Choose the vehicle best suited for your business

Are you looking for speedy deliveries of small items, or are you in need of vehicles that can deliver larger loads, but may take longer to get to their destination? Whatever your needs, we’ve unpacked the pros and cons of using a motorbike for your deliveries as opposed to using a Light Delivery Vehicle/truck or car.

Why choose a bike?

If your business makes smaller deliveries closer to your place of work, then a motorbike is probably the best choice. Its smaller size means it gets through traffic easily and can take “short cuts” that would normally not be accessible to bigger vehicles.

Motorbikes are also easier on the bank account as the fuel costs are much lower than in a four-wheeled vehicle and so are the service, repair and on road costs. Bikes are best for document delivery, fast food or even medical related items such as blood samples or medicines.

The down side to a motorbike is that often the bikes are not seen by other road users, particularly if the biker is lane-splitting, or riding in an unsafe manner. So, it is imperative that you explain to your riders the safety measures they need to follow when using the bike:

  1. Make sure all the running lights are working, specifically the head and taillights
  2. Ensure your riders wear retroreflective clothing so they can be seen in any lighting conditions
  3. Ensure your riders are licenced and understand the rules of the road
  4. Use a good quality helmet that fits correctly, and properly strapped onto the head at all times while on the road
  5. Get your riders good quality, protective clothing that will help prevent serious injuries should something happen

Using a four-wheeled vehicle

If you’re into delivering bigger items, or perhaps big quantities of smaller items, then a car, LDV or small truck might be a better option. If this is the case, then we suggest you take the following into account before choosing exactly which vehicles to purchase:

  1. How much will you be delivering? Will you require the space provided in an LDV/truck or will a hatchback or sedan prove adequate? The cars could very well prove less expensive in the long run.
  2. How far will your vehicles be travelling and through what type of terrain – CBD, urban, rural or a mix of all three? LDV chassis and suspension is generally hardier than that of a hatchback or sedan, so would suit the rural or mixed terrain better.
  3. Distance in terms of driver capability – will the deliveries you make require your driver to make overnight stops or that you need more than one driver per vehicle?

Remember, that when it comes to driving a vehicle with four or more wheels, your drivers also have to obey certain rules:

  1. Be licenced to drive the vehicle in question – it’s no use being licensed for a sedan or hatchback, but your driver is behind the wheel of a double axle truck
  2. Load and drive the vehicle according to its tolerances
  3. Be aware of speed limits and road usage rules in all terrains
  4. Take the necessary breaks on long journeys

Perhaps your business requires the use of different types of vehicles – in that case the above still applies as you make your choice about exactly what vehicle mix would suit you best, and what types of deliveries ensure a good return on the time and money you’ve invested.

And once you’ve selected the vehicles you need for your business, let Retriever help you with getting the best out of your fleet. Retriever, Kenya’s premier fleet management and vehicle tracking and recovery company, can also help you improve driver efficiency and behaviours, reduce costs and improve service delivery. Click here to find out how we can help you.