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Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Tips for Truck Drivers to Save Money




When it comes to driving a truck, there are plenty of expenses that come with the territory. The bottom line for a truck driver is the gross amount of money he or she makes less their expenses. Cutting down on various expenses can really help to increase the amount of revenue they are able to keep for themselves.





The most expensive investment for a truck driver is the truck so getting a good deal on a quality piece of equipment is important. The industry tends to have an abundance of used trucks on lots and you can get one that is in good condition for a reasonable price. New trucks are more expensive but they come with a better warranty and you have the peace of mind that it hasn’t been through too much wear and tear.





Getting a good interest rate on your truck is going to lower the cost of your overall payments. It is a good idea to pay extra on your truck towards the principal when you can. This will help you to pay it offer sooner and it will reduce the amount of interest you pay over the life of the loan.





Investing both time and money in routine maintenance is a good way to save money. Your truck will run better with regular oil changes and taking the time to check over all your hoses and lines will prevent you from having to buy expense parts on the road. Having the right amount of air in the tires will also save you on fuel expenses.





Pay close attention to the cost of fuel when you are driving over the road. You may be able to save several cents per gallon by going to another truck stop. Many of the chain truck stops offer fuel cards that will also save you money. Each time you use your card you can save a few cents per gallon. They can also offer a points system where you can buy meals or other items from inside.





Showers can become expensive for truck drivers, with many truck stops charging up to $7 for one. Most of them offer the shower for free if you get a set amount of gallons of fuel. It may be more cost effective to get fuel each morning instead of filling up at one location so you can take advantage of free showers. That is one expense that really adds up fast.





Food is another cost that truck drivers find puts a dent in their wallet. It is a good investment to get a small refrigerator for your cab. You can store lunch meat, fruits, snacks, and drinks in there. This is also more convenient than having to stop to get something to it. This will also help you eat healthier because many truck stops offer fast food options as well as a restaurant.





Truck drivers do need some hot meals though, and these can be eaten at any truck stop restaurant. There are also small stove tops that operate on butane you can buy for your truck. They work great for heating up meals you can enjoy in your truck instead of having to pay for a meal in the restaurant.



There are plenty of personal supplies a truck driver needs to carry with them. Paying for these items at a truck stop is very expensive. Pack plenty of soap, deodorant, toothpaste, mouthwash, and razors so you won’t run out. You should also carry plenty of clothing so that you don’t have to pay to do laundry at truck stops.





A good way to prepare is to pack a very large duffle bag with all of your travel supplies. Carry a smaller duffle bag with one change of clothes, your personal hygiene items, and a couple of towels. You can conveniently carry in the small duffle bag and leave the majority of your supplies in your truck. This is also a good safety measure in case you happen to leave your bag behind.