So you want to get your foot into the door of the trucking world. You can take the bet on the high risk/high reward route and sign your name to a quarter-million dollar lease for a new commercial truck or head to the auctions and try to nab one “new to you” at a discount.
But for some, finding a reputable company to train you to drive a truck safely and legally, as well as having a decent starting pay, can be a difficult task. So let me introduce you to some of the best companies to start with, with some help from the team at FreightWaves Ratings.
- GP Transco
GP Transco jumped in the headlines a few years ago by offering a massive pay increase over the previous set of pay rates. It was the first shot in a war for drivers which led to the raising of pay around the industry. With 0.65 per mile starting pay, full benefits package, and address-to-address pay, they are a leading candidate for drivers looking for a great head start into the industry.
- Roehl Transport
When it comes to getting sound training, Roehl Transport is one of the best programs going. Being able to get a CDL in a reasonable amount of time, be paid while you are training, and then getting into a truck and making money afterwards is the main goal of all drivers when they fill out the application. They have locations across the country, so the drive or flight should not be a hassle.
- Schendier National
If you know my history, you had to know “ol’ Omaha Orange” would be gracing my list somewhere. Schneider National is a great program with training academies across the U.S. They have a great initial training program and a remedial training series if you have been away from the wheel for a while. And if you want to work your way up to owning your own truck, they have both trucks for sale and a lease program to run under their authority or a certified carrier.
- U.S. Xpress
Being one of the first carriers to use the Qualcomm device in cab and have cross-country team drivers, U.S. Xpress is a great company to begin your career with. Having an $0.82 starting pay with a five cent per mile raise after 45 days, it’s also one the the top starting pay levels you can find. It’s also a great company to pick if you want to bring a pet along.