to Safely Drive a Van Rental
The first time driving a van for anyone is a different experience. Vans don't handle like a sports car, or even a midsize sedan. Your van rental will be longer, taller, and have different sightlines than the average vehicle.
This doesn't mean however, that you need to be afraid of driving or reserving an independent van rental, it just means you need to know a few things about how to drive a van before you climb behind the wheel.
Your Mirrors Are Your Best Friend
The bigger the van, especially if you're renting a cargo van or even a 12- or 15-passenger van, the larger your blind spots will be. To minimize these danger zones around your vehicle, spend a few extra minutes adjusting your mirrors . Some vans will have no center rearview mirror or if the van is loaded, it will be inoperable. This means you'll need to check your sideview mirrors more often, and assure they are adjusted correctly. Remember, if you can see most of your own vehicle in your sideview mirrors, they likely are not in the proper position. Mirrors are for seeing the road, not your vehicle.
Things To Consider On The Road
Once you're in the driver's seat and your van rental is loaded with cargo or passengers, you need to remember vans do not handle like smaller rental cars. Vans are often heavier, especially when fully loaded, which means they will take longer to stop. This means it is crucial to leave added space between your van rental and the vehicle in front of you. As well, vans are longer than the average vehicle which adds to your turning radius. Be careful the first few times you take a corner, particularly when turning right. You'll need to take most turns a little wider, and pay attention to items in your mirror as you turn. Vans are also taller, which means they can be less stable if you take a corner too quickly. Slow down, take it easy, and you'll arrive safely with your passengers and cargo in tow. Finally, if it is windy, the height and size of a large van rental can push your vehicle with increase force. Always drive with two hands firmly on the wheel of your van rental.
Time For a Quick Course in Parking
For the most part, parking your van rental will be much like parking your car. You do, however, need to be aware of your surroundings, since your van rental is longer than the average car. Backing into parking spaces is a wise choice to help you easily and safely leave the parking spot. As well, you'll need to actively use your mirrors to assure you stay clear of obstructions. The large size of the average van rental will make parallel parking, or entering other tight parking spaces difficult, but not impossible. Don't rush when parking, and don't be afraid to get out and look, or have a passenger help you enter a parking space by communicating through your mirrors. Finally, some van rentals are too tall to fit in low parking garages. It's important that you make note of the vehicle height and pay attention to posted signs when entering a parking garage.
Keep Your Load Safely Secured
Cargo vans, and large passenger van rentals are meant to transport people and things. If you're carrying a large load of belongings, it's important to be sure your belongings are safely secured. Sliding, rolling, or tumbling loads can be costly and dangerous. Similarly, if your van rental cargo is a group of friends, family, or other passengers, always double check that everyone is properly wearing their seatbelt. Often, passengers in buses and large passenger vans have a false sense of security due to the size of the vehicle. It is still crucial to wear your seatbelt at all times.
Driving a van rental can be simple and safe, as long as you are aware that a van has unique features and handles differently compared to an average car. If you're looking for an affordable and independent van rental in your community or at your destination, CRX will help you find a vehicle that meets your needs.