Keeping A Remote, Part-time Job On The Side While Full-time OTR

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Alexandr S.'s Comment
member avatar

Hi everyone. This is my first post and I will try to be as concise as possible.

I am in my early 30's and currently work part-time as independent contractor, and the work is entirely on my laptop. In this job, I can accept -- within reason -- as little work I would like. I would like to start doing OTR , but to still keep doing some of my current work, which I would obviously significantly reduce, but I would still probably need to spend 15-20 hours each month on it. Is that feasible? Can I fit in 15-20 hours of side work in a month while doing OTR? I don't have family commitments and can spend my home time anywhere, so that's a plus. Still, I expect that this would likely be very exhausting, since my down time while OTR would be sporadic and unpredictable, or so I imagine.

Any insight? Any of you know of someone doing some flexible work on the side? Is this something that companies would care about?

Thanks!

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.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Alexandr.

Yeah, you can certainly squeeze in that amount of time during the month as long as you can do it whenever you have the chance and not on a particular schedule.

G-Town's Comment
member avatar

Welcome Alexandr.

On the discussion thread for one of my articles, you inquired about the very high attrition rates in trucking and wanted more information. Here is our starter kit, this is a good place to start:

A few other suggestions, be careful reading about trucking information on the internet; unreliable and full of embellished information. Invest several hours reading Brett’s book (in the above links), the career outline and go to the TT blog section for additional “factual and truthful” information written by experienced and trusted members of this forum.

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.
Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

I'm just finishing up my month of student-training OTR , and even as a student I can find 30 minutes a day or an extra hour every few days. So, in my opinion it sounds feasible. You'll really have the time in the beginning, as well, because of something called the 34 hour reset - something us newbies get very familiar with because we're still learning the finer points of clock-managememt (psssst... Brett's book mentioned above, you can read it online for free!)

One suggestion I would make is to sign yourself for an unlimited data plan for your phone if you plan to submit your work online. First, WiFi access can be sketchy out here. Second, depending on where you happen to land at the end of your workday, many truck stops charge for it. Third, do all the calculations you want (I tried) but you are gonna bust right through ANY grand blueprint you design for trying to stay within a certain limit of data usage. Everyone said to get unlimited data, but my background is in IT, so if course I could figure this one out on my own...
rofl-1.gif There are a lot of things truckers say, but we newbies often pick just one or two things we cling to, because we just know this will be different or that can be handled. And soon enough humility comes along offers up a lesson that we should have just listened to.

That last part is not solely about your phones data plan. It's just in general. And you'll find no better, safer, or more honest advice than right here in this site. I hit 3 or 4 of what might be considered "major" trucking websites when I first started looking around. After a few weeks I stopped visiting anywhere but here. The rest remind me of bad truck stop bathrooms. Take that as you will.

But I definitely think you can do some extra work from the road. Depending on your company, you may get sent out with a trainer (more than likely) for about 30 days. And that time might get a little crunched for you just because of learning many things they don't teach you in trucking school and some basic adjustment to the lifestyle. But after a few weeks you're settled in and you'll have that extra time.

Best of luck with your studies and hope to see you around here more!

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.

BMI:

Body mass index (BMI)

BMI is a formula that uses weight and height to estimate body fat. For most people, BMI provides a reasonable estimate of body fat. The BMI's biggest weakness is that it doesn't consider individual factors such as bone or muscle mass. BMI may:

  • Underestimate body fat for older adults or other people with low muscle mass
  • Overestimate body fat for people who are very muscular and physically fit

It's quite common, especially for men, to fall into the "overweight" category if you happen to be stronger than average. If you're pretty strong but in good shape then pay no attention.

Keith A.'s Comment
member avatar

I'd say from a simple time consumption standpoint it's possible but from a mental energy standpoint I think you're looking for trouble. There are so many elements that go in to this job that trying to even think about finding time for a second part time job will distract you from dealing with driving the truck, which after all is said and done, is worth almost two fill time gigs every week.

Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

Really Keith?

So what if I cant remember my name by the time my shift is done. I can still...

Wait, what were we talking about?

rofl-3.gif
Well, there is definitely an adjustment period! I tried to describe to my brother how exhausted I am after my driving shift, and he asked me, "From what? You're just driving, right?"

