Bookmark and Share

Semi-Truck Lifestyles: Tips for the Rookie

Now that you have aced that final road test, and gotten your CDL, who do you what to drive for? Well here are some things you should consider when choosing the right company that suits you. What are the things you can do while out there on the road? Is it expensive for a beginner? Is driving all the time good for my health? Can I save a lot of money? Well, here are a few tips.

  How much will I be earning? I have to eat. It's not like I can go home for lunch.

Most trucking companies pay between 0.28 and 0.40 cents per mile starting out as a beginner. You can expect payment between 0.27 to 0.29 cents a mile. Believe me when I say it's not so bad. The company is going to work hard. The lifestyle is rough, but you'll be with someone training you that is well prepared.

  Starting with a company trainer.

Once you get to the company and go through their orientation, you will pair off with a trainer for about four weeks. When the trainer is comfortable with your skills enough to say you are ready, you can hit the road on your own. During this time expect to get paid about $450-$525 a week for most companies no matter how many miles you have driven. A good trainer sometimes pays for your meals, show you the best places to eat, and the trainer keeps you safe. This allows you to save money. The faster you complete your training time, the faster you get to make more money.

  Getting your own truck.

Once you've gained the confidence of your trainer, you can go on your own. Oh, getting ready to get out there ready to carve your own path across the country. You are ready to step into that new truck with all your gear and ready to go. You get to the terminal and you see that your truck isn't new, but it is in good shape. Most companies don't give rookies new trucks. If you're lucky, the truck will be under 100,000 miles but don't worry, you won't have it longer than a year. Think of it as training to make you a better driver, keeping you on your toes.

  On my own staying fit and eating right.

When I was a rookie, I gained weight, and it was hard to stay active. Running hard up and down the road with hardly any time to even think about eating healthy. I wanted to show how good a driver I could be and when I did stop, all I was eating was fast food. Well, one day I woke up and I was 300 pounds. This had to stop before it got any worse and I wouldn't be able to pass my DOT physical. Meanwhile, I started to see drivers getting out of their trucks and walk the parking lot. It can be a great way to get exercise, but I wouldn't do that at every truck stop. You want to be in a safe area. Most big trucking companies have exercise equipment at their terminals for drivers. Next, I changed my diet. Eating Subway was the best thing for me to slim down and it worked. There are truck stops with Subway restaurants and exercise rooms inside. I started buying healthy snacks to put in my truck and saved a lot of money. After that, I got a small grill and a fridge in my truck so I could cook boneless chicken breasts when I got tired of Subway.

We hope this little bit of information helps you on your driving career journey. Be safe out there.