How to Become a Trucker in 5 Easy Steps
Trade jobs are experiencing massive labor shortages across the country, and nowhere is that felt more than in rural Idaho communities, with our wealth of agriculture and manufacturing across the state. Labor shortages are driving up wages for stable jobs with low barriers to entry, such as transportation jobs. If you’re looking to retool and start generating more income for yourself and your family, consider a career as a truck driver. Here’s how:
Have a Clean Driving Record
Most employers won’t care that you got a parking ticket five years ago, but they’ll probably be concerned about a reckless driving charge on your record. If a company is going to entrust a freighter to you, they need to know it’ll be handled safely. For this reason, the best way to find a job as a trucker is to keep a near-spotless driving record.
Consider Trucker School
There are plenty of schools that are happy to put you on the fast track to trucking, but make sure to do thorough research on any potential trucker training programs. While many of them are looking to help you earn a CDL, just as many are only out to make a quick buck at your expense.
Earn Your Commercial Driver’s License
Think of the Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) like a bar exam for a lawyer; without it, you’ve got no chance of pursuing your career. The CDL is a written and physical exam about driving law and regulations, as well as equipment on a commercial vehicle.
Pass the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation Exam
Passing the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Regulation (FMCSR) exam isn’t technically necessary to being a trucker, but it’s close. This exam proves to employers that you can safely operate your vehicle, and passing will often increase your desirability to companies. You only have to pass the written portion once, but to stay current you’ll need to pass the physical exam every year.
Once you’re a trucker, you’ll need to find ways to make your freighter more comfortable, given all the time you’ll be spending there. For those looking for basic amenities, EpicVue is a well-known vendor of satellite televisions for truckers, which can be a lifesaver during long sitting spells in your cab.
Trucking isn’t for everybody, but it’s the only way of life for some people. If you find yourself dissatisfied with being a homebody or working a dull 9-5 at an office, then consider if trucking is the right career path and use these tips to land your dream job.