vehicles and more, such as artics, trails and flat-bed vehicles.

Please feel free to get in touch with us to discuss your requirements, we'd be pleased to be of assistance.

Call us on 0161 436 3296 or drop us a line at