Working as a self-employed van driver can be an exhilarating and fun way to earn a living. The job comes with many great benefits such as having a flexible schedule that allows for you to arrange your working time when it suits you best. In fact, the demand for self-employed couriers or van drivers has never been higher than it is now. Large companies like Amazon, eBay and other internet retailers are all looking towards self-employed van drivers to deliver packages to their clients. However, as is the case with every job, there are also a few downsides to being a self-employed delivery driver. Luckily, there are plenty of gadgets that delivery drivers can use to make their job that much easier. In this post, we will be taking a closer look at some of the must have accessories that every delivery driver should invest in.
Navigation System:Whether you use your trusty smartphone and Google Maps or a dedicated GPS unit to the to get around town, navigation is an absolute must have for every delivery driver. Having a accurate and easy to use navigation solution makes it easier to get around town and complete your deliveries quickly and efficiently. Since not all navigation devices are created equally, it is important to make sure that you check the specifications of the device that you are interested in. For example, does it come with free map updates? Does it offer real-time traffic updates? Does it allow you to avoid specific routes or areas? All of these functions come in handy at one point or another and you might kick yourself later down the line for not having them.
Phone Mount:As a courier and responsible driver, road safety should always be your first concern. This is why it is always a good idea to invest in a mobile phone holder that will allow you to securely mount your phone while you are driving. It is best to opt for a phone mount that can be fitted to your vehicle’s dashboard so that your mobile is always in your eye line. This way, you do not have to take your eyes off the road when you need to consult your navigation system. However, it is important to remember to not use your phone for texts or other distracting activities while driving as this can cause you to lose focus and might lead to an accident. Investing in an universal phone mount is also a good option because you will not need to change phone mounts later when you get a new phone.
- Phone Charger or External Battery: For many couriers, their phone is their lifeblood. Despatchers often contact couriers by phone to arrange deliveries and many use their phones as their primary navigational tool. For this reason, it is essential that mobile phones never run out of battery. Having a good external power bank or reliable car charger on hand can make all the difference in keeping your device charged and ready to go when you need it most. When choosing an external battery, opt for one with a large enough capacity to fully recharge your phone at least once. Prices for external battery banks have dropped significantly in recent times and this affordable accessory can be a true lifesaver in times of need.
- Proper Clothing: As the saying goes, there is no such thing as bad weather, only inadequate clothing. This is especially true when it comes to couriers since self-employed delivery drivers often have to work in unforgiving weather conditions such as cold, rain and snow. Being dressed properly for the weather makes it much easier to do your job effectively and keeps you from getting a chill or flu. In addition, being dressed professionally sends a message to your clients that says that you are serious about your job and that you can be trusted. First impressions count and getting repeat customers is much easier when you look the part.
- Dash Cam: While things generally goes smoothly, problems are unavoidable and will rear their head at some point. This is especially true when it comes to traffic and since courier drivers spend a lot of time behind the wheel, the chances of being involved in an accident is higher. Installing a dash cam in your vehicle gives you an extra layer of security and makes it easier to finalise insurance claims when an accident does happen. Installing a dash cam can even lead to a reduction in your insurance premium and they act as an objective witness when you need one most. Dash cams are not very expensive and this small improvement can give you a lot of peace of mind.
- Lower Back Support: Operating a vehicle all day long can wreak havoc on your back and adding something as simple as a lower back pillow to your arsenal of tools can make it much easier to get through busy days. This is especially important for couriers who often work with heavy packages and drive long distances. After all, investing in your health is the best investment that you can make.
- Hydration: Remaining hydrated as you go about your deliveries is essential for your health and to keep your energy levels up. Carrying a thermally insulated metal water bottle with you will ensure that you always have access to cool water. This can be a lifesaver on a warm day when you have several different deliveries to complete. In addition, using a reusable metal bottle cuts down on plastic waste and protects the environment, which is a great benefit for everyone.
- Sunglasses :A good pair of sunglasses is an indispensable tool for every courier. Being out and about all day long in bright sunlight can harm your vision and sunglasses with UV protection is a good way to eliminate the harmful effects of the sun and they make you look more dapper when going about your deliveries!
These are just a few of the basic items that a self-employed van driver can use to make doing their job easier and most of the items on the list are not extraordinarily expensive items but they can make a big difference. However, it is not only gadgets that can make it easier for couriers, simple lifestyle changes are just as important. Working as a self-employed van driver can be a great source of income and a very engaging and enjoyable job but it is also hard work and requires a lot of energy. This is why it is important for every courier to ensure that they make enough time for meal breaks and that they take care of their nutritional needs. Being self-employed, most courier drivers do not have benefits such as sick leave and this is why it is important to do everything that you can to ensure that you always remain in tip-top shape. Driving all day long in busy city streets can be stressful and places a large strain on your mental capabilities. Taking a short break every now and again gives your brain the chance to take a breather and makes sure that you are always 100% focussed when driving.
Using the above gadgets and tips can make your job as a courier much easier and allows you to work more efficiently. The self-employed van driver market is already fiercely competitive and couriers need advantage that they can get to rise above the competition. Adding these gadgets to your arsenal makes it easier to get more deliveries done without breaking the bank.