Everyone likes to save money where they can, and vehicle costs are no exception. When one adds up all the expenses of running a vehicle (road tax, maintenance, fuel prices, etc.), the final bill can be surprisingly high, meaning that many drivers are now looking at every option available to make running their vehicle a little cheaper. Van drivers are certainly no exception, especially given the extra expense often associated with keeping a bigger vehicle on the road.
But aside from choosing cheap van insurance, what else can be done to keep your insurance premiums as low as possible? Keeping your van secure and avoiding accidents at all costs are both easy ways to do this, as many companies will reward drivers who have never had an accident with bonuses and lower quotes. This is especially so for vans and bigger vehicles, which are often tricky to drive and can be hazardous. To reap the benefits of lower premiums and better policies, follow our top tips for safe driving.
It’s important to be aware of the size of your van at all times, especially if your route consists of narrow roads or bridges. The best advice is to not take risks: taking a slightly longer route around a low bridge is infinitely better than chancing it and destroying the top half of your van. Another thing to remember is blind spots: a van has more of them due to its bulky structure, and is often missing a rear window or rear view mirror. This results in lower visibility for the driver, making accidents more likely. Adjust your mirrors carefully before you set off, and check your mirrors more often to stay aware of what’s going on around you.
It’s also important to check the van itself before beginning your journey. Check the rear doors are locked or that the load is securely attached to the vehicle, as well as checking the tread and pressure of your tyres. The tread must be at least one millimetre, any less can result in a large fine from the police should you be stopped and checked. You should also make a note of the condition of the van in general (the sound of the engine, any potential damage, etc.) and take into account the road and weather conditions when planning your journey.
Of course, all standard road safety rules still apply: take regular breaks, stick to the speed limit, and be aware of what’s happening around you. Big accidents don’t just come from big mistakes: often a simple error, such as a glance in the wrong direction, can result in far more significant damage.
Aside from lower insurance premiums, driving safely can also save you money in repair bills, van maintenance and even compensation from other drivers. And as the nights get colder and the roads become ever more treacherous, being careful on the roads has never been so vital. Remember our tips to ensure that you stay safe (and free of high insurance bills!) this winter.