The Complete Guide To A Career In Trucking

How many miles will I drive, and how often will I get home as a new driver?

Your first year as a truck driver will be a learning experience, and depending in part how long your company training is, your miles probably won't be very high compared to what they will be later on.

That said, truck driving is one of the few professions where you are in competition with the other drivers in your company for loads and miles. Top-performing drivers will learn the tricks to be available for any load, any time. "To the Victors, go the Spoils."

Generally, most new drivers will start in OTR jobs, so home time may be sparse at first. Occasionally, new drivers will land local or dedicated jobs right out of the gate, getting them home more often, but not terribly often.

How many miles will I drive as a rookie?

It will depend, but at first, your dispatcher will normally be giving you loads to work your way into high miles while you learn the job, so your miles will follow your personal learning curve. This is not to say that they won't test you or challenge you, though.

What if I can't get enough miles? Do trucking companies ever run out of work?

The companies and drivers are in the same boat: nobody makes money unless your wheels are turning. The company has no interest in "punishing" drivers, or making them sit for a while. If you're not moving freight, you're not making them money. There are always loads available, for the drivers that really want them.

The drivers that get the most miles and and the long runs are those that go out of their way to really go after it, be it knowing where to find empty trailers, being willing to take ANY run they're given, cultivating great relationships with their dispatcher, and managing their clock to be available as much as possible.

Is it hard to get home time as a rookie truck driver?

It will depend on the company. New long-haul drivers should expect the average "1 week out, 1 day home" OTR routine, until they are established within their company.

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More