Getting Into Trucking - Moving Back To The US

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Tajeshwar K.'s Comment
member avatar

Hello,

I am thinking of moving back to the US and pursue trucking. I have no particular preference in terms of a state to move to. I have been living abroad for the last 10 years, but still have a valid New York driver's license.

I have a wife and three daughters (and am 38 myself.) I would initially like to move to the US and get the CDL training out of the way and make some money before I fly my family to the US.

Some questions I have for you all are:

1. What state would be best suited for this? What is a good state for me to move to for trucking?

It would be nice to have low cost of living and decent weather - not very cold, but all suggestions are welcome.

2. What truck driving school would be best?

Thank you.

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.
James H.'s Comment
member avatar

I have a wife and three daughters (and am 38 myself.)

What state would be best suited for this? What is a good state for me to move to for trucking?

Do you intend to pursue an OTR career? If so, and maybe even if your plan is to drive local, the decision should really be based on what is best for your wife. She's the one who will be raising three children while you're away on the road. This will be a big move for her as much as, and maybe more than, for you. Has she lived in the U.S. before? Do you have family or friends who could help out or at least provide some sense of community? Low cost and good weather are nice, but having a support network is essential. Make sure she doesn't end up feeling isolated in an unfamiliar place.

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.

BK's Comment
member avatar

I would say Wisconsin, but you don’t want cold weather. Wisconsin is home to many companies, but maybe you could try Schneider, they have training centers in many locations.

George B.'s Comment
member avatar

Virginia. Not difficult to change your New York license if its clean. Swift trains in Richmond. Millis trains in Eden, Nc which is right across the state line from Henry County/Martinsville. Most company sponsored cdl programs will have you get your cdl in your home state. Climate is mild. Cost of living depends on area. NC not bad either. Good luck and keep us posted.

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.
Tajeshwar K.'s Comment
member avatar

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I have a wife and three daughters (and am 38 myself.)

double-quotes-end.png

double-quotes-start.png

What state would be best suited for this? What is a good state for me to move to for trucking?

double-quotes-end.png

Do you intend to pursue an OTR career? If so, and maybe even if your plan is to drive local, the decision should really be based on what is best for your wife. She's the one who will be raising three children while you're away on the road. This will be a big move for her as much as, and maybe more than, for you. Has she lived in the U.S. before? Do you have family or friends who could help out or at least provide some sense of community? Low cost and good weather are nice, but having a support network is essential. Make sure she doesn't end up feeling isolated in an unfamiliar place.

Thank you. That is good advice. She has lived in the US before, but we really don't have any friends or family she would like to live close to. I will talk to her about this more and ask her.

Her brother lives in New Jersey and I have an aunt who lives in Virginia. Virginia showed up in one of the recommendations below as well.

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.

Tajeshwar K.'s Comment
member avatar

I would say Wisconsin, but you don’t want cold weather. Wisconsin is home to many companies, but maybe you could try Schneider, they have training centers in many locations.

Hi,

Thank you. I will look at Wisconsin. I have heard good things about WI.

Can you recommend a training school that you might have attended or heard good things about? I was hoping to pay for school myself and then look for a job as opposed to having a company train me and then be stuck in a contract.

The cost of living in WI might be good compared to Virginia right?

Tajeshwar K.'s Comment
member avatar

Virginia. Not difficult to change your New York license if its clean. Swift trains in Richmond. Millis trains in Eden, Nc which is right across the state line from Henry County/Martinsville. Most company sponsored cdl programs will have you get your cdl in your home state. Climate is mild. Cost of living depends on area. NC not bad either. Good luck and keep us posted.

Thank you.

If I were to move to NC, would you recommend Eden, NC itself? I'm going to do a completely "fresh" move as in I have nothing in the US right now. I'll have to move and set everything up from scratch.

Or, is there another town or city you would recommend that I can move to and start doing training? Also, would it be possible for you to recommend any truck schools as that is what I will do at first?

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.
Navypoppop's Comment
member avatar

NJ is a hard state to live in as I know because I was born and lived there most of my life. South of the Trenton area is a lot of open areas and the seashore areas and north of Trenton is more industrialized and congested. Toll roads and heavy traffic exist everywhere. The taxes are among the worst in the nation. But there seems to be a lot of work available. I would choose a state south of the Mason-Dixon line (Virginia or further south).

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

BK's Comment
member avatar

double-quotes-start.png

I would say Wisconsin, but you don’t want cold weather. Wisconsin is home to many companies, but maybe you could try Schneider, they have training centers in many locations.

double-quotes-end.png

Hi,

Thank you. I will look at Wisconsin. I have heard good things about WI.

Can you recommend a training school that you might have attended or heard good things about? I was hoping to pay for school myself and then look for a job as opposed to having a company train me and then be stuck in a contract.

The cost of living in WI might be good compared to Virginia right?

Cost of living really depends on the exact location in Wisconsin, as well as in Virginia. I went to Diesel Driving School in Sun Prairie, WI to get my CDL. Then I signed up with Schneider and went through their training, which was excellent. Prime is probably the best company for training, in my opinion. If I had to do it again, I would skip private school and just go with company sponsored training.

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.

Company Sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Anne A. (and sometimes To's Comment
member avatar

Hello,

I am thinking of moving back to the US and pursue trucking. I have no particular preference in terms of a state to move to. I have been living abroad for the last 10 years, but still have a valid New York driver's license.

I have a wife and three daughters (and am 38 myself.) I would initially like to move to the US and get the CDL training out of the way and make some money before I fly my family to the US.

Some questions I have for you all are:

1. What state would be best suited for this? What is a good state for me to move to for trucking?

It would be nice to have low cost of living and decent weather - not very cold, but all suggestions are welcome.

2. What truck driving school would be best?

Thank you.

My vote is obviously, for Ohio. The cost of living is SO reasonable, partially attributed to the Amish presence.

Most of our state is more/less 'valley' topographics, winters and snow are not necessarily too bad. TrekOhio.com will show you.

Industry! Much of it has gone wayward, ie: Westinghouse, Ohio Brass, etc .. but we still have AK Steel, and the Mansfield RxR tracks still stay busy, with CSX and similars.

Trucking! We really DO have a great selection of trucking companies within the state; many of which DO train! This includes many LTL companies, as well.

I was born in LI, NY .. raised in Florida, and landed (for good) here. I LOVE it. If I were to move, it would be Montana, Alaska, or upstate NY.

Best wishes~

~ Anne ~

ps: Did you read this?

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.

LTL:

Less Than Truckload

Refers to carriers that make a lot of smaller pickups and deliveries for multiple customers as opposed to hauling one big load of freight for one customer. This type of hauling is normally done by companies with terminals scattered throughout the country where freight is sorted before being moved on to its destination.

LTL carriers include:

  • FedEx Freight
  • Con-way
  • YRC Freight
  • UPS
  • Old Dominion
  • Estes
  • Yellow-Roadway
  • ABF Freight
  • R+L Carrier
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