If you feel like you’re stuck in a boring career, or have had enough of a desk job and are ready for something different, you’re in luck. A truck driving career may not be the first idea that pops into your head when thinking of a new career path, but maybe it should be.
An OTR trucking career is an experience full of benefits, consistent (and competitive) income, a flexible working schedule, and the ability to see the country in a way few people ever get the chance to. It’s a lifestyle unlike any other, and with the industry more in need of passionate drivers than ever before, it’s time to stop being bored with your job and embrace a new and riveting career as an over-the-road driver.
Here are some of the ways a career as an OTR truck driver can give your lifestyle the boost of adventure it needs:
A World of Possibility
Not only is the trucking industry in need of new drivers, but trucking companies are more than willing to help new drivers acquire their commercial driver’s license (CDL) and support them both on and off the road in whatever way they can.
Most trucking companies pay their drivers for each mile they travel, which means that the more miles you cover, the more money you’ll be making. And since the industry is so eager to hire more drivers, industry-wide competitive pay has become almost a staple.
Some companies, like Lily Transportation, will also offer additional income incentives via loyalty and safety programs. The bottom line is this: the trucking industry is eager and willing to reward its drivers for a job well done. Trucking may not always be easy, but when you commit to the job, the job will also commit to you.
Seeing the Sights
While there may be some career paths that allow frequent travel, few of them are as dependent on it as truck driving. Even with the long hours behind the wheel, an OTR trucking career provides its drivers with an opportunity to experience the country in a very special way.
Whether you’re driving solo or as part of an OTR team, exploring the open road is a place of adventure, opportunity, and untold beauty. If you know an office job isn’t right for you, and you’re looking for a dramatic change of scenery, then perhaps it’s time to consider getting behind the wheel. Not only is it one of the best opportunities to see the world you call home, but every day is going to look a different—both literally and figuratively.
When you become a truck driver at Lily Transportation you’ll become part of a larger family of passionately driven professionals who love what they do. Don’t hesitate to talk to one of Lily’s recruiters at 800-248-5459, or browse our available positions through on our careers page.
Retirement is a well-earned and rewarding lifestyle for many Americans. It’s a refreshing change of pace from the routines they grew accustomed to over the years in the workforce, and for many, they’re content to stick to it. Some retirees, however, are still looking for the kind of lifestyle only a career can offer.
That’s where the over-the-road (OTR) trucking lifestyle can help. With job opportunities aplenty, flexible work schedules, and consistent income, OTR truck driving can be a great second career for retirees looking for adventure. Here are a few of the unique benefits truck driving jobs for retirees can offer.
Plenty of Opportunities
As of several years ago, “18.8% of Americans ages 65 and older, or nearly 9 million people, reported being employed full- or part-time, continuing a steady increase that dates to at least 2000.” Pew Research goes on to explain how more “older Americans – those ages 65 and older – are working than at any time since the turn of the century.”
For some of these retirees, however, finding consistent work can be tricky. That’s not the case in the trucking industry. After acquiring a commercial driver’s license—which some trucking companies will even help drivers attain in exchange for a one-year commitment to drive for them—a retiree will find that there is a multitude of trucking companies who are more than willing to work with them.
Plenty of Benefits
Since most OTR truck drivers are paid for each mile they cover, OTR driving can be a deeply lucrative second career for retirees looking to try something new and exciting. They can also set up a schedule that works for them. For example, you could drive cross-country for a job and then return home for a week before heading back out again.
This means that you’re empowered to work in ways that allow you to enjoy the benefits of retirement without the drawbacks that led you to seek out a new career in the first place. Especially when you drive as part of an OTR team you’ll be faced with a wealth of experiences, relationships, and benefits that you can only find on the open road.
Plenty of Reasons to Get Started
Just like Forbes says, “it’s becoming more common for people over 50…to pursue second acts as truck drivers.” Whether it’s fulfilling a lifelong dream to see the country, or simply a desire to try something new, opportunity abounds in the trucking industry for prospective drivers of all ages and walks of life.
If you’ve found that the retired lifestyle isn’t quite for you, then consider a second career as a professional truck driver. Companies like Lily Transportation are excited to help you settle into a new and adventurous lifestyle as a truck driver at Lily. Don’t hesitate to reach out to us today and get started!
