What Is A Box Truck Vs Cargo Van Business – Pro and Cons!

What Is Box Truck and Importance To Trucking & Cargo Business?

Do you work in a service business that involves transporting merchandise and equipment?

Do you want to invest in the best vehicle to easily carry the equipment and offer better services to the customers?

This guide will discuss cargo box truck, their advantages, and commercial benefits and compare them with smaller cargo vans.

Fleet of white box trucks

What is Cargo Box Truck Used For?

As the name says, a cargo box truck is a box-shaped vehicle with an enclosed area for storing cargo. It’s also called cube truck, cube van, box van, cube truck, and rolling toaster.

The cabin is separated from the cargo area in most box truck models.

Box trucks come in different sizes, making them ideal for multiple tasks. You can use this popular vehicle for different purposes, including… 

  • Residential and Commercial Moves 

Residential and commercial moves are the most common uses of box trucks. This vehicle has a protected cargo bay perfect for moving fragile items, goods, and furniture. 

  • Rental Storage Facility 

Storage facilities provide box trucks as an incentive to rent from their store. The truck makes it easy for the tenants to move their items quickly from one place to another. 

Two loaded wooden pallets

  • Parcel Delivery

Many companies use cargo box trucks for parcel delivery services. This vehicle can safely transport packages from one warehouse to another. 

  • Furniture Delivery 

Box trucks can also be used for furniture delivery. You can stay one step ahead of your competitors by offering free delivery. The vehicle will keep items safe, making it possible for you to deliver any furniture.

  • Appliance Delivery 

Like furniture delivery, box trucks can also be used for appliance delivery.

If you sell appliances, you can use a box truck to deliver the items to your customer’s door to compete against the online market.  

  • Newspaper and Magazine Delivery 

Lastly, box trucks can also be used to deliver newspapers and magazines. The truck keeps the paper publication in good condition for store-to-store delivery.

Home moving truck loaded with properties

Box Truck vs Cargo Van Business – Similarities and Differences!

Box trucks are used by individual companies that want to transport large items like furniture or big boxes. People hire box trucks when they are moving as it has a cube-shaped cargo behind the cab for storing items.

Compared to box trucks, cargo box vans are smaller, but they can be larger. Since these vehicles are made of one piece, a person can access the cargo area from the front seat.

The larger version of cargo vans has roll-up rear doors. The main difference between cargo vans and box trucks is that box trucks have two separate parts.

The cargo box sits on a different frame and is separated from the cabin. But cargo vans are made of a single piece.

Also, box trucks are known to be bigger than cargo vans. The similarity is that both vehicles are used for transporting large items.

Free delivery and shipping graphics

What Is A Box Truck Considered or Classified?

As a number of trucks are carrying loads on the road, they have been divided under three different categories. This is done to keep the people safe and help the truck run smoothly on the road. 

The three categories for trucks are light-duty trucks, medium-duty trucks, and heavy-duty trucks. 

Light-duty trucks have a gross vehicle weight rating ranging from zero to 14,000 pounds. Usually, these are non-commercial vehicles but they can be termed as commercial under this category.

These vehicles include pickup trucks, box trucks, minivans, cargo vans, and more. Next is the medium-duty trucks that have a gross vehicle weight rating from 16,001 pounds to 19,500 pounds.

These trucks can be used for non-commercial purposes. The trucks under medium-duty trucks include bucket trucks, box trucks, rack trucks, and more. 

Lastly, the heavy-duty truck has a gross vehicle weight rating between 19, 5001 pounds  and more. These are really heavy trucks used for performing heavy jobs.

The trucks falling under this category includes truck tractors, dump trucks, furniture trucks, sleeper cabs, and more. 

A box truck is a vehicle that has a cab truck with a cuboid-shaped cargo area for storing goods. Some box trucks have doors between the cabin and cargo area while some don’t have a door.

Delivery man pick boxes from van

The Commercial Importance of the Box Trucking Industry?

Is a box truck a commercial vehicle? Yes, Cargo box trucks have great commercial importance as they are available in different sizes.

Along with delivering products to the customers, one can use them for transporting equipment from warehouses to retail stores. Below is the commercial vehicle importance of the box trucking industry:

  • Free Advertising

When you use a box truck for your service business, you get an opportunity to advertise your company on wheels. You can easily mention details about your brand on the truck to be more visible to the public.

  • Safer Storage Container

Another commercial importance of box trucks is that they are used for storing and transferring a wide range of cargo.

The truck safely protects the tools and merchandise from getting vandalized. In addition, the goods stay protected from the harsh climates as well.  

  • Not Having to Hook Up and Pull a Trailer 

Many companies have started using box trucks as they are less time-consuming. With a box truck on your side, you do not have to spend your time hooking up a trailer. Hauling the extra weight of the trailer can also be expensive. 

When there is no hassle of pulling the trailer, you make quicker deliveries and provide high-quality services. Thus, your company gets more attention. 

  • Better Maneuver and Gas Mileage 

As box trucks are easier to maneuver than semi-large trucks. They are used for local business runs. These trucks do not have high fuel requirements, which makes them an ideal solution for driving in tight areas. 

Truck drivers on the highway

What Are Box Truck Sizes and Their Importance?

Keep in mind that the actual capacity of any box truck depends on its make and model. But there are a few guidelines that are made for different box sizes. Below are the capabilities for popular box truck sizes.

Get a light-duty size (small box trucks) (up to 16 ft) if you carry 1-3,000 lbs. goods.

This sized truck is ideal for carrying less than five pieces of furniture, 50 boxes or less, and 400-450 cu. ft. of inventory. 

A medium-duty box truck (up to 22 ft) is ideal for 3,000-4,5000 lbs. of goods. It can also be used for 650-680 cu. ft. of inventory, less than 10 pieces of furniture, or 100 boxes and less. 

Lastly, you can use a heavy-duty truck (22-28 ft+) for 4,500 to 6,500 lbs. goods. This vehicle is ideal for moving around 15 furniture pieces, 150 boxes or less, or 900 to 1,400 cu. ft. of inventory.

Home Size  Recommended Truck Size 
1-room apartment  10-16 ft.
2-room apartment  12-22 ft.
3-room apartment  16-22 ft.
5-room apartment  22-26 ft. 

What Is Considered As A Small Box Truck and Why?

A small box truck is ideal for customers who need to rent a moving truck as it does not require a commercial driver’s license to operate.

For this reason, small trucks are also a good choice for a business willing to outfit their fleet with moving trucks without hiring drivers with CDL.

If you want people to rent your box truck, pick a small model that is perfect for consumer operation.

Many customers overestimate their needs with the small box truck size. But if you pack and store them correctly on the truck, you can get the work done with a small box truck. 

2D image of a truck carrying a bottle

Pros and Cons of Box Truck Business


  • Comparatively, box trucks can accommodate more items with flat sides. 
  • Heavy items can be easily loaded and unloaded as rolling rear doors are installed. 
  • Flat sides of the box trucks can be used for advertisement. 


  • As box trucks are powered by robust engines, they are heavy, which results in increased fuel consumption.


If you plan to get a box truck, you are advised to invest in a larger truck. After all, it’s never a bad idea to have extra space.

Large vehicles also come with additional features like liftgates and the option to side the door. But if you are not interested in a big-sized vehicle, you can invest in a smaller box vehicle. 

Box truck with lift on a driveway