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Old 19th August 2015, 14:30   #1
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Default Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Hello, this is targeted towards single or fleet truck owners. It has been a dream to do a long-distance journey by truck, as driver. The vision is to take a fully-loaded truck on a regular job, and bring back to city of origin with another load. It may seem like a case of taking an opportunity that could benefit a professional driver, but still wanted to put this out there to see if there is the opportunity. I am also open to having the regular driver on the trip as well, as long as there is considerable driving involved for myself.

I don't currently have a heavy vehicle licence, but this will be done well before the journey. I also don't expect any remuneration for this, and will also be open to funding my way during the journey, even taking care of fuel expenses if that can swing a decision in my favour

I have asked around through my personal network but no one was able to connect me with a truck owner or company, and so this public query. I look forward to hearing from this forum on what would be possible.

I'd love to start and end in Bangalore, but am open to other cities as well.

The result would be a travelogue that will generously mention the owner/company's support, and also raise funds/awareness for issues that are faced by long-haul truckers in India.

Look forward to all your thoughts.
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Old 19th August 2015, 14:37   #2
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

VRL logistics have a constant demand for drivers. They advertise on their trucks for want of drivers for bus and trucks. Have you tried there? Next time you spot a VRL bus/truck , feel free to call the number painted on the tail gate.
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Old 19th August 2015, 14:41   #3
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

From what I understand, the OP wants to do a one-off trip like this on a truck. VRL might not entertain his request.

Interesting thoughts though ! Good luck to avkurian.
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:00   #4
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

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Originally Posted by avkurian View Post
I also don't expect any remuneration for this, and will also be open to funding my way during the journey, even taking care of fuel expenses if that can swing a decision in my favour
From what my friend who was in to logistics business said, it is difficult to find good truckers now days. Thanks to the work atmosphere and social status, it is very difficult to find a good truck driver even if they were ready to provide good pay. Hence, you may not be able to turn the deal just based on monetary benefit.

Also, do note that a truck + load equals a lot of money and good will. It is a risk for any truck operator to hand over the vehicle to you just to save few thousands (in salary and fuel as you mentioned).

If you find anyone willing to do the same, consider yourself lucky. Else, I guess the best possible option will be to join any driver on a long distance mission after convincing the truck operator. This may give the next best experience.
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:05   #5
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Yes -VRL ! Take a month's break, join them, take the longest route that they will give. And enjoy the drive(s).
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:32   #6
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Fascinating idea. Please tweet through the trip as well, if you can!

ANY truck fleet or courier company would agree. I have met atleast half a dozen such business owners who are really at their wits end in recruiting staff post MNREGA. No one wants to drive even trucks with AC cabins these days for a salary of 25000 (per my last such conversation a year back).

Bigger issue would be your lack of familiarity in bribing the state-wise transport / RTO department enforcement teams. Thats where you would be a potential liability compared to seasoned operators.
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:34   #7
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Someone in my FB network, along with his friends, did the Ahmadabad-Delhi route as co-passengers in a Truck. You could try something like that, atleast for starters.
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:35   #8
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

While chasing the dream is nice, I am worried about the risk involved - not only to you, but other road users as well.

Getting a license - especially in India - would be fairly easy. But the point is how do you really prepare yourself for handling a vehicle of that size and weight? Have you driven a truck before? A loaded one? What's your training plan? How many hours of training hours are you planning to put in before embarking on this dream journey with a loaded truck across multiple state boundaries?
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:47   #9
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Been there, done that!

For reasons that don't belong here, I ended up owning 2 Eicher Jumbo 20.16 trucks. These trucks did the Pune-Kerala-Pune and Pune-Bhuj-Pune routes.

So on a couple of occasions I along with the main driver did these routes.

This experience will teach you things like:

1. How difficult the other smaller vehicles make it for truck drivers.
2. How little a truck driver actually knows / sees around him and what a miracle it is that more folks don't get crushed under trucks.
3. How cops treat the drivers. Long distance drivers get slapped at least a few times each month, especially if they are from out of state.
4. How good the roads in Gujarat are.
5. How the system of corruption by the traffic cops and the RTO works. How overloaded trucks buy monthly passes which allows them to pay one-time bribes. These passes are just pictures of gods, animals, etc.

