Team driving involves two truckers working together, taking turns driving the same truck. Team driver jobs usually involve a longer haul that’s more time-sensitive. What would be difficult for a single driver can be accomplished by a team, with one driver sleeping while the other is driving. As part of a team, the amount of down-time is significantly reduced.
Team drivers are paid for their combined mileage, which is often at a higher rate compared to solo driving. Companies also prefer working with truck driving teams because it can expedite delivery times.
If you’re considering team driving, here are some tips to consider:
Create a Plan
It’s important, before you get started, to develop a system and discuss each person’s expectations and preferences. Work out a schedule for shifts and discuss time management, like when and where you would like to stop for breaks.
When you’re a solo truck driver, you have more control over how you spend your day. You can generally choose when to take your breaks, where to take breaks, whether to listen to music or a podcast, etc. As a team driver, you’ll need to decide on these things together.
When it comes to driving shifts, some drivers prefer to drive at night with less traffic, other truckers prefer driving during the daytime for better visibility. Discuss your preferences with your teammate and be willing to compromise.
Communication is Key
Communication is very important to make a team driving partnership work, both with each other and actively checking in with dispatchers, supervisors and loading dock staff. If one driver learns about a crucial detail while the other is asleep or out of the cab, it will be very important to develop a system to relay this information to the other driver.
You Must Trust Your Teammate
Trust is a must with a driving team. The two of you will have to rely on each other throughout the day and night. If it’s done right — and with the right person — team driving can be a great experience. Think about it — you don’t have to try to back up into a tight space alone! It’s also less lonely when compared to driving on your own.