• OTR can be a Great Path for Local Jobs in the Future

    Once you go to school and complete your CDL training, starting as an Over-The-Road (OTR) truck driver can be the long-term key to getting a gig driving commercial trucks more locally in the future.

    Starting As An OTR Trucker

    As an Over-The-Road (OTR) Trucker, you will generally be hauling heavy loads over long distances, crisscrossing the country. These long-distance jobs usually pay a bit higher and are great for drivers who have just gotten their CDL and are starting out in their trucking careers. Many trucking companies start a driver at $40,000+ a year, which is pretty competitive pay compared to other jobs that one can get just out of trade school. Generally, drivers are expected to spend at least one year as an OTR driver before they are hired for more local jobs. In other words, you have to put in the time and live the truck driver lifestyle to be able to enjoy the local work.

    Transitioning to Local Driving

    Local drivers are those usually have dedicated routes within a local region, city, or town. This means that these drivers are not required to travel as long of distances at OTR drivers are. Many can even go home each evening or even work traditional Monday - Friday hours with weekends off. While this is very convenient for those who have family responsibilities, it's often a lower-paying position for those who do not have experience of OTR driving under their belts. Those who have gotten their OTR experience in are usually the ones who get "dibs" and are the drivers that are more preferred for the local trucking jobs. Having a few years experience in OTR trucking is a great way to get your "foot in the door" to possibly get one of the local "preferred" jobs that don't require excessive travel and time from home. While these jobs often do pay lower salaries than long-distance jobs, they also often offer a higher salary to those drivers with previous experience making it a more desirable position for those with experience who wish to work a more traditional schedule and stay closer to home.

    In Conclusion

    While OTR trucking might demand that you are on the road and away from family more than you would like to be, it often is a great path to take to get a more local job in the future. The higher salaries of OTR trucking are a nice bonus and the experience helps you get a higher salary when you are a more local job down the road. For more information on how OTR trucking can help you get the local position, you want, give us a call! 303-848-8443
  • Why CDL Classes are Definitely Worth Considering

    Going back to school as an adult is a big decision. Making that decision means asking some questions for yourself. Is it worth the time and effort?  Can I afford it? Is it easier to just get by with my current job? Are there other opportunities available to me? Going to trucking school carries the same commitment of any other program. You need to dedicate time and money, while possibly sacrificing in the short term for a better career. If you're looking to build a career for yourself, it's entirely worth considering.

    Build a Marketable Skill

    The most important reason to go back to school is to earn a skill you can earn money with and build a career on. Going to trucking school gives you a license at the end of the course that makes you immediately hirable at many companies. According to the USA Today, truck drivers are in high demand. many trucking companies are offering sign-on bonuses because of the shortage of drivers.

    Make a Short Commitment

    CDL license classes don't require years or months to complete. You can complete our CDL A training in 3-6 weeks, with options for day or night classes available. There is still a lot to learn with the company you go to work for. But completing a CDL course will definitely give you a step ahead, plus the confidence that you can do the job. Compared to other courses or programs, this is a small investment you can make even if you're working another job while attending classes.

    Financial Aid is Available

    One of the first questions students ask is if they can afford CDL school. We offer several options for financial aid to students, including sponsorships, loans, and reimbursement. The goal for students enrolling in our trucking program is to help them build a new career in trucking. We designed our financial aid programs to help our students achieve that goal and become proud members of the truck-driving community.

    Take the First Step

    When you're considering attending trucking school, or any program, you'll have many doubts and questions. Don't let those doubts stop you from finding your career as a truck driver! Ready to roll? Take the first step toward your new career, call us today! 303-848-8446
  • Start Your Civilian Career in the Trucking Industry

    If your military service is ending and you're looking for a new career, don't dismiss the trucking industry.  Not only are your military skills transferable, but as a veteran, you may be eligible to use funding through the Veterans Administration to start your career in the civilian workforce. United States Truck Driving School participates in programs that give veterans the opportunity to use financial assistance for CDL training.

    What VA Benefits Can I Use

    The VA provides a variety of benefits and services to active duty service members, veterans, and their families. Some of these include the Montgomery Bill, Post 9/11 GI Bill, or the Special Vocational Training Program. In addition, some carriers provide a Tuition Reimbursement Program to those who have used VA benefits to pay for CDL training.

    Applying for Benefits

    Find out if you’re eligible for VA education benefits and apply online using the VA eBenefits website. Make sure you have access to your social security number, education, and military history. You'll also need basic information on the CDL program you'll be enrolling in. For a full list of the military benefits you can apply to your CDL training at United States Truck Driving School, visit ustruck.com/veterans. In addition, your campus Financial Aid office can provide information or eligibility requirements for these programs. To get started, give us a call today! 303-848-8443
  • How Military Skills Transfer to the Trucking Industry

    As a military veteran transitioning to civilian life, you may be wondering what career path is next. The skills you learned in the military are easily transferable to the trucking industry. For this reason, you might want to consider a career in commercial trucking. The need for truck drivers is at an all-time high. Currently, there is a nationwide shortage of about 51,000 truck drivers. That number is expected to increase in the coming years. Trucking is an in-demand field that can provide veterans with the job security they'll need for their future.

