Best Van Breakdown Cover in 2024

Use this guide to find out what’s the best breakdown cover for your van. 

If you’re using a van for business or are consistently moving around a high volume of items, then it’s important to you that your van is in good condition. Unfortunately, you can’t always guarantee that your vehicle will be free from issues. 

That is where van breakdown cover comes in. When things fail, and your van is broken down on the roadside, you’ll want to get moving as quickly as possible, as an extended period out of action can cost you money. 

With van breakdown cover, you’ll be able to get the help you need to get yourself back on the road and hopefully fix any issues it may have. 

The problem is that van breakdown cover is a bit different from the regular breakdown cover and has a few quirks that make it tough to know your best option.

In this guide

What is a van breakdown cover?

This type of breakdown cover is specifically crafted for vans and larger vehicles predominantly used for manual businesses. 

Breakdown cover can provide many different services, but it usually includes roadside assistance and recovery. From this base level of cover, you can then add other services to your plan to build the most robust breakdown cover for you. 

Breakdown cover provides a little bit of protection for when you’re on the roads. If you’re using your van for business, you’ll likely be racking up more miles than average, putting your vehicle at a bigger risk of developing problems. Having a van breakdown cover enables you to access help whenever and wherever you need it easily. 

Having van breakdown cover will usually give you additional services that best suit a van and will also mean that you’ll be rescued by a mechanic who has the skills and capabilities to work on and fix one of these larger vehicles, 

The specifics of what you get with van breakdown cover will alter depending on the provider you choose and the level of service you buy.

Van breakdown cover prices compared

When selecting breakdown cover for your van, it’s useful to understand the market and how much each competitor costs. That’s why it’s useful to see everything in a table so that it’s more clear. 

In this table, we compare the top 5 van breakdown cover providers. The prices that have been focused on are the costs of getting the most comprehensive separate van breakdown cover.

If a provider covers vans in their normal, standard coverage, then their lowest annual price will also be included. This is to help you see all your options and determine which is right for you. 

Provider 

Van Breakdown Cover Cost

Included in the standard cover?

The AA

£179

Yes (£79 a year)

RAC

£165

Yes (£126.50 a year)

QDOS Breakdown

£59.99

Yes (£59.99 a year)

GEM Motoring Assist

£96.66

Yes (£78.50 a year)

Green Flag

£123.50

Yes (£54.88 a year)

The quotes for this table are the prices for annual breakdown cover for individuals in their mid-twenties. As your personal details are used to give you your quote, the price you’re offered may be different. For this reason, this table is for illustrative purposes only.

Is van breakdown cover included in standard breakdown cover policies?

The vehicles covered in standard breakdown cover policies will alter depending on your chosen provider. 

Currently, the major breakdown cover providers such as the AA and RAC cover all vehicles in their regular breakdown policy, meaning that vans are included. 

However, there may be a weight and size limit. Typically, your van will have to weigh under 3.5 tonnes and be no more than 2.55 meters wide, although these dimensions can be even smaller with some brands. 

Suppose vans are covered in a provider’s standard breakdown policy. In that case, you can get access to all the levels of service that you can expect for a car, such as roadside assistance, at-home services, national recovery, and onward journeys. 

To make things a little bit more awkward, some providers that include vans in their standard cover also have separate options for vans. These plans often include more bespoke services that suit vans, specifically like-for-like van replacement if yours is out of action. 

This means that if you’re looking for van breakdown cover, you have a lot of different choices, making it hard to know which ones are worth spending your money on. This article should help you in your decision-making process by comparing the top providers.

How do I know if I need van breakdown cover instead of car?

When getting breakdown cover, be careful to get the right type for your vehicle. Each vehicle falls into a different vehicle category, and it’s this category that dictates if you’re driving a car or van. 

Although you may think it’s evident if your vehicle is a car or van, some cars are actually classified as vans, such as certain 7-seaters or larger models. 

To figure out if you need van or car breakdown cover, you can look at your vehicle information found in your logbook. Here you’ll be able to find the vehicle category or vehicle types, as well as a lot of other useful information about your vehicle. 

If your category type is ‘M1’, it means that your vehicle is classified as a car and that the standard breakdown cover will be suitable. However, if you have ‘N1’ or ‘N2’ category, then it means that your vehicle is officially a van and thus will need this specific type of cover. 

What happens if I don't have van breakdown cover?

If you don’t have breakdown cover for your van, it puts you at a big risk. If you break down without any cover, you’re responsible for finding your own help. This can be a massive hassle, and it could involve much longer wait times to get someone out to you to provide roadside assistance. 

Furthermore, getting a mechanic can be more expensive than the annual cost of breakdown cover, and you may also have to pay for a replacement vehicle in case you’re unable to use your van for a while. 

