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A Guide to Removal Van Sizes

Zenyx Griffiths

Written by Reviewed by Dave Sayce

29th Jul 2021 (Last updated on 23rd Mar 2022) 6 minute read

There are a variety of sizes and models for removal vans. Whilst your chosen moving company will allocate the best removal van for your requirements, it’s still important to understand the different vehicles available.

Trying to work out which size van you need for your house move can feel impossible. But by using a professional and experienced removal company, you can make the process so much easier. They will be able to assess the items that need to be moved during the home removal survey, ensuring you’re provided with the right moving van.

This article will cover the following:
  1. Why Should You Hire a Removal Van?
  2. What Size Are Removal Vans?
  3. What Size Removal Van Do You Need to Move House?
  4. What Moving Equipment is Used?
  5. Removal Van Insurance
  6. Saving Money on Your House Move

Why Should You Hire a Removal Van?

Whether you require a removal company or a man with a van service, it’s beneficial to hire a removal van to ensure your possessions are protected.

Moving vans will have the necessary equipment required to safely and efficiently transport your items. By hiring a removal company, the majority of hard work will be done for you and you’ll also have complete peace of mind throughout the move.

You should hire a moving van and team if you’re moving:

  • from a 1+ bedroom house or flat
  • heavy and bulky furniture
  • specialist and fragile items
  • furniture that needs to be dismantled

For more information, read why hire a removal company?

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What Size Are Removal Vans?

There are 4 standard van sizes that many packers and movers will use:

Type of Removal VanAverage Loading Capacity in Cubic FeetNumber of Boxes That Can Be Transported
Medium Wheelsbase Transit and Sprinter Van280-38030-40
Long Wheelsbase Transit and Sprinter Van380-53030-50
3.5 Tonne Luton Van55040-60
7.5 Tonne Luton Van880-65040-80

1. Medium Wheelsbase Transit and Sprinter Van

Medium wheelbase (MWB) vans are the most commonly used removal vans across the UK. The models you’re likely to encounter are the Ford Transit and Mercedes Sprinter.

MWB vans are usually ply-lined and have an easy loading platform and high roof, making the moving process more efficient. They are often cheaper than other vehicles as they are fairly small and are used when moving flats or apartments.

These types of removal vans are best suited to small moves, with enough space for the personal belongings of 1 or 2 people. Depending on the specific size and model, a typical MWB van can fit 30-40 moving boxes with an average loading capacity of 280-380 cubic feet.

2. Long Wheelsbase Transit and Sprinter Van

Long wheelbase (LWB) vans are slightly larger and are available with either a high or low roof. They are also known as ‘Jumbo Transits’ or ‘Jumbo Sprinters’.

This type of removal van is ideal for moving 1-2-bedroom flats. The specific dimensions will depend on the exact make and model your chosen removal company uses.

LWB vans typically have a loading capacity of 380-530 cubic feet. They can carry a range of white goods and/or several pieces of furniture. LWB vans can fit approximately 30-40 boxes alongside these other items, depending on the specific dimensions. Without other items, these removal vans could hold up to 50 boxes.

3. 3.5 Tonne Luton Van

Luton vans are very popular amongst removal companies, especially 3.5 Tonne Luton Vans. They’re not drastically bigger than LWB vans but they have a loading capacity of around 550 cubic feet.

Many removal teams favour Luton vans as they often have a tail lift to help with the loading. They are also narrow enough to easily manoeuvre narrow streets. This is why they are especially popular when moving in London.

3.5 Tonne Luton Vans are used for a small house move or for moving a 1-2-bedroom flat. They can fit around 45 boxes as well as other furniture. Without other items, these removal vans could hold up to 60 moving boxes.

4. 7.5 Tonne Luton Van

A 7.5 tonne Luton van is built exactly like a 3.5 tonne Luton van but on a bigger scale. They have a loading capacity of approximately 880-650 cubic feet and can store 40-80 moving boxes. Luton vans of this size are used for 3-bedroom house moves.

