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.
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.
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.
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.
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