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Doing it yourself shouldn’t mean risking road safety

Europcar survey reveals nearly 1 in 5 35-44 year olds have attempted driving an overloaded car when transporting furniture

London, June 2014 – According to new research* from Europcar, the leader in car hire services in Europe, 1 in 10 home improvers have tried to fit a sofa in their car; 28% have attempted to squeeze in a mattress!  Illustrating the potentially serious consequences of cutting corners by trying to transport furniture home, nearly 1 in 5 35-44 year olds admitted to driving an overloaded car.


The Europcar research suggests that many home owners are deciding to improve their property rather than go through the expense of moving.  But the van hire specialist is urging DIY-ers not to cut corners when it comes to getting new furniture and equipment home.


“An overloaded car presents visibility issues and could compromise vehicle handling, not to mention being uncomfortable and probably requiring multiple journeys,” says Ken McCall, Managing Director, Europcar UK Group. “We’re aiming to lighten the load for people with a long list of home improvements to do. Whether it’s decorating, gardening or updating furniture, Europcar has a van for the job available from an extensive network across the UK. With prices starting at just £16 per day, van hire is cheaper than paying for delivery, plus there are no delays.”


The Europcar research reveals that when it comes to home improvements, only 25% of homeowners said they would ask a skilled person to help.  And with a focus on saving money, over a third (38%) opt for flat pack furniture as a way to stay on budget.   However, with standard delivery for furniture items from a well-known home retailer** costing around £35 with a two week delay it’s no surprise that many home-improvers opt for doing it themselves when it comes to getting new furniture home.


8% of home-improvers who responded to the Europcar survey admitted to having had a mishap while transporting furniture home.  Yet a short wheel base van from Europcar can take an assortment of furniture with ease – and in safety.


“Our research shows that many people prefer to do it themselves, but transporting big items can be tricky and even dangerous in the family car”, added Ken McCall.  “From small vans, like the Renault Kangoo, to big box vans, we’ve got the right vehicle for every job – at the perfect price.”


Tips and Advice from Europcar for Packing a Van


  • Remember to distribute cargo evenly to ensure the van handles correctly
  • Load the largest, heaviest items first such as appliances or furniture and keep them upright
  • Use padding to protect corners or wooden surfaces – this will help you slide heavier items into the van
  • Use spare mattress protectors to cover sofas and mattresses and place them on their sides against the walls of the van to save space
  • Dissemble bed frames, tables and desks but making sure you tape the pieces together
  • Roll-up rugs and carpets and tape these at each end and in the middle and place these on the bottom on the van
  • Put heavy boxes at the bottom then stack the lighter boxes on top
  • Slide long items such as floor lamps in along the sides of the van
  • Place odd-shaped items on the top of your load if they are light enough or place them last in the van ensuring that they don’t move around when being transported
  • Pack all items as tightly as you can to prevent anything breaking whilst on the move


Please feel free to use the accompanying photography:

Don’t Move Improve 1

Don’t Move Improve 2






*Research conducted amongst 2,000 UK consumers by Populus, June 2014

**Ikea furniture delivery for anything over 25kg charge from £35 and are based on postcodes



For further press information please contact the Europcar UK Press Office:  Dominic Dennis, Ed McCambridge, Madeleine Roles or Wendy Harrison on 020 8977 9132.  europcarukteam@harrisonsadler.com



About Europcar Group:

Europcar is one of the leading mobility players in Europe. Present in over 130 countries, the group provides customers with one of the largest car rental networks through its own operators, franchisees and partnerships. Europcar operates worldwide its own brands Europcar® and InterRent, which is its low cost brand. It also operates the National and Alamo brands in EMEA. The group puts customers at the heart of its mission whether it is innovation or service. All the employees of the group are committed to delivering customer satisfaction. Europcar is actively promoting Corporate and Environmental social responsibility. Europcar has been recognised again in 2012 and for the 4th consecutive year, as the winner of the first World Travel Award and as the World’s Leading Green Transport Solutions Company. Europcar was honoured for the first time in 2012 with the “Europe’s Responsible Tourism Award”. Europcar is owned by Eurazeo, one of the leading listed investment companies in Europe.


For more information: www.europcar.co.uk



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