If you’re a worker, having your van stuck in a garage can also mean that you cannot provide your usual services, which can result in a loss of income. That’s why getting breakdown cover for your van is a good idea, as it protects your vehicle and your business. 

RAC

Much like the AA, RAC also includes vans in their standard breakdown policy, meaning that you’re able to get help for your van if you break down. 

What’s good about RAC is that as well as getting roadside assistance, At Home services are also included in their standard level of cover at no extra cost. With At Home services, it means that if your van is broken down at its registered address, you’ll be able to call a mechanic to come to repair it. This is a great advantage and improves the value for money. 

If you want to get something a bit more specific for a van, RAC also offers a separate policy designed for vans and larger work vehicles. This van breakdown cover includes a lot of what you get in the standard option but also offers more suitable extras for vans. 

For example, with their van breakdown cover, you get a van-for-van replacement if yours is out of action. This means that you won’t have to make do with a smaller model than you have, allowing you to continue working at your previous capacity. 

Their cover also gives you access to specifically trained mechanics that know how to fix vans. This means that you can rest assured that you’re getting expert assistance.

There are two options when getting a separate van breakdown cover with RAC: Lite or Total. 

Lite comes in cheaper, costing £125 a year for a single van. It covers the van for business and personal use, gives you access to a 10-mile tow, and three call-outs a year, to name a few features. 

Total van cover costs £165, although RAC do run regular discounts on this price. With Total, you get unlimited tow, unlimited call-outs, and access to overnight accommodation if you need it. 

You can also add a few extras to your cover for additional prices. Things like tyre replacement, battery recharges or replacements, and accident care can all be included in your policy, which is a great option if you think you’ll need it. 

Trustpilot score: 4.3 out of 5

Average wait time: 50 minutes

Repairs success rate: 4/5 vehicles repaired at the roadside

rac-breakdown-cover.svg
Customer score
4.1/5

Based on over 84,000 reviews.

QDOS Breakdown

With QDOS Breakdown, you can get cover for your van with their standard breakdown cover option. In fact, unlike the AA or RAC, they do not offer a specific type of breakdown cover for a van. 

This means that you can’t get bespoke features that other providers offer. You are, though, able to get all the levels of cover that you can get in a regular policy, and the quality that you receive will be the same, regardless of if you are driving a car or a van. 

This means you can get roadside assistance, at-home services, national recovery, and onward travel. 

If you want to cover your van for European travel, you’ll have to get their European policy. 

Be aware that the QDOS has a weight and size limit and states on their website that they will only cover light vans. This means that if you have a larger truck, you may have to look elsewhere. 

The dimensions that your vehicle needs to stay under are 5.5 meters long, 3 meters high, and 2.3 meters wide, and they can’t weigh more than 3.5 tonnes, although they do say that they will try to accommodate bigger vehicles on request. 

There are also age limits for your van, which will alter depending on what type of cover you need. If you’re only getting UK cover, your van can be up to 16 years old. If you’re getting European cover for a single trip, it can only be up to 13 years old. If you’re getting both European and UK cover, which many people with vans will need, you can only get cover if your van is under nine years old. 

With QDOS Breakdown, you can also get cover for an entire fleet. This is great if you run a business and need to cover a lot of vans at once. What’s neat is that you can have multiple types of vehicles in your policy as well, which is great if you’re a taxi service that has both cars and larger seaters that are legally classified as vans. 

To get a quote for their fleet breakdown cover, you will have to complete an online form before finding out the price, although it is stated that the prices start at £12.65, which is the lowest that it can be. 

Trustpilot score: 4.3 out of 5

Average wait time: 1 hour

Repairs success rate: 4/5 vehicles repaired at the roadside

qdos-breakdown-cover
Customer score
4.3/5

Based on over 2,556 reviews.

The AA

When you get breakdown cover from the AA, vans are usually included. This means that you can protect your van with its cheapest level of cover. 

However, the AA also offers a more bespoke van breakdown cover policy that’s better suited to those that use either a single van or a fleet of vans for work or to run a business. 

This type of cover aims to protect your vehicle while causing the least amount of disruption for you, allowing you to get on with your job as quickly as you can. You’re able to add multiple product add-ons to this policy, including national recovery, relay plus, and accident management. 

The only eligibility criteria for this type of cover is that your van needs to weigh under 3.5 tonnes. This includes the weight of any load it’s carrying as well, so it’s important that you never overload your vehicle and ensure that it’s under this weight so that you can access cover for it.  

With their bespoke van breakdown service, you can add European breakdown cover for a single van for an entire fleet. This is great if your vans are used for making deliveries all around the continent. To get this European cover, your policy will cost around £179 for one van. 