If you’re a newly CDL-certified over the road trucker looking for a job to help you get settled in this new and exciting career, then look no further than OTR team trucking.
By driving with a trucking partner, you’ll not only be able to earn more but also tap into a wealth of experience that will help you learn the industry, master your driving skills, and build valuable connections with the other truckers you’ll be working alongside. Here are five simple tips for starting a new job as an OTR team truck driver:
1) Accept the Learning Curve
There will always be a learning curve when taking your first steps toward a new career. This is true for just about every new job you’ll ever have, and it’s especially true for the trucking industry. Operating a semi-truck isn’t always easy, and it’ll take you time to take the skills you earned in your CDL training and apply them to the open road.
Don’t fight the process though. Be patient with yourself, practice at truck stops if you can, and always be willing to ask your truck driving peers for advice. This is where your OTR co-driver can be helpful, as they will be happy to help you learn the tools of the trade so your learning curve is as smooth and manageable as possible.
2) Minimize Distractions
There will always be distractions on the road. However, you and your co-driver can work together to minimize how those distractions influence your driving. Here are the three primary categories of distractions you should be wary of:
Visual Distractions: Can be anything that might pull your eyes off the road.
Manual Distractions: Can include anything that could potentially cause you to remove one or both of your hands from the steering wheel.
Cognitive Distractions: Usually includes drowsiness, distracting conversation, or even daydreaming.
You and your co-driver are a team, so if you find yourself growing distracted for any reason, let them know so they can help you stay focused on the task at hand.
Communication is key in any and every situation you’ll experience on the road as an OTR team driver. You and your co-driver are a team, and regardless of your experience (or lack thereof if you’re just starting out), it’s essential that you consistently communicate with your partner. This means building a foundation of trust with them that will help you both know that, no matter what happens, you’ve got each other’s backs.
4) Pay Attention to Your Environment
Whether it’s a storm on the horizon, an accident on the highway, or just an unexpected detour, it pays to be informed of what kind of environment you’re driving in. This is especially true for OTR drivers since their jobs take them across the country, meaning they’re bound to encounter a situation they haven’t had to face before.
You can’t plan for every possible situation, but you can be prepared and adaptable to whatever the open-road throws your way. This means looking ahead at the weather forecast, checking out the route you’ll be on, paying attention to traffic patterns, and just generally paying attention to the world around and ahead of you.
5) Take Care of Yourself
When you’re spending long days on the road, you’re going to need to be well-rested, fed, and nourished in order to keep your senses focused. As such, it should go without saying that taking care of yourself is one of the most important things you can do to ensure your OTR team truck driving experience is as safe, enjoyable, and lucrative as possible.
One of the (many) unique benefits team truck driving offers is the ability to take turns behind the wheel with a trusted and professional co-driver. If you find yourself growing drowsy, then ask your partner if you can swap roles and take a nap in the cabin while they keep going. You’re both in this together, so be open and honest with each other about your needs.
Over-the-road (OTR) team driving can be a rewarding career for people looking to travel the country, earn a competitive income, and do so with a partner who can share in the journey. Team driving has been a popular option for drivers, but it can be a challenge to be matched with a co-driver whom you are compatible with.This is just one reason why married couples make up an increasing percentage of the team driving population. Driving with a spouse not only eliminates the challenges of drivers spending extended periods of time on the road and away from their families. Also, team driving with your spouse makes it easier for couples to earn a higher combined income.
Here are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind if you’re considering becoming a team driver with your spouse.
More Miles, More Money
When driving with a partner, you can cover twice the distance as you would if you were to drive alone. As quoted in CDL Training Today, “Alternating sleep schedules allows the team to cover more miles at a faster pace. While a solo driver can drive 10 hours a day, a couple can drive for 20. Products are delivered in half the time of a single driver.”
Since most truck drivers are paid for each mile they cover, driving with a partner means more miles traveled and more money earned. While OTR team drivers split the profits they earn, each individual driver will still earn an increased income than if they had been driving solo. However, when driving with your spouse, splitting the income becomes even less of a factor.
