Starting CDL School On Monday, Live In Multiple States, Also Confused, Anxious, And Terrified.... So Many Questions!!

Topic 15591 | Page 1

Page 1 of 2 Next Page Go To Page:
Dee B.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello all, I've been cruising these forums for over a year now, and joined when I saw a post by 6 string (or six string, not sure how he spells it lol) discussing LTL trucking. I start school on Monday at a private CDL School named American Driver Training Academy that my current employer (Amazon), is paying for. Once I'm done with the class Amazon pays us a "buyout" if we'd like to quit and pursue our newfound career that they paid for the schooling for. I plan on taking that offer, (I've been there 3 years so that's $3,000). I just wouldn't be able to ever work for Amazon or its subsidiaries again. I say that to show that I have no other option but to succeed. I've been thinking about trucking for a career for years and already have a family member who's currently a trucker. I have so many questions, and have tried to find the answers in the forums. I've found the answers to some, but I've decided that I would rather ask my questions here, then use this same post to document all the steps, hurdles, and triumphs between now and finding a company to work for.

Enough introduction, my first question refers to my situation. I currently live in Bear, Delaware, but my lease is up on my house on Sept. 1, which then I will be moving in with my girlfriend in Philadelphia. (Yes, I'm a female. Yes, so is my gf lol.) I'm not sure whether I should keep my license in Delaware, or transfer it now to Pennsylvania and test for CDL in Pennsylvania. My school is on the border of both states and will take you to get your license in either state. They also pay for you to get your TWIC card (they're actually a TWIC location or whatever it's called, and they do hazmat fingerprinting). We have three boys in between me and my gf, (kids, not some weird orgy thing lol). The youngest one is two, and we've been discussing having another child. For this reason, something like LTL, linehaul , local, or possibly regional would be most beneficial. I don't really have any interest in OTR , its not too appealing to me. I kinda like routine, and would just love a trucking job that I could get home at least twice weekly. I'm not expecting to make millions my first year driving, but I'd need to at least bring home more then $400/week, which is what I'm making now.

So, here are my questions:

Which state would probably offer more job opportunities between Delaware and Philly? Which trucking companies do not do forced dispatch (esp. to NYC, the thought of driving through that is terrifying in a car, let alone a big rig!) Any idea which companies have the best/highest starting pay? How do you get a estimate of how much a company pays when you factor in benefits, bonuses, etc.? Any insight into companies such as New Penn or A. Duie Pyle? I've heard mixed reviews? Any other advice for a newbie like me on differences between driving tankers, dry van , reefers, regional, dedicated, etc.? I've been seeing a lot of recent job posts for all positions even with only CDL school, but I don't graduate until October.

I probably have more questions, just can't think of all of them right now. I'm still trying to get through the High Road Training before I test for my Permit on Monday. Just figured I'd rather have it on first day in class instead of waiting two weeks like they say we can. I plan on getting every endorsement except passenger, and school bus. I don't figure I'll need it.

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.

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

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.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

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.

Linehaul:

Linehaul drivers will normally run loads from terminal to terminal for LTL (Less than Truckload) companies.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning them to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.

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.

Reefer:

A refrigerated trailer.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

DUI:

Driving Under the Influence

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

First off welcome to the forums. This is the best place to get all of your questions answered. As far as starting a local job right out of school, there is a very slim chance for that. Most local jobs require one to two years of OTR experience. Also, most companies that go to NYC do not force dispatch those loads. However, they usually pay extra if you do them. You would benefit from looking here. Trucking Company Reviews You may also be interested in these two on YouTube. Two girls in a truck Also try putting a questions you have into the forum search. 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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Dee B.'s Comment
member avatar

I've actually checked out some of their YouTube videos, thanks! Another question I forgot about, at what point should I make contact with recruiters? I've been seeing posts around from companies that aren't usually hiring that are doing some hiring near my location at this time. I already contacted Old Dominion bc I figured it couldn't hurt and was told that basically my school is definitely an approved school and that I'm more than welcome to contact him closer towards the end of Sept. since I'm done school beginning of October. I'm just wondering should I be contacting companies that I'm interested in now to let them know that I'm interested, go with the companies that my school suggests, or wait until I'm almost done with school before I even contact anyone to let them know of my interest.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Welcome to the forum Dee. You might want to take a look at these links:

I think after reviewing the above information you'll have a better idea how to interact with potential employers.

Good luck!

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.

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 (CFI's biggest 's Comment
member avatar

A month or so ago I had a delivery from ODFL. I asked the driver how long he had been driving. If I remember correctly he said 12 years. I asked where he started driving. He said he got hired with ODFL right out of school. I'm in Charlotte, NC and we have every major LTL company here. He told me he went to one of the two private schools in Charlotte. He said he had only seen one other driver do that. That is to say it is possible to get a local job right out of school, yet rare. The best thing I can recommend is to read everything you can on this site. Good luck.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier
Dee B.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks... Well, I've started CDL School and have actually applied to a few companies already in an attempt to get prehire letters. JB hunt, crete, us xpress, schneider, melton, yrc, and roehl have already responded to my application and/or called me. The problem is, I work from 7-4 and then have school from 430-9 so I have no idea when I'm going to be able to respond back to the recruiters. Schneider called me twice today from some automated number. My only real time to make contact is Friday after 4 pm and weekends. Will that cause me to look disinterested? Should I wait until I'm able to contact these recruiters back before filling out more apps? I'm really hoping for something LTL , dedicated, or regional. OTR is definitely not an option for me right now as I have three children at home.

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.

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.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

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.

Prehire:

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.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Susan D. 's Comment
member avatar

Dee, I went the Amazon Career Choice route too. One thing i would strongly consider is whether trucking is really for you at this time, only because your have young children at home and OTR is what's accepted in the industry as experience. Tou could stay on as a yard driver with Amazon but would have to go back through school or at least a refresher training to do anything else. Companies want drivers fresh out of school or verifiable experience (otr trucking).

A coworker of mine had young children and finally realized she would have a really hard time getting a local job and used up her Career Choice scholarship needlessly. Those local jobs are very tough for an inexperienced driver.

I wish you sucess but please consider whether this is the right thing to do i at this time in your life.

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.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

You need to look up 6 strings thread about driving for Old Dominion.

Search for LTL and it should pop up.

(Help me out with a link guys. I suck at putting them on!)

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier
ChickieMonster's Comment
member avatar

I was going to CDL school for 8-4:30 every day M-F.

I would call recruiters on my lunch breaks. The conversations are usually pretty short.

Try taking to your school. They may be able to let you take calls or make calls to recruiters. After all, that's why you are there right?

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.
Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
(Help me out with a link guys. I suck at putting them on!)

Here is the link to 6 String Rhythm's Thread:

LTL Trucking: My Linehaul Job

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier

Linehaul:

Linehaul drivers will normally run loads from terminal to terminal for LTL (Less than Truckload) companies.

LTL (Less Than Truckload) carriers will have Linehaul drivers and P&D drivers. The P&D drivers will deliver loads locally from the terminal and pick up loads returning them to the terminal. Linehaul drivers will then run truckloads from terminal to terminal.
Page 1 of 2 Next Page Go To Page:

New Reply:

New! Check out our help videos for a better understanding of our forum features

Bold
Italic
Underline
Quote
Photo
Link
Smiley
Links On TruckingTruth


example: TruckingTruth Homepage



example: https://www.truckingtruth.com
Submit
Cancel
Upload New Photo
Please enter a caption of one sentence or less:

Click on any of the buttons below to insert a link to that section of TruckingTruth:

Getting Started In Trucking High Road Training Program Company-Sponsored Training Programs Apply For Company-Sponsored Training Truck Driver's Career Guide Choosing A School Choosing A Company Truck Driving Schools Truck Driving Jobs Apply For Truck Driving Jobs DOT Physical Drug Testing Items To Pack Pre-Hire Letters CDL Practice Tests Trucking Company Reviews Brett's Book Leasing A Truck Pre-Trip Inspection Learn The Logbook Rules Sleep Apnea
Done
Done

0 characters so far - 5,500 maximum allowed.
Submit Preview

Preview:

Submit
Cancel

Join Us!

We have an awesome set of tools that will help you understand the trucking industry and prepare for a great start to your trucking career. Not only that, but everything we offer here at TruckingTruth is 100% free - no strings attached! Sign up now and get instant access to our member's section:
High Road Training Program Logo
  • The High Road Training Program
  • The High Road Article Series
  • The Friendliest Trucker's Forum Ever!
  • Email Updates When New Articles Are Posted

Apply For Paid CDL Training Through TruckingTruth

Did you know you can fill out one quick form here on TruckingTruth and apply to several companies at once for paid CDL training? Seriously! The application only takes one minute. You will speak with recruiters today. There is no obligation whatsoever. Learn more and apply here:

Apply For Paid CDL Training

About Us

TruckingTruth was founded by Brett Aquila (that's me!), a 15 year truck driving veteran, in January 2007. After 15 years on the road I wanted to help people understand the trucking industry and everything that came with the career and lifestyle of an over the road trucker. We'll help you make the right choices and prepare for a great start to your trucking career.

Read More

Becoming A Truck Driver

Becoming A Truck Driver is a dream we've all pondered at some point in our lives. We've all wondered if the adventure and challenges of life on the open road would suit us better than the ordinary day to day lives we've always known. At TruckingTruth we'll help you decide if trucking is right for you and help you get your career off to a great start.

Learn More