Monthly Archives: April 2021

9 Tips on How to Choose a Truck Driving School

Starting a truck driving career as a truck driver can be fun, rewarding, and exciting. If you are interested in becoming a long-haul trucker, you will need to decide how you will go about obtaining your CDL and where to go to truck driving school.

 

truck on highway during daytime

 

You most likely will have tons of questions about CDL training schools, CDL training programs, training time, and what the different schools offer. To narrow down your search and choose the best truck driving school, we encourage you to review the following tips.

 

Tip #1: Know the difference between paid CDL training programs and private truck driving schools.

When you are researching schools, you will typically come across two different options—paid CDL training programs and private truck driving schools. Paid training programs are normally company-sponsored programs offered by various trucking companies.

 

The trucking company will hire you and put you through their paid training. You are paid while you work on obtaining your CDL and on-the-road training. However, you will still have out-of-pocket expenses like housing, food, and tuition.

 

Another type of paid training is where the trucking company will offer tuition reimbursement after you finish truck driving school and meet other qualifications like being employed with the company for a specific period.

 

Private truck driving schools offer training programs and teach truck driver training. They may offer job placement assistance after completion of the program. This option requires you to foot the bill for all costs associated with the training program and obtaining your CDL.

 

Tip #2: Select a comprehensive training program.

You want to choose a school that offers you classroom instruction and on-the-road training. Paid training programs will often pair you with a dedicated trainer for your on-the-road training that can last between four and six weeks before you go solo.

 

Private driving schools will provide you with at least the minimum number of range and on-the-road training hours required to obtain your CDL. Once hired by a trucking company, they may also provide additional on-the-road training with a dedicated trainer.

 

Tip #3: Be careful if you are offered “free training.”

There are trucking companies that partner with private driving schools to recruit new drivers. They may advertise their training programs as being free. However, someone is still paying for the training.

 

For instance, the trucking company may require you to sign a financial agreement where you agree to pay them back for your training if you do not stay with the company for a set period. Other companies may start you at a lower pay rate to recoup the costs of your training. Just be aware of these programs and always read the fine print.

 

Tip #4: Review the job placement percentage of the school.

If you opt for private training, find out what percentage of students are placed with an employer after completing the program. Ideally, you want to choose a school that has a job placement percentage in the high 90s or even 100%.

 

Tip #5: Be willing to travel to get the best training possible.

The location of the school should not matter. Your objective should be to find the best schools with the best training programs. Sometimes you might luck out and have a school nearby in your state.

 

Other times, you may have to travel out of state to find the best school. If you choose an out-of-state school, verify that you can obtain your CDL in your state.

 

View of the green mountains from the front window of a truck

 

Tip #6: Find out what others have to say about the paid training or private school.

One of the easiest ways to decide if a paid training program or private school is right for you is by reading online reviews. You can see what other truckers had to say about their experiences with instructors, the quality of training, and so on. You will also be able to find out which ones you should avoid.

 

Tip #7: Visit truck stops and talk to the truckers.

Make a point to visit nearby truck stops and talk to the truck drivers. Ask them how they went about getting their CDL and if  there is a particular school or paid training program they would recommend. To thank them for taking the time to talk to you, offer to buy them a snack and a beverage.

 

Tip #8: Determine how you will cover the costs of your truck driver training.

There are several different options to secure the money required to pay for CDL training programs, such as:

 

  • VA Benefits – Your GI Bill may cover most of your out-of-pocket costs.
  • Federal Student Aid – Some schools are eligible to accept federal student aid programs like Pell Grants.
  • Student Loans – If the school doesn’t accept Pell Grants, you may still be eligible to apply for a federal student loan.
  • Private Grants – There may be various types of grants available in your state.
  • Scholarships – You may also find scholarship opportunities to pay for your truck driver training.

 

Keep in mind that you can often use a combination of financial aid, scholarships, and loans, so that all of your out-of-pocket costs are covered throughout your training.

Tip #9: Choose the best value, never the lowest cost.

