One third of white van men may actually be white van women. A survey recently conducted by AXA Business Insurance on van drivers found that one third of them were women using their vans for commercial activities.
Van drivers have commonly been held as the subject of the white van man stereotype. In British (tongue-in-cheek) popular culture, the white van man is considered rough round the edges, handy, often bald, two sugars in his tea and wielding an impressive hardware collection.. oh and he’s a man.
Not everyone finds the stereotype amusing however, with 14 percent of the poll finding it very insulting and only 40 percent believing the white van man stereotype to be accurate. Interestingly, whilst a third of female van drivers found the stereotype amusing only 29 percent of male drivers did.
70 percent of the poll surveyed did not have any traffic offences in the last 10 years even though half spent over 10 hours per week driving and 15 percent spending over 30 hours.
AXA Business Insurance’s MD Darell Sansom said that, “Commercial van drivers have been given a pretty bad reputation over the past decade, but the stereotypes around them couldn’t be further from the reality.” And that “What we’re finding is that as more and more women are driving vans, coupled with a higher degree of professionalism amongst the van driving community, the stereotypical perception of a ‘white van man’ is fast becoming a thing of the past.”
Overall however, despite female van drivers being shown to be slightly more cautious, the new EU legislation on gender equality coming into place later this year will increase van insurance quotes none the less.