When people think CDL, they automatically think of over-the-road truck drivers. While most drivers get their start in that role, there are lots of other jobs that you can utilize your Class A CDL License to qualify for. Learn about what type of jobs you can get with your Commercial Drivers License (CDL).
Solo OTR Driver
When people think about over-the-road truck drivers, they most often think about one person in a semi-trailer enjoying the freedom of driving their route alone. If you’re the kind of person that needs independence, solo OTR driving is a good option to use your CDL. A tremendous amount of opportunity is available for solo truck drivers. They’re in charge of their day and can enjoy a flexible schedule.
Team OTR Drivers
Essential for maintaining the supply chain from coast to coast, team drivers are able to keep their trucks moving over long distances because they can swap driving duties as necessary. Instead of driving your route alone, you have company along for the ride. Team OTR truck drivers are on the road for many days at a time, which is something to consider when it comes to your home life. Because team drivers can cover more distance in a shorter amount of time than a single truck driver, there’s a possibility to earn more money.
Dedicated Account Drivers
Drivers for dedicated accounts haul freight for certain customers. Dedicated account drivers work with the same customers on a route with a set schedule that doesn’t change often. Dedicated drivers typically load and unload their own freight. This is not typically the case with most OTR truck drivers. However, these Dedicated Truck Driving Jobs typically pay more and get you home more often than standard OTR jobs do. If you’re someone who likes the comfort of familiarity and what to expect, becoming a dedicated account driver may be a good option for you.
Temperature Controlled Truck Jobs
Transporting perishable items and climate-sensitive goods requires the use of a temperature-controlled truck. These trucks are designed to maintain specific temperatures in order to preserve goods like seafood, meat, dairy products, fruits, and vegetables. Driving temperature-controlled units (TCU) offers you the opportunity to haul a variety of goods and routes. These jobs often pay more than standard driving jobs.
Drivers who work one-way truckload jobs transport freight from one location to another. There’s a variety of customers to serve through one-way truckloads nationwide and even into Canada and Mexico. If you’re not looking for long-haul jobs, some truckloads are delivered via a relay program that has drivers home every night.
Owner operator truck drivers own their own trucking business. They can either own or lease their truck, but are responsible for finding freight to haul and the daily activities of owning a trucking company. There’s a lot of freedom that comes with owning your own trucking business, but a greater amount of responsibility to ensure your success.
Intermodal truckers are responsible for hauling freight between railyards and customers. Because the train covers the longest leg of the journey, intermodal jobs are for solo drivers. This means you could spend more time at home.
Large or unusually shaped freight are hauled using commercial flatbed trailers. The driver is responsible for using the proper straps, tarps, and other equipment to ensure the cargo is safely secured. Because these jobs are more demanding, they’re often paid higher wages than the average trucking job.
Driving Jobs Where You’re Home Every Night
Once you have a few years of OTR driving experience, you have even more opportunities available to you. Some drivers find that their life situation changes and they wish to spend more time at home. And some just grow tired of spending so much time on the road.
You have several options at this point. You can search for local trucking jobs in your area that have you home every night, or you can find another use for your CDL without leaving the trucking industry. You can use your experience to become a supervisor, recruiter, truck driving instructor, bus driver, mechanic and more.
CDL Training Instructor
If you’re looking for a change of pace in your truck-driving career or just want to spend more time at home, there’s a continued demand for CDL training instructors.
To be qualified for a CDL training instructor position, you must generally have:
- Verifiable OTR tractor-trailer experience
- Valid Class A CDL License
- Clean MVR and background
- High school diploma or GED
- Excellent communication skills
- Demonstrate intellectual and leadership abilities
- Be able to perform duties of over-the-road, basic skills, and classroom instruction as assigned
- Regular, reliable, and predictable work attendance
- Ability to obtain and maintain licensure as required by applicable state regulations
To learn more about career opportunities with Roadmaster Drivers School, visit our Careers page.