Tips For New OTR Trucker With A Family

Topic 27063 | Page 1

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James A.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello everyone! I have been addicted to this site since I found and used the High Road Training program, and I have to say, everyone on here is amazing!!

With that said and out of the way, let me tell you my situation, and what I am looking for.

I have seen/heard a lot of you say that TOE with a family is a bad idea, and also read a few topics in the site about that issue, so I am fully aware of what I am getting in to, and the fact that most think it is a horrible idea to do OTR with a family at home. I assure you, my wife is a very strong, independent, and loyal woman who supports this decision 100%!! I made absolutely sure she was ok with it before I even signed up for this life.

So, the ultimate goal I am trying to accomplish with this post is to get feedback from drivers who have done the OTR route with a family at home (wife and kids) and gather any tips and info to help make the transition as easy on everyone as possible!!

I leave exactly one week from today to start the GYCDL program through Roehl. I plan on staying with them until I get my 120,000 miles in, starting off as a flatbed driver, for at least the first 6 months, then can switch fleets if I want, as stated in my contract. I plan on using either FaceTime or Skype to be able to talk to my family as much as I am able to, without interfering with my training and my job, especially for that crucial first year. After I have my miles in with Roehl, I plan on going regional or even local. So I am expecting to be OTR for about 15 to 18 months, until I hit that 120,000 Mile mark.

So, please, any tips to help my family and me stay in touch and keep close through all of this is GREATLY appreciated, and thank you all for you feedback, thought, and opinions in advance!! Also, any more questions about my situation are welcome, especially if they will help with any advice!!

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.

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.

Big T's Comment
member avatar

Welcome James.

How old are your kids?

I run OTR and have a wife and six yr old daughter at home. It is tough. There is no getting around that. There are a few things we do that helps.

First we have daily phone calls. I try to talk to my daughter before she goes to school and my wife goes to work. This is usually when I'm going to bed since I mainly run nights.

We video chat a couple times a week. I will also let my daughter put me on video even when I can't participate. It's not the most exciting thing to watch me drive, but it keeps her connected. Sometimes just being able to see her Daddy is enough for her.

Hope that helps. There are a lot of things you can do.

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.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

OTR Relationships: Are They Possible?

Prime works with a non profit called Good Dads that gives tips and advice. i never really investigated it since i dont have kids, but im told they are helpful.

Good Dads for Truckers

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.

James A.'s Comment
member avatar

Big T - My children are 14, 12, 11, and 7. That is my plan, definitely a phone call everyday, at some point throughout the day, and video chat at least a couple times a week! I really Think the video calls will help my 7 year old daughter, she is a daddy's girl for sure!!! Thank you for the input, every bit helps! Also great to hear how others make that time as well!!

Kearsey - Thank you for the links, very informative and helpful!! Have to check with Roehl, see if they have anything along the same lines!!

JuiceBox's Comment
member avatar

Itll be tough regardless of what you do, nothing can replace you physically being there and you cannot get back any of the time you miss. That said, facetime and constant communication are huge of course. I used to hide candy all over my truck when I got home and I would let the kids go hunting for it, they really loved that. Other than that, I did my otr for one year in a flat bed and then I switched to car haul and am home a lot more and make a lot more money as well. Goodluck to you!

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.

Dave in Tulsa's Comment
member avatar

If your wife is on board, that will definitely help. I call home every day and get home (usually) every weekend, although some weekends are shorter than others. Have a plan. Maybe do it for a year, then get something closer to home. I've just passed the 2 year mark and while my wife is also on board, last week she reminded me there's more to life than work. She's right.

Truckin Along With Kearse's Comment
member avatar

Good Dads is not Prime specific. Prime just helps promote them and recommends to our drivers. ANY driver can utilize them for support

Dave Reid's Comment
member avatar

ROEHL has plenty of regional opportunities, depending on where you live.

Hello everyone! I have been addicted to this site since I found and used the High Road Training program, and I have to say, everyone on here is amazing!!

With that said and out of the way, let me tell you my situation, and what I am looking for.

I have seen/heard a lot of you say that TOE with a family is a bad idea, and also read a few topics in the site about that issue, so I am fully aware of what I am getting in to, and the fact that most think it is a horrible idea to do OTR with a family at home. I assure you, my wife is a very strong, independent, and loyal woman who supports this decision 100%!! I made absolutely sure she was ok with it before I even signed up for this life.

So, the ultimate goal I am trying to accomplish with this post is to get feedback from drivers who have done the OTR route with a family at home (wife and kids) and gather any tips and info to help make the transition as easy on everyone as possible!!

I leave exactly one week from today to start the GYCDL program through Roehl. I plan on staying with them until I get my 120,000 miles in, starting off as a flatbed driver, for at least the first 6 months, then can switch fleets if I want, as stated in my contract. I plan on using either FaceTime or Skype to be able to talk to my family as much as I am able to, without interfering with my training and my job, especially for that crucial first year. After I have my miles in with Roehl, I plan on going regional or even local. So I am expecting to be OTR for about 15 to 18 months, until I hit that 120,000 Mile mark.

So, please, any tips to help my family and me stay in touch and keep close through all of this is GREATLY appreciated, and thank you all for you feedback, thought, and opinions in advance!! Also, any more questions about my situation are welcome, especially if they will help with any advice!!

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.

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.

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