Additionally, being part of an OTR team with your spouse can significantly lower your living expenses. With the extra income the two of you will be making as co-drivers, and the reduced living expenses, you’ll be able to further expand your retirement fund or utilize your earnings for other financial gains.
Seeing the Sights Together
While the income incentives are great, arguably the best part of teaming with your spouse is that you get to spend more time with your significant other.
Check out TruckersNews.com to view in-depth interviews with several married couples who work as a good OTR team. Hear their testimonies all supporting the idea that driving with your spouse is a great way to earn a competitive income, spend time with a loved one, and enjoy an active lifestyle. “One of the big pros of driving with your spouse is being able to travel and see things together,” one of the drivers interviewed said. “Seeing it all through her eyes again has really made it a lot more fun for me.”
Get Started Today!
If you and your spouse are interested in pursuing an OTR team driving career, then Lily Transportation Corp. is here to help you get started! Join our ever-growing family of passionate and committed drivers and receive competitive pay, great benefits, and customizable home time! Visit our career page to talk with one of our recruiters, view open positions, and apply directly online!
The logistics industry is in need of drivers now more than ever. Shopping online has become a staple in the lives of people across the globe, and without truck drivers to transport the products consumers purchase from warehouse to doorstep, the industry would collapse.
However, as important as truck drivers are in the logistics industry, there are not enough of them to keep the industry alive and kicking. With many industry veterans nearing retirement, the industry is looking for an influx of younger, driven, and diverse drivers to help keep it thriving.
The truck driving industry is a backbone of the U.S. economy, and as such, a career as an over-the-road truck driver is a great opportunity for people from all walks of life. It is the perfect blend of stability and adventure that can only be found on the open road, becoming a truck driver can be a great option for anyone looking to explore a new and exciting career path.
If you’re interested in the benefits a truck driving career can provide but aren’t sure if the lifestyle will be a good fit, take a look at this comprehensive list that will help you identify everything you need to know about life as a professional OTR truck driver.
Table of Contents:
The Challenges of Being an OTR Truck Driver
Hours on the Road
Being Away From Home
The Perks of Being an OTR Truck Driver
The Thrill of the Open Road
OTR Truck Driving vs. Local & Regional Driving: What’s the Difference?
Driving with Lily Transportation
The Challenges of Being an OTR Truck Driver
Pursuing a career as an OTR truck driver is a rich experience full of exciting benefits, consistent income, and a flexible working schedule, but it’s not a lifestyle that’s suitable for everyone. Before committing to the adventure, it’s important to understand not only what you’ll gain from but also what the potential challenges of a truck driving career.
1) Hours on the Road
If there’s anything you’ll encounter as an OTR driver, it’s long hours behind-the-wheel. OTR drivers are tasked with delivering products and goods all over the country, and it’s the driver’s job to get those products from the starting point to the finish line. This means committing to long hours on the road, remaining alert and focused for an extended period of time and ensuring the safety of yourself, your co-driver and other motorists on the road.
For many drivers, there’s a profound sense of accomplishment in overcoming these long-hours in a safe and efficient way. One of the core characteristics of the OTR driving culture is the pride drivers experience from a job well done and the achievement of having seen it through to a successful conclusion.
However, not everyone is going to find value and fulfillment in these long, potentially monotonous hours on the highway. Just because it works well for most drivers doesn’t mean it will for all drivers. It’ll be important for you to decide if this is something you could find value in, or if a different career would be better suited to your expectations and skillset.
2) Being Away from Home
Another potential challenge of long hours on the road is being away from home. One of the reasons trucking companies are seeking younger demographics to drive OTR is because often times they have more flexibility to be away from home for extended periods of time. The average age of today’s truck driver is mid-to-late-forties, meaning these drivers are more likely to have families making it challenging to spend long periods of time away from home.
For younger drivers, however, an OTR truck driving job can be a great place to start their professional career. With a minimal barrier for entry—you must be 21-years of age and have a commercial driver’s license (CDL). OTR truck driving can help young people pay off loans, build an impressive résumé and see the country in exciting new ways.
3) Unpredictable Conditions
Whenever you travel over long distances, the weather is always going to be a factor you’ll need to consider. Whether it’s snow, extreme winds or rain inclement weather is unpredictable and can present dangerous situations if you are not prepared.
