Trucking 101

What is OTR trucking?

In contrast to driving for a less-than-truckload carrier, where you might leave your house in the morning, make deliveries and return home at night, over-the-road trucking (also referred to as OTR or long-haul trucking) is a traveling lifestyle where time on the road is measured in weeks (usually two to three at a time) rather than hours.

CFI‘s OTR drivers get to see the country. They thrive on the freedom of the open road. And they do it all while earning a great living with a company that truly cares. If you’ve always loved trucks, or you’ve simply had a thirst for adventure, this could be the best job you’ve ever had.


What are the daily routines?

In a typical day, you can expect to drive for a maximum of 11 hours in any 14-hour period, with a required minimum rest time of 10 hours to follow. During breaks, you can grab a bite to eat, exercise, explore a new area or just relax with a book or watch some TV (the modern CFI sleeper cabs are wired for flat-screen TVs). Every day is a little different, and that’s what so many drivers love.

How much time will I spend on the road vs. at home?

In most cases, you can expect to be out on the road for 15 to 20 days at a stretch, with two or three days at home between. And for every seven days on the road, you can request a day off. Paid time off increases at full time, regular service loyalty benchmarks: 14 days the first five years, 21 days after five years, 28 days after ten years and 35 days after 15 years.

Driving record:

At a minimum, job candidates must not have any BACs, DUIs, DWIs or license suspensions for moving violations in the past five years. In addition, we reserve the right to judge each applicant on an individual basis regarding preventable accidents, moving violations and employment history.

Who qualifies?

CFI is an Equal Opportunity and Affirmative Action employer, committed to hiring top-notch candidates without regard to race, sex, disability, gender or other protected status. Below are a few basic requirements of the driver jobs at CFI. This list is not all-inclusive – for more details, call a recruiter.


CFI drivers must be 21 years or older and either hold or be able to obtain their Class A commercial driver’s license (CDL).


CFI regularly hires both male and female drivers. In fact, our female drivers are some of the best in the industry. Read about our own Stephanie Klang, ATA’s America’s Road Team Captain, and our other stellar women drivers here.

What are the living conditions like?

Our OTR drivers captain our state-of-the-art fleet — one of the most modern on the road — with an average vehicle age of three years. Powerful, smooth-driving, clean and high-tech, our equipment is built to make the driving experience comfortable and fun. All trucks are equipped with SiriusXM Radio to keep you entertained by day, and roomy sleeper cabs to help you sleep well by night.

We’ll structure your time on the road so that you have regular opportunities to check in at one of four terminal locations across the country. There, you can park your truck to shower, exercise, do laundry and enjoy other amenities, which vary by location.

Different Types of OTR Trucking Jobs


A student driver is still in training, and therefore works alongside an experienced driver, called a driver trainer. Apprentices earn one day of home time for every seven days of driving. Once requested, we will get you home within 14 days. Learn more about student opportunities.


Does a nice, long drive help you recharge your batteries? Do you love the feeling of an open road ahead? If so, solo driving could be the perfect career for you. As a CFI driver, you can hit the road for 15 to 20 days at a time, with two or three days at home in between trips.


Team driving is a great option for friends, families, spouses or partners who enjoy each other’s company. Key benefits include more flexibility in hours and consistent miles.


As a regional driver, you can enjoy benefits such as consistent, predictable miles and more home time than you would get with a cross-country driving career.


Dedicated drivers enjoy more home time and consistent hours, get guaranteed miles, and can earn additional bonuses for experience and productivity. Due to the high level of competition for these positions, drivers typically need to have significant experience to qualify.

Owner operator

If you’ve always had an entrepreneurial spirit, this could be your calling. The independent owner operators that contract with CFI own their vehicles and enjoy high pay and reliable miles. You can retain the option of driving in a team, solo, regional or dedicated setup, with sign-on bonuses available to owner operators who join us as a small fleet or for a minimum number of miles. If you don’t already own a truck, ask us about the owner operator track — we can help you earn a truck by driving with us.

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CFI policy provides equal employment and individual opportunity to all job applicants and employees without regard to race, color, religion, sex, age, national origin, disability, veteran status or any other status as protected by federal, state and local governments.

All new hires must pass a post-offer drug screen.