Narrowing down my options here.
Terminal is much closer.
No tuition reimbursement or sign on bonus.
Driving nights on a set route which doesn't excite me as much as driving coast to coast.
They also have an OTR option but I think that's regional as well.
Nice new Cascadias
Option to pull tankers which interests me.
Tuition reimbursement plus sign on bonus would be an extra $7,500 in year one.
Terminal is far away.
I guess it comes down to money. How much are R+L drivers making? The guy said they pay by the route... Kind of vague so not sure what to expect exactly. I'm assuming it's more than Schneider's starting pay which is .44cpm.
Line haul sounds like a bit of a grind. I would be stuck in the north east pulling doubles at night all winter. But getting home daily is pretty good I guess.
What do you guys think? I'd like to hear from R+L drivers here.
OTR with Schneider or Line Haul LTL with R+L Carriers?
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LTL won't have to worry about finding a place to park. Won't get held up for hours at customers waiting to get unloaded/loaded. Sleep in own bed, use own bathroom. More work/life balance
OTR easier to set your own schedule. No commute. Flexible time off, take time off anywhere. Doesn't feel like a job compared to local/ltl
I think the R + L job has more advantages than the Schneider one. But you might like OTR and you'll never know unless you try it. IMO tanker is the only thing I wirth considering doing OTR in
Also have a call scheduled with UPS for a "feeder driver."
That said, LTL linehaul is where the money is at for companies like Estes and Old Dominion. If R&L is vague on their pay policy I don't know enough about them to know what the money is like there. But you could always jump ship when you get your 1 year experience and go to basically any of the LTL companies and make more money if R&L isn't paying you too good.
With Schneider they might keep you around the Northeast anyways depending on how often you want hometime. But I don't know a lot about Schneider either so maybe the dispatchers will run you out West if you let them know that you'll stay out for a month or so at a time.
If you go the OTR route I would suggest thinking about what comforts you want in a truck. Fridge, inverter and APU. A lot of warehouses don't even let drivers inside since 2020, which isn't a big deal in the spring and the fall but in the winter and in the summertime you want that APU when the warehouses have no idling policies and won't let you inside (and also Schnieder probably has a no idling policy as well though I'm not sure on that). I think Schnieders newer trucks have APU's but if I remember right, when they were recruiting at my CDL school several years ago not all the trucks had APU's on them. So ask about that.
If you want to drive nationally you could do OTR with LTL companies as well, but the thing is to the best of my knowledge you're not going to get more than 2 days off after spending 3 - 6 weeks out on the road, like you will with traditional OTR companies. I know at Estes I asked about it and they said you could stay out for months at a time but when you came home you were still only getting 2 days off. So, there's that to think about too. Although Schnieder's hometime policy might not be much better (I don't know what their hometime policy is) so maybe that won't matter.
Note that your time on the road with a trainer at Schneider will be VERY brief--about a week, or so.
This is either an advantage--or a disadvantage, depending on what you're looking for.
Most other starter companies keep you with a trainer for about 4 weeks, or thereabouts.
I think most experienced drivers would agree--that 1 week with a trainer is usually not enough.
If you live in the eastern US, you probably won't see much west of I-35 with Schneider, unless you're willing to stay out A LOOOONG time.
In that case--most of your driving for Schneider (as a beginning driver) will probably be in the northeastern US.
For that, consider getting a good GPS system--you'll need it.
If you want to run out west more, consider another starter company, like Swift. You will see more of the western US with them (especially in their reefer division).
If you decide to go tanker with Schneider, that's fine--but only do so if you're sure you will do so with a DEDICATED account.
For tanker--go ahead and get your tank, & hazmat endorsements.
A TWIC card will come in handy there, too.
Otherwise, I would suggest...start a tanking career with another carrier that pays MUCH better (Superior Carriers, etc).
And yes, I was with Schneider for a while.
Now I do tanker duty, hauling fuel.
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