Explained: The different types of HGV Driving Jobs

In the first of a series of blogs on this subject, we wanted to tell you about all the different driving jobs available to you as you start your career as a newly qualified HGV Driver. There are lots of different types of work you can do.

In this blog we look at airport work, food delivery, working for a builder’s and long distance / trunking.

Airport Work

Typically, Class 2

Perhaps the least amount of actual driving of any HGV job.

In this role, working for an airline catering company, you will be responsible for taking airline food from the caterer direct to the aircraft.

You drive from your base, usually no more than a mile or two, to airside security before proceeding to the stand to await the aircraft. Once arrived you will position the specially modified HGV next to the plane. Working in a two-man crew you raise the platform and deliver the fully loaded trolleys into the aircraft while removing the empties.

In a typical day you will only driver 10 miles per day. Certainly, a role for an airline enthusiast.

Airline catering companies are happy to take newly qualified drivers, the main stipulation to drive airside is a solid 5-year pervious work history. The compliance checks are more stringent for this role than many others.

Builders Merchants

Class 1 and Class 2

Builders’ merchants deliver all manner of building and tool hire supplies to construction and building sites.

Whether it be a house renovation or a larger building site the delivery process is still the same.

Most builder merchants use something called a HIAB to unload their products. A HIAB is a huge hook that carries all the heavy goods and safely delivers them to the ground.

HIAB is an additional qualification that most employers will get for you when you join them. It can be complete in a few days.

More information on HIAB and HIAB training can be found online.

Most builders’ merchants work Monday to Friday from around 6:30-7:30 AM finishing approximately 15:30/16:00PM

Not all the products are delivered by the HIAB so it can involve some heavy lifting.

You may be asked to work a small shift every other Saturday for 3-4 hours starting around 7AM. This variers from merchant to merchant

Food and Super Market Deliveries

Class 1 and 2

Food delivery is a large part of the HGV Market.

You could work for any of the following:

  • Supermarkets
  • Food suppliers
  • Catering companies
  • Alcohol and Beverage suppliers
  • Fast /convenience food supplier
  • Large scale coffee chains

Working on either Class 1 or 2 as these companies use both you will be delivering food and drink into supermarkets, restaurants, leisure venues, transport hubs, schools, petrol stations, petrol forecourts, shops, hospitals and prisons.

Typically, you will deliver this food in cages or on pallets.

When delivering to customers you may do 6-10 drops per day. It can be more physically demanding but it keeps you active!

Some of the Class 1 work can involve moving food from depot to depot as well without store delivery.

This sector is busy 7 days a week so you must be prepared to work over the weekends when needed. There are lots of different shift profiles, you will find out more when clients approach you and tell you about their HGV jobs.

The clients look for people with good customer service skills as you are the main person, they meet representing your employer.


Class 1 and Class 2

The term known for long distance driving.

In this role you may only do 1-2 drops per day but drive large distances.

Shift profiles can vary as can the different types of customers you work for and deliver too.

This role is for someone that likes the open road and wants to cover larger distances.

In the next blog we will look at continental work, pallet networks, Waste and Recycling, construction and aggregates and fuel delivery.

We hope you find this information interesting when deciding the types of HGV work you want to undertake as a newly qualified HGV Driver.

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