Contact us

10 questions to ask a promotional vehicle hire company

By Gary Parker on Jun 8, 2022 4:49:52 PM

10 min read
10 questions to ask a promotional vehicle hire company

Having trouble finding a good promotional vehicle hire company? Investing in a promotional vehicle provider is a big decision when trying to pull a campaign together on time, on task and on budget.

But fear not! If you’re planning to use a promotional vehicle company but don’t know who to choose, you are in the right place. We’ve compiled a list of 10 questions you can put to any promotional vehicle hire company to screen for quality and professionalism.

Any established provider will be happy to answer these questions and more, if it will put your fears to rest, so try these 10 questions to find a company that bests fits you!

1. How much experience do you have?
2. Are you able to do “X” to “Y” vehicle?
3. Do you source or own your vehicles?
Do you offer design support?
5. How quickly can you build my project
6. How much will my project cost?
7. What happens if things go wrong?
8. Can you help me with logistics?
9. Can you help me with staffing?
10. What level of insurance do you have?


1. How much experience do you have?

This is a great question to start with, and one you can often answer yourself if you do a bit of digging on their website.

How long have they been operating? The age of a company is one of the best signs of success, but don’t stop there, who have they worked with, what can they tell you about branded campaigns from their perspective? Savvy companies will have case studies, image galleries and content dripping with expertise.

You should be able to read testimonials, examine their previous work and maybe even access tools designed to ballpark your expenses. Such tools are a clear sign of experience, it shows the company knows your pain points and is attempting to make your life easier, something that will translate to the level of service you will receive.

Beyond these tell-tale signs, you can also read through their website to get a thorough understanding of what they actually offer. You can also use Google maps to check their premises. This lets you establish that they actually have onsite facilities, instead of outsourcing jobs to other businesses.

If you can’t find the information online, ask. A good company will be happy to talk through previous projects and clients with you, and you can always follow up with previous clients to check for authenticity.


2. Are you able to do “X” to “Y” vehicle?featured image template (17)

Established and slightly larger companies have diverse fleets of vehicles, along with the experience and onsite facilities to make the magic happen. Almost any design is possible, so long as it falls within the physical limits of the vehicle itself. Refer to our design guide for specifics.

If they have the vehicle within their fleet, the chances are they are more than capable of fulfilling reasonable remodelling requests. The longer they have worked with the vehicle the better the outcome.

However, a company agreeing to your design and vehicle ideas, and their ability to fulfil them, are two very different things. Make sure you ask the right questions to find the best fit for you.


3. Do you source or own your vehicles?

So what should you ask? Questions such as: do you actually own the vehicles you claim to? For example, if you were to ask for a VW camper, are they saying they can get one or that they explicitly own one?

Don’t bet your campaign on a promise, if a company doesn’t own the vehicles they claim to, and has to source them, that will add time onto your project. Make sure you get what you pay for, if they don’t tell you everything upfront, you risk overrunning event day, or missing it entirely.

To be clear, there is nothing wrong with a company sourcing vehicles, but if they don’t tell you that from the get go, then they are deliberately wasting your time. It is also worth considering that if they don’t actually own any vehicles, they make money simply as an agency referring and managing other clients.

In such cases, it might be more economical and efficient to cut out the middle man and go straight to the company they represent. But again, this will depend on what your design ideas are. If the same agency has split different parts of your design amongst several companies each working on one aspect, then it might be worth sticking with them.

In the best case scenario though, you minimize any chances for things to go wrong by finding a well-established company that can fulfil all requests onsite. Having your whole project under one roof is ideal.


4. Do you offer design support?WhatsApp Image 2021-07-15 at 15.03.13

The design process can often be tricky for those unfamiliar with vehicle templates. The practicalities of mapping 2D designs onto a template that represents a 3D final product isn’t easy.

There are many factors to take into account with vehicle designs, such as how the intended designs will affect the weight distribution and aerodynamics of the vehicle. This affects how the vehicle will behave on the road, something you need to know from a health and safety standpoint.

A good company will be able to offer you support services to help you produce an eye catching, dependable design that will stand up to the rigors of a campaign.


5. How quickly can you build my project?

Time is money, and a good company won’t waste yours. They will provide you with an accurate quote based on what design details you are able to provide them. The design process takes on average 2-3 weeks, but 5-6 weeks is not uncommon depending on requirements.

The average time it takes to complete a project varies, but in general, the whole process takes about 5-8 weeks including the design process.