The most important factor when deciding between private truck driving schools and company-sponsored paid CDL training programs is looking for which ones offer the best value. Never base your decision on the lowest cost. Otherwise, you might not get quality training to prepare you for a career as a professional truck driver in the trucking industry.

 

Why Truck Drivers Love Suburban Seating & Safety

After completing your CDL training program and becoming a solo truck driver, you can find truck accessories, safety products, cushions, parts, mattresses, truck seats, and more for your truck. Truck drivers love us because we help improve their lives while on the road by keeping them safe and comfortable.

 

Please feel free to browse our website to explore our product lines, or contact Suburban Seating & Safety at 844-727-7328 today!

 

Sleeping on the Road: What You Need to Know for Better Sleep

Do truckers sleep in their trucks? That’s a common question asked by aspiring truckers and people interested in trucking. If you’re just getting started as a truck driver, you’re probably wondering the same.

semi truck driving on highway at sunset

You must get proper sleep as a truck driver—especially when on the road. Not only do you need to get enough hours of sleep, but you must get quality sleep.

Without further ado, let’s dive into everything you need to know about sleeping on the road as a trucker.

Where Do Truckers Sleep in Their Trucks?

Over the road (OTR) truckers are so-called because they haul cargo over long distances. Because of that, they usually sleep on the road.

Where do OTR truckers sleep in their trucks? Long-distance truckers sleep in the sleeper cab of their semi-trucks. This is a small room located behind the driver’s seat, and it is also called a sleeper berth. The sleeper cab is usually kitted with a small bed.

Tips to Improve Sleep Quality on the Road

So, how do you ensure that you get the best sleep even while you’re on the road? Here are a few tips to help you do that.

Invest in a Truck Mattress

One of the first steps to ensuring that you get quality sleep as you’re on the road is to invest in a truck mattress. Sure, your sleeper cabin will have a small bed but, in most cases, the mattress is built more for convenience than comfort. That’s why you must upgrade your truck mattress by getting yourself a mattress designed for quality sleep.

Find a Good Place to Park

The other crucial element to getting quality sleep on the road is choosing a good place to park. There are many truck stops—rest areas—all over the country, and these are the best places to park for the night. Besides having enough space for your truck, rest areas also provide a safe place to sleep.

Another alternative is to arrange with your customer to sleep in their parking lot. This will help you maximize your driving hours.

Block Out Light and Noise

Quality sleep requires that you sleep in a dark, quiet place. You can use a white noise generator or noise-canceling headphones to block out noise from the truck stop. You can also block out light by investing in thick curtains for your sleeper cabin.

Avoid Caffeine

Avoid caffeine as much as possible before going to bed. Caffeine is a stimulant trusted by many truckers to keep them alert on the road. However, consuming it a few hours before bedtime will lead to poor-quality sleep.

Upgrade Your Sleeper Cab with Accessories

One of the most important factors of successful long-haul trucking is to ensure that you’re as comfortable as possible. To do so, you must upgrade your sleeper cab with accessories that will make it feel like a home away from home. Some accessories to consider include:

  • USB chargers
  • Mobile device and laptop holders
  • Dash-mount
  • Cushions and cushion covers

You can also consider upgrading your truck seats, so you have a more comfortable day in the cockpit. That will help you have better sleep, as you’ll have fewer body aches and pains.

yellow heavy truck

Do Truckers Sleep in Their Trucks? Getting Quality Sleep on the Road

We’ve come full-circle to the question we started with—do truckers sleep in their trucks?

Yes, they do if they are long-haul truckers.

If quality sleep is something that’s been eluding you on the road, all you probably need are a few adjustments to your sleeper cab. The best place to start is a mattress. Also, make sure to find a safe and quiet place—for peace of mind—and avoid stimulants before bedtime. 

While we may not be able to help you with your choice of beverage and where to park your truck, we can help you with truck accessories to help you sleep better. So, go ahead and browse our selection of truck accessories. You can also give us a call at 844-727-7328 for personalized advice.