Team Driving – Yay or Nay?
What is team truck driving
If you feel like you could use some company during a long haul, maybe you should consider team driving. Being a professional truck driver means that sometimes you need to spend several days on the road, which can get lonely and boring, but having a driving buddy could change that.
Team driving is essentially two truck drivers sharing one truck, as well as the profit and all the expenses. However, as pretty much everything else in life, team driving has some good sides and some bad sides that are worth looking into before you make a decision.
Based on past experiences of team truck drivers, we came up with a Pro’s and Con’s list to help you.
Let’s start with the good stuff!
Like we mentioned before, when you’re part of a team, you share one truck with another driver, so while you are on a break, the other driver takes their turn to drive the truck. That means you cover more distance than you would as a solo driver. As you already know, more mileage equals more money, so this is one nice perk of team driving. Team drivers share the profit equally, and each share is often larger than what a solo driver would make for the same ride.
Another good thing about team driving is the company. You don’t need to spend hours just listening to music, audio books, or the radio, but you can enjoy a nice conversation during a long haul. Some teams are made up of two friends, while there are also husbands and wives who work as team drivers. As a professional truck driver, you will probably have to spend quite some time away from your family, so having your significant other on the road with you can actually be beneficial for the relationship.
Since you are sharing the profit with your teammate, it’s only fair that you share the expenses on the road as well. Whether you are sharing a meal at a restaurant, buying groceries to cook something, and even if something needs to get repaired on the truck, it’s much easier on the wallet when the bill is divided in half.
An extra pair of hands and another set of eyes
From time to time, a driver will be asked to help with the manual work, like the loading and unloading of goods, and having a partner to give you a hand is a great help. Besides helping with manual work, a partner can help you inspect and double-check the truck and all the equipment before you go on the road. You can never be too safe.
Now, let’s look at some of the bad sides of team driving.
A small living space
While it might be great sharing a lot of things with another driver, you have to remember that you are also sharing a pretty small living space. Newer trucks can have amazing sleeping cabins, but they are still essentially tiny rooms that can get really cramped really fast.
The sleeping situation
Besides the sleeping quarters being pretty small, it can be really hard sleeping in a moving vehicle. Remember, while you sleep the other driver continues to drive the truck, and that can be hard for some people to get used to. For some people, it’s impossible to get some quality sleep in a noisy truck. That can lead to lack of sleep, which is not something a truck driver should be experiencing. They need to be as alert as possible while they are driving, for their own safety and the safety of everyone else on the road.
The wrong teammate
As much as it can be great to have some company on the road if you don’t end up with the right teammate the haul can be horrible. You need to be compatible with your driving partner, but you don’t always get to choose who you drive with (it depends on the rules and regulations of the company you work with, so it’s advisable to research everything in detail). Sometimes you might have a different plan for the route you should take, for example, which could lead to a conflict.
However, even if you do get along with your partner, you have to always keep in mind that you are going to spend a significant amount of time with them, so you might not have as much privacy as you would like.
How to make it work
Don’t be discouraged by the bad sides of team driving, however, because they can be overcome. First of all, you need to work on building trust with your partner; remember you will be effectively putting your lives in each other’s hands. Second of all, you both need to remember to be tolerant and patient with each other. Respecting each other is essential.