Which Types Of/Companies Pay The Best For New Drivers?

Topic 11685 | Page 1

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Tam's Comment
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I feel overwhelmed by all the information that is out there and really not getting a good feel for the direction I need to go. This site has helped tremendously though.

Old School's Comment
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I feel overwhelmed by all the information that is out there and really not getting a good feel for the direction I need to go.

Tammy if you hang in there you will ease your feelings of overwhelm by getting a better understanding of how all this stuff works, and there is no better place than right here where you are.

First off I want you to realize that trucking schools or training programs don't really make you into a truck driver. Their sole design is just to get you to the point where you have a CDL (Commercial Drivers License) - that is just the first step in the process. Once you've gotten that out of the way there are certain companies that are willing to hire "newbies" and they are going to put you with a trainer for several weeks so that you can ease into this new career. We often liken this training time to learning to ride a bike with the training wheels still on it. Hopefully you won't mess up too badly with another professional right there with you sort of holding your hand along the way - that is the second step. Then comes the third step in the process - your first year of running a solo truck all by your self. We always encourage folks to stick with their first trucking job for a full year. That is one reason we are so supportive of the Company-Sponsored Training programs, they usually require a one year commitment from you.

That first year of being a solo driver is of vital importance to the future of your career. I do not recommend that you seek the highest paying company during that year, but that you actively find a place that you think will meet your needs as far as the type of freight, the area of the country you want to be running in, and the kind of home time you will be needing. There are a lot of options, and we can help you sort it all out.

A great place to start doing your research is to work your way through our Truck Driver's Career Guide. Follow all the links you come across, and you will gain a lot of knowledge about making a good start in this business. Also, you should read the free on line version of Brett's Book, it will give you a great idea of the lifestyle of the modern day truck driver.


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.

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.

G-Town's Comment
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I feel overwhelmed by all the information that is out there and really not getting a good feel for the direction I need to go. This site has helped tremendously though.

Tammy I think if you take the time to review Brett's book and then the Truck Drivers Career guide as Old School suggested, you may feel less overwhelmed. Old School's advice is very sound and truthful guidance. Once you have reviewed those two works, you will have a much better understanding of what to expect and probably feel less stressed about information overload and direction. This is a big decision, we all get that, here to help.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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