We are a new team that has been studying this forum for a couple months, and researching this career choice on this website and others.
We are ready to proceed. We have already began studying the manual and online resources to be ahead of the game when the time comes. We want to take our class together. We also want to go with a company that can get us together after the training period ASAP (Within reason of training adequacy of course, we do not like shortcuts either.) We are drug/alcohol free, hard working (20+ years in our current career,) eligible, professional, fast learners and dependable. Our only problem at this point is we are not yet licensed and have 0 Commercial driving experience. We understand the challenges we face and know we have what it takes to at least get our feet wet in this field. We also have a prepared plan B if we decide this is not us after our first year.
We are struggling between private and paid CDL training. We have our own financing so do not need to sign a contract but will be happy to do so if it was the right circumstances.
We have multiple CDL private schools near us: 160, MTC(DRC,) Roadmasters, Professional Drivers, and more.
We have not ruled out contracting with a carrier and training with them to get our feet wet and experience for the first year.
Could anyone, even if by DM, give us some advice on who is a GO and who is a NO-GO within an hour of St. louis. Personal vendettas are not welcome here. We understand problems and things happen. The last time this was discussed here was 2018 so would like some updated opinions as the reviews for these schools and carriers are hard to wade through. We want to ensure we get the training we need, and since we want to be a team, ensure we work with a company or school experienced with the team dynamic. It is also important we can network with companies that are interested in team drivers as well.
Thank you all so much for your time!
St. Louis Area CDL Driving School Recommendations..
Page 1 of 3
A no-lose suggestion:
You will find 2 CDL schools in the St Louis area that should do you proud in the following link:
Schools - Drive For DTI | Dot Transportation, Inc.
Also -- once you finish out with your CDLs, you can then drive team for this same carrier; read more about it at:
Driver Job Types - DTI (drivefordti.com)
This is easily one of the best reefer fleets to join up with, at the moment.
If you have studied up and read around here as indicated -- then you are probably aware that general freight right now is basically in the septic tank -- and so you should understand why I would suggest you look further into resources with a very reputable reefer fleet, instead (think "food"...it's usually pretty recession-resistant freight).
SPECIAL NOTE: I have no business (or other) ties to any of the above-listed entities. I recommended them based solely on what others have said about them here on this Forum; in addition, I have never driven for/with them, and do not know anyone else personally who has. Caveat emptor.
Another note: if the above carrier decides (for whatever reasons) not to hire you -- the above schools should still make for a very worthy start in the industry -- otherwise, DOT would not have them on their own website.....right?
KLLM EXPEDITED TEAM DRIVERS
High-miles, true team-freight with cross-country lanes.
100% No-Touch Freight
Late-Model Equipment--2024 models already on the road
Truck Amenities: Inverter, Refrigerator, TV Mount, Double-Bunk Sleeper, & Extensive Safety Package Added to Every Truck
If you should later decide that reefer duty simply isn't for you (and believe me -- I certainly understand -- been there, done that ) -- here are some team job listings...& some are dedicated that aren't reefer duty.....but should still keep you busy and running:
Werner Enterprises -- team driver listings -- list changes with time, so check back later
CAUTION: As new drivers, BE SURE TO AVOID any job or account that has you delivering to ANY of the so-called "dollar" stores: Dollar General, Family Dollar, Dollar Tree, etc. Those jobs/accounts are incredibly bad choices for rookie drivers -- instead, leave those for drivers with 3+ years of experience.
Werner Enterprises accepts new drivers right out of CDL school:
Werner -- training for new drivers -- team driver job ops available -- St Louis
Reefer is the way to go for teams or solo.
I did it for 18 years and liked it; coast-to-coast & border-to-border.
Refrigerated trailers can also haul dry van freight and hazmat freight. That's why you keep the wheels turning. Refrigerated companies haul food and medicine mostly and don't slow down because of a recession; everyone needs food and many need medicines.
Might even get expedited plasma loads which has to be frozen. Can't do that with a dry van.Last edited: Aug 30, 2023
Lately....team drivers have become especially popular with a lot of carriers...obviously because said carriers can run a rig much more efficiently with a team on-board; and....since many carriers are especially in a belt-tightening mode, teaming is (seemingly) the current freight du jour, so to speak.
Even with all that said -- your problem is of course -- you lack experience. So your team driving choices right now are somewhat limited.
Once you guys get AT LEAST A YEAR of seat-time under your belts (along with good safety records), A LOT more opportunities will then open up, and you will have the chance to drive where you can make more money.
Without question -- the most financially successful people I have witnessed in trucking....were team drivers who were teammates -- spouses running together.
Thank you all for the information so far. The lack of experience is my concern as well and the ability to get on the road as a team is my next concern. We are open to doing any kind of work. We are both dependable and not afraid of hard work. Choosing what school to go with is the decision we just can not make for some reason. Again. Thank you everyone for your kind replies and taking your time out of your day to help a stranger. I know you are all busy people.
If....somehow....all the above does not yield a job for you....you can then check into an opportunity with my old alma mater:
Schneider -- team truck drivers -- dry van, reefer, OR DOUBLES!
This position is unique -- it gives you the option to get experience pulling doubles, or "pups"....which is usually the trailer of choice in the LTL world.
The LTL sector would be a natural for you to pivot to later....for some of the best money in teaming. Examples: Old Dominion, ABF Freight, R & L Carriers, Estes, SAIA....note that Yellow/YRC/Holland is now totally out of business .
In exchange for their CDL training -- I think Schneider would only want a 9-month commitment from you. Inquire within, to verify.
As before: I have no ties now with Schneider (or any other carriers) -- so I don't benefit in any way if you should later sign up with the above. Caveat emptor.
Do a year with KLLM Expedited, then take a look at R&L Carriers.
Need 12 mos. experience for R&L Carriers.
CDL A Team Truck Drivers, $115,000 - $120,000 yearly (each driver)
Our Team Drivers are home every week!
Earn 1 week of vacation after 90 days of employment.
Come and experience the difference with R+L Carriers
Page 1 of 3