This is true for leisure travel, and it’s especially true for professional truck drivers. When you’re trying to cover a lot of miles having to unexpectedly deal with unfavorable weather conditions is never an ideal situation. However, with experience and preparation, you’ll be able to navigate these situations. Safety is the number one priority.
OTR driving careers can be demanding and come with their fair share of challenges. But if you’re someone who prioritizes safety, can make educated and timely decisions, and likes adventure, then an over-the-road driving position might be a perfect option for you!
The Perks of Being an OTR Truck Driver
There are going to be drawbacks to any career, and over-the-road truck driving is no different. However, the advantages of becoming an OTR driver far outweigh the challenges for anyone willing to take a risk and dive into an exciting new career/lifestyle.
To help get you started, here are some of the unique benefits that the OTR driving lifestyle can offer.
1) Endless Opportunity
According to a study conducted by Statista in 2017, retail e-commerce sales amounted to 99.4 billion U.S. dollars. On top of that, Statista also reported in an April 2017 survey that approximately 40% of all American internet users purchased items online several times per month, with 20% saying they bought items or service online weekly. These percentages are even expected to double by 2021, so it’s clear that online retailers aren’t going anywhere anytime soon.
People love shopping online, and as e-commerce sales continue to skyrocket, so too will the need for professionally trained truck drivers. Without the skills and expertise of these drivers, the products purchased by consumers online wouldn’t reach their doorstep.
Companies need drivers and lots of them. The American Trucking Association (ATA) said in a 2017 report that the trucking industry will need to hire almost 900,000 new drivers in the next decade—or 90,000 per year—to keep the industry’s workforce operating at peak efficiency. With this spike in demand, the trucking industry is eager and willing to work with you wherever you are.
2) Financial Stability
One of the most compelling reasons to pursue a truck driving career is financial stability. Most companies pay their drivers on a per-mile scale, so the more miles you cover the more money you’ll make. Since there is a strong need for drivers, industry-wide, competitive pay is increasingly common.
Knowing what to look for in a trucking job is a great place to start, especially since most companies offer additional income incentives through loyalty and safety program. Do your research, and find a company that will work with you as you work with them. The trucking industry values their drivers will pay to hire and retain those who do the job successfully!
3) The Thrill of the Open Road
There are few careers that allow the kind of travel offered as a truck driver. Many OTR drivers will regularly drive cross-country and get to see the sights in all seasons! If you know an office job isn’t right for you—then truck driving might be a great career option. Not only is it one of the best opportunities to see the country, but every day is going to look a different—literally and figuratively speaking.
OTR Truck Driving vs. Local & Regional Driving: What’s the Difference?
When you’re considering a career in truck driving, you’ll be faced with choices about what kind of driving you want to do: local, regional or over the road.
The major difference between these two types of career paths is, unsurprisingly, the distance you travel. OTR drivers typically transport goods coast to coast and often involves being on the road for many days, or even weeks, at a time.
For local truck driving jobs, drivers spend their shift on the road but are home daily; meaning your lifestyle is a bit more predictable than that of an OTR driver. Still, the major difference between the two options is one of preference. If having a consistent routine is your ideal, then local driving can provide that. But with OTR driving, you can live a more flexible and diversified lifestyle.
Driving with Lily Transportation
If you’re interested in pursuing a career as a professional OTR truck driver, then Lily Transportation would like to hear from you!
When you become a truck driver at Lily, you become part of a larger family of passionately driven professionals from all walks of life who love what they do.
We’re a family owned and professionally managed company who truly believe people are our greatest asset.
In addition to the lucrative income, flexible work schedule, and travel opportunities, OTR truck drivers who sign with Lily will receive benefits such as:
Blue Cross Blue Shield Medical and Dental Insurance
Paid Holiday and Vacation Time
Health and Wellness Program
Cell Phone Allowance
Meticulously Maintained Equipment
24 Hours Dispatch
If you’re looking for a new and unique career experience, then OTR driving might be exactly what you are looking for. For more information, please feel free to talk to one of our representatives at 800-248-5459, or visit the Careers Page on our website!
