Should I Do It?

Topic 20509 | Page 2

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Steve L.'s Comment
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My first year OTR with Schneider (dry van) I made $40k. Second year was about $48k. I got five days home time per month. I'm in my third year driving (with a different company), I get home weekly and should make $48k-$50k.

I started right here on TT and got my permit on my 53rd birthday. You can make much more than me (especially in food or beverage distribution).

Good luck!

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Bob J.'s Comment
member avatar

My first year OTR with Schneider (dry van) I made $40k. Second year was about $48k. I got five days home time per month. I'm in my third year driving (with a different company), I get home weekly and should make $48k-$50k.

I started right here on TT and got my permit on my 53rd birthday. You can make much more than me (especially in food or beverage distribution).

Good luck!

Thanks so much for the response! I am assuming that is gross right? That's kinda where I hope to be at.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

Dry Van:

A trailer or truck that that requires no special attention, such as refrigeration, that hauls regular palletted, boxed, or floor-loaded freight. The most common type of trailer in trucking.
Steve L.'s Comment
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Yes, that's gross. Also, one student from my class went straight to Coca Cola, but my understanding is most local jobs require a couple of years experience.

G-Town's Comment
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Bob J clarifies his answer and asks additional questions:

Thanks Old School for your insightful information. I think there was some misunderstanding though. When I say go to school and work at the same time, I am referring to school during day and work at night. No differnt than someone going to a private school and still working at night. It would only be during the CDL classes phase and I would be 100% commited to my new company when I start actual orientation and OTR training.

I guess what I'm getting at is $2200 a month average for a driver? At least one paid at .34 CPM? This is the main question because it is lucridious for me to leave my home each night job to drive OTR just to make the same money you know? I am looking for a job that pays me more. That is another reason I am looking at driving. Not to make the same money as I am now just with more expenses.

Have you read the contents of this link? Company-Sponsored Training Programs

To elaborate, Truck Driving School, when taking the path of Company Sponsored, is a highly intense, very fast paced learning process. Almost comparable to Basic Training in the Military. Greater than 8 hours every day. When do you plan on sleeping, cause you are going to need all the rest you can get?

With Swift, when I attended their Richmond Academy, by 0615 (or 0'Dark-Thirty) we were in the yard working on and practicing the Pre-Trip Inspections on the trucks. Class ended between 1600-1630. After dinner, myself along with most all of the other students, studied until lights-out. A 100% commitment is required to pass the course. You cannot afford to be late, tired or distracted. I for one could not have passed the course if I worked a second or third-shift job and then went right to school. Not saying it cannot be done...but considering under the best of circumstances the average failure rate in any of the company sponsored schools is roughly 70%, you are setting yourself up for an even greater challenge.

With that said, the average, first year income for an OTR truck driver is about 35-40k. Keep in mind that includes the reduced pay you receive while in road-training with a mentor/trainer. Second year at least 40k is possible, if not probable. My second year I was solidly in the upper 50k range. By my third year I was close to 70k annually. The top performing drivers on this forum are making between 65-75k annually (some more),...but you must pay your dues and learn this craft or those numbers will not be possible. It is reasonable to expect 70k after 4-5 years of top-performing experience. Make no mistake, a huge delta between rookie level experience and even 3 years. Takes work...dedication and focus.

You have a lot to think about...your first hurdle being the most difficult. I sincerely wish you the best of luck and hope is all works out in your favor.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OTR:

Over The Road

OTR driving normally means you'll be hauling freight to various customers throughout your company's hauling region. It often entails being gone from home for two to three weeks at a time.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

Company-sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

I have a thread I posted comparing my first year with the first 4 weeks of second year. At the end of this year I'll.probably post the differences again. We he actually gotten a raise since.then, but Prime pays more than many other companies, and different divisions pay differently.

Keep.in mind that everyone's pays are different. I'm.great at time management.... I learned from Old School!! I started racking up miles earlier than some other rookies. After a few months I started getting constant pre plans. Other drivers who didn't take the time to learn the time management and trip planning were getting way less miles. If you want to learn and work hard you will do fine. If you want to be handed 3000 miles a week, forget it.

Prime first year pay

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