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5 life hacks that truckers need to know

January 11, 2024

Trucking isn’t just a job, it’s a lifestyle. A truck for a truck driver is their office, bedroom, and recreational space, so the distinction between work and life can get murky. In the world of trucking, efficiency, safety, and well-being are the cornerstones to successful trucking. So to help navigate the highways more smoothly, seasoned truckers have learned invaluable life hacks tailored to make the journey safer, more comfortable, and ultimately, more rewarding for drivers. Here we provide some life hacks for anyone just starting out as a truck driver that we got straight from the source: truck drivers themselves!

1. Make the space in your rig yours

Personalizing your workspace can provide comfort and helps create an environment that feels motivating and productive. By making your truck yours, you can infuse it with elements that reflect your unique personality, allowing for a more enjoyable and conducive work experience. A few inventive tricks can turn a trucker’s mobile office into a comfortable living space.  

With some innovative thinking, YouTuber, “Alex the Trucking Guy” (link to his channel is below), turned his truck bed into the ultimate gaming setup. Some additional advice he gives truckers to making the most of their space is to:

  • Hanging up lights will help you to create the desired ambience. From simple LED strip lights to fairy lights, and even holiday lights, the lighting can help separate work time from downtime.
  • Investing in a comfortable mattress and driver seat cushion are also key. They can keep you sitting upright and comfortable behind the wheel, while sleeping soundly at night. 
  • Hanging up motivational quotes and images will help empower you to reach your goals. 
  • Placing small towels strategically to prevent items in your pantry or minifridge from creating audible clatters while on the road is a simple yet essential trick for maintaining your sanity while driving.
Learn more from “Alex the Trucking Guy” on his YouTube channel

2. Keep an emergency kit on hand in your long-haul truck

Emergencies, while often unforeseen, can be managed with a well-prepared emergency kit stocked with essentials. Beyond the basic repair tools, this kit should include inventive solutions for any issue a driver may face. Common items are often multi-purpose; toothpaste, for instance, proves handy for defogging headlights, while soda can be effective in getting rid of stubborn rust. Additionally, carrying spare toilet paper in your long-haul truck or even kitty litter can save the day when a bathroom is out of reach. Being proactive by assembling an emergency kit can offer peace of mind and ensures readiness in addressing potential troubles and averting desperate circumstances on the road.

3. Meal prepping ahead of time helps truck drivers ensure good meals while on the road

Truckers frequently encounter limited options while browsing truck stop aisles, scouring the stores for anything resembling a proper meal, often having to settle for unsatisfying, unhealthy meals. The solution to this can be simple: meal prep at home beforehand to bypass the struggle of finding last-minute dinner. Seasoned truck drivers also recommend setting up a convenient kitchenette in the truck. Equipping the truck with compact, portable appliances allows for easy meal preparation and storage, ensuring healthier and more satisfying meals on the road. 

4. Use the seatbelt hack for extra safety while driving your long-haul truck

Safety is key when it comes to living the life of a truck driver. Truckers frequently find themselves spending the night at truck stops, often without the added layer of security they may have at home beyond their vehicle’s door locks. To safeguard against potential risks, experienced truck drivers recommend being proactive. Consider investing in security cameras and alarms. Opt for parking in well-lit public areas and employing tricks of the trade like what is known as “the seat belt hack.” This technique involves looping the seatbelt through the arm of the door before fastening, effectively preventing the door from being opened in case of a break-in attempt.

In this TikTok video, female truckers at NFI Industries demonstrate the seatbelt method which they attribute to helping keep them feeling extra safe at night:

5. Use the right technology when you’re out on the road driving your long-haul truck

Sometimes generic navigation apps like Waze or Google Maps fall short when it comes to effective truck navigation. Some specialized trucker apps or GPS systems consider truck-specific routes that will strategically avoid low bridges, restricted roads, and provide real-time traffic updates. Using technology dedicated to anticipating obstacles impactful to truckers helps long-haul truckers avoid wasted time, effort and unnecessary stress. Certain apps can also help with finding convenience fueling stations and fleet management solutions. WEX offers a trio of apps – WEX CardControl, EFS CarrierControl, and Fleet One CarrierControl – to simplify navigation, streamline communication, and manage fleet cards all from the convenience of your smartphone.

WEX is a leading, global fintech solutions provider, simplifying payments and back-end business processes in the fleet management, benefits management, and corporate payments areas. To learn more, please visit the company’s About WEX page.

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