Over-the-road (OTR) driving can be a rewarding career for people looking to travel while also earning a competitive income. Having two drivers who alternate shifts removes the necessity of stopping for sleep, as one driver can continue the trip while the other rests. This means more time on the road and a shorter trip overall, increasing productivity.
Earning a Good Living
When you drive as part of a team, you’re able to double the miles traveled, and since most drivers are paid per-mile, covering more miles in less time means a higher paycheck for drivers; making considerably more than solo drivers. Team truck driving is also beneficial for employers, as it means loads spend less time on the road and more time in the hands of distributors and customers.
Truck drivers are truly the lifeblood of the American economy, now more than ever. With so much commerce moving out of brick and mortar retail chains and into online retailers, logistics are more important than ever. Consumers expect to receive products within hours, rather than days, and often those products must move from coast to coast.
OTR team drivers can keep their cargo moving for longer and get it from point A to point B in less time, making fast delivery possible for consumers, retailers, manufacturers, and other economic players.
Staying Safe While Going the Distance
On top of the salary and productivity, driving on a good OTR team also means better safety for drivers. When driving alone, routine stops are necessary in order to keep the senses keen and the body rested. This is vital for the safety of both the driver and everyone else on the road, but when you drive with a partner, you not only have someone to share the workload with, but you also have someone to get your back when you need it.
It’s impossible to plan for every scenario on the road, but with another professional driver at your side, you can make sure you’re always equipped with the resources and knowledge to handle any situation that arises; whether that’s bad traffic, inclement weather, or mechanical troubles, having a co-driver means less overall stress and better well-being for both you and your partner.
Enjoying the Adventure
While the practical benefits of OTR team driving are clear, driving as part of an OTR team can also be fun, as it means sharing the ups, downs, and overall adventure of coast to coast travel with someone you respect and enjoy.
OTR driving is a lifestyle. When you put two people together with a shared passion for that lifestyle, a routine trip can become something far more enjoyable. With this in mind, it’s important to find a co-driver who you know you’ll be able to work well with, a strong partnership is a key to finding success and enjoyment as an OTR team.
Over-the-road (OTR) driving is a lucrative career and allows drivers to see all corners and areas of the country. When you join an OTR team, you’ll not only have a partner to share the journey with, but you can also end up earning more than if you were driving solo.
Going the Distance
When you have a co-driver, you are able to drive longer and farther simply by keeping the truck going. Where a solo driver has to stop to sleep and keep their senses keen, team driving all but eliminates that, as it allows one driver to rest while the other keeps the truck going.
Getting involved in OTR team driving still requires commitment, and just because you have someone else to rely on doesn’t lessen your responsibility. If anything, team truck driving increases your responsibility, as you’re now responsible for not just your own safety and the safety of others on the road, but also that of your co-driver. This is why OTR trucking is a lifestyle, and its teams are some of the most well-respected and well-paid members of the logistics industry.
When you drive with a partner, you can almost double the distance you travel per week. Since most drivers are paid for each mile covered, the more miles you and your partner can cover, the more you’ll ultimately be paid.
While driving on a team means splitting the profit with your co-driver, you’ll be covering so much extra ground that you’ll still be making more than if you were driving solo. As part of an OTR team, you not only get to cover more ground, efficiently, you also get paid significantly more per week.
Many carriers will even offer their teams referral bonuses to bring on other OTR teams because coast to coast driving is not only lucrative for drivers but an important part of the business for carriers. More miles traveled each day means more efficient arrivals of loads, which leads to happy customers, ownership, and most importantly drivers!
Joining a Team
Whether you’re ready to start a new career as an OTR driver or are looking to transition from a solo position to a team, Lily Transportation is here to help. We’re always looking for eager, experienced, and SAFE drivers to join our coast to coast operation!
We offer excellent benefits, provide competitive pay, and always the best fleet! If you’re interested in career opportunities at Lily, visit the Jobs Page on our website to get started. We can’t for you to join the Lily family!
Over-the-road driving, or OTR, is as much a lifestyle as it is a career. It’s demanding, but rewarding, as it’s not only a lucrative career but also gives you a unique lens to see the country through. It can get lonely out there on the open road for solo drivers, which is why team driving is becoming an increasingly popular option for drivers and businesses alike. If you’re interested in driving as part of an OTR team, these insights will help you gauge if team driving is for you.
