Truck drivers are essential workers. Their service is vital to the health of the economy.
CDL Class A trucking can be challenging, but it also has the potential for good pay, job availability, and a sense of adventure. The decision to become a CDL Class A truck driver should be made after researching the different aspects of the job, the lifestyle of a trucker, and the job market to ensure it is a good fit.
To learn more about the opportunities available to CDL Class A truck drivers, keep reading below.
Over-the-Road (OTR) Trucking
Over-the-road (OTR) trucking refers to long-distance trucking. Truck drivers travel long distances, often across multiple states, to deliver goods to different locations. OTR truck drivers typically spend several days or even weeks on the road, and they may cover thousands of miles during a single trip. OTR trucking is also known as long-haul trucking.
In OTR trucking, drivers are typically responsible for loading and unloading their own cargo. They may be required to complete paperwork and keep detailed logs of their trips. OTR truck drivers may also be required to comply with various federal and state regulations related to trucking. For example, hours of service rules and weigh station regulations.
OTR trucking can be a good option for drivers who enjoy being on the road and traveling to different places. However, it can also be demanding, as drivers often work long hours and spend extended periods of time away from home.
OTR drivers have to plan their trips carefully, taking into account the traffic, weather, and other road conditions. They also have to consider regulations and permits that may be required for the different states they will be crossing.
Regional trucking refers to a type of trucking where drivers typically stay within a specific region, such as a particular state or group of states, and make regular trips to different locations within that region.
Regional truck drivers often drive shorter distances. As a result, they have the ability to return home on a regular basis. This type of trucking is also known as “Regional Haul” or “Short-Haul trucking”.
Regional trucking can be a good option for drivers who want to be on the road but prefer to stay closer to home. They can have a better work-life balance and have more regular schedules and predictable pay. Drivers may also find that regional trucking offers more consistent routes and less time spent away from home.
Local trucking is a type of trucking where drivers make deliveries within a specific area, such as a city or metropolitan area. Local truck drivers typically drive shorter distances and make multiple deliveries in a single day. This type of trucking is also known as “Local Haul” or “City trucking”.
Local trucking can be a good option for drivers who prefer to stay close to home and have a set schedule. Local truck drivers can have more regular schedules and a better work-life balance. Also, they can have more predictable pay and less time spent on the road.
Specialized trucking refers to a type of trucking where drivers transport specific types of cargo. The cargo might contain hazardous materials, refrigerated goods, or oversized loads. Specialized truck drivers usually have to comply with additional regulations and certifications to transport these types of cargo.
Like all other types of trucking, drivers are responsible for loading and unloading their own cargo. They may be required to complete paperwork and keep detailed logs of their trips. Specialized truck drivers not only need to comply with various federal and state regulations related to trucking, but with specific regulations related to the type of cargo they are transporting.
Specialized truck driving careers can be a good option for drivers who want to be on the road but prefer to stay closer to home. However, it can still be demanding as these types of drivers often work long hours and spend extended periods of time away from home. Specialized trucking can provide higher pay and more trucking jobs, but also requires additional training and certifications.
Dedicated trucking refers to a type of trucking where drivers work for a specific company or shipper. They make regular trips to the same destinations. Dedicated trucking is a specialized type of trucking where the driver is committed to transporting goods for one particular client only.
Dedicated trucking can be a good option for drivers who want a sense of stability and regular pay. They work for the same company and make regular trips to the same destinations. Drivers will also have a more predictable schedule and will be able to plan their trips with more certainty.
Owner-operator trucking refers to a type of trucking where the drivers own and operate their own trucks. They have the freedom to choose their own loads and routes.
Owner-operators are independent contractors and not employees. They are responsible for all aspects of running their business. This includes finding loads, negotiating rates, and covering all the expenses associated with operating the truck.
Owner-operator trucking can be a good option for drivers who are looking for more freedom and control over their work. They can choose their own loads and routes. This grants them a higher earning potential.
However, it can also be a risky option as the driver is responsible for all the expenses associated with operating the truck. The income can be uncertain and variable.
Pursuing a CDL Class A License
It’s worth noting that CDL Class A trucking can vary depending on the company and the region. Some trucking positions may require more driving hours, more nights out, and more overnight stays. Despite this, it can be a good career choice for drivers who are willing to comply with the additional regulations and certifications.
To pursue your professional CDL license, take a look at the course we offer.