0244189001523866740.jpg

So, yeah, perhaps it would be fair to mention that extra time is possible, but it won't be worth much until ya get used to driving a truck for ten hours (which, yes, is surprisingly and painfully different than driving a car for 10 hours.)

So, the time may be there, but it may not be usable time for a little while. Orrrrr perhaps he may just come out the gate and be totally unfazed by driving a full shift. Odds are against that, but ya never know.

To be clear with everyone, I'm agreeing with Keith. Just opened with some bad humor. Not my first time doing that, lol.

I'd say from a simple time consumption standpoint it's possible but from a mental energy standpoint I think you're looking for trouble. There are so many elements that go in to this job that trying to even think about finding time for a second part time job will distract you from dealing with driving the truck, which after all is said and done, is worth almost two fill time gigs every week.

Alexandr S.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks a lot. This is really useful. I've been lurking this board for a few weeks, and the friendliness and support from you all is really something. I appreciate your welcomes. These are exciting times . . .

Jeremy C.'s Comment
member avatar

Thanks a lot. This is really useful. I've been lurking this board for a few weeks, and the friendliness and support from you all is really something. I appreciate your welcomes. These are exciting times . . .

Yeah, this site is awesome. Now just wait til G-Town or Old School bounce some boot leather off your backside for some thing you said or did. Then you'll know you've officially joined the club!
rofl-2.gif

And hopefully soon you'll be welcoming people and sharing your road experiences with them. That's the code, us newbies gotta stick together! 👍

Alexandr S.'s Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

Thanks a lot. This is really useful. I've been lurking this board for a few weeks, and the friendliness and support from you all is really something. I appreciate your welcomes. These are exciting times . . .

double-quotes-end.png

Yeah, this site is awesome. Now just wait til G-Town or Old School bounce some boot leather off your backside for some thing you said or did. Then you'll know you've officially joined the club!
rofl-2.gif

And hopefully soon you'll be welcoming people and sharing your road experiences with them. That's the code, us newbies gotta stick together! 👍

One thing I’d like to add: I just passed my permit with doubles / tankers / hazmat endorsements.

I am now doing some at home prep before I return to my school next week to do the Pre-Trip work. The resources on this site are friggin incredible as to the Pre-Trip. The videos and photo guides make me I actually feel like I am getting it without ever having looked at many of those parts on a real truck before. The pretrip materials dovetail very well conceptually with the CDL testing material I have been learning intensely last week for the permit. The photos and well-curated YouTube videos (esp because how many there are many out there), are what really makes the difference in getting this all to stick. The official DMV handbook is okay but not nearly as digestible. Cannot believe this is a free service. Thanks so much!

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

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

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

double-quotes-start.png

double-quotes-start.png

double-quotes-start.png

Thanks a lot. This is really useful. I've been lurking this board for a few weeks, and the friendliness and support from you all is really something. I appreciate your welcomes. These are exciting times . . .

double-quotes-end.png

double-quotes-end.png

Yeah, this site is awesome. Now just wait til G-Town or Old School bounce some boot leather off your backside for some thing you said or did. Then you'll know you've officially joined the club!
rofl-2.gif

And hopefully soon you'll be welcoming people and sharing your road experiences with them. That's the code, us newbies gotta stick together! 👍

double-quotes-end.png

One thing I’d like to add: I just passed my permit with doubles / tankers / hazmat endorsements.

I am now doing some at home prep before I return to my school next week to do the Pre-Trip work. The resources on this site are friggin incredible as to the Pre-Trip. The videos and photo guides make me I actually feel like I am getting it without ever having looked at many of those parts on a real truck before. The pretrip materials dovetail very well conceptually with the CDL testing material I have been learning intensely last week for the permit. The photos and well-curated YouTube videos (esp because how many there are many out there), are what really makes the difference in getting this all to stick. The official DMV handbook is okay but not nearly as digestible. Cannot believe this is a free service. Thanks so much!

Yeah, there are some pretty kick-ass resources here, right? I used most of the stuff here (tools and advice) to get through school and pass my exams.

Dont forget the High Road CDL Training Program if you haven't gotten there already. Another great tool!

And also, Brett's book: Becoming A Truck Driver: The Raw Truth About Truck Driving (Which is also free on this site.)

Keep up the great work! 👍

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

Doubles:

Refers to pulling two trailers at the same time, otherwise known as "pups" or "pup trailers" because they're only about 28 feet long. However there are some states that allow doubles that are each 48 feet in length.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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