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  • minibus to campervan conversion
  • Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Full Member

    If I bought a 17-seat minibus with a view to keeping only 10 seats and turning the back end into some sort of camper-type facility, would I need to have a minibus license, or would my current license (with no certification for minibuses) suffice?

    Am I correct in thinking that so long as my passengers number fewer than 12, it’s alright?

    Premier Icon cbike
    Free Member

    direct.gov has the facts.

    Premier Icon steveh
    Full Member

    When did you pass your test? If it was before 1997 then you drive up to 17 seats (including driver) if after this then only 9 seats total. You’d have to get the classification changed by the dvla for this to work too (you can’t just take the seats out) and to do that you must meet certain criteria.

    Premier Icon spooky_b329
    Full Member

    What license do you have?

    I think all 17 seater minibuses will be over 3.5t so you need a pre-97 license, with a pre-97 license you can drive a 17 seater including the driver. But post-97 licenses you are limited to 8 passenger seats plus the driver, not forgetting your license won’t cover the weight. If you update the recorded number of passenger seats to 16 or less you can drive a minibus with over 8 passenger seats if:

    i. the vehicle is used for social purposes by a non-commercial body but not for hire or reward
    ii. the driver is aged 21
    iii. the driver has held a car (category B) licence for at least 2 years
    iv. the driver is providing the service on a voluntary basis
    v. the minibus maximum weight is not more than 3.5 tonnes or 4.25 tonnes including any specialist equipment for the carriage of disabled passengers
    vi. if the driver is aged 70 or over, is able to meet the health standards for driving a D1 vehicle

    Also, minibuses are rubbish for camper conversions as all the glass makes them freezing cold/boiling hot depending on the weather condition. Insurance will also be practically impossible to find with the camper modifications along with the number of seats.

    Edit: Do you need all 10 seats? You can get crew vans with 7 seats, 3 up front and 4 behind, probably an easier choice plus you just fit windows where you want them.

    Premier Icon SaxonRider
    Full Member

    Also, minibuses are rubbish for camper conversions as all the glass makes them freezing cold/boiling hot depending on the weather condition. Insurance will also be practically impossible to find with the camper modifications along with the number of seats.

    Edit: Do you need all 10 seats? You can get crew vans with 7 seats, 3 up front and 4 behind, probably an easier choice plus you just fit windows where you want them.

    Thanks for that. I genuinely hadn’t realised that the windows would make that much of a difference.

    Premier Icon spooky_b329
    Full Member

    I know of people who have converted minibuses in the past, the general consensus is although they saved a couple of hundred by not needing to fit windows, they severely restrict your layout options, you can’t insulate unless you board over the un-needed windows, they are heavy (reduced payload) and don’t normally open so no ventilation.

Viewing 6 posts - 1 through 6 (of 6 total)

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