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Question For Panther And Tristate Cargo Van Drivers

Discussion in 'General Expediter Forum' started by dodgeboy, Feb 6, 2009.

  1. dodgeboy

    dodgeboy New Recruit

    I am still trying to figure out whether or not I should go to work for a fleet owner in a cargo van or a straight truck! How are you cargo van drivers and straight truck drivers "solo" doing out there right now? How many miles have you been getting per week since right before christmas? I'm sorry to pry, but I need to make the best possible decision that I can. Thanks.
  2. Zoli

    Zoli Rookie Expediter

    both Panther and Tristate not enough miles to survive....Try back in March or April.
  3. hondaking38

    hondaking38 New Recruit

    actually i am starving..wondering if i will survive this your will dissapear a lot faster then it is coming in right now