Truck driving is the perfect option if you’re searching for an exciting job. Truck drivers are the backbone of our nation’s commerce and supply network, transporting goods and services throughout the country.
However, there’s a lot more to this job than hauling freight across state lines. In fact, many people don’t realize how much variety there is in truck driver work hours.
In this post, we’ll discuss how often are truck drivers home, what factors contribute to their schedule flexibility, and what requirements there may be on truck driver work hours. If this sounds like your dream job, keep reading!
How Many Days do Truck Drivers Work?
Truck driver work hours are very different from the typical 9-to-5 daytime schedule of most workers. Truck drivers often work long hours, sometimes in the dark, and frequently on weekends, and holidays.
In fact, most truck drivers work at night to avoid traffic jams and other road hazards during daylight hours. That is why many truck driving careers begin with a “days on/days off” type of schedule. This helps drivers avoid any time restrictions they may have for the week.
For example, a transportation team may keep drivers on the road for 4 days at 10 hours a day and then off for 2-3 days. Other companies with longer hauls may do a different schedule. It all comes down to the they type of driving job you have and company you work for.
How Long are Truck Drivers Away from Home?
How often a truck driver is home depends on a number of factors, including where they live, what routes they run, and how many miles they drive.
Truck drivers who travel across state lines must follow federal guidelines for driving time. The U.S. Department of Transportation sets limits on how much time can be spent behind the wheel in any given day, week, or month.
Federal Guidelines Matter
You may be wondering, “How long can a truck driver work in a day?” A truck driver is only allowed to drive for up to 11 hours before stopping for 10 consecutive hours in a 24-hour period. A driver cannot start another shift immediately after this break period.
It’s important to note that these regulations do not apply to the delivery of dangerous goods by road. There are some other differentiating factors that may affect how many hours a driver can complete in a day. These restrictions also help those who want answers to how often do truck driver work.
The Long-Haul Driver Difference
The life of a long-haul truck or over-the-road (OTR) driver is not for everyone. Anyone who has been in the industry can tell you that. Long hours and tight deadlines can make it a challenging job. In most cases long-haul drivers will be away from home for two or more weeks and then home for several day. Some long-haul drivers choose to stay out months at a time to maximize profits.
However, despite all the challenges involved with being a long-haul OTR truck driver, many perks come with this career choice – including freedom and higher pay.
Regional Drivers Get Home Weekly or More
As you can see the trucking industry offers a variety of job opportunities each offering different home time option. For drivers looking to stay a little closer to home, a regional driving job might be the best fit. Regional drivers tend to stay within a set geographical area, running similar routes, which ensures they get home each weekend or more.
Regional driving opportunities can be a nice balance between consistent home time and high pay. Regional drivers will get home on Friday evening and typically leave home on Sunday in order to make their Monday deliveries.
Local Drivers Get Home Every Night
While there are certainly some truck drivers who spend long periods away from home, there are local job opportunities for CDL drivers that get them home every day.
As you can imagine local jobs are highly sought after and therefore competitive. For this reason, many local jobs require drivers to have some over-the-road (OTR) experience. However, after one year of successful commercial driving experience getting that coveted local job is possible.
Truck driving can be a great job as long as you find the right balance for your career needs. Knowing the work hours is important before you get into this career path.
The key is determining the income you want, the area you wish to see, all while maintaining the friends and family connections you value.
The truth is many hiring companies prefer family-oriented drivers who want to get home regularly. This is because those drivers put a high value on completing a solid day’s work to provide for their families. As a result, they will be willing to go the extra mile to keep our nation’s supply chains open.
If you want to learn more about this fantastic career and find the right niche driving situation for your lifestyle, call us at DRC. We work with drivers ranging from long-haul road warriors to short-distance city experts that call it a day in the evening. So fill out the form below to learn more about CDL training and starting an exciting career in truck driving!