Team Truck Driving Pros and Cons
Having a driving team or partnership comes up frequently at the Academy. The definition of team drivers is exactly what you expect. It is having two different drivers sharing one truck and haul. There seems to be a lot of questions about the topic and it’s not for everyone. Understanding the pros and cons of team truck driving will help you better decide if it is for you.
Grey Area of Team Truck Driving
Many aspects of team truck driving will be a Pro for one driver and a Con for another. For example, some drivers prefer solitude and some welcome company in the cabin. Also, if you do not like your partner, chances are team driving will not work for you at all. If you don’t like your teammate, many of the cons will outweigh the Pros. Fortunately, some services help drivers looking for a team driver. In the discussion, the assumption is you have a professional and workable relationship with your team partner and want to have someone nearby.
Pros of Team Truck Driving
- Sign-on Bonus – Having team drivers is more beneficial to a company than a solo driver. This is because the team can log more miles in a week with less downtime. Schneider is just one company the offers a big sign-on bonus. Additionally, it’s common to get guaranteed miles at sign up which helps in planning finances and schedule. Together, this is a great opportunity to get your trucking career going with a bang with the help of a big bonus that you may not get as a solo driver.
- More Available Jobs – Team drivers are more profitable for freight companies so they tend to give preference to teams who can put in the miles. A question that often comes up is how many miles do team drivers average per week. Team drivers can put up to 5,000-6,000 miles in a week. This is a huge advantage over solo drivers. Also, because of the demand for team drivers, you can be selective with who you join and get your foot in the door at a great company.
- Higher Pay – Companies save money from employing team drivers. They can then offer high pay per mile than they would for a solo driver. Team truck driving rules are essentially the same for solo drivers in terms of how many miles you can drive, but the bump in pay per mile can help. Other bonuses are available including weekly performance, annual guarantee, and hazmat endorsements. So, finding a partner, developing a team driver schedule, and maximizing available bonuses can help bring home more pay.
Cons of Team Truck Driving
- Tight Quarters – Even while driving with a good friend or co-worker, it can be challenging sharing the same truck. There are now your belongings as well as the other driver’s items. This is true for the cabin and sleeping quarters. You’ll be putting a lot of time so figuring out how to keep the cabin as clean as possible will help with the extra stuff.
- Poor Sleep Quality – Human bodies are designed to sleep at night so sleeping during the day will be different and difficult for many. Some of you night owls are used to night driving to take advantage of the benefits of driving at night and won’t have a problem with this. Even if this is you, chances are you are well trained to not fall asleep in a moving truck. It will take time getting used to relaxing with your eyes closed in a moving truck. Keeping awake has kept you alive and will be hard to adjust.
- Splitting Pay – Sure it’s great getting more pay per miles but you have to share that pay with someone else. The bonuses and extra miles will help you come out on top but it can be hard seeing the pay per mile and not getting the whole thing. This is why we see the increase in married couples teaming up to keep all the pay in one house.
- Longer Away from Home – Because of your team’s ability to be so productive, you may be asked to go out longer than you would as a solo driver. Downtime with family is important and being away can be hard. With the right partner or even trucking with pets can help with homesickness.
Summary of Pros and Cons of Team Truck Driving
There are great financial benefits from team truck driving. You provide a premium service to your company that will not only pay more but also provides stability and the ability to work for the best companies. There are some drawbacks to team truck driving that can be reduced with the right partner and schedule. Let us know what questions you have about team truck driving or ask about CDL Training, we’d love to hear from you.