What are the geographic restrictions for a truck driver?

Because nearly everything is delivered by truck, truck drivers are needed throughout the country. Most drivers tend to live within a reasonable driving distance of their company yard, but this is relative to the driver and the company. Other drivers may use their family home as their base of operation and travel all over the country. As for geographic restrictions on where a driver will be needed to drive once hired – that is determined by the type of route and needs of the trucking company. If you prefer to drive in a certain part of the country, make sure to discuss this with any prospective employer to see if it is feasible for both you and the company.

Is there adequate demand for truck drivers?

Yes. Trucking is an industry that is currently facing a driver shortage. The American economy needs trucks in order to deliver everything we depend on as a nation. Trucking is not an industry that can be outsourced overseas.

How much does driving a truck pay?

How much a truck driver makes varies greatly on the driver’s experience, safety record and type of route. In general, starting salaries begin at about $40,000 per year, and with experience can range between $60,000-$65,000 per year. However, for more specialized driving, such as being part of a team drivers, a driver can make $55,000 to $65,000 per year. Similarly, drivers that spend days out at a time doing over-the-road deliveries tend to make more than city drivers.

How long will I be gone from home?

This depends on many factors such as which segment of the industry you drive for, your experience, and the needs of your company. For example, some city drivers are home every night, while over-the-road drivers may be gone for four days at a time or longer. Be sure to ask what driving schedule would be expected of you when you are talking to prospective employers.

Will I be required to do heavy lifting?

Normally, over-the-road drivers are not required to do heavy lifting. Their trucks tend to be unloaded by distribution center workers. Most city or pick up and delivery drivers are required to do lifting to load and unload their trucks. This is different from company to company, so make sure to ask about the company’s policy.

Can I take my wife/family along?

This depends on a company’s policy for passengers and has to do with issues of insurance and liability. Some companies will allow family members to accompany a driver in the cab, but this is not the case for every carrier. Some carriers will have an option for you to pay a fee in order for insurance for your family members. Make sure to ask about a prospective employer’s passenger policy and find out which types of passengers are allowed (i.e. spouse, children, other immediate family, etc.). Some companies even allow you to take your dog or cat along for the ride.

What types of insurance plans, vacation and other benefits are offered?

Most companies will offer vacation time and have insurance and retirement plans that drivers can join. The amount of time off and coverage will vary by company, so make sure to ask what sort of benefits carriers provide and if your family would be covered. In general, benefits tend to be very competitive.