How committed are you to your fishing? How much gear do you have, and how often do you go? Depending on the answers to the above you might be in the market for a reliable transportation solution… And we aren’t talking about fishing trolleys. We are in fact talking about the benefits of a fishing van vs estate car. In this article we are going to look at the pro’s of each and see if we can come to a conclusion about which is best.
Fishing van vs estate car
The fishing van
- Plenty of space
- Mess isn’t such an issue
- A mobile storage solution
- Lack of seating for the ‘other times’
- Difficult to park
- Insurance issues
- Potentially expensive on fuel
Who doesn’t like roaring round in a big white van? The beauty of a fishing van is that, provided its secure you can leave your fishing gear locked up. When you want to go, just take the keys, start it up and you are off (don’t forget your bait).
Because it’s sole purpose is as a fishing van you don’t need to be concerned about logistical things such as seats and getting them wet.
The question you have to ask yourself however is ‘is it worth it’? Ok so you’ve got quite a lot of convenience, but consider the downsides.
Can you justify the cost? If you are looking for a new motor and have only yourself to consider then it might be a really great solution. But if you need a vehicle that allows you to drop the kids and Mrs off, then you may need something with more seats.
If this is the case then your fishing van will more likely be a second vehicle. Will you have room to park it? Remember that a second vehicle means double the cost of everything. More fuel, more tax, more insurance and more maintenance. When it comes to maintenance, work on the worst case scenario, not the best.
The estate car
- Its cheaper
- It’s multi-functional
- You’ll still fit plenty of gear
- You’ll need to remove your gear each time
- Fishing gear can be dirty
- Limited as to size and amount of tackle
Bearing in mind the above, an estate car can offer a viable solution. They are normally big enough to house a fairly respectable amount of gear and can be used in the normal manner when you aren’t able to go fishing. For a start you are going to have plenty more seats
Obviously, the costs are less. One car equals less expense. But an estate can come with downsides.
Folding seats will allow you to fit a fair bit in, but how would you feel about the water from your keepnet dripping on the patch where your wife and kids are going to have to sit? A stinkbag might be an idea, but there is still the unavoidable issue of mess and dirt, which is bound to happen. (A pint of maggots spilled makes for a very unhappy partner, let us tell you).
You are also going to have to take your gear out every time, if not, then you might as well get a van as your sole vehicle.
Depending on how much gear you have you may find that you won’t always be able to take everything you would like.
When asking the question of Fishing Van vs Estate Car, there are plusses and downsides to each. It isn’t a one size fits all solution and is very much based on the individual. If you are s serious angler who goes multiple times a week then it is worth it to get a fishing van. For the casual angler, not so much. As a solution that fits both worlds, a transporter might be a solution. You’ll have plenty of seats, but can fold them down and fit lots of tackle in when you need to. Ultimately our advice would be to be honest with yourself. Be honest about how much gear you have, how often you go (not intend to go… actually DO go) and whether or not the cost is justified. Once you have reached a conclusion with all these points you will be in a much better position to decide whether you need a fishing van or a ‘normal’ car will do. Just don’t forget to buy an air freshener on your way past the garage.
Mike has over 30 years of fishing experience in carp fishing and general coarse fishing. He is always looking for the latest fishing kit to try out and talk about and needs a bigger shed due to all the fishing tackle he owns. You can read more about him here.