    What Can Trucking Offer Veterans

    The trucking industry respects veterans and provides a secure, high-paying job they need when returning to civilian life. Pay for a first-year driver can start at $40,000+ with full health benefits for them and their families. Carriers are also providing incentives like retirement savings, paid vacation, and more home time. United States Truck Driving School works with a variety of VA programs to help veterans pay for their CDL school tuition. This makes trucking school and earning a CDL affordable, and helps veterans get a quality, high-paying job they deserve.

    Road Test Exemptions

    Military veterans with 2+ years of experience driving heavy duty equipment in the last 12 months may be able to skip the road test part of the CDL exam. To determine eligibility, veterans must complete a "Veterans CDL Skills Test Waiver." The waiver can make getting a CDL much quicker for those who qualify. Your United States Truck Driving School admissions representative can help you determine if you qualify for this exemption. Veterans returning to the civilian workforce already have the skills many trucking companies are looking for. They are ambitious, driven, responsible, and have what it takes to get the job done. These characteristics make veterans attractive hires to trucking carriers. Trucking companies throughout the United States are eager to hire military veterans looking for a second career.
    To see how you can use your VA benefits toward your CDL, contact United States Truck Driving School! We'll help you get on your way to a secure career in the trucking industry! 303-848-8443
  • How to Make Team Truck Driving Run Smoothly

    With the high demand for truck drivers, it's a great time to start a new career in the trucking industry. Most people think of a trucking career as driving solo, but what if you don't really want to go it alone? Consider the option of pairing up with a partner and driving as a team. When you drive as a team, two people share the responsibilities, the truck, and the drive time. Team driving has its pros and cons - it may work great for some people while others prefer to go it alone. Today we're exploring the option - and looking at the benefits - of team driving.

    The Benefits of Team Driving

    One major benefit of team driving is that you are given first priority over truck loads. When there are two people to share the driving time, you'll average more miles in a day which can equal faster trips - and more money. Because of these faster delivery times, some carriers even offer driver incentives to those who partner up. The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration’s (FMCSA) Hours of Service still apply to teams. However, you are able to split up your hours and alternate driving shifts. This allows team drivers to stay within FMCSA guidelines and make those on-time deliveries.

    Tips for a Productive Partnership

    Some drivers choose to partner with their spouse or classmate. Others find a partner through their carrier's driver match program. These programs pair drivers that have similar interests and hobbies. Whether you get to pick your partner or not, you'll be living and driving with them in very close quarters. For long distances. With a lot (24/7) of togetherness. So you better make it work!

    The Keys to a Successful Partnership Start With:

    Open Communication - Sometimes more than one driver can cause confrontation issues between people who are stuck in the same truck for hours on end. Be open-minded and willing to compromise. Having a partner to keep you company is great when you're logging miles through relatively similar (and sometimes boring) landscapes. Talking things through from the beginning will build a great foundation to a successful team driving career. Trust and Respect - It's likely that you and your driving partner will have some differences. There are bound to be some confrontations or power struggles between drivers. You'll be sharing a small space - respecting boundaries can go a long way. Before hitting the road, you'll need to come to a mutual understanding of how things will run. Set boundaries, discuss drive techniques, and be willing and open to compromise.
    If you're ready to kick your career in gear as a team driver, call us! We'll provide the training you need to jumpstart your trucking career! Classes start regularly, register today! 303-848-8443
  • The Future of the Trucking Industry

    While there are many industries that have a surplus of qualified applicants vying for a few available positions, the trucking industry isn't one of them. Companies that hire truckers are desperate to fill driver shortages.

    Why the Shortage?

    One of the biggest factors of the driver shortage is the age of current drivers. Many of today's drivers are aging out of the industry, and hanging up their truck keys for retirement. Many more aren't far behind and will retire within the next 10 years. Getting new, younger drivers to take their places is proving to be difficult. It can be a difficult lifestyle, particularly for long-haul drivers. Spending weeks on the road seeing the country often sounds good to young people who are just out of school. But after a few years, they may realize that it's not a good fit. The good news is that having just one year of OTR experience under your belt can make it easier to move into regional, dedicated routes - giving you more home time.

    The Benefits of Becoming a Truck Driver

    Getting started in an industry with such high demand is a benefit to new, entry-level drivers.  While other industries are becoming automated and putting workers out of a job, that's not the case with trucking. The industry needs more drivers, and carriers are continually recruiting to meet those high demands. Carriers are also starting to offer an assortment of better perks to incoming drivers, including sign-on bonuses, higher starting pay, and benefits packages.

    How to Join the Industry and Become a Truck Driver

    It's a great time to earn your CDL and start a career in the trucking industry.  Becoming a professional truck driver isn't difficult. United States Truck Driving School partners with trucking companies that offer tuition reimbursement to incoming students, making tuition even more affordable. Get started in your new career by enrolling in our next CDL training class! To learn more about what our CDL training program entails and how it will change your life, give us a call! 303-848-8443