You may be wondering; do I need a special license to drive a van? From time to time, driving license allowances change, with the most recent adjustments being made in 2013. Because of this, it can be confusing to know exactly what kinds of vehicles you are licensed to use. The good news is that most regular vans can be driven without a special licence.
However, there are still a few factors that need to be considered such as your age, the date you passed your test and the exact weight of the vehicle.
Here, we’ll go through some common van license queries to help you avoid any confusion.
Can I Drive a Van On My License?
If you have a car license, there are some vans you can drive. If you hold a full UK driving licence (category B), you can operate conventional, rigid-axle vans or pick-ups up to 3.5 tonnes in weight, with up to eight passenger seats. This basically means that if you have a car licence, you can drive most common light vans.
Electric vans are typically heavier than diesel versions due to the size of the battery. This previously required van drivers to apply for a category C licence, which comes with fees and demands for a medical report.
Acknowledging this, the Government raised the electric van weight restriction in 2017. The rule modification boosted the maximum permitted mass for a Category B licence holder from the previous limit of 3500kg up to 4250kg, considering the additional weight of electric or hybrid-electric vans.
Can You Drive a Van On a Provisional License?
While learning to drive, you can in fact drive a van. The rules are similar to regular road vehicles, and are based on the driver holding a valid provisional license, and that they are accompanied by someone 21 and over with a driving history of at least three years.
Can I Drive a Van When I Pass My Test?
The date you passed your driving test actually has an effect on what kinds of vans you are able to drive. If you have only just passed your test, you will be restricted; but if you passed before January 1997, there is some freedom.
If you passed your test before January 1997, you might already be qualified to operate heavier, larger vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes (the back of your driving licence will tell you for sure). Anyone who passed their driving test after that time must pass another exam before they can operate a vehicle that weighs more than 3.5 tonnes.
How Can I Tell the Type of Driving License I Have?
To figure out what vehicles you can drive, your best resource is your driving license. All the information around your allowances can be found on the rear in a small table.
A modern driver’s licence has four columns on the back: the left one lists categories (the precise sorts of vehicles you are permitted to drive), and the two columns in the centre list the start and expiration dates for each category. Driving licence codes are located in the right column, and they show any conditions associated with your licence, such as if you require corrective lenses or spectacles.
You can get further information about how to read your licence on the Government website. You can also check the type of licence you have and the categories of vehicles you are allowed to drive using the DVLA’s online database.
What Types Of Licenses Are Needed for Each Van?
• Category B: Drivers are permitted to drive vans weighing up to 3.5 tonnes.
• Category C1: The holder of a licence is permitted to operate vehicles weighing between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes.
• C1 E: Includes cars weighing up to 7.5 tonnes with a total weight of 12,000 kilogrammes and a trailer weighing more.
If the vehicle weighs more than 3.5 tonnes when completely loaded or is carrying a trailer, you may additionally need to install a tachograph. Tachographs keep track of driving distance, speed, and time. They are used to ensure that drivers adhere to the restrictions on drivers’ hours and do not spend too much time behind the wheel, as this can be dangerous.
Browse Vanzone To Find the Right Van for You
At Vanzone we provide a wide range of vans, so no matter what driving license you’ve got, we’ve got the perfect van for you. Take a look at our wide range of vans here.