How to plan your trip as a Trucker!

I get asked a lot as a truck driver how do you plan your day, how do you know where you will be at a certain point in time. Well the easy answer is I'm familiar with the routes, and know where I need to stop, the long answer is, and the truthful answer, is I do plan my day, and im going to show you how to plan your route as well!

I usually plan my day around a 60 mile an hour rule where 60 mile an hours is the average of the daily mile per hour. In this average I will plan where I need to be at a certain point during the day where I can take my 30 minute break where I can fuel up.

Generally speaking usually you get your load information from your computer, or dispatcher. This information will tell you where you need to pick up, the city ,state and address and all the pick up number information that you should have prior to picking up your load, and how far it is from your current location and how many miles it is for the whole trip..

From this I take my miles (per 60 miles an hour)  and I'll see how how long I have until I can pick up the load.  Usually it's within an hour or two. Once I get to the shipper , I will go in and give them the information, they will usually tell me what dock I need to go into and then back your truck into the door and wait to get loaded.

This is the part where we are unsure about how long is going to take for you to get loaded, now you need to take into account this could take a few hours this could take all day long. Which is why I really don't plan to the shipping office and they tell me how long is generally going to take to get loaded.

After this information I  generally see how far I have to drive to get to my destination and my company uses pilots and Flying J's (yours may use other fueling stations), so therefore I have an app on my phone that shows me all the pilots and Flying J's all over United States. If I am currently in need of fuel or if I need to scale out I will use this information to find the closest fueling station that I can.

While waiting to get loaded is generally when I plan my route. If your going to be heavy, you need to know where the closest CAT (Certified scales) will be. Will you be able to get to those scales before you run into a weigh station? How much fuel do you have? and how much will it take you to get to the customer? Generally you want to know how long it will take you to get to the customer, but there are a few circumstances that can lengthen that time, or shorten it, such as, what time of the day is it? will you have to go through any big cities to reach the customer? All of these factors need to be taken into account.

I personally am an early AM driver, I deliver early in the morning, or get to the customer before they open. This way I am offloading while the rush hour traffic is happening, and I am on my way to the next shipper after rush hour, to get loaded, and ride while most people are at their day jobs.
I hope you've found this information helpful, and I look forward to hearing from you!


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