Newbies - Becoming A Driver

You have your CDL in your hot little hands and you're off to orientation and working with a trainer. What do you take with you? Remember that the storage space in a truck is limited and you will be sharing that limited space with another person who considers that truck his home most of the time. When packing to go out with your trainer use common sense and courtesy. If you take too much stuff you will infringe on the trainer's space. If you take too little you will have needs and the trainer will have to waste time filling them for you instead of teaching you.

Here is a list of things you will want to take with you. This looks like a long list, and it is, but consider the season when packing clothes. There is no need for a heavy jacket in the middle of August. Another tip is to always be considerate of your co-driver. Keep your belongings in order and neatly packed out of the way.

Student Things to Take List

  1. Drivers license and Fed Med card (duh, yes some people forget them!!)
  2. Diploma or GPA sheet from your school
  3. Social Security card (UNLAMINATED!)
  4. List of your personal references
  5. List of previous addresses
  6. List of wife's and children's Social Security numbers and birth dates (like I can remember all those!)
  7. A blank check or deposit slip from your bank (for direct deposit)
  8. A phone card
  9. Notebook
  10. Calculator (as big as possible)
  11. Ink pens and pencils
  12. Highlighter pens
  13. Prescription medications
  14. Prescription eye glasses
  15. List of any previous medications or surgeries you've had in the last few years
  16. Police reports from any accidents in which you may have been involved
  17. Full explanations for any arrests (yes, even as a stupid kid caught with a goat)
  18. A ten-year work history
  19. As much cash as you can afford (or an ATM card)

Note: Some of these things you may not need at orientation or may NEVER need at all. It is best to be prepared, and not be held up from getting out on the road having to wait for your wife or other family member to send you something by mail or fax.

Things For The Truck (Clothes)

  1. 3-5 pairs of good (hole free) blue jeans or work pants
  2. 5-7 pairs of socks
  3. 5-7 pairs of underwear (no, I don't care about boxers or briefs or thong's...eeek!)
  4. 3 bras, sports bras would work well (no, not for you guys!)
  5. 5-7 heavyweight t-shirts (no offensive logos)
  6. 2-3 good sweatshirts (also with no offensive logos)
  7. Good polo shirt or something with a collar (a company shirt would be advisable so bring some cash to buy one if the company has such things available)
  8. Belt (or suspenders)
  9. Work boots (and spare laces)
  10. "Comfy" driving shoes (slip-ons work good for late PM potty excursions)
  11. Light jacket (sweatshirts work for me)
  12. Good weather-proof WARM coat (preferably with an attached hood)
  13. Knit hat, stocking hat (or even better, a belaclava)
  14. Good cold weather gloves (not work gloves!)
  15. 1 pair heavyweight socks
  16. 1-2 sets of long johns
  17. Baseball cap (for bad hair days)
  18. Work gloves (pigskin type)

Once again, you may NEVER need all of these, but it's better to be prepared. In the beginning, most of your time will be spent inside of the truck, but if the truck were disabled in the winter, freezing to death would not be a good thing! Some of you folk in Florida or elsewhere in the far south may need to order this winter stuff from a catalog.

Personal Hygiene Stuff

  • Shower Kit
    1. Travel bag
    2. Toothpaste & toothbrush
    3. Shampoo (pop-top not screw-on caps)
    4. Conditioner (if you care about that stuff)
    5. Soap (liquid travels better)
    6. Disposable razors
    7. Shaving gel or creme
    8. Aftershave lotion
    9. Antiperspirant
    10. Travel mirror
    11. Comb or brush
    12. Tweezers
    13. Nail clippers
    14. Small scissors
    15. Lotion
    16. Feminine hygiene products
    17. Shower shoes
    18. Laundry soap (plastic bottle w/cap)
  • Bedding
    1. Sleeping bag (extreme cold mummy bag type)
    2. Sheet and/or blanket for milder temps
    3. Big pillow or pillows
    4. Alarm clock (one that will wake you up!)