Well, best of luck and careful driving!!! Try to stick to the southern states, Mah. and Gujarat.

Last edited by john doe : 19th August 2015 at 15:51.
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Old 19th August 2015, 15:58   #10
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Wow, that's a lot of insight and experience.. I understand there would be a few negative bureaucratic experiences along the way, but in these days with a number of political and administrative leaders active on social media, maybe a well-timed tweet could actually begin to bring about change. Of course, I know it isn't all that easy, but it would be a start.

In terms of preparing myself for this endeavour, that too needs to be planned. The first step is someone to give me the keys. Whether an owner would feel confident enough to give me the keys or not is a sale I would need to make.

@phamilyman, if there is a truck owner you think you could intro me to, that would be fabulous. My email is (myTBHPhandle) @gmail.com

Thanks for all your thoughts and for taking the time.
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Old 19th August 2015, 16:00   #11
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Would you hire a driver for your car, with your credentials - Want to drive for the heck of driving, no driving experience and preparing to get a driving licence?? I wouldn't! Neither can I imagine anyone giving their truck + load to a driver with your CV!

Although I really like your idea and wish you all the best in your endeavours!
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Old 19th August 2015, 18:03   #12
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

Quote:
Originally Posted by avkurian View Post
It has been a dream to do a long-distance journey by truck, as driver.

Look forward to all your thoughts.
Kurian,

I get what you are trying to put forward and I am all for it, after all we do share the same passion. (maybe its the name )

It so many times that I think, I should have been in Europe just so I could pursue my passion of long hauling. In developed countries, trucking is not looked down on. Heck, there is a career to be made of it. If you have followed Ice Road Truckers, there is a hierarchy of driving with the starting off as a delivery van driver and going up to oversize and expensive cargo hauling. In our country, anything that has a driver tag to it is looked down on.

In your case from what you wish to do, the best bet is to get friendly with a good driver and down the road, I am sure he will give you the wheel.

This is a channel I follow of a Polish lady driver on Youtube:
https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCP5...O0qo6xkeGp5W4A
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Old 19th August 2015, 19:01   #13
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

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Bigger issue would be your lack of familiarity in bribing the state-wise transport / RTO department enforcement teams. Thats where you would be a potential liability compared to seasoned operators.
Or Maybe an asset, just imagine if he is stopped by an enforcement team, and he comes out wearing decent clothes, instagramming and tweeting away in fluent English, the enforcement guys will be at their wits' end!
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Old 19th August 2015, 23:24   #14
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

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Or Maybe an asset, just imagine if he is stopped by an enforcement team, and he comes out wearing decent clothes, instagramming and tweeting away in fluent English, the enforcement guys will be at their wits' end!
Hope you jested. In my experience what you described is a double edged sword.

Highway cops are used to be treated like dirt by VIPs and riding roughshod over commercial vehicles (like someone said, getting slapped). You do all this fancy "high class" behavior and there's a fair chance someone will take his frustrations out on you on some pretext.

You will represent the life he could never had. The average highway cop spends hours in the sun, with many tough years as a lackey doing the grunt work to get bribes for the higher up. They would love to have led regular well paying middle class jobs or even a better police beat.

I could be wrong here but after being regularly bullied by shared-auto drivers and cab drivers in Gurgaon for similar reasons, I'd be really skeptical of your approach.
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Old 20th August 2015, 12:52   #15
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Default re: Want to do one long round-trip as a Truck Driver!

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Originally Posted by avkurian View Post
Thank you very much. I will check on this right away!

Quote:
Originally Posted by jkrishnakj View Post
From what I understand, the OP wants to do a one-off trip like this on a truck. VRL might not entertain his request.
Interesting thoughts though ! Good luck to avkurian.
Well, if the OP has something interesting to offer for VRL, they might consider it. VRL has a very successful print media division(vijaya karnataka).They might get a good chance at using this opportunity for publicity. Go on a mission like spreading awareness on HIV/AIDS,blood donation etc.

From what I know their longest route is between Bangalore and Delhi
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