If you’re only looking for basic roadside assistance, then you can get cover for just £76 a year. 

Trustpilot score: 4.2 out of 5

Average wait time: 40 minutes

Repairs success rate: 4/5 vehicles repaired at the roadside, with 58% being fixed permanently

the-aa-logo
Customer score
4.2/5

Based on over 28,000 reviews.

GEM Motoring Assist

Like QDOS Breakdown, Gem Motoring Assist does not offer a bespoke service for vans, meaning that you’ll need to use their standard car breakdown cover to get cover for your vehicle. 

When you get this type of cover, all vehicles are included, such as motorcycles, caravans, trucks, and of course, vans. 

Although, when getting breakdown cover for your van, there are eligibility criteria that you’ll need to meet. However, it doesn’t seem to be as strict as QDOS, with the only stated requirement being that the gross weight of the van can’t be more than 3.5 tonnes, which seems to be a standard weight across the industry. 

When you get breakdown cover from GEM Motoring Assist, you get a lot of bang for your buck. In fact, GEM prides itself on offering a comprehensive plan, even at the lowest price. This means that you get home assistance, roadside assistance, national recovery, and onward travel included as standard. 

This shows that GEM goes above and beyond for their customers, and only want to provide the best care for your van. 

The cheapest that you can get this comprehensive service for is £78.50, which is pretty cheap for a policy that includes all the levels of cover that you need. It may be a bit annoying for some that you can’t get a cheaper policy that only includes roadside assistance, but if you’re looking for breakdown cover that provides you with the most robust protection, then at that price, GEM may be the best option out of the lot.  

You can also get a more premium option from GEM Motoring assist called Recovery Extra. This gives you unlimited call-outs, among other perks and costs about £96.66 for the entire year.

Trustpilot score: 4.5 out of 5

Average wait time: 1 hour

Repairs success rate: 4/5 vehicles repaired at the roadside

gem-motoring-assist-breakdown-cover
Customer score
4.5/5

Based on over 900 reviews.

Green Flag

When you get breakdown cover with Green Flag, it can cover most vehicles, including some vans. This means that no matter what you’re driving, you can get the help and assistance you need. 

Annoyingly, much like many of the other providers, this standard level of cover only covers light vans. It means that if you’re driving a van that’s heavier than the 3.5-tonne threshold, you won’t be able to get assistance. 

However, if your van is eligible and is under this weight, then you’ll get one of the better breakdown cover in the UK. Green Flag are award-winning and has one of the best user ratings on Trustpilot. 

With Green Flag, you can customise your cover in a way you like, meaning that you can add any and all the levels so that it’s as robust or as lightweight as you need it. However, adding all the levels of cover will, of course, increase the price of your policy, so do consider if you need it before opting in. 

No matter the level of cover, you get unlimited call-outs with Green Flag and access to 24/7 help, which is useful for van users who may be hauling loads during the night.

Green Flag do not offer a bespoke plan for vans, which isn’t great if you want targeted protection. However, if you run a business and have multiple vans, you can get cover for an entire fleet. 

What’s good about the business cover that Green Flag provides for fleets is that the more vehicles you add to it, the lower the price will be, meaning that Green Flag can be a good option if you have a lot of vehicles.

If you have just a couple of vehicles, the cost of cover will be £84 per van. However, if you have 20 or more vans in your fleet, then the individual price will be around £60. 

Their business cover means that no matter who’s driving the van, you get the same amount of protection. The weight and dimension limits are also larger when you get this type of cover, with the maximum weight being 4 tonnes instead of 3.5. This makes it better suited for vans, and you do have the option to only cover the 1, making it good for those who use a van for personal use. 

You will have to do your due diligence to ensure that you’re able to get this breakdown cover, as your vehicles need to have a history of being serviced regularly, and they also need to have valid MOTs at all times; otherwise, you won’t be able to get Green Flag business cover. 

If you want to get comprehensive business cover for one van, it’s going to cost you around £123.50 for a year. This does give you all the levels of cover, and also includes European cover, meaning that you’ll be able to use the van to transport goods throughout the continent. 

Trustpilot score: 4.2 out of 5

Average wait time: 30 minutes

Repairs success rate: 86% of vehicles repaired at the roadside

green flag logo
Customer score
4.2/5

Based on over 21,000 reviews.

Van breakdown cover takeaway

Getting the right van breakdown cover for you can be tricky, especially where there are multiple options per provider. 

With this guide, we’ve detailed what each of the best breakdown cover UK providers offer, detailing their prices and unique quirks to help you make a decision. 

It’s impossible to say which provider offers the best van breakdown cover, as it will vary depending on the situation. To figure out which provider is right for your current situation, take stock of what you need your cover to have and evaluate your options based on the price point and the quality of service each company provides.