Time Off During First Year

Topic 22996 | Page 1

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IMRAN M.'s Comment
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Hi guys, I was wondering how easy it is to take unpaid time off during the first year. Are there minimum days you have to work a month or for the year as a first year driver? For example if I have a 2 week trip planned in October, will I have any issues taking that time off if I were to begin training right now (end of July)? Thank you.

JuiceBox's Comment
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In general you will earn 1 day off for every 7 days on the road. Hometime policies will differ with each company though. I have no limit as to how many days I can take off at one time, as long as i have the earned days off. Also if they get me home a couple days early it does not use my earned days, but that's my company.

I think most times with very specific questions like these regarding a company's policies, it is best to talk to the recruiter about it. Maybe if you tell everybody here who you are looking to drive for them somebody who is there already can better assist with the company home time policy. Goodluck

IMRAN M.'s Comment
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Thanks for the reply. I will look to closer at the hometime policies. I might also repost my questions once I narrow down my choices to a couple of companies. Cheers.

Old School's Comment
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Imran, if the trip is really important to you, then I would consider putting off starting until after the trip. Here's my thinking...

That trip is going to fall very shortly after you are upgraded to a solo driver. That is a critical point in the learning curve. Whether the company allows it or not, it's just not a good time to punch out for a few weeks. I believe there's an important continuity going on during that time period, and it's critical that you are focused and committed to the task at hand.

I still remember taking my first home time as a rookie driver. I had been gone from home six weeks. Four weeks with a trainer, and two weeks solo. I spent only three days at home, and when I got back in my truck it felt like I had completely forgotten how to drive a big rig. I was nervous, making stupid mistakes, and contemplating quitting because I felt like I was almost dangerous for the first few days.

Commitment is a big part of what makes for success as an introductory driver. It is really tough to see those first three or four months through. Seriously, I think you should either forget the trip, or put the start of your new career off until after the trip. Trucking isn't going anywhere. Those jobs will be available when you are available. I just don't think you are really available until you've gotten home from your trip. Putting all your distractions aside is important out here especially as a brand new driver. Rainy just wrote a great Article About The Danger Of Distractions. Check it out and try to rethink this situation.

HOS:

Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Peter M.'s Comment
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I’ve started a new (non trucking) job with a vacation previously booked. I just let them know ahead of time. No issues.

G-Town's Comment
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I’ve started a new (non trucking) job with a vacation previously booked. I just let them know ahead of time. No issues.

And your “no issues” point has no relevance to this thread.

Reread what Old School wrote, specifically the criticality if the first few weeks of solo running.

Chip Bagg's Comment
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Like Juicebox mentioned, run by the recruiter or whoever you maybe in contact with for the company. Chances are they will work with you as long as you let them know beforehand.

Rainy D.'s Comment
member avatar

As a new driver, two weeks of not driving can seriously hamper your skills. Heck, even now after hometime i cant back the first couple days lol. you should have seen the yard dogs expression on his face when i tried to drop a trailer. he got scared and ran.

id wait until after the trip to start school.

Patrick C.'s Comment
member avatar

Don't take this the wrong way, Rainy; but, I would love to watch you push an aircraft around. Even something small like a Blackhawk. I get the feeling it would be entertainment for days. Just imagine spinning the cab around on your truck, then putting a pup trailer in between the tractor and regular sized trailer. Now put a set of poles on top that are 56 ft across. Just push away, lol.

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