London van hire

Thanks to a sharp uptick in short-term tenancies Londoners are on the move like never before - so much so that many people in the capital swap their digs at least a couple of times a year. While the idea of changing your surroundings so often might sound appealing on paper, the upheaval associated with moving all your belongings across one of the world's most populous cities can be a bit of a headache. To help ease the worries, here are our top tips for hiring a van in London.

One-way hire

In order to meet the needs of their customers rental companies are becoming much more flexible in the way they structure their hire contracts.

One advantage of this is that you needn't give yourself the extra legwork of having to return the van to the point you picked it up.

Instead, opt for a one-way hire so that you can collect the van from a convenient location (near your old house, ideally) and then drop it off on the other side of the city.

 

Mileage

Most companies encourage you to go sign up for an unlimited mileage contract - and, to be fair, in many cases this is absolutely the right thing to do, particularly if you're moving across the country.

If it's just a trip across London though, providing you're sensible with your journey, you should be able to get away with a 10 or 20 mile limit - which could help keep your moving costs down significantly.

 

Paperwork

Rental companies, with some justification, want to make sure the people they lend their vehicles to are safe and reliable - so there will be a few hoops for you to jump through first.

At minimum, you'll need to provide a copy of your driving license and proof of your current address, as well as a verification code from the DVLA which allows rental companies access to your history on the road.

 

Visual check

When renting any kind of vehicle it always pays to carry out a visual check straight after collecting the keys - even if the company assures you everything is in order.

The purpose of this is twofold: first, you can make sure the vehicle is fit for purpose (remember, if you're going to be leaving valuables inside, it needs to be secure).

Just as importantly, though, it also enables you to have a reliable, indisputable record of any pre-existing blemishes to make sure you don't get hit with any unexpected charges after the fact.

 

Loading

It's important to load the van in a proper and sensible way - both to prevent damage to the vehicle and your own posessions and ensure you maximise the space available, thereby preventing multiple trips.

As a starting point, make sure the big items are dismantled into their constituent parts where possible (particularly in the case of wardrobes and beds) and that they are loaded first in the back of the van.

Smaller items, such as boxes of clothing and kitchen items, should go towards the front, ensuring that they are tightly packed where possible to prevent movement while in transit.