Know What You’re Getting Into
Before signing up for anything, it’s important to know what you’re getting into. In the case of OTR driving, you’re committing yourself to spending days, sometimes weeks, on the road, usually with a designated quota of miles traveled to hit. When it comes to driving as part of an OTR team, you’ll be faced with the same responsibilities, but rather than facing them alone, you’ll have a partner at your side every step of the way.
This means that you can spend more hours actively on the road, cut down on the stops you’ll need to take, and ultimately, maximize the profits of you and your driving partner.
Find a Good Partner
Obviously, OTR team driving means that you’re never really alone on the road. Driving with a partner can lighten the mood, help pass the time, and generally keep the journey from becoming monotonous or lonely. As such, team driving has become popular for married couples who both possess a commercial driver’s license (CDL), as it’s a great way to spend quality time with someone important to you.
Not everyone has a spouse who they can travel across the country with, in which case you’ll still need to be able to find a good partner who is just as willing to work with you as you are with them. You can do this by talking to drivers you already know or by being matched with a co-driver. Whatever you do, just make sure you’re comfortable with your partner before the drive begins.
Understand the Payout
OTR drivers know that the farther you travel, the more money you make, and traveling with a partner basically guarantees that you can travel longer distances, make less stops, and thus, get paid more. While you’ll need to take into account that however far you travel and however much you’re paid will be equally divided between you and your co-driver, OTR teams still, on average, make more than solo drivers do.
When you plan a trip before hitting the road, you and your co-driver can rest easy knowing that you’re well-prepared for whatever you’ll encounter. This means setting up a rotation for who drives when; understanding each other’s driving preferences; stocking up on healthy snacks and food you can both enjoy; and, of course, knowing who likes what music. The more you plan, the less surprises you’ll both come across.
If you’re considering a new over-the-road, or OTR driving career but have never driven OTR before, you may have some questions. Driving OTR is very different from driving locally. Some aspects of OTR driving take some adjusting, but as a career choice, it also comes with a number of great benefits.
As you know, truck driving jobs are very different from the typical office job. Most experienced drivers, especially those that drive coast to coast, OTR truck driving jobs, will tell you that driving a truck is more of a “lifestyle” than a career. Driving OTR involves being on the road for many days at a time, and sometimes for weeks at a time.
Why Choose OTR Trucking?
While being away from home and family can be a challenge, many OTR drivers jump at the opportunity for a few key reasons. Perhaps the most obvious reason to drive OTR is that you have an opportunity to earn more money.
But better earnings aren’t the only reason people choose an OTR career. There are other benefits, such as the ability to travel, the chance to grow professionally, and the opportunity to become part of the greater trucking community. Coast to coast truck drivers get a unique view of the country. Many CDL holders choose OTR trucking as a way to earn more and reach their financial goals, but it also brings them closer to the reason many of them chose the trucking profession in the first place: the open road.
The Team Driving Lifestyle
Having a co-driver is a great way to keep company on the road, learn from someone else’s experience, and build a sense of camaraderie with another driver. As a lifestyle, team driving isn’t for everyone, but it could be the most rewarding truck driving career you embark on.
As you’ll be sharing space with another person in the truck, trust is an important factor in a team driving job. You need to be able to trust your co-driver to drive safe and your co-driver will need to rely on you to do the same. You’ll also be sharing responsibilities on the road, so it’s important to discuss a plan before you start driving.
Many drivers choose team driving because they want to earn more money and reach their financial goals. Others choose it strictly because of the lifestyle. For example, teams of married partners often drive OTR because they want the chance to travel together and experience the open road.
Whatever your reason, you won’t have to look far for an OTR driving job.
OTR Team Driving at Lily Transportation Corp.
If you’re looking for a new OTR or team driving opportunity, talk to one of Lily’s recruiters at 800-248-5459. You can also browse our available positions through careers page, and even apply online.
Why OTR team driving? There are so many advantages of being part of an over the road team. They cover more ground, and because they can keep the truck and its cargo moving for longer, team drivers can earn more money than solo drivers. OTR trucking can be a very lucrative full-time truck driving career.
