Is it the end of the road for white van man?

Female van driverThere’s a popular stereotype of van drivers as thoughtless alpha males who speed around the city streets with little regard for other road users. However, research carried out by the country’s busiest automotive website suggests that ‘white van man’ could soon become an endangered species as more women get behind the wheel.

White van man suffers from a serious image problem and gets a bumpy ride in the press. While public opinion believes they deserve their dodgy reputation; the statistics show that they are much less likely to be involved in accidents. Van drivers are in need of a makeover and it is women who are making the changes.

A report by Auto Trader has revealed that a third of vans are now owned by women and the findings are backed-up by ONS data which shows the number of female van drivers has doubled in the past five years. Not only are more women driving vans, they are also driving much heavier vehicles. Applications for C1 or C1E licences (vehicles weighing between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes) have increased by 29% over the past three years.

Suddenly the stereotypical image of van drivers is beginning to look outdated, and it isn’t just about gender; we are also changing how we use our vans. Across the country van ownership is on the rise and they are increasingly being used for pleasure as well as business. Vans are ideal for people with active lifestyles and it’s hardly surprising that 40% of the 1.4million households that own a van use it for activities outside of business.

While vans are becoming more popular with growing families and weekend warriors; it’s the boom in small businesses that’s really driving the change. Small businesses are the backbone of the country’s economy and a recent study by a leading motoring organisation has helped to reshape the way we see van drivers.

After some serious number crunching they found that drivers of vans owned by small businesses contributed a staggering £35billion to the economy every year (based on an annual salary of £21,000). Not only are van drivers diligent and hard-working, but they are also statistically safer on the roads, which makes sense when you consider that their livelihood often depends on their licence.

With so many myths being busted about van drivers it’s comforting to find that some things don’t change and that white is still the most popular colour amongst van owners with 32% keeping things simple.

At Quoteline Direct we’ve long championed van drivers and that’s why we guarantee you a minimum saving of 10% against your current insurers renewal premium with similar cover, based on the same details. To find out more visit our van insurance page or Tel: 0161 874 7710 to speak with a member of our team.


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