CFI Reviews?

Topic 30259 | Page 1

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Melissa J.'s Comment
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I'm still doing my research on what beginner company I want to go with, and love the reviews TT has for each company. But not seeing one for CFI? I've been pretty satisfied with what I've heard about Prime, but would like to compare the two. Is CFI listed here under another name? Has anyone else debated between the two? Thanks for your time :)

Steppenwolf 's Comment
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Hi Melissa Welcome...

Don't know about Prime but they use Freightliner trucks, CFI has almost all Kenworth trucks. The Freightliner is wider inside and makes a nice living area.

I drove for CFI for 15 months. The pay was low but went up over time. Training was a couple of weeks then solo. You will get more at Prime. Speed is 65 mph.

They have a few really nice terminals. Joplin, Atlanta and one near Canadian border. Michigan I think. Now remember if you're making miles you won't be at terminal much. From what Lacey says Prime has really nice terminals too.

At CFI dispatch can be a pain sometimes but I ran good miles all over the country. CFI is forced dispatch so you run what you get.

Hope this helps you some.. Any other questions just ask...

Steppenwolf

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Steppenwolf 's Comment
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Sorry Kearsey...not Lacey...my badshocked.png shocked.png

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
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Hello Melissa, As you can see from my handle here, I love CFI. I was trained by them, drive for them and train for them. Training is free. You must get your CDL Permit and DOT physical before they will accept you for training. They will reimburse you for these. CDL school is 3 weeks, then you come to Joplin, MO, our HQ, for orientation, two days, then it's out with your finisher/trainer for 21 days. Then you upgrade into your own truck. You will learn a lot in a short time. Current pay while out with your trainer is 32CPM, when you upgrade you go to 38CPM. During your first year you will have a few pay raises based on mileage. While in school they cover your housing and meals. They provide all your transportation.

All of our trucks are KW T680 nothing older than 3 years. Our company is growing.

I am happy to answer any questions you may have.

Scott

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.

DOT:

Department Of Transportation

A department of the federal executive branch responsible for the national highways and for railroad and airline safety. It also manages Amtrak, the national railroad system, and the Coast Guard.

State and Federal DOT Officers are responsible for commercial vehicle enforcement. "The truck police" you could call them.

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Melissa J.'s Comment
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I've been following a few different diaries, most recently Nathan's, seeming I'm from Michigan also, if I go through cfi I would be following his path going through Trainco in Ohio. I do like how prime keeps you at one place through the whole training, with having the simulators to practice on. But also seems CFI is on top of getting you a trainer and into a truck quicker. I know Prime gives you a $200 advance each week in training, which could be very helpful. Both company's pay for housing and meals. Money will be tight for the 1st month, comparing out of pocket expenses would be very helpful. Being comfortable in a decent home away from home for the duration of my employment is pretty important, I'm almost 6 ft tall so having a little room is a bonus. I'm planning on taking a small non- shedding dog with me on the road when it's allowed. I see both company's allow for this... not sure on the fees/deposits at CFI, but Prime requires a $1k deposit. And then of course the pay, it seems Prime pays a little more. A video I watched, Trucking with Dave, said CFI had an increase in pay 6 months ago, 42cpm I believe? (Correct me if I'm wrong, been on information overload lately) Prime has fuel and safety bonuses, I believe CFI only has safety bonuses, correct? Looking at roughly 40k the 1st year with both company's? Some things aren't too important, but outweighing pros and cons can be a little confusing at 1st, knowing where will be a good fit. I've been blind in one eye for almost 30 years, to the point it was normal for me. So when I decided over a year ago on this career choice, I realized I needed a cornea transplant 1st. The thought of having my eye cut off and a donor stitched on has kept me from doing it my entire life. But this has been too important for me, so I had the surgery. So I've already overcame something I never thought I'd be able to do, and failing now is not an option for me, I've already came too far. I really appreciate the time helping me sort all this out!

thank-you-2.gif

CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

Melissa J.'s Comment
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Jim Palmer has been another company I've been checking out, if anyone has any experience with them. I haven't heard of anyone going through them yet, no personal experience.

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
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Jim Palmer pulls mostly Prime freight.

At a much lower pay rate than CFI pays now, I grossed a bit over 50 K my first year. I am currently in the 60K range and have been since year two. As far as I can find out we still have our fuel and safety bonus. I will be taking home more money with this raise because bonuses are not part of per diem. My current student, who just upgraded, grossed a little over $2,100 while on my truck for 21 days. That doesn't include this current pay week. We are paid on dispatch and paid weekly.

What is most important to you in a company?

With CFI our vacation is earned while we drive. It's PTO time. You can save it or use it as needed. CFI gets you home when you need. Your hometime days build up.

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay

Big Scott (CFI's biggest 's Comment
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Our pet deposit is $500.00.

Chief Brody's Comment
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I have attached portions of my Prime pay statements. The larger YTD one is 4/30/2020 to 12/31/2020. The second is YTD 4/30/2021.

You have to add Gross Earnings plus reimbursements, most of which is the per diem (non- taxable).

So, my Prime first year Gross pay was about $ 64,858. This includes lower paying in training of $700 per week. After that I get 48 CPM.

I'm flatbed so I get tarp pay as well as safety and fuel bonus. I don't try to maximize my fuel bonus.

I also had to drive 50,000 miles in TNT.

Rob D.

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CPM:

Cents Per Mile

Drivers are often paid by the mile and it's given in cents per mile, or cpm.

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay

TNT:

Trainer-N-Trainee

Prime Inc has their own CDL training program and it's divided into two phases - PSD and TNT.

The PSD (Prime Student Driver) phase is where you'll get your permit and then go on the road for 10,000 miles with a trainer. When you come back you'll get your CDL license and enter the TNT phase.

The TNT phase is the second phase of training where you'll go on the road with an experienced driver for 30,000 miles of team driving. You'll receive 14ยข per mile ($700 per week guaranteed) during this phase. Once you're finished with TNT training you will be assigned a truck to run solo.

Melissa J.'s Comment
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A trucker friend of mine says not to get an automatic restriction, that even though most companies are going with automatics, that it will really **** me later on, having to go back through training to get manual training without restrictions. (He makes around 120k-160k a year and gets a ton of home time, some company out of Portland, wants to get me in there someday)

Do any of these 3 companies let you train and test out on a manual? Are there any other comparable companies I should look into? Thanks again guys :)

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