OTR team drivers are also essential contributors to the national supply chain. In many ways, they form the backbone of the entire economy. By keeping their vehicles moving, team drivers can carry their cargo over long distances — essential for maintaining a supply chain that spans from coast to coast.
If you ask any driver who does OTR team driving, they’ll likely tell you that it’s as much a lifestyle as it is a rewarding career. It involves being on the road for days at a time, which means being away from your home and your family as well. That’s why spouses who are both CDL holders often act as co-drivers.
As a CDL driver, it’s up to you to decide if OTR team driving is the right career choice for you. OTR team drivers are focused and goal-oriented, and they’re some of the most respected and well-paid professionals in the logistics industry. OTR team driving also comes with many other advantages and benefits.
Table of Contents:
1. The Benefits of an OTR Team Driving Career
2. Finding a Co-Driver
3. Forming a Good OTR Team
4. Staying Safe on the Road
5. OTR Team Driving Careers at Lily Transportation Corp.
The Benefits of an OTR Team Driving Career
Team driving is an exciting opportunity and a chance to make a positive shift in your driving career. OTR team drivers tend to be driven, adventurous professionals. While it does offer some challenges, the benefits of driving over-the-road are worth working towards.
Earn a Good Living
Simply put, logging more miles with two drivers means making more money.
Have Company on the Road
One of the most difficult parts of driving solo is being alone on the road. While some drivers enjoy the solitude, it’s natural for people to want company while they work and drive. When you drive as part of an OTR team, you’ll always have company.
Having a co-driver is also helpful for planning your trips and solving problems. Your co-driver can help you navigate, give you help in tough situations, or just act as someone to share ideas.
One of the most rewarding parts of driving over-the-road is the ability to travel to new places and see more of the country. For drivers who love the open road, there’s no better way to do so than coast to coast team driving. OTR team drivers not only get to visit new places, they also have an opportunity to explore more scenic drives. If you love to drive, then OTR team driving is a good career option.
Gain Valuable Experience
Driving long distances is both challenging and rewarding, for those who choose professional truck driving careers. Team drivers get a lot of driving experience, but they also get experience with planning, problem-solving, and working as part of a team. If you’ve been driving solo for years, a team driving assignment is a great way to grow professionally.
Finding a Co-Driver
Most team drivers will tell you that the key to being successful is finding the right partner. Your co-driver should be someone you get along with, someone you can build trust with, and someone who you can rely on. Here are a few ways to find a co-driver:
Search In Your Own Network
If you have any experience in the logistics industry, you’ve likely met people along the way. Sometimes, a good way to find a co-driver for your OTR team is to ask the people you already know and trust. This could be your family, friends, co-workers, or other drivers you’ve met in your travels. Naturally, this is a limited pool of people, but it increases the possibility of finding someone you know and trust.
Drive on a Company Team
Get matched by a logistics company. Lily Transportation Corp., can match you with a co-driver based on your needs and preferences. Working with a company eliminates the risks of putting out an anonymous ad and makes the entire process easier. With a company, you can also trust in reliable pay and support on the road.
Forming a Good OTR Team
The success of your OTR team hinges on the success of your partnership with your co-driver. Good OTR teams are built on trust, professionalism, and a positive attitude. It should come as no surprise that many co-drivers are close friends. Spousal teams are also common, but many other successful teams are formed simply by two dedicated drivers who want to work hard and earn more.
Here are a few ways to form a good OTR team:
Before starting out, it’s important to understand who is responsible for what. It could be that one of you prefers to drive at night while the other prefers to drive during the day, or it could be that each driver is responsible for driving a specific number of miles. Some drivers prefer to drive in the countryside, while others don’t mind driving near cities. When it comes to driving, you must work within FMCSA rules to determine driving, sleeping, and stopping times for both drivers.
Nonetheless, planning in advance makes the job much easier and reduces the chances of surprises. You can also set responsibilities for loading and unloading cargo, if necessary. That way, there won’t be any confusion when you reach your destinations.
Driving OTR as a team requires you to share space with your co-driver and sleep on the road. You must agree on how to organize storage space, such as how to store personal items, food items, and work-related items in the truck. You’ll need to come to a basic understanding about each other’s personal preferences, such as noise levels, control over the radio, and cabin temperature. It’s important to stay open to compromise when discussing your shared space so both drivers can reach an understanding they both agree with.
