If you choose to become an over-the-road (OTR) driver, you’ll be able to choose between team trucking and solo driving. There are pros and cons for both types of trucking and at the end of the day, which is best for you will depend on your personal preferences.
Team Trucking Overview
Team truckers alternate who is driving the vehicle. This allows them to stay in compliance with hours of service (HOS) regulations, which limit the number of hours a trucker can drive, while still keeping the truck moving. Some team drivers pair up with someone they already know, such as a spouse, family member, friend, or trucking school classmate.
In other cases, you can take advantage of team matching that will pair you with another driver based on your professional goals and preferences. This is available with many motor carriers, including DSW.
Pros of Team Driving
- Higher Earning Potential: Team drivers can keep their trucks moving and this is valuable for motor carriers. As a result, they are willing to pay more for trucking teams. This translates into higher earning potential for you.
- Company on the Road: Trucking is often a solitary job and many drivers appreciate the opportunity to have some company with them on the road. Team trucking is a great option for spending time with a family member or friend while making money, which is one reason why husband-and-wife trucking teams are common.
- Split Up Tasks: Team truckers split up driving time and can also divide and conquer for non-driving tasks. This makes it easier to get things done quickly and efficiently.
What to Consider
Team drivers have to be comfortable sharing the relatively small space inside a semi-truck with someone else. This is why these arrangements often work best for drivers who already know and are comfortable with each other. Whether you are driving with someone you know or not, it’s important to practice good communication.
Solo Driving Overview
Solo trucking is pretty self-explanatory. Instead of sharing responsibility with another driver, you are solely responsible for operating your vehicle. You will need to take regular breaks due to HOS regulations and must keep track of your driving hours to ensure you are in compliance.
Pros of Solo Driving
- More Control: As a solo trucker, you have more control over where and when you stop, what music you listen to, how you organize your truck, et cetera. If you are a very independent person, you will probably prefer to be able to make all of these decisions yourself.
- Sleep in a Stationary Truck: Team drivers need to be able to sleep while the truck is moving and the other trucker is driving. This can take some getting used to. Solo drivers, on the other hand, park when it’s time to rest.
What to Consider
As we mentioned previously, team drivers have higher earning potential. Additionally, spending time on the road by yourself can affect your mental health if you are normally an extroverted person. It’s important to consider your personality and earning goals when deciding between team and solo trucking.
Team and Solo Opportunities at DSW
At DSW, we are currently hiring OTR and regional truckers. We have team matching available or you can choose to work with someone you already know if you both become DSW drivers.