Whilst they are usually the largest vehicle a removals company will have, they are still compact enough to move through narrow spaces. However, if you’re moving anything bigger than a 4-bed property, you might require more than one vehicle.

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What Size Removal Van Do You Need to Move House?

To move a standard 3-bedroom house, you will likely need a 7.5 Tonne Luton Van.

Every piece of furniture will have a cubic feet size value. When measured, this can help your removal company gauge the volume of the moving van required. As a basic example of this, many medium-sized moving boxes will be around 3 cubic feet, meaning 300 boxes could fit into a 900 cubic feet van.

It’s recommended you hire a professional and experienced removal company to help you calculate which size removal van you need. We’ve created a basic table showing the inner dimensions of 3 of the most common types of moving vans. However, these dimensions will vary depending on a number of factors such as the specific make and model.

Type of VehicleLengthWidthHeightPayloadRecommended Property Size

Long Wheelsbase Transit (LWB)

4.2m/14.1ft

1.7m/5ft

1.8m/5.9ft

1000-1200 kg

Studio flat or standard garage

3.5 Tonne Luton Van

4.0m/13.1ft

2.0m/6.5ft

2.2m/7.2ft

1000-1100 kg

1-2 bedroom flat

7.5 Tonne Luton Van

6.0m/19.6ft

2.3m/7.5ft

2.3m/7.5ft

1500 – 4000 kg

3-4 bedroom house

The data provided in the table above shows the inner dimensions of numerous removal vans, taken from the House Movers website in July 2021.

What Moving Equipment is Used?

One of the benefits of hiring a removal company is knowing that they have the correct equipment to safely load your items. The type of moving equipment used will depend on the specific movers you choose.

There are a few basic items that most removal companies will need to keep in their moving vans:

  • Protective workwear such as steel toe-capped footwear
  • Hoisting straps
  • 2 or 4-wheel furniture dollies
  • Ramps
  • Furniture blankets
  • Crates or bins
  • A basic toolkit

If the moving company offers additional services, they may need more equipment. For example, if a company offers packing services, they will need:

  • Packing tape and a dispenser
  • An assortment of moving boxes
  • Packing paper
  • Bubble wrap

If you're moving furniture into storage, your chosen removal company may require specialist equipment. Additional packing materials may also be required to ensure each item is protected whilst in the storage unit.

It should also be noted that any possessions being moved into storage may also require specialist storage insurance. Contents insurance and removals insurance will sometimes cover goods whilst in transit or in storage. This isn't on every policy.

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Removal Van Insurance

When comparing removal companies, there are 2 specific types of commercial van insurance cover that you should look out for:

Hire and Reward Insurance

This type of insurance covers physical vehicles. It’s a legal requirement for any removal van and for the transportation of goods for monetary reward. It can be expensive but it’s a necessity for any moving company.

Goods in Transit Insurance

This insurance will cover the cost of goods and the property while everything is being moved. The maximum amount for this cost is around £10,000.

Removal companies are not legally required to purchase Goods in Transit insurance so it’s vital you ask for further information.

Every partner that enters the Compare My Move network must first be put through our strict verification process - part of this process is providing evidence of this type of insurance cover. The company must provide our team with the relevant documents showing they have both Goods in Transit insurance and Public Liability insurance.

Saving Money on Your House Move

Now that you're aware of the types of removal vans available when moving house, it's time to compare removal quotes to find the most professional company available in your local area. Simply complete Compare My Move’s quick and easy online form to get connected with up to 6 verified removal companies, saving you up to 70% on your moving costs.

Zenyx Griffiths

Before Compare My Move, Zenyx once wrote lifestyle and entertainment articles for the online magazine, Society19 as well as news articles for Ffotogallery.

Dave Sayce

Reviewed by Dave Sayce

Owner & Managing Director, Compare My Move

Dave Sayce is the owner and managing director of Compare My Move and has over 10 years of experience in the house removals industry.