How To Get A Job In The Trucking Industry With No Experience?

Topic 21553 | Page 1

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Lisa M.'s Comment
member avatar

I recently got my Class B CDL and studying for the last section (combination vehicles) to get my Class A. I didn't go to a truck school because the cost is too much. The problem I'm running into is none of the trucking companies in my area want to give me a chance because I have no trucking experience, but I can't gain any experience if I don't start somewhere?!

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.

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.

Big Scott's Comment
member avatar

You found out the hard way why we have to go to a school with at least a 160 hour program. While there is more than one way to do this, I love Paid CDL Training Programs. When you go this route, you have very little to no out of pocket expenses. You get paid while training and are almost guaranteed to be hired upon successful completion of your training and orientation. These companies require you to work a contact, usually one year. One year is a very short time and it is recommended to stay with your first company for at least one year. To get a good idea of what this training is all about you can look in our Training Diaries section. Good luck. We are here to help.

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.
Errol V.'s Comment
member avatar

It's true, no one is born with truck driving experience. Even all trucking companies know that. So training, that will get you into the driver's seat of a big rig, takes at least three months from start to finish. That's after you get a CDL-A learner's permit.

If you are looking to get your full license on your own, don't. Even with a fresh full license, you will need training. If you have been checking with smaller, local companies and getting no joy, you are looking in the wrong place.

Don't worry about costs right now. Yes, you'll be contractually on the hook for school, but Paid CDL Training Programs will get you training, the job, and a way to pay it off. I drive for Swift. (Big Scott works for CFI.) Swift's plan will actually cost you $1050 (I think) if you stay with them for a year.

All is not lost, Lisa. Here's a good place to start:

All your questions will be answered here. Feel free ...

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.
Martin's Comment
member avatar

I recently got my Class B CDL and studying for the last section (combination vehicles) to get my Class A. I didn't go to a truck school because the cost is too much. The problem I'm running into is none of the trucking companies in my area want to give me a chance because I have no trucking experience, but I can't gain any experience if I don't start somewhere?!

Have you considered asking about going for ride alongs? Often in good weather once a raport is built with a driver, they will let you drive some. Or at least I have, and know some others who have done likewise.

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.

Combination Vehicle:

A vehicle with two separate parts - the power unit (tractor) and the trailer. Tractor-trailers are considered combination vehicles.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Have you considered asking about going for ride alongs?

A ride along isn't going to count as experience. She's looking for a company that hires inexperienced drivers.

The guys above are correct. You're either going to have to pay your way through Private Truck Driving Schools or go through Paid CDL Training Programs.

You also have the option of speaking with your state's employment agency and see if any WIOA funds are available. You can follow this link to Learn About WIOA Funding. They will often pay for truck driving school for you.

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.

WIOA:

WIOA - Workforce Innovation & Opportunity Act (aka WIA)

Formerly known as the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), the WIOA was established in 1998 to prepare youth, adults and dislocated workers for entry and reentry into the workforce. WIOA training funds are designed to serve laid-off individuals, older youth and adults who are in need of training to enter or reenter the labor market. A lot of truck drivers get funding for their CDL training through WIOA.

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