ULEZ Extension 2021: How Van Drivers Are Affected
In this guide, you’ll find out whether your business is impacted by the October 2021 ULEZ extension.
London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone is expanding.
Initially rolled out in April 2019, the zone has been a resounding success in Transport For London’s bid to improve the air quality in England’s capital.
TFL made it well-known from the off the designated zone would be expanded outside of Central London in October 2021.
Now, that time has come.
As of Monday 25th October 2021, the ULEZ has grown 18 times larger than the previous area, affecting millions of residents and businesses throughout the city.
Is your business one of those impacted by the October 2021 ULEZ extension? Read on to find out.
What Is The Ultra Low Emission Zone?
Let’s start from the top. What exactly is London’s Ultra Low Emission Zone?
The initiative was first set up by Boris Johnson and brought forward by current Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, to address issues surrounding London’s air quality.
It aims to reduce the number of harmful pollutants in the air by imposing strict guidelines on vehicles that emit too much pollution.
Launched in April 8th 2019, those driving vans with pre-Euro 6 engines have to pay a £12.50 daily charge to enter the zone.
Initially covering the same area as the Congestion Charge, the recent expansion effectively means if you’re a business that operates in – or frequently visits – London, you either need to upgrade your fleet to newer, less-polluting vehicles, or suck it up and pay the daily fee.
To learn more about the ins and outs of the Ultra Low Emission Zone, including which vehicles are exempt and what exactly Euro 6 is, we wrote an in-depth guide specifically for van users. Be sure to check it out.
Upgrading Your Fleet May Save You Money
We know this might sound odd. But, believe it or not, swapping out your old gas guzzlers for shiny new low-emission vehicles could actually save you money in the long run.
Let’s say you operate five days a week: with a daily charge of £12.50, that equates to £62.50 per week or £250 per month – that could cover the finance payments on a new van!
Plus, with a newer vehicle, you’re likely to get better fuel economy. So, the van will effectively pay for itself.
TFL even launched their own scrappage scheme where you could get up to £9500 towards a new van when you scrapped your old one. Unfortunately, applications for the scheme have paused due to overwhelming demand. But keep your eyes peeled for any news if whether it opens back up or similar initiatives appear.
ULEZ Extension 2021: New Areas Added
Let’s get to why we’re here today: the expansion.
As mentioned above, the planned ULEZ Extension is here. Up until October 25th 2021, the ULEZ only covered areas in the heart of central London, the same areas where the Congestion Charge has been implemented. Such areas include Clerkenwell in the North, Lambeth in the South, City of London in the East and Mayfair in the West.
With the new expansion, the zone has grown 18 times larger, bringing cleaner air to millions more Londoners. The area’s boundaries now go as far as the North Circular (A406) and South Circular (A205) roads.
Here’s a full list of areas that have now been added to the zone:
- City of Westminster
- Hammersmith and Fulham
- Kensington and Chelsea
- Greenwich, Newham and Tower Hamlets
- Waltham Forest
And check out the map below to see the zone’s new boundaries:
What Vans Are ULEZ Exempt?
To be exempt from the daily ULEZ charge, diesel vans need to have a Euro 6 (2015) or newer engine, while petrol vans need to have a Euro 4 (2006) or newer one.
If you’re unsure whether your van falls under either of these categories, TFL have a handy vehicle checker where you can simply enter your vehicle registration to see if it’s compliant.
It doesn’t just work for vans, either. You can check cars, vans, HGVs and more.
That concludes our rundown of the 2021 ULEZ extension and how you can check whether your business is affected.
If you have any questions or ideas for topics you’d like us to cover, be sure to leave them in the comments below.
See you in the next blog!
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