A Beginner’s Guide to Becoming a Truck Driver
Ever dreamed of cruising down the highway, windows down, and country music playing in the background? Becoming a truck driver is one way to make that dream come true. It’s not an easy road, but it can be gratifying – if you know what steps to take. Read on for a beginner’s guide to becoming a truck driver.
Get Your CDL License
The first step to becoming a truck driver is getting your Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) from your state DMV. To get your CDL, you’ll need to pass written and skills tests, plus meet physical requirements. Depending on which state you live in, you may also need to submit additional paperwork or medical information. Make sure you check with your local DMV office ahead of time so there are no surprises when it’s time to apply!
Find the Right Training Program
The next step is finding the right training program for you. Many trucking companies offer their own training programs at little or no cost – just make sure they are certified by the Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI). There are also several third-party schools that offer comprehensive truck driver instruction courses for prospective drivers. No matter which route you choose, ensure that the program provides hands-on experience with real trucks and classroom instruction.
Once you have your CDL and have completed training, it's time to hit the open road! Most new drivers will start out as over-the-road (OTR) drivers for their first year or two before moving up into more specialized positions like local delivery or hauling hazardous materials. Regardless of which role you choose, make sure that you follow all traffic laws and always wear your seatbelt while driving! As long as you stay safe and keep up with industry changes and regulations, being a truck driver can be an incredibly rewarding career path!
Becoming a truck driver isn't always easy – but it can be incredibly rewarding if you put in the effort and dedication required! The key steps involve getting your CDL license from your state DMV office, finding the right training program for your needs, and then hitting the open road as an over-the-road (OTR) driver. Take these steps one at a time, stay safe on the road, and soon enough you'll find yourself making money (and memories!) as a professional trucker! Good luck!