Removals & Relocation Specialists

Tel: 0330 666 55 00

What size van do I need for my removal service?

So you're moving house and now comes the time to decide what removal company to choose to help you move. Amongst the obvious reasons such as reputation and price, people often choose a removal firm down to the size of van that will be helping them on the day.

As you may have noticed from the 'See Our Vans' link from the footer menu below, we use a Long Wheel Based Ford Transit Luton van with Tail Lift and an Extra-Long Wheel Based Mercedes Sprinter for all removal work. Both of these vans are 3.5 Tonne vans (not 7.5 Tonne vans as a couple of bewilded customers have commented on over the past despite it clearly saying 3.5 Tonne on the website!).

Now more often than not, just 1 of these vans is sufficient for your house move, especially if you are moving within the same city so there isn't much distance to cover between the properties. We can do several runs in the 1 van and it still works out much more cheaper (over half, even tripple) the price less than what it would have cost you in the big 7.5 tonne trucks (I will give you a price example later in the article.)

Of course, doing the whole move in a couple of runs isn't always an option. You could be moving over long distance or you may need to vacate your house at a certain time when the contracts have exchanged and the new owner is wanting to move their belongings in. This is when customers call us up and tell us that they want a 7.5 tonne truck. More often than not, this isn't neccessasry at all. Just use 2 of our vans instead! 2 x 3.5 tonne vas are just as good as 1 x 7.5 tonne van and again, believe it or not hiring both of our vans will still work out cheaper than hiring the big 7.5 tonne truck!

So, to give you an idea of the dimensions of an average 7.5 tonne truck, I am using the example given from the Rabbits Vehicle Hire Website (link opens in a new window if you want to take a look), which displays all the dimensions of the 7.5 tonne trucks they hire out. The most important bit we need to look at here is cubic capacity, in other words, how much area in the back of the van that is available to fit all your belongings.

In this case, the cubic capacity is 33.9 cubic meters (or 111 cubic feet). With this in mind, if you use both of our vans the total combined cubic capacity comes to 32.5 cubic meters (or 107 cubic feet), so not a great deal of difference at all. In fact, it probalbly boils down to you can fit an extra couple of boxes or cases in the 7.5 tonne truck than you can in ours but as long as we aren't taking any passengers in our vans, then there's no reason why we can't fit an extra couple of boxes in the front of the van with us so then it works out that there isn't any difference at all! One other thing to point out as well is the 7.5 tonne vans are higher and it isn't always possible to stack boxes right up to the ceiling. You can utilise all the space in our vans as they aren't as high so you may actually find that you end up not utilising all the space in the 7.5 tonne van where as you would with our vans. The only difference between using a big removal companies 7.5 tonne van instead of 2 of our 3.5 tonne vans is the price which we shall now look at...

Obviously, prices differ depending on the city you are moving in and the distance involved but with this example I've taken our average run of the mill job. A 3 bedroom semi-dettached house moving from Sheffield to Birmingham. I've looked up the price for a Monday in the middle of 2016 (the below chart shows you the prices for the rest of the days).

Pickfords price for Monday 1st August comes up at a basic charge of £1974. Now this isn't the price you will pay, you'll pay a lot more than this as they charge you VAT on top of this which works out at an extra £395 on top of the standard price so were rising to £2,400 already. However, on top of this you also have insurance costs, extra costs for packaging materials and a packing service (despite them telling you it is included in the price, it isn't! Take a look on the many forums across the web if you want to have a look!), they charge you for extra's such as protection against keys being delayed and for protecting your property in case Pickfords do any damage so you can imagine, the costs keep rising and rising. Let's say for argument sake that the total price for this particular removal comes to £2,8000. Now, let's have a look at what Van Man Hire would cost using both their van's with 2 drivers; now, as you may be aware from browsing our website we charge by the hour, that way everyone gets a fair deal, you are billed for what work has been done and we are payed for our time it's taken to help you move.

So, our price would be an initial £300 to start off with. This includes all the diesel for both vans, insurance so all your goods are covered while they are being loaded on to the van and unloaded at the destination, plus whilst they are in transit (you can view our insurance certificates on our website). Then, the rest of the work is charged at £40 per hour for the labour, so basically the time it takes to load both vans and the time it takes to unload them again (and any other time taken if you wish us to dismantle furniture and put it back up again, plumb washing machines and cookers etc. things that are also charged extra at other removal companies!). Now it's hard to predict how long a removal service will take (take a look at our How Long Does a Removal Service Take? guide for an idea.) but lets assume we spend 3 hours loading both vans and then a further 3 hours unloading them. You've got a total of 6 hours labour at £240 to add to the bill so all together the total removal bill works out at £600. As you can see from my statement at the begining of this article, a whole lot cheaper than the bigger removal companies, in fact more than tripple on this occasion. And imagine if it took us double what was estimated above because we had to dismantle furniture and reassemble at the new address. 12 hours would be £480 so the removal bill would still only be £780! Still less than tripple the price of the bigger removal firms with the big 7.5 tonne trucks!


So, to summarise;


Big Removal Firm - 7.5 Tonne Van
Load Volume 33.9 Cubic Meters (111 Cubic Feet)

around £2,800


Van Man Hire - 2 x 3.5 Tonne Vans
Load Volume 32.5 Cubic Meters (107 Cubic Feet) (plus cabins!)

around £700!


Makes you think doesn't it! So, we may not have a 7.5 tonne van but that doesn't mean that we don't have the capacity to help you move. Do the right thing, give us a call and book in your removal with us. You'll be quids in!

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