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6 keys to saving money as a trucker


6 keys to saving money as a trucker

One of the biggest issues many truckers run into over the course of a life on the road is overspending. That, in turn, can make the financial realities of the job somewhat untenable.

Put another way, everyone would probably like to save a little more money each year, and truckers may be uniquely positioned to do just that, especially if they follow these recommendations:

1) Don't buy supplies while you're already on the road

It seems like you always realize you need something in the middle of a trip, but the more you can do to plan and make purchases in advance, the better off you'll be, according to Smart Trucking. Whether it's extra wiper fluid, more food or anything else, the markups you're likely to encounter at any random roadside shop or truck stop can be significant. Buy online or in-store before you hit the road, and you'll save a lot of money over time.

2) Make your own meals and store them in a cooler or fridge

Paying $10 or so for a meal here and there may not seem like much, but if you do it even once a day over the course of a month, you're suddenly racking up meal expenses in the hundreds of dollars, Smart Trucking added. Instead, you should buy your food at a grocery store and make it at home (then put it on ice) or even in a crock pot while you're driving.

3) Make a budget each month

One of the big problems many people — not just truckers — face with their monthly expenses is failing to realize how much they're spending, or what they're spending on, according to EZ Freight Factoring. If you sat down and looked at your average expenditures over the course of a year, you might be shocked to find the kinds of things you spend money on. Sit down and crunch the numbers, then set a budget for each category and resolve to stick by it.

4) Take the free stuff where you can get it

Too many truckers buy multiple bottles of water over the course of a trip instead of investing in a refillable bottle, EZ Freight Factoring said. The same is true of paying for internet connectivity services while they're on the road, instead of waiting to get to a place where they can use free WiFi. You may have more options to buy for free or using discounts than you realize.

5) Buy older or second-hand tech and entertainment

You don't necessarily need the latest and greatest in tech and entertainment to keep yourself happy on the road, according to Trucking Truth. The discounts you can get on a smartphone that's even a year old can be significant, and the same is true of paying for movies, books or other things you rely on for entertainment.

6) Take advantage of tax breaks

Finally, it's important to keep in mind that because many of the things you purchase on the road are for work-related purposes, they may be tax-deductible, Trucking Truth advised. Keep careful tabs on your road expenses and talk to a tax professional to see what flexibility you may have.

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