Being a OTR driver and spending up to 2 month on the road without coming back requires some serious truck supply to successfully finish the lads they carry. We all know that being a Class A truck driver is not an easy job and that it takes a lot of sacrifice and hard work to be a truck driver.
Now days when trucking industry becomes more and more competitive and profit margins are going down truck driver are facing constant pressure from the fleet managers or dispatch departments when it comes to pick up and delivery times.
If you ask me this is totally unfair that everything is put on truck drivers back. Entire company should work as a team to increase the efficiency and productivity level and make more money.
But still there is some things truck drivers can do in order to reduce the level of pressure and stress that has been on their back. Now days there is a ton of gadgets or apps that can help you go trough your trucking life and nowadays it is easier than ever to spent some non driving time while you are on the road.
For the purpose of the increasing efficiency and reducing pressure and making you as comfortable as we can while you drive your beast I created this small list of 10 things every Class A truck driver should have in his truck cabin:
Mobile or Smart Phone
Of course this is nothing new and we all use the cell phones for 20 years now but there is some things that can make a huge difference if you use them. Today there is unlimited number of options to buy but some of them may fit better for truck driver life.
One of the things that are mandatory is to buy yourself a smartphone. Latest market research are showing that Android powered devices are way more popular among trucking population and 91% is the market share Android devices hold in trucking industry. Almost entire remaining market size is held by Apple iPhone. So buying one of these two devices is a great way to start.
There is a lot of benefits having a smartphone in trucking industry and some of them could really save a lot of time and money for both you and trucking company you work but I would say the main benefits are:
– Great cameras allow you to take picture or scan documents and to send them electronically in a second to company HQ
– You can download cool apps that can help you with your daily routine. Like E’Log Book Apps
– Smart phone can be a great device for entertainment while you are a trucks stop taking rest
– You can find where to add fuel cheaper
Over the last decade when the GPS becomes massive that brought a lot of relief to truck drivers across entire world. It become very easy to find a pick up and delivery stops and to plan everything in ahead simply by knowing the estimate of the trip duration time required to reach the destination.
Of course all of us know that those GPS Navigation are not quite perfect and that sometimes it can lead you trough the city downtime instead of highway over all the effect is positive an they help the ordinary truck driver a lot.
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But there is some things to have in mind when buying them.
– Always buy a GPS Navigation that is prepared and designed to be used by trucks and for truck drivers. There is a big difference between those and navigations prepared for passenger cars.
– Try to buy the premium brands and high end devices because the map quality is better with them.
– Try to find the devices that have the latest versions of maps and that offer a free life time upgrade
– There is more advanced models that will try to avoid any traffic jams and accidents on the route so it would be good idea to get one to save a lot of time.
What I mean here is cash – not some credit or debit cards you might carry with you. I don’t even think on fuel card with the option to withdraw money from ATM. I mean real cash.
Have some amount of the cash along your side in a truck cabin. It doesn’t have to be a lot of money, a couple of hundreds will do the work and can be a great help in some cases.
Thinks of the possible situation that you find yourself driving over night and once of a sudden truck stops in the middle of nowhere without no apparent reason. You can dial a road assistance but if you are owner operator you know that the cost could easily end up on few thousands. So what you do then – try to improvise and make your own repair.
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You might be able to use a truck radio and get a piece of broken equipment or part and continue your driving just because you had some money with you and you were able to pay for the repair.
Always when you are driving bring some food with you on the truck. I know that you think why and that you can buy it everywhere and that is actually true but having some food on the truck has a multiple benefits that can help you a lot.
Driving across the entire country and living on the wheels makes the eating habits a bit complicated or of not complicated than expensive than usually so I prepared a small list of tips that may use you to make it better.
– Food that can be stored in the truck buy in advance in cheaper places so that you save money
– Some types of food you like may be hard to find in some parts of the country so think in advance and buy it before leaving the home
– Save money by preparing some meals in the truck
– Buy fresh food in some parts of country: example buy fruit in California
All of you driving Class 8 truck over the country and especially those driving across Canada probably discovered that there is huge difference between drinking water prices and quality of the water as well.