There are many reasons guys and gals choose longer trips as opposed to short-haul trucking; most of which boils down to personal likes and dislikes.
However, being a long haul or OTR (over the road) driver is not just a job, it’s a lifestyle with both good and bad points.
Some guys get into a trucking career for the sole reason that they love driving and being around the big equipment! It’s also a known fact that the loud roar of a diesel engine (that raw, unbridled horsepower) is said to raise the ‘testosterone levels in the human body.’ Even in this stressed economy, there are still lots of long-haul trucking jobs, which isn’t the case with many other professions.
A commercial driver’s license not only gives a driver plenty of job opportunities but there’s some satisfaction knowing that if you don’t like the company or people you’re working for, you can always look for another job. More recently, many truckers seem to prefer short haul trucking jobs, as they don’t require the serious lifestyle changes as running long.
The money for long trips can be good if you are with a fair company.
However, the consensus nowadays is that long haul jobs do not compensate the driver fairly for the long hours he is away from home.
Yes, there’s orders from dispatch and yes, there are hours of service rules to follow.
BUT, you still have more flexibility than anyone sitting behind a desk pushing a pencil all day long, too!
That will tell right away that the company may be having problems creating high driver turnover.” It doesn’t matter where you live (small town or big city), it’s always possible to get a job.It isn’t impossible to be an OTR driver with good health and happy family life, but it is certainly more of a challenge.With careful planning and the right trucking company, a career in this niche of the trucking industry, can be satisfying and rewarding and still, an honourable profession.It can also mean the end of a relationship, due to the long periods of absences.If a driver suffers from loneliness, long-haul trucking may not be a great choice. Since the ruling on no handheld devices has been implemented, the driver cannot talk to friends or family when driving.Some drivers just can’t get enough of driving; they simply love to drive a big truck – many shutter at the thoughts of backing into a loading dock several times each week and maneuvering tight spaces with multiple city deliveries all week long – so those local or short haul, has no appeal to them whatsoever.It’s the nice long highway trips that hold more appeal for some truckers.The high cost of restaurant food, fuel, repairs and equipment, is making this niche far less appealing than it once was.Some truckers have stated that with the introduction of electronic log books, the attraction of the independence factor is waning somewhat.Long-haul truckers have the privilege of seeing some pretty spectacular scenery on their journeys, that would otherwise cost lots of money on a paid vacation.Trucking can be an adventure, and a great way to see the country.