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How to become a Van Driver

van driver careers

What does a Van Driver do?

Van drivers are mainly involved with deliveries. It is the driver’s responsibility to collect goods and load the vehicle according to written instructions. Route planning is important to ensure that deliveries are made on time. Once the goods have been transported, the driver unloads at the drop off point and records the delivery.

Vehicles vary in size, depending on the load and the type of licence the driver holds. A van could be a small car or a light commercial vehicle up to 3.5 tonnes. In vehicles over 3.5 tonnes, a tachograph in the cab records the number of hours spent driving, resting and loading or unloading. It also measures the speed of the van and the distance travelled.

If delivering valuables or cash, a specially adapted van with a time-lock safe or other security features, may be used.

Some van drivers may sell items from their van, for more information about this see the Roundsperson profile.

What's the working environment like working as a Van Driver?

Hours vary, but an average week could be between 40 and 48 hours. Some companies offer overtime in the evenings and at weekends. However, there are legal limits on drivers' hours, depending on the vehicle, that employers must adhere to.

Drivers work in all weathers, and sometimes have to deal with hazardous driving conditions.

In some jobs, they might have to wear a uniform and, if carrying valuables or cash, they may wear body armour and a helmet.

What does it take to become a Van Driver?

To be a van driver you should:

  • enjoy driving and have excellent practical driving skills
  • be able to work alone and maintain concentration
  • be patient, and have a polite attitude towards other road users
  • have good communication skills
  • have an awareness of general road safety
  • have a good geographical knowledge of the area
  • be able to complete record sheets and paperwork.

Van Driver Career Opportunities

As a van driver, there are opportunities to work for a huge range of manufacturing, service and retail companies, throughout the country. In recent years there has been an increase in opportunities delivering goods ordered over the internet.

Opportunity for promotion would be in related areas of transport and retail. It may be possible to move into supervisory or management posts.

By taking the C+E category test, you could drive large goods vehicles for a haulage or distribution company (see Driver: Large Goods Vehicle profile).

Further information

If you would like to know anything about Van Driver that does not appear on Hotcourses, further information can be found below.

Skills for Logistics
14 Warren Yard
Warren Farm Office Village
Milton Keynes
MK12 5NW
Tel: 0870 242 7314

Careers in Logistics

Driving Standards Agency (DSA)
Stanley House
56 Talbot Street
Tel: 0115 901 2500

Road Haulage Association
Roadway House
35 Monument Hill
KT13 8RN
Tel: 01932 841515

Security Industry Authority (SIA)
PO Box 9
Newcastle Upon Tyne
NE82 6YX
Tel: 0870 243 0100

Facts and Stats:

  • The Toyota Corolla is the best selling car of all time
  • London Heathrow is the world¿s busiest international airport
  • In 1969, the then Czechoslovakia was the first country to make the wearing of seatbelts compulsory

Courses to help you become a Van Driver