Owner Operators - Which Lane Do You Prefer To Take?

Topic 30064 | Page 1

Page 1 of 1
Max B.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello everyone,

I just purchased my first Pitterbilt a few weeks ago. Have 3 years of experience but never been an owner.

I was wondering if anyone can suggest some route they take, and what do you guys make?

What I do, of course, rates change every week and we need to adapt to them, but my ideal week looks like this: 1. Chicago, IL (I live here) - PA,NC = $3000 (780-820miles) Del on Tues 2. NC, PA - short run to midwest (TN, OH, KY included) = $1200-1800 (500-600miles) Del on Wed 3. Midwest - MN = $3000 (1000-1200mi) Del Fri 4. MN - UT, OR, WA (whatever pays better) = $4000-5500 (1300-2000miles) Del Monday.

Would like to know how you guys run, maybe we can share some good locations.


Robert B. (The Dragon) ye's Comment
member avatar

Rather than focusing specifically on lanes, you might be better served by focusing on specific customers, ones you might be able to establish a consistent relationship with which will give you reliable freight vs relying on brokers and load boards. Those relationships come with time but you’ll be more successful having your own “customers”


Hours Of Service

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

Hello Max, and welcome to our forum!

We focus on helping new entry level drivers figure out how to make a good start in the trucking career. There are only a few owner/operators in here. We allowed your post for discussion, but I don't think you will find a lot of help in here with your question. Perhaps you will find some helpful information from some of our members. We will watch how this one goes and see.

PackRat's Comment
member avatar

All those rates are about 5% of the numbers you need to worry about. Three years driving and went out and bought a truck.

How about insurance, IFTA, maintenance, fuel, fuel surcharge, fixed costs, accounting, incidental costs, depreciation, withholdings, savings, maintenance costs per mile, etc.

Are you running on your authority, or leased to a carrier?


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Anne A. (G13Momcat)'s Comment
member avatar

Just my 2 cents, as a Petercar enthusiast...(slingo for Peterbilt, btw...) if one cannot 'SPELL' the brand name; perhaps you don't even HAVE the wherewithal anyway?!?

re: Lanes/customers >>> look up PJ and his threads/comments!

Best to ya!!

~ A ~

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

Three years driving, bought a truck without knowing exactly how you would run it. During those three years you should have researched everything. By your question, it seems you didn't.

I have been OTR for about 4 years. I have zero desire to own a truck. I have two friends who own trucks and are leased on to companies. One thing they both have in common, they don't go home.

This is Trucking Truth, we give the cold hard truth. No sugar coating.


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.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.


Operating While Intoxicated

Banks's Comment
member avatar

Running those lanes, you'd better have a little extra put away for fuel. It doesn't get any higher than those areas.


Hours Of Service

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

Hi max,

Let me first say, you are pretty far off on your expectations. You've got the mindset of a company driver and you'll learn quickly the differences between a company driver and an owner.

First, o/o's don't run as many miles as a company driver. I run between 1500-2000 miles per week. This is because our trips are live load and unloads which take up a large portion of out time. We don't drop and hook.

Money wise you should figure roughly $2.00/mi. So aiming for $4-5k a week should be a realistic goal.

You also can not schedule your week out that far. What if your equipment fails on the first trip?, Cancelling loads is a huge black mark on your carrier.

Being an owner means driving is about 30% and all the back office is 70%, imo.

Best of luck.

Drop And Hook:

Drop and hook means the driver will drop one trailer and hook to another one.

In order to speed up the pickup and delivery process a driver may be instructed to drop their empty trailer and hook to one that is already loaded, or drop their loaded trailer and hook to one that is already empty. That way the driver will not have to wait for a trailer to be loaded or unloaded.

Old School's Comment
member avatar

Thanks Sid!

I knew those numbers were askew. I hoped one of our O/O's would point that out. I could have said something, but I knew an O/O's word would carry a lot more weight in here with a new guy. What do I know? I am just a company driver. smile.gif


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
Page 1 of 1

New Reply:

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

Links On TruckingTruth

example: TruckingTruth Homepage

example: https://www.truckingtruth.com
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

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



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