Profile For Feanor K.

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    2 years, 4 months ago

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Posted:  1 week, 1 day ago

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First Year Earnings Question

Ahhhhhh, the eternal question with no definitive answer.

First off welcome to the site! You've found the best source of info on this profession the internet has to offer. There are a bunch of great articles covering your question as well as many others which I don't have the links handy for but I'm sure someone will supply shortly.

I will give my answer based on my own experience.

The standard response here on TT is 40-50k for a solo driver. Trucking play is setup to be performance based, so depending on your own ability/ dedication this number could be higher or lower. OTR will typically pay somewhat better than regional but this is not always the case. The type of freight you haul is also a factor.

If you are running team with both driving it should naturally double, and more, because the nature of team driving is more efficient. I have not driven team so others may have better info.

Here is a link to a thread I made detailing my own first year wages.

Posted:  1 week, 4 days ago

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Realistic beginner driver pay for regional drivers

That comment was bound to get backlash John, given the people who were advising you are some of the most successful and experienced drivers around and donate a ton of time and effort herefor free, but I also understand that you are new here and didn't know anything about them, so it's understandable imo.

I made a thread a while back precisely for people in your position that I will link. Hope it helps!

My Rookie Year Wages (Flatbed)

Posted:  1 week, 6 days ago

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Struggling With Making The Big Decision

Go for it mate. I am of a similar mindset on a lot of points (introverted, dislike talking on phones, bad at networking, gamer) and trucking was one of the biggest, most difficult, and most rewarding choices of my life.

Before I started I trucking 2 years ago, I was making $11/hr busting butt from 4am in a bakery, I had hardly been out of my home state, never driven a manual vehicle, and was nervous just going to the small-medium sized city 20 miles away.

Now I make twice in a week what I used to every 2 weeks, while most work days consist of taking in the beautiful scenery of the Northwest while listening to my favourite music and audio books and doing some deep thinking on my projects and life in general. I have been to every state (minus a couple), about half of Canada, almost every major city in a 10speed truck over 60ft long.

The whole experience has expanded my mind, my confidence, and my wallet, and is truly a unique job experience that will likely change the way you think about work.

I'm not saying it's easy, but I am saying it is worth it. Despite the first 6 months of my career being some of the must stressful and challenging I can remember, I consider it a small price for what you can gain sticking with it.

Posted:  3 weeks, 1 day ago

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How old were you when you started driving truck?


Posted:  3 months, 3 weeks ago

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Not 100% on this but I believe CRST has a Train- your- partner program.

Posted:  4 months, 3 weeks ago

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Surgery Tomorrow. (Positive thoughts and prayers appreciated).

Good luck to you! You are in my prayers.

Posted:  5 months, 3 weeks ago

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Should I become a truck driver or stay with my present career?...need help

Hello and welcome Aby. I will do my best to answer based on my own experience.

1: 71k for 3 days per week sounds pretty nice. But I understand your reasons for wanting out. You can definitely work your way up to that kind of money trucking IF you are willing to work hard, consistently and stay safe. We have a number of folks on this forum who are making that much or more. Had I finished out my first year I was on pace for about 60k. It's quite possible to reach 70+ within a few years if you got the work ethic for it.

3: stress can be very high in trucking, especially that first year. My first 6 months were some of the most stressful of my life. I think it's a bit different kind of stress than what you have talked about though. There is some paperwork and a lot of regulations, but it's just you in your truck and you are following these things to save yourself tickets and avoid trouble, not just 'cause corporate said so. '

5: I think introverts do well in trucking. Just gotta get through that training phase. A month in tight cab with a stranger can be rough.

7: You will not find much encouragement for going O/O here, ESPECIALLY as a rookie. I have not looked into it much personally, but we have some very experienced and successful drivers on here who have, and the consensus is that it is not worth it after the numbers have been crunched. Little to no gain in money for a lot more stress and risk.

9: There are many stress factors. Tight deadlines are the norm, limited parking especially at night, big city traffic frequently, sleep schedule can be erratic (I never had issues with this in flatbedding), driving in all weather conditions imaginable, time away from loved ones (even as an introvert this can get tough. Trust me.) And more besides. You won't have to deal with people in the same way as your other job though, just get along with your dispatch and do a good job and you will pretty much be left alone.

10: Long hours driving are the norm, but you will never do 11 straight. There is a mandatory 30 minute break every 8 hours, and even running hard you should be able to find time for another stop or 2 throughout the day.

11: Trucking may not be viewed as the most prestigious job, in fact it gets a bad name to a lot people, but among people who know what it takes, there's plenty of respect, and it is a very satisfying and rewarding job to succeed at!

In the end it is a highly performance- based job, so your results will be directly correlated to your effort and willingness to sacrifice. Be honest with yourself about how much you are willing to endure and put forth. If you still want to go through with it, then I encourage you!

One of the major reasons I got into trucking was to push out of my comfort zone, and it was DEFINITELY successful in that respect. It is a great way to travel, expand your horizons, build confidence and push your limits.

If you go for it, Just remember that it is challenging, steep learning curve, and there WILL be times you want to quit, just stay strong and take it one day and one week at a time.

Posted:  6 months ago

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Game: How Do You Motivate Yourself?

I should say "your jokes" probably so that is taken in the correct light : P

Posted:  6 months ago

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Game: How Do You Motivate Yourself?

I’m afraid of my driver manager.

Your comments always crack me up. Thanks for that!

Posted:  6 months ago

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Failed My CDL road test - Need Advice

Definitely start lower imo. No harm doing 3rd or even 2nd. I remember I went up a hill in my CDL test, and I took the entire thing in like 5th gear cause I didn't wanna risk stalling. Traffic behind me mighta got a bit annoyed but I didn't stall, and the Examiner didn't say a word.

