Student Van Hire & Self Storage Guide

Hiring a small van can be a great way to move your stuff back home. But young drivers face age restrictions as some companies won't hire a van to drivers under 25. To help you, we've put together these tips on van hire for under 25s, one-way hire, self storage and all the basics you need to know when hiring a van.

Van Hire Companies For Drivers Under 25

These are the national companies we've found which will rent vans to under 25s.

Please note that all of these companies apply a young driver surcharge to drivers under 25. This is usually per day and can be quite expensive. It isn't always included in internet booking price - you may have to pay this fee locally at the rental branch.

  • Thrifty: 21-24 (Selected models only. Surcharge applies to under 25s.)
  • Hertz: 23-25 (Selected models only. Surcharge applies to under 25s.)
  • Europcar: 22 (Surcharge applies to under 25s.)
  • Sixt: 21-25 (Selected models only. Surcharge applies to under 25s.)
  • Northgate: 21

Compare student van hire prices

Remember: If age restrictions are causing you a problem when hiring a van, think about clubbing together with an older driver and fitting two or three people's stuff into one van.

One-Way Van Hire

You may be able to arrange a one-way van rental so that you can travel from your university to your homes and then simply drop the van off wherever convenient.

Click here to compare prices on one-way van hire

Remember: One-way van hire can be very convenient but it is much more expensive, as hire companies will charge you a one-way fee. This can be significant so for short journeys it might be cheaper to return the van yourself and get the train/bus back to uni.

Van Hire Tips

If you haven't hired a van before, here are a few tips to help ensure everything goes smoothly.

  • Booking a van: You'll need a full EU/UK driving licence held for at least one year at most companies. You may also need a DVLA licence check code. You will also need a credit or debit card to pay for the rental and deposit. The credit/debit card used will normally need to be in the driver's name.
  • Fuel policy: Should you return the van with a full tank or with the same amount of fuel as when you collected it? If the company has a full-to-full policy and you don't fill up, you'll have to pay a refuelling charge.
  • Petrol or diesel? Most rental vans are diesel, but petrol vans are becoming more common. The filler cap should be labelled with the right fuel, but if you are in any doubt then ask when you collect the van. If you put the wrong fuel in, you will probably have to pay for it to be pumped out and for any other necessary repairs.
  • Parking: Don't forget you probably won't be able to go into car parks with height barriers. Also make sure you can park safely at both ends of your journey to load and unload.
  • Driving a van: this isn't as hard as it seems. Make sure your mirrors are adjusted so you can see clearly down each side of the van and behind you. Drive more slowly than usual, especially on corners, roundabouts and twisty roads. Get someone to help you when reversing. Check out our Driving A Van For The First Time guide for more tips.
  • London: If you enter the congestion charging zone, make sure you pay the congestion charge promptly.

Need Some Storage For The Holidays?

Self storage can be a great choice for storing your stuff during the holidays. It's often cheaper, quicker and easier than arranging van hire or getting a lift to take all of your stuff home. And then having to haul it back to uni again a few weeks later.

Most major cities now offer a choice of modern, secure self storage sites. You can often book space online. Try companies such as Big Yellow and Safestore to get started (we have no affiliation with either company).

Remember: Not all self storage is equal. Cheap storage in containers or barns can leave your stuff dirty and damp, so make sure you know what you're paying for. Also check on security arrangements to make sure your stuff will be in a secure private space that only you can access.

Check out our Self Storage guide for more hints and tips on storage options.

Moving House Packing Tips

Having the right packaging makes all the difference when you're packing up your belongings, whether you're moving from a bedsit, flat or a 4 bedroom house.

Tramping round shops looking for empty boxes is often a frustrating experience and it's sometimes easier to spend a few quid on a proper set of packing boxes.

Check out our Packing Tips For DIY House Removals guide. You'll learn more about how to safely pack all of your belongings when moving house yourself in a hire van or moving your student possessions from Uni back home.

Packing Tips For DIY House Removals

House move packing tips

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Learn How To Load A Van

Loading a van

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