There are several different factors that will affect a truck driver’s schedule. These include:
- Trucking company
- Loading/unloading delays
However, a typical truck driver schedule may look something like this:
- Morning: Most truckers begin the day early—anywhere between 4 and 6 am. After eating breakfast and possibly taking a quick shower, they’ll begin their pre-trip inspection or fill out driving logs. Many truckers check the weather and driving conditions, plan stops, and figure out where weighing stations are prior to hitting the road. Once everything has been checked and planned, drivers will begin driving.
- Afternoon: While the amount of time spent on the road varies depending on the trucking company and the haul, many drivers will spend up to 11 hours on the road after a consecutive 10-hour break. Many trucking laws and regulations do not allow truckers to spend more than 14 hours on the road. Violation of this rule can be incredibly costly. Afternoons are typically spent on the road with a few breaks in between. Additionally, loading or unloading a haul is typically done in the afternoon.
- Evening: After reaching the 11-hour limit, most truckers will stop at a truck stop for the night. They’ll park their rig, perform a post-trip inspection, and fill out any necessary paperwork or workflow. Then they’ll have some free time, which is usually spent eating, watching TV, reading, or checking in with their families. Most truckers turn in early to get enough sleep before their early start the next day.
A truck driver’s work schedule is incredibly demanding. The extended amounts of time spent on the road limit how often truckers come home.
So how often do truck drivers come home? While “home days” will vary depending on the company, most over-the-road truck drivers are on the road between 4-6 weeks at a time with a short visit in between routes.