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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I am not confident but company wants me to take the driving test

Awesome job man! Personally I never felt ready at any new stage when I was getting started trucking, but if you just go with the attitude that you will do the best you can and take it slow, never failed me

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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The photo and opportunity that took almost 7 years to achieve!

Grats man! Nice shot you got

Posted:  6 months, 1 week ago

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Starting class tomorrow, anyone else?

Goodluck Spaceman! Just remember that it is a stressful, trying time for everyone in school, and that it is perfectly normal to feel unready at nearly every stage (from your first drive to your CDL test to your first solo load), the key is to just push through and keep going until your mind finally has time to catch up.

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Back On The Road

Last July I made the decision to turn in my keys and move on from trucking.

Next Monday, almost 7 months later, I will be assigned a truck and head out on the road again. And I'm excited :)

I honestly didn't expect I would get back into this profession with my criteria, let alone so soon, but the right opportunity came along and here I am.

My company offers home time and a work environment that I never expected, which should allow me the time and energy to work on my projects at home, all with a solid paycheck.

Have to say it's good to be back driving!

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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Should I risk it?

Awesome job sticking with it! You showed integrity and discipline, and I have no doubt it will continue to pay off

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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My Rookie Year Wages (Flatbed)

Feanor, interesting info Can you lend me a few bucks?

You kidding? I'm a broke *** warehouse worker, atleast until next week. If anyone's getting a buck its me!

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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My Rookie Year Wages (Flatbed)

'I no longer drive for Systems, but I talked a lot about my experience with them in this thread.'

Woops! Forgot to provide the link. Link This is the thread I was referring too :P

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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My Rookie Year Wages (Flatbed)

Much obliged Feanor, your effort is not in vain.

For us prospects reading this website daily we appreciate the time you took and will combine the lessons explained here with the evidence yet again put forth that attitude and hard work makes the world turn in this industry.

Happy to help!

I actually have Systems Transport bookmarked for future reference once I have a year of OTR exp under my belt w/ TMC.

How are you liking ST thus far? and do they have a pet policy?

I no longer drive for Systems, but I talked a lot about my experience with them in this thread. The TL;DR is, they treated me fantastically and gave me all the miles I could handle. If you are willing to work hard and earn their appreciation, you will be rewarded. If you are interested in the Regional Heavy-haul Fleet, they run a great outfit, especially if you get Branden as your DM.

As far as pet policy, I honestly don't recall. I don't have any pets so I paid no attention : /

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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My Rookie Year Wages (Flatbed)

Hey TT'ers! Good to see yall again! Well actually I never really stopped lurking here, so I have seen you but... you get the point :P

So I haven't posted on here in a good while, but the last time I did I promised to do a post detailing my first year's earnings for anyone interested. I know when I was starting out I had a really hard time finding any detailed post about actual numbers, especially for Flatbedding. So hopefully this helps someone get a better idea. Keep in mind, trucking pay is very much performance based, so it can vary substantially by the person. That said, if you keep that in mind and use your discernment, I believe real numbers can be very useful to compare and draw your own conclusions!

I worked at System Transport fresh out of CDL school as an OTR Flatbed driver from 9/1/17 - 5/4/2018 and on their NW Heavy-haul Regional Fleet from 5/4/18 - 7/27-18. All said just shy of 11 months total. Out of that time, my first 10 weeks were Training. I have collected screenshots of an overview list, as well as all my stubs from their Driver Portal. It was kind of an awkward process, so be warned they didn't all come out perfect and you may have to zoom in.

I'll link the overview here, but the stubs are like 50 separate images so I will have to find a better way to conglomerate those in another post. Bear in mind, training period checks are included for both OTR and Regional (these are annotated on the stubs, but not the overview.) Anyway here it is!

System Transport: 9/1/2017 - 7/27/2018

My Gross total for the period was: $53,136.21

My Net total for the period was: $36,188.36

Total of 12 weeks training @ $700/wk included.

My mileage pay rate was 43/CPM.

I also received Tuition Reimbursement once per month in $396 chunks. I believe the total amount was $3500. 0097287001551557290.jpg0768616001551557326.jpg

So there it is! I hope this helps give some prospective drivers out there an idea for the kind of money you can make in your first year. Keep in mind, I screwed up a lot early, and as a result spent an extra long time in training (almost 3 months!). I also switched Fleets which came with more downtime and training.

All in all I could have done better in several categories, but this site prepared me amazingly well, and as a result I got some awesome miles and fantastic treatment from my company. By the time I hit my stride I was on pace to make easily 65k + for my second year, and if you run hard, be safe, and keep a good attitude you can expect the same!

In conclusion I hope this is helpful, and if you have any questions I'll be happy to try to answer them!

Posted:  6 months, 2 weeks ago

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I have a problem with keeping my eating out spending low... How can I discipline myself?

One idea would be to cook up a lot of dishes on your home-time (things like rice and chicken or beef-heavy chili/spaghetti are tasty and easy to nuke) and store them in your fridge so all you gotta do is warm them up. Seal them well and they will last a long time. If you got a freezer you could put some in there as well if you are out for long periods, and rotate them to the fridge as it gets low.

I also workout frequently and I know the pain of road spending. Double scoop protein shakes also keep the hunger under control and are very cheap. Personally I load up on protein rich canned food (mostly beans as I'm vegetarian) and Minute rice. Combine and nuke and you have a decent meal in a couple minutes. Add a few slices of bread, maybe some PB and a protein shake and I can easily hit 3200 calories and my protein for the day for dirt cheap.

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