Is being a truck driver hard? That’s a valid question, one well worth asking if you’re considering getting a commercial driver’s license (CDL) and starting a trucking career.
Let’s face it. There are easier ways to make a living than truck driving. (There are a lot harder ways, too.) But truck driving isn’t just a job; it’s a way of life. When you view it from that perspective, you can better understand and accept the pros and cons.
What’s the hardest part of being a truck driver?
There is no one right answer to that question. It’s different for everyone. For some, the long hours are the hardest. For others, it’s being away from family and friends for days and even weeks on end.
Learning how to drive a truck is a challenge for many new drivers. Backing up a 53-foot trailer or learning to shift and double-clutch are skills that take time.
There are also DOT FMCSA rules and regulations to follow, such as hours of service, cargo securement, CDL issues, and drug screening.
It’s not only the physical aspects of trucking that are hard. The responsibility of driving a vehicle carrying several tons of expensive cargo, dealing with the inherent loneliness, and meeting tight deadlines set by the dispatcher can weigh heavily on drivers’ minds and emotions.
However, the time spent on the road can be profitable, and we don’t just mean in terms of money. Many drivers make the most of their time listening to music, audiobooks, and podcasts. Some even attend online classes during downtimes. There are many opportunities to broaden your horizons.
You can have a lot of fun, too, going places you’ve never been, seeing sights you’ve never seen. You will also meet new people and make new friends along the way.
If you’re a local delivery driver, you’re home every night. Regional drivers also see more home time, too. Most trucking companies offer a variety of home-time options for long-haul truckers and over-the-road (OTR) truckers, as well.
Is it worth being a truck driver?
As you learn the traits of a good driver, you will find trucking can be a dream job. The difficulties will become less and less.
You’ll look forward to life out on the road. You desire (and even crave) the freedom and independence truck driving provides. Experienced drivers make good money; company drivers enjoy many benefits, and the trucking industry offers endless truck driving job opportunities. There’s plenty of job security, whether you want to drive a flatbed, dry van, or refrigerated. Become an owner-operator and you can be your own boss!
More than that, you join a community of men and women dedicated to serving the public good. You keep America moving, delivering necessary items we use every day. You make a real difference in the lives of people. That’s something to be proud of.
But is it worth being a truck driver? That’s a question only you can answer—and the only way you’ll know is by becoming one.
The CDL School is the place to start. Our certified CDL training programs are designed to help you pass the CDL driver Knowledge and Skills exam and give you the opportunity to start a truck driving career.