Keep a Positive Attitude
Since you’ll be spending a lot of time together, it pays to keep a positive attitude with your co-driver when out on the road. Everyone has bad days, but being positive and supportive is often just what someone needs to turn their day around. When stressful situations arise, it helps to communicate and pool your wits to solve problems. For many team drivers, having company on the road is just what they need to stay positive and focused.
Build Mutual Respect and Trust
As a professional enterprise, OTR team driving is built on respect, trust, and understanding. When both drivers are honest with each other and dedicated to the task at hand, it makes for a more pleasurable and fulfilling driving experience. If you and your co-driver can set boundaries, know your responsibilities, and communicate effectively, you’ll build a strong professional relationship and a successful OTR team.
Staying Safe on the Road
For any CDL driver, and for every logistics company, safety is the number one priority. Most truck drivers understand basic safety tips like wearing a seatbelt, signaling properly, and driving the speed limit. However, there are a few safety tips that are especially important when driving long distances.
Get Enough Sleep
Getting sound sleep is perhaps the most important safety concern for OTR team drivers. It can also be one of the most challenging. Team drivers must sleep often while the truck is being driven by their co-driver, and sometimes during the day.
To achieve a sound sleep, it’s important to set rules about noise levels with your co-driver. Other things that might inhibit sleep are light, movement, health issues, and caffeine consumption.
If sleeping during the day, it helps to eliminate as much light as possible, whether with curtains or window covers. Discuss driving style with your co-driver beforehand to reduce the likelihood that you’ll be woken up by truck movements. If you have health issues that may affect your sleep, such as sleep apnea, it’s important to take steps beforehand to ensure you can sleep soundly on the road. If possible, avoid consuming too much caffeine when you’re getting close to the end of your driving shift. This will help you fall asleep faster when the time comes.
There are other steps you can take to get better sleep, such as bringing a comfortable mattress, using a noise machine, and avoiding smartphone use when it’s close to bedtime.
While staying focused is often directly related to sleep, it’s also a practice that you can improve over time. Staying focused on the road is all about removing distractions. Common driving distractions include smartphones, food, and conversation.
When driving, it’s important to avoid using your smartphone. The screen can distract your eyes from the road, leading to danger. Nonetheless, some drivers rely on their phones for communication or even navigation. Before driving OTR, set your phone to operate in hands-free mode if you intend to use it on the job.
It can sometimes be tempting to eat or snack while driving, especially when you’re trying to keep the truck moving, but it’s much safer to only eat when the truck is stopped or when you aren’t driving. When it comes to conversation, there’s nothing inherently wrong with chatting on the road. But if your co-driver is distracting you from the task at hand, don’t hesitate to let them know that you need to focus.
Check Weather Reports
As part of your planning process, you should always check the weather. Even if it’s bright and sunny where you are, the weather can change almost instantly when you’re driving OTR. Knowing the weather beforehand will help you avoid weather hazards, select alternate routes, or give you the chance to mentally prepare to drive in more difficult conditions.
Plan Your Drives
Planning your drives with your co-driver is an ideal way to split up responsibilities and maintain a steady, reliable course. It’s also the best way to ensure that you earn as much as possible in your OTR position. Try to plan your drive based on dispatch instructions, hours of service regulations, stops, fuel, weather, location, road conditions, and even the preferences of you and your co-driver.
Part of leading a successful career in any part of the trucking industry is keeping yourself healthy, including eating right and getting exercise. Not only does staying healthy make driving more enjoyable, it can help you get better rest so you can maintain enough energy to stay focused on the road.
Sometimes eating healthy is a simple matter of substituting healthy food for unhealthy food. But you and your co-driver can establish a plan for meals to ensure you eat healthily and even set up an exercise regimen at stops to keep your energy up. Even just going for a walk is helpful for staying healthy on the road.
OTR Team Driving Careers at Lily Transportation Corp.
If you’re interested in an OTR team driving career, you don’t have to look any further than Lily Transportation Corp. Join our family of drivers to get matched with co-driver and receive competitive pay, great benefits, and dedicated runs. Our OTR team drivers even get customizable home time.