Have you ever considered driving a van for a living? Van delivery drivers provide a valuable service throughout the UK every single day. They deliver goods and packages in major cities and small towns; sometimes they even drive across country when required by their employers. You can earn an excellent living and enjoy being out and about on a daily basis as a professional van driver.
According to the National Career Service, the van driving candidate needs to be proficient in English and maths as well as possessing the appropriate licence. We will talk more about licence requirements in just a moment. As for what you could expect from a van driving job, most drivers routinely do the following:
The average salary for a van driver is between £17,000 and £21,000 annually. Some employers may pay extra bonuses for additional work that might be indirectly related to van driving. However, additional bonus pay is never guaranteed.
The tricky thing about van driving is that vans are included in two separate licence classes, depending on vehicle weight. Lighter vans weighing no more than 3,500 kg can be operated legally on a Category B licence. Vans between 3,500 kg and 7,500 kg require a Category C1 licence.
The only exception to the different licence classes applies to those who obtained a Category B licence prior to 1 January 1997. They are able to operate Category C1 vehicles on their current licences without any additional entitlements. Everyone else needs to have a higher licence to drive heavier vans.
From a practical standpoint, it does not make sense for a van operator to hire only drivers with Category B licences – even if their entire fleet consists of vehicles no heavier than 3,500 kg. There are several reasons for this:
Some employers will hire drivers with Category B licences and then put them through training to help them obtain the higher category licence. Doing so may meet the company’s immediate need for drivers of their lighter vans while also preparing for the eventual use of heavier vehicles.
One more thing you should know before we move on: if you obtained a Category C1 licence to operate heavier vans for non-commercial purposes, that licence might enable you to get a job as a professional. You would still have to undergo 35 hours of CPC training in order to be certified in compliance with the law, but already possessing the right kind of licence gives you a leg up in the hiring process.
It is normal to assume that van driving is not complicated enough to require training. And there may be some drivers who do very well as professionals yet never undergo formal training. However, they are the exception rather than the rule. Van driving requires a skill set that can be best attained through proper training. At the HGV Training Centre, we provide that training.
Future professional drivers undergoing training with us will be trained in the following areas:
We utilise a focused training approach that presents our students with information in short, concentrated segments. This approach allows us to impart a large volume of information in a short amount of time without compromising the integrity of our training. We can have you trained and ready to take your final test in as little as a few weeks. As long as you are committed to learning, we can get you in and out of training quickly.
We do not have a reputation as being one of the best driver training companies in the UK by accident. We have worked very hard to establish ourselves by going above and beyond to help our drivers succeed. Our commitment extends well beyond just initial training to include both job placement assistance and ongoing Driver CPC training.
Where job placement assistance is concerned, we maintain an up-to-date jobs database listing van driving jobs all over the country. Our students can apply for jobs while also referencing us as their training provider. We will do everything we can to help you find work as quickly as possible upon completion of your training.
We hope you will appreciate your experience with the HGV Training Centre to the extent that you will return to us for your ongoing CPC training every five years. As a professional, you will need 35 hours of training sometime within the final year of your current qualification card in order to be recertified for another five years. We make that training available on an ongoing basis.
If you have ever considered van driving for a living, trust us when we say it is a good career choice. There continues to be a professional driver shortage in the UK, a shortage that is expected to persist for years to come. Now is the time to get the training you need for your professional van driving licence and CPC certification. Then you will be ready to embark on a long and rewarding career as a driver.
If you would like to learn more about professional driving careers please select from our list of relevant articles below.
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