The truck driving life is a distinct, one-of-a-kind thing. It’s equal parts freedom, time management, excitement, and patience. It’s unlike any other career out there, as a day in the life of a truck driver is one of the most predictably unpredictable things you’re likely to encounter.
If you’re interested in learning how to become a truck driver yourself, then you’ve come to the right place. Here are just a few (of the many) things that make the truck driving life the unique adventure it is.
Requirements to Become a Truck Driver
A trucking career is accessible to just about anyone with a commercial driver’s license (CDL). And thankfully, earning your CDL is a straightforward process that can be started by picking up a CDL manual from your nearby DMV. This manual will walk you through the requirements to become a truck driver and help you prepare for the written and skills-based tests you’ll need to take.
The requirements to apply for a CDL are also straightforward:
- You must be 21 years old (although some states allow 18-20-year-olds to apply for a single-state CDL)
- Your driving record from the last ten years in all of the 50 states (and the District of Columbia) will be inspected
- You’ll need to provide evidence that you’re medically qualified to operate a commercial vehicle
- You must have your commercial learner’s permit (CLP) for two weeks before taking the skills test that will qualify you for an official CDL.
- After passing the three-part skills test, and the proper documentation has been submitted, you’ll be awarded your CDL.
These requirements can differ from state-to-state (although they tend to be reasonably consistent), so always check with your local DMV about what the requirements to become a truck driver are for your state.
A Day in the Life of a Truck Driver
If you’ve ever wondered what a day in the life of a truck driver looks like, you’re not alone. Truck driving is one of the most essential careers in the country, and much of our livelihood hinges on the professionalism, experience, and skillsets of truck drivers.
Trucking.com says it like this: “The trucking industry is the lifeblood of the U.S. economy. Nearly 71% of all the freight tonnage moved in the U.S. goes on trucks. Without the industry and our truck drivers, the economy would come to a standstill.”
It’s reasons like this that truck drivers are such a sought after commodity across the country. But that doesn’t mean the truck driving life is always an easy one. When you spend the majority of your day on the open road, you need to be alert, energized, and committed to the task at hand no matter what unpredictable situations come your way.
This is why curating a healthy truck driving lifestyle is so crucial. Without the right kinds of meals, exercise, comfort, and sleep habits, the truck driving life can become a difficult one. Instead of succumbing to the temptations of fast, greasy food (that will cause you to crash), follow TruckStop.com’s advice and “Start your healthier food journey by finding out which meal options are ideal at truck stops.”
The truck driving life also involves a personalized truck driver schedule. Every driver is different, and it’s up to each driver to build a schedule that works for them. Since “Federal regulations prohibit truckers from driving for more than 11 hours in a 14-hour window,” and even minor “disruptions can cause a ripple effect” that could throw off your schedule, drivers need to be flexible. A truck driving schedule is crucial, but so is being comfortable with it changing.
Experience the Open Road
The truck driving life is unlike any other. Not only are truck driver salaries competitive, and can even involve scholarship programs for applicants in need of CDL-certification, they’re also incredibly rewarding. If you want to learn more about what the open road looks like for a truck driver, then get in touch with Lily Transportation today!
We’re always looking for new and excited drivers, and would love to talk to you about the wealth of benefits and opportunities we provide our drivers with!