Beyond the complexity of your design, there are several other factors that can influence build time.

Company size

Project timescale is largely dependent on the size of the company you are dealing with, how many employees work on the build team, how many vehicles are in their fleet, how many projects they can handle at once and the physical size of their premises.

A smaller company may not have the facilities to handle multiple projects and may have a smaller fleet of vehicles, meaning the vehicle you want is more likely to be unavailable, and that you may be queued behind several other projects.


We have touched on this above, but experience matters. An experienced and highly skilled team knock out vehicle overhauls like clockwork, and aren’t tripped up by complex requests. Less experienced teams are more likely to struggle.

Out sourcing

The more elements of a build a company outsources, the less control they have over your project. All the time critical elements already discussed, now factor into these smaller companies getting their part of the project done.

This can easily add extra time onto a project. Even if all companies involved fulfil their requirements, communication across multiple commercial entities is fragmented at best, and organisation will be difficult.


6. How much will my project cost?

Prices will vary depending on a variety of factors including vehicle type, how long you will require the vehicle for, and your number of activation days.

Any extra services you incur will also be tacked onto your final bill, such as design or campaign management or logistical assistance.

A good company will give you this information up front, but it’s also a good idea to compare prices. Check out our price calculator for a ballpark figure of your expenses, or our costs and services guide, for a full breakdown of everything a promotional vehicle company is likely to offer.


7. What happens if things go wrong?

How will a company support you? Let’s face it, accidents happen, whether that be due to a planning error or vehicle breakdown, you need to be prepared for a worst case scenario.

A good company will let you know about all the potential logistical problems that might affect your plan and prepare you accordingly.

Access issues are a common pitfall for example, and a company should ask you for when and where your vehicle is going to, in order to comply with any rules and regulations required by the venue.

In the event of a breakdown, they may have an onsite mechanic or transporter to get your vehicle back on the road.

All of this is usually covered as part of your logistics package, so make sure you probe for details.


8. Can you help me with logistics?

There are many obstacles involved in getting large, old or unwieldy vehicles from A to B and a good logistics service plans for all eventualities.

A company should be able to assist you in route planning, vehicle transport and venue access.

Route planning

Route planning is essential for success as not only is it important to take an efficient and reliable route, but many larger or older vehicles will have restrictions on what they can do and where they can go.

For example, low bridges and narrow roads present problems for vehicles of a certain size, whilst older vehicles may struggle on motor ways.

Vehicle transport

Many vehicles will be capable of being driven, but if the vehicle is unique or requires specialist knowledge to handle, the company may opt to send a driver with you for the duration of your campaign.

Less mobile, or particularly slow vehicles may need to be transported by the logistics team from location to location.

Venue access

Venues often have specific rules and regulations, encompassing access and health and safety. This means that you may only be able to get your vehicle onsite late at night or early in the morning.

The venue also may require specially trained professionals, called banksmen, to guide your vehicle to its designated spot. You may be required to drain your fuel, put down fuel drip trays, or comply with any other energy related rules.

Navigating these requirements can be a bit tricky if you aren’t experienced, so assistance from logistics personnel is often extremely helpful.


9. Can you help me with staffing?Edit15-1

Will you need extra help on event day? Companies with a bit of experience will know the kind of extra help you might require and will be able to source engagement professionals for all your activation needs.

These brand ambassadors will be used to the rigours of an extended campaign and have the experience to prove real assets in boosting the impact your brand makes each day.


10. What level of insurance do you have?

You should always ask what insurance a company has. As unpleasant as it is to think about, accidents do happen, and you should be prepared for every eventuality.

A good company will have motor trade insurance in the event of an accident, as well as public liability insurance in the case of any incident caused through negligence, damage, injury etc.


What are my next steps?

Armed with these questions you now possess the means to screen companies for quality and professionalism.

If you are dissatisfied with the answers you are getting from companies or would like to quantify what you are being told, don’t hesitate to reach out to us. Answering customer questions is extremely important to us and we would love to help in any way we can.

Check out our vehicle hire process for information on working with a vehicle hire company, or try our cost and services guide for a breakdown of individual costs and services.


Gary Parker

Written by Gary Parker

Director of Promohire, with over 10 years' experience of helping customers find the perfect vehicle for their brand activations, product launch campaigns, PR stunts and more.

Gary is also instrumental in our vehicle fit-out and build projects, drawing on his extensive knowledge to advise on interiors and implementing power solutions.