Long haul trucking as a career choice has numerous benefits:
- The trucking industry is stable with opportunities for long term employment;
- The trucking industry is a vital part of the economy; store shelves would be empty without trucks;
- The pay scales range from $40,000 to $60,000+ per year depending on experience;
- There is an ease of entry through short-term training at a professional school and on the job training through mentorship programs;
- Currently, there are a lot of job opportunities as thousands of seasoned truckers begin to retire.
That being said, long haul trucking isn’t for everyone, but for the right person, trucking can be a viable, professional career choice.
Who is the Right Person for Long Haul Trucking?
A career in long-haul truck driving is ideal for independent people who are self-motivated and can work without constant supervision. Unless you have a partner, there is no one out there on the road with you. This alone is one of the biggest drawbacks to being a long haul driver. If have a family or are very a very social person, it can be hard to adjust to a lifestyle that keeps you on the road for 8 to 10 days at a time.
Long haul truck drivers must also be able to handle stress well. The trucking industry is a fast-paced, and demanding world. The pressure of meeting hard deadlines while remaining safe and staying compliant with all rules and regulations can be complicated. The skills you need to get the job done safely and effectively can only be learned by doing them.
Where to get Started
Starting with a reputable training school is a must. Through a combination of in class training and practical road training, you will learn the skills required to perform the job. Once you pass your testing you will receive your CDL. But the training doesn’t end there. Becoming a professional truck driver starts with good habits and comes with practice. There is a big difference from driving around with your instructor on roads that you are familiar with to driving alone through California.
There are companies who offer training and mentorship programs which let you ease into your new career with the help that you need. Often times this will mean that you will be dispatched as a regional driver to start – this is a good thing. Staying close to home lets you gain experience gets you home a little more often. Both make the job easier. Many seasoned drivers suggest this route whenever possible.