How to Become an Owner-Operator Truck Driver

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Many drivers and enthusiasts decide at one moment to start a career as owner-operators. This is a serious decision that needs to be well-thought-out. If you don’t approach this issue seriously, then you may face big problems. 

This is what this article is written for, which will help you understand this business. With this information, you can get started quickly and productively.

Who is the owner-operator?

This is an independent owner of a trucking business that owns a truck. Often the owner-operators are both businessmen and drivers. But there may also be a situation where you hire a driver, and you are engaged in management classes. We can say that the owner-operator is a cargo transportation company in one person.

What is the owner-operator responsible for? 

He chooses a route, plans them, maintains his truck, keeps accounts, communicates with customers, receives insurance, organizes all documentation, and can drive the truck on his own, says Indeed. Half of these responsibilities may disappear if he decides to use the dispatch services for owner-operators.

Why do many people want to be owner-operators? 

Several advantages attract most future business owners. 

A lot of people are happy to be mobile and buy the truck they need. For example, you feel comfortable with a small food truck. Great, you have a wide niche and a convenient vehicle for you. 

People are also attracted by the opportunity to manage their income independently. However, it is important to take into account that at first most of your earnings will be in business. The real income will be visible in at least six months. 

As always, future owners-operators are attracted by the freedom that their own business gives. It’s true, you manage your schedule. However, remember that often you are completely absorbed in the business. Also, your earnings now depend on many of your decisions. So it is undesirable to relax.

What does it take to become an owner-operator? 

There are several initial steps, after which you will become a full-fledged owner-operator. 

DOT and MC numbers

Be sure to get US DOT and MC numbers for legal business (see here). Also, you can’t forget about insurance. More information about which insurance is suitable for you can be found on the FMCSA website. 

Basic expenses

It is important to first calculate what most of the money will be spent on. This is fuel, truck repairs, and insurance.

Truck 

The owner-operator must have a truck to work with. It can be either your truck or a rented one. Which is better? Depends on your financial situation. But, of course, in the long run, buying your truck will cost you less than paying rent. 

A few tips to minimize waste:

  • don’t exceed the speed limit to save fuel;
  • constantly undergo truck maintenance;
  • use the dispatch services for owner-operators as advised on this site. This will help you focus more on business and routes, rather than on finding cargo and communicating with customers.

And so, becoming an owner-operator isn’t difficult at all. However, it is essential to remember that this is a big responsibility and financial investment. Decide on this only if you are ready.

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