Any UK truckers here that moved to Canada?

Discussion in 'Canadian Truckers Forum' started by 00Gambit, Jan 18, 2020.

  1. krupa530

    krupa530 Light Load Member

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    I've been living in the us for 7 years. Used to live in Sandbach. I see a few canadian trucks about with Brits in em. I dont think there's as many as there was back in the late 90's or early 00,s.
    Driving is definitely different over here, but like everything you get used to it. No way I'd ever go back there to drive.
     
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  3. dunchues

    dunchues Medium Load Member

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    I'm English, moved here 10 years ago and enjoy it.
    It is not similar to UK driving, temp and weather extremes are very different and theres no Gulf stream to take the hard edges off it.
    I was lucky, I moved to NB and started with the right company for my "wife riding along and all 48 and all provinces" long haul plans.
    I'm still based in NB, moved company after 7 years and have my own truck still doing otr everywhere, and I still enjoy every trip.
    With hindsight it was just luck I chose right. Most dont and are gone in a year or two, expensive lesson learned the hard way.
     
  4. 00Gambit

    00Gambit Bobtail Member

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    Hey, glad you're enjoying it. My long term plan would be to be an owner operator as well but first I want to get at least 5 years of company experience and I try not to plan too far in advance. Of course there's a lot of luck involved as well, if your first year is with a terrible company with an unreliable truck, badly planned loads / routes etc it's probably going to put you off but it's one of those things which if I don't try for myself I'll always regret it.

    I'm in quite an optimal position for long haul, being away for days or weeks at a time as I have no dependants, no commitments, I'm single etc and I know one of the biggest things truckers dislike is the extended periods away from their family but that's really not an issue for me as I have no family.

    Any tips you could share? ;)
     
  5. Snow Monster

    Snow Monster Medium Load Member

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    You seem like a passionate individual, which is what the industry needs more of and I would like to offer a suggestion, a plan if you will.

    Others have mentioned the different terrains and weather that you have yet to experience and it might be a good thing to start your career in the sandbox so to speak, the prairie, flat land.
    I'm suggesting you start out in Manitoba, roughly the middle of Canada.

    It's a place that has genuinely cold winters by Canadian standards and you'll get a proper education in a relatively short period of time.
    Good place to start if you're curious about winter road driving to places like Shamattawa or York Factory
    It's also a major transportation hub and being central there's freight going in all directions.
    Driving from Winnipeg to the GTA and back on #17 in ON your first winter would be a good warm up before driving in the mountains.

    If you're sick of high density, stay away from S Ontario, the entire 400 highway system from Montreal to Windsor.


    When talking about wide open spaces, you have a pretty clear shot from Hope BC to Sudbury and North Bay ON and from of Quebec City to the east coast is not too bad, the people are great on the east coast.



    (was colder in SK that day)
    Screen Shot 2020-01-16 at 9.03.24 AM.png
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2020
  6. 00Gambit

    00Gambit Bobtail Member

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    Manitoba is the province I'm looking at as Winnipeg is a main transport hub. Honestly the cold weather doesn't bother me that much, which I know saying it is a lot different to living in it but I'm not going to let a few months of cold weather and snow a year stop me from trying.

    Even after I pass my CDL course I'd be happy to pay out of my own pocket for a mountain / snow driving course if one exists, perhaps in Alberta or BC. As a foreigner I understand I'm in no position to feel entitled so I'll do what it takes to get my driving and knowledge up to the same standards as Canadians.

    My biggest concern honestly is the hassle and time it takes for employers to hire a foreign driver? Isn't it a really long winded process?
     
  7. uncleal13

    uncleal13 Road Train Member

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    I rented a camper van on my holidays in Australia. Driving on the opposite side of the road is no big deal. By the end of the second day you get the hang of it, by the fourth day I didn’t even think of it anymore.
    But after three weeks, when I went to get into the van, I still approached the vehicle from the wrong side to get in the drivers seat.
    We are seeing more round-abouts being build at major rural intersections, less serious accidents. But they’re still pretty scarce.
    I’ve met a few Brits here in Saskatchewan hauling grain. Some at Biggar Transport, but that was several years ago.
     
  8. dunchues

    dunchues Medium Load Member

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    You are clearly trying to do your homework and that's good.
    It's normal to minimize the different weather too, in Europe we have no real concept of northern winters so cant really picture the reality.
    I've never heard of a course for driving in the hills, you'll have had plenty of traction issue experience by the time you get there so your biggest danger will be trucks that say triple 8 or lightspeed on the trailer. Do you get highway to hell on UK tv?
    Seriously, how do you see a working day/month? Have you decided on the type of runs you'd like to do, or the type of trailer or load you are interested in? From my perspective that is the most important consideration you have to make.
    Believe me, companies here work very very differently to what we're used to. You probably wont think it's better, and you'll never change anything they do so you need to focus on what you want to do and choose a firm that is right for your plans.
     
  9. Snow Monster

    Snow Monster Medium Load Member

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    You have 3 years experience, which is a lot more than many others who got into this biz, you're already at an advantage.

    Getting up to Canadian Prairie standards is going to be the hard part.
    You have to be able to drink a couple 40 ounce bottles of whiskey, smoke a bag of of high test weed, snort a couple grams of coke and chew 15 or 20 goobers while attending a Ukrainian wedding that lasts for 3 days, them jump in a truck with a raging hangover and drive non stop to Montreal or Vancouver with a hot load in a raging snowstorm and be there on time with the truck and load still intact.
    Our standards are much higher than most, but so are our drivers!
    (I jest, of course)

    If you not afraid of challenges and hard work it will be a piece of cake.
     
  10. dunchues

    dunchues Medium Load Member

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    Btw, you mentioned raising your skills to the level of North American drivers. You have no idea how bad the average driver over here is, you will be amazed and shocked. There are many highly competent truck drivers, and theres many more that aren't!
    You mentioned earlier the higher level of driving test some provinces have introduced. This was mostly due to the actions of an inexperienced b train operator in Humboldt, SK. , but that sort of driving you'll see everyday with fortunately less serious consequences.
     
  11. AModelCat

    AModelCat Road Train Member

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    As with any city, some neighbourhoods in Winnipeg are better than others......
    2image.png image.png
     
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