Thoughts On Pay Per Mile Or Straight Pay Per Day

Topic 20918 | Page 1

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Brett 's Comment
member avatar

Hi everyone, this is a great site with a ton of great information. I'll be starting CDL School pretty soon. Ive even filling out applications on line and I've talked to a few recruiters. As of know I have two possible opportunities, so far. One is with Trans Am, which is OTR and starts at .32cpm. The other one is Falcon Transportation, and is OTR with mostley dedicated routes. Can be home on weekends or stay out longer. And the starting pay there is $160 a day, and if I stay out longer I would get $75 for the 34 hrs reset. What are your thoughts on the daily pay versus CPM? The daily pay would be consistent, and the CPM would obviously vary. Any thoughts or ideas is much appreciated.

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.

Dedicated Route:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Brett, without knowing much more information, $160 per day at Falcon is the same as 32cpm at TransAm if you average 500 miles per day. As a rookie driver, 500 miles is not going to happen every day. It also depends on what Falcon's definition of "a day" is. Is it 11 hours of driving or is it a combination of driving and on-duty time at multiple stops requiring live un-loads (like you could expect on a just-in-time retail account)? Is the 160 per day locked in for an entire year, or does that only represent starting pay? I'd ask where you could expect to be at your 1 year anniversary, etc.

What type of job is Falcon offering? Dedicated to what? Dedicated only means you move freight for one customer. It could be a retail, wholesale, manufacturing or distribution customer. All over the map...each customer type has unique characteristics that influence how the job is performed, driving time, and how much work you are required to complete in one shift. It helps to know those parameters to accurately assess the actual value of the daily rate.

Not trying to be evasive, it's difficult to give you a reasonably educated answer without more information on Falcon.

Now if you want an opinion based on my experience? I'd be happy to offer my thoughts on a daily rate vs.a mileage rate. I am 100%, totally in favor of mileage pay because I know I'll make more money. It's that simple and 99% of the top performing drivers will say the exact same thing. There is zero incentive to "run-hard" with a fixed daily rate. For instance, there is no way I'd run Walmart Dedicated (my current job, retail grocery) if I was paid a fixed daily rate. My actual performance is worth much more than $160 per day. A daily rate locks you in, there is no upside other than the occasional "atta-boy". Truck driving is performance based, highly competitive. I want my pay directly aligned with my ability to perform. Put into perspective, although I have 5 years of experience, a "slacker day" for me is $185.00. That only happens if available hours require a short run on that particular day or if for whatever reason I request a short run. That said, my upside is far greater than the daily rate you quoted.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Turtle's Comment
member avatar

On face value the pay per day doesn't sound like a very good deal to me at all. It sounds like a recipe for the company to pile as much on you as they can every day. I'd much rather be paid for what I can actually produce in miles.

Also, it's early in your game so don't limit yourself to just those two companies. There are companies paying considerably more than that for new drivers.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

Hey, Yuper. do keep in mind that a trucking job is not the same as running a paper napkin machine. Hourly pay, if you notice from Turtle's and G-town's comments isn't what it's all about in trucking. You may have your reasons for choosing Falcon or TransAm. But please read these before you make a decision based on bucks:

and

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Daniel B.'s Comment
member avatar

With Trans Am you'll be home once a month but with Falcon you stated you can be home every weekend.

I don't think this is a question of comparing pay (since that is pretty much the same), but more of a question of how important is hometime for you?

Either way, both companies are bottom of the barrel pay wise so you have to decide if you're wanting that true, nomadic OTR lifestyle or would want more frequent hometime. But do remember, you don't make money at home so in the end Trans AM will be more profitable if you opt for frequent hometime.

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.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Daniel wrote...

With Trans Am you'll be home once a month but with Falcon you stated you can be home every weekend.

I don't think this is a question of conparing pay (since that is pretty much the same), but more of a question of how important is hometime for you?

Either way, both companies are bottom of the barrel pay wise so you have to decide if you're wanting that true, nomadic OTR lifestyle or would want more frequent hometime. But do remember, you don't make money at home so in the end Trans AM will be more profitable if you opt for frequent hometime.

Brett,...Daniel's point does raise the question, why TransAm? And why Falcon? Something to think about that more accurately addresses the home time point,...Dedicated Accounts provide an opportunity for regular, weekly, many times scheduled home time. In addition depending on the account, a Dedicated driver can also make a more consistent paycheck than their OTR brethren. Several companies represented in the Company-Sponsored Training Program link and in Trucking Company Reviews, are industry leaders when it comes to the extent and variety of Dedicated Account opportunities. To name just a few; Swift, Schneider, Prime, Shaffer/Crete, Werner and US Express are big players in the Dedicated Account Contracts. Unless there is some underlying reason, I suggest not limiting yourself to the two carriers you already mentioned.

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.

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.

Brett 's Comment
member avatar

I really appreciate, your guys comments and opinions. I guess I need to get more info on Falcon. Falcon guy said It'll be over the road but I could be home on weekends if I wanted too, or could stay out longer if I wanted to. The only run certain areas nothing west Kansas City. Mostly Midwest and eastern US. I was kinda thinking the same thing about limiting myself on what I could make. I also just received a phone call from a Swift recruiter and he just sent me a pre hire letter. And Swift is offering .36 cpm to start off. I have little while to get this figured out. I have so excited tough choices to make. I appreciate this site and the info it has to offer.

Over The Road:

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.

Pre Hire:

What Exactly Is A Pre-Hire Letter?

Pre-hire letters are acceptance letters from trucking companies to students, or even potential students, to verify placement. The trucking companies are saying in writing that the student, or potential student, appears to meet the company's minimum hiring requirements and is welcome to attend their orientation at the company’s expense once he or she graduates from truck driving school and has their CDL in hand.

We have an excellent article that will help you Understand The Pre-Hire Process.

A Pre-Hire Letter Is Not A Guarantee Of Employment

The people that receive a pre-hire letter are people who meet the company's minimum hiring requirements, but it is not an employment contract. It is an invitation to orientation, and the orientation itself is a prerequisite to employment.

During the orientation you will get a physical, drug screen, and background check done. These and other qualifications must be met before someone in orientation is officially hired.

Big Scott's Comment
member avatar

My suggestion. Use the links you've been provided. Research the companies. Find the company that best suits your needs. I am very happy at CFI. We have people here who are happy with the companies they are with. Swift is a great company with many different driving opportunities. CPM isn't everything. There are additional pays that vary by company. For example, stop pay, Northeast pay, Hazmat pay, detention, layover, tarping, fuel bonus, safety bonus and more. Not all companies offer all of that and how much depends on the company. Hometime, rider and pet policies vary by company. As you can see there is much to consider. Good luck. We're here to help you succeed.

HAZMAT:

Hazardous Materials

Explosive, flammable, poisonous or otherwise potentially dangerous cargo. Large amounts of especially hazardous cargo are required to be placarded under HAZMAT regulations

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

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

Steve L.'s Comment
member avatar

Decide if money is top priority or home time. I started OTR with Schneider and drove two years with them, from Maine to California, Minnesota to Laredo, TX. Good company, good pay. Switched to a southeast regional company in January. Same pay, but home every weekend. Now I’m doing a dedicated run with that same company. A slight pay cut, but home more often and weekends are now Friday afternoon until Monday morning (instead of Saturday noon and Sunday).

Know how much you want to make and decide what your priorities are. Then bring your best attitude and enjoy the ride!

Dedicated Run:

A driver or carrier who transports cargo between regular, prescribed routes. Normally it means a driver will be dedicated to working for one particular customer like Walmart or Home Depot and they will only haul freight for that customer. You'll often hear drivers say something like, "I'm on the Walmart dedicated account."

Regional:

Regional Route

Usually refers to a driver hauling freight within one particular region of the country. You might be in the "Southeast Regional Division" or "Midwest Regional". Regional route drivers often get home on the weekends which is one of the main appeals for this type of route.

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.

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