Thinking About Becoming A Trucker.

Topic 2095 | Page 1

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AF_92's Comment
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So, I'm currently active duty military, and married, however both of those things may soon change due to circumstances outside of my control. I like driving, and have been thinking about being a truck driver for a little while now, as a backup plan just in case things do in fact change. I have a few questions though, that I was wondering if y'all could help me with. I'm sure I'll have more later on as well, but for starters, here are the first three.

What are some things I need to know? What are the best companies to work for? What is the salary like?

Thanks y'all.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Brett Aquila's Comment
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Welcome aboard AF 92!

Since you're just getting started with your research into the trucking industry your best bet is to go through our Truck driver's Career Guide thoroughly. Follow all the links you come across and read up on everything it points you to. You'll find answers to a million questions, including a whole pile of em you wouldn't even know to ask. We set that up so people could learn what it takes to get their trucking career off to a great start. You'll find it incredibly valuable.

The other thing I highly suggest is my book Becoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving. That's a link to the 100% free online version of the book. Read through that. It's a pretty quick, easy read with a lot of great insights into the industry and some great stories from the road you'll really enjoy.

I'm certainly not brushing off your question. But there's a lot to know about getting your trucking career underway so we organized the info for ya. So have a look and get back to us with any questions you may have. We'll make sure you get answers to all of em


Vlad D.'s Comment
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I drove Class B for many years before I became a cop. When injuries forced me into retirement I went back to trucking. The problem was the jobs were not plentiful and the pay was terrible. I decided to go to school and get my Class A.

It wasn't easy as I thought, but I finally got the coveted Class A. Now to find a job..

Ken P.'s Comment
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I got out a few months bak myself after 9 years as a Combat Medic. Here are some things to think about

1) Do you want to use your GI Bill to pay for your school? yes)then you may look at - no) look on this site at some of the CDL sponsored training and save your GI Bill toward a degree

2) Do you have a family that requires a good health plan? This site lists a lot of different companies and how they compare fo health benefits, 401K etc...

3) If you do have family, are you going to have a serious issue being gone for extended periods of time? Find out which companies are primarily near the area you are going to be and if they offer regional or dedicated routes.

I did lots and lots of homework to find the best fit for my family. Just like the military, jumping into anything without thinking it through could lead you to an assignment you may regret. Research, research and more research. Good luck


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."


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.

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