Choosing which size van you need when hiring local removals firms may impossible, so we’ve put together a comprehensive guide to help you choose.
Standard removal van sizes
There are many different sizes and models of removal vans. Your removals company can provide more details about the vehicles they have. However, there are standard sizes for removals vans.
Medium Wheels Base (MWB) Van
The MWB van is popular for removals in the UK. This is because it has a high roof, easy loading platform, and is cheaper to hire. The van's popularity is also because of its smaller size.
The most common models are the Ford Transit and Mercedes Sprinter. The insides are often ply-lined for ease of loading.
MWB vans are ideal for a moving either one or two people. They are perfect for an empty studio or one bedroom flat. You may fit a bed, small sofa, or appliances like a fridge or freezer, depending on how many boxes you have. It can fit around 30-40 boxes depending how large they are.
The average loading capacity of this van is 280-380 cubic feet. To determine if your belongings can fit in this small vehicle, check if they can fit in a medium-sized shed. If so, the MWB van could be your best option.
Long Wheels Base (LWB) Transit Van and Sprinter Van
Also called Jumbo Transits or Jumbo Sprinters, these vehicles are ideal for one and two bedroom flats. LWB vans can carry large items like furniture, appliances, and electronics, including a collapsible bed. Alongside these you could fit up to 30 boxes depending on their size and contents.
The average loading capacity of this van is 380-530 cubic feet. To determine if your belongings can fit in this van, consider whether your stuff would fit in a single garage.
Also referred to as a 3.5 Tonne Luton Van, this vehicle is another popular one. They have a slightly larger loading capacity than LWB vans, approximately 550 cubic feet. Luton vans are often preferable because of the presence of a tail lift.
They are narrow, making it easy to manoeuvre through narrow streets, which is helpful when moving house in London. The wheel arches don't intrude into the storage area, making it easier to pack boxes.
A Luton van is ideal for a two bedroom flat or a small house with up to 45 boxes. It can hold a table and set of stackable chairs, spacious sofas, two double beds, wardrobes and white goods.
7.5 Tonne Luton Van
This vehicle is identical to the 3.5 Tonne Luton Van – just bigger.
It’s ideal for three bedroom houses and can store 40-50 boxes. It can hold up to 4 beds, 3 sofas, 2 dining tables and sets of chairs, 3-4 wardrobes and most kitchen appliances.
The loading capacity is approximately 880-650 cubic feet.
If you're moving from a 4-5 bedroom house with lots of furniture, the 7.5 Tonne Luton Van may not be spacious enough.
Your removals company may have a bigger vehicle or trailer, but the 7.5 Tonne Luton Van might be their largest option.
Depending on how far away you’re moving to, the best option then might be paying for a second vehicle.
Alternatively, if you’re not going far, you could do several trips but you would have to ensure when hiring a removal company that they are aware of this in advance.
Things to consider:
- The vans can vary in size depending on the model. Remember to check with your removals company, especially if your property has height or width restrictions.
- Remember to tell your removals firm in advance if you have any particularly large or awkward items. Read more advice on moving awkward items.
- This guide provides an idea of the vehicles available to you, to help you prepare for moving day. When you pick a removals company, they can give you specific information about the size and type of vehicle you need.
- Get quotes for removals companies first.
The best thing you can do is get a home survey. A home survey is when someone from the removals firm comes and assesses how much stuff you’ve got, so they know which van(s) to book.
Have a look at our packing guide
for information on how to pack for your move smartly.
If you want to save money on your move by transporting less, have a look at our 5 easy ways to purge your possessions