Having access to a van can open up a lot of opportunities to earn a living. With some business areas more crowded than others, however, the most profitable way can be to find a more unusual niche with less competition. Here are some ideas to help you find an unconventional way to use your van for business.

Mobile Shop

There are enough markets, car boot sales, fairs and festivals to make a year-round living from selling on the move. Anything from clothes and antiques to records and toys can work. You can specialise in something that interests you to put your expertise to good use.

Sell Advertising Space

A number of companies will pay you to display adverts on your van, which is almost money for nothing! Although you might not make enough to give up work, it can be a nice top-up to your earnings that works alongside another business, as long as the adverts won't interfere.

Collect Donations For Charity Shops

Charity shops rely on donations to keep running, and one of the ways they get people to donate goods is to organise doorstep collections. Some charities will pay drivers to drop off donation bags, and collect them when people have filled them.

Mobile Catering

You don't need a specially adapted van to run a mobile catering business, as you can use the van to transport your equipment and then set it up outside, under a gazebo. There's always a market for mobile food, or you could even try something a bit different in the form of a coffee stand or mobile bar. As well as outdoor events, weddings could bring in a lot of work.

Transport Someone Else's Mobile Business

As an alternative to running your own business selling goods or catering services on the go, there are people out there who would love to have a mobile business of their own but lack the transport to do so. By teaming up, you could provide them with transportation services while they concentrate on their business.

Teach People To Drive

If you're an experienced van driver, you most likely already have the skills needed to qualify as an instructor. As this is a niche area, you could potentially earn good money doing this, and with less competition than a car driving instructor.

Mobile Classroom

If you or someone you know is a qualified teacher, you can offer tutoring services in the setting of a unique mobile classroom in the van itself.

Mobile Valet

People who love to keep their vehicles in top condition are willing to pay someone to come and give them a professional valet service at their homes. For a relatively small initial investment in equipment, you can easily turn your van into a fully kitted mobile valet.

Transporting Bands

Musicians often have large, heavy equipment that they need to transport to venues for gigs. Advertising your “man and van” services to musicians can be a potentially lucrative area, without much competition.