BUDGETING & TRIP PLANNING
WELCOME TO BUDGETING 101:
Life behind the wheel presents its own unique challenges which ranges from loneliness, high levels of stress which can be caused by driving conditions and monetary pressures. There is much more that goes into being a truck driver than may meet the eye. One critical issue many drivers face is how their day to day is constantly different, which makes it difficult to plan for expenses, food and other necessary daily tasks drivers encounter. We wanted to offer budgeting resources and tips for our drivers to keep more money in their pockets. Even though the trucking industry offers plenty of opportunities for a good income, we want our drivers to be savvy with their funds, which benefits them in the long run. Planning ahead is one of the most pivotal things a driver can do to save their money on the road and see a difference in the amount of money they are saving. When drivers don’t have a plan it leads to more spontaneous spending which can hurt your bottom line income.
WHERE TO START:
Budgeting can be challenging and confusing, which is why many people do not take the time to do so. In order to begin your planning you need to have a couple of monthly expenses known in order to properly plan. For starters, a driver should know details of their payment package and benefits and documentation of all your monthly income and expenses. Your income and expenses may feel like a lot of information to put together, but once you take the time to do it initially it will save you so much time in the long run. Here is a list of incomes and expenses to consider including:
- Home Expenses:
- Mortgage or rent
- Car payments
- Cell phone payments
- Medical costs
- ATM fees
You may not experience all of these expenses or you may have more expenses than what this list is showing, just make sure you outline all of them that you personally have. One unique challenge that drivers face is that over-the-road (OTR) drivers and lease drivers are often not sure of the exact amount they will be receiving on a monthly or even weekly basis because it is subject to change. In these case scenarios an estimate within a couple hundred dollars should suffice to plan your budget.
MAKE A PLAN:
Once you have acquired all of the necessary information from above, you then need to go on and create your budgeting plan. With a relative idea of monthly expenses you experience you can then decide how much you are looking to spend on a monthly basis based on the amount of income you expect you will receive. An important factor in creating your budget is trip planning. Trip planning simply put, is you as a driver planning where you will be spending your personal time and money. Planning your trip allows you as a driver to plan things such as food, showers and fuel that allows you to move efficiently and effectively. Driver trip planning assists drivers in ensuring they are meeting all their needs throughout their trip. The opportunity to plan where you will be getting your diesel allows you to plan stops where the cost of them is lower. Truck stops have many resources for drivers to take advantage of, ranging from wifi to coffee and even laundry at some truck stops.
We have attached resources that will help you write out your budget and trip plan! Happy Trucking!