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Please note: In July 2011, MyLocalVanHire.co.uk was rebranded as vanrental.co.uk. Ownership and operation of the site are unchanged.
Media Information: 1st December 2010
Van hire companies in London have a golden opportunity to promote electric van hire and should be doing more develop this modern, eco-friendly service, says MyLocalVanHire.co.uk.
By adding electric vans to their hire fleets, London van hire companies would help to reduce pollution in London while saving customers money through exemption from the London Congestion Charge.
Electric vans based on mainstream models such as the Ford Transit are now available with ranges up to around 100 miles. This is a far greater distance than that covered by many London van hire customers, a significant proportion of whom remain within Greater London with their rental vans, covering no more than 30-60 miles.
London is the ideal test bed for electric van hire - its population of 7 million* is the greatest in the European Union and is more than 7 times greater than that of the UK's second most populous city, Birmingham. London's population density is also the fourth highest in the EU, highlighting just how many people and businesses are located within a short distance of each other.
Van rental companies hoping to offer electric van hire in London face two main obstacles - charging facilities and maintaining a suitable balance of conventional vehicles capable of long-distance work.
Of these two challenges, battery charging is probably the greater. Although many van hire companies have their own parking compounds in which charging facilities could be provided, some do not and rely on on-road parking, which makes battery charging very difficult. Similarly, many van hire customers do not have off-road parking facilities and would be unable to charge their hire vans when parked overnight.
The Source London network will hopefully begin to address this problem by expanding and consolidating London's existing electric vehicle charging facilities. Some London car hire companies are already offering electric cars - it is to be hoped that London's van hire companies soon follow suit.
*2001 Census figures
In July 2011, MyLocalVanHire.co.uk was renamed VanRental.co.uk. Its new address is www.vanrental.co.uk.
MyLocalVanHire.co.uk is a UK van hire portal listing more than 730 rental branches in over 400 UK locations, including 70 in London. Visitors can search for van hire companies in their area and see the results displayed on an interactive map. The site has grown rapidly since its launch in May 2007 and now attracts more than 50,000 visitors each month.
MyLocalVanHire.co.uk also provides a minibus hire search service and a wide range of free information guides on all aspects of hiring, driving and loading vans. For more details, visit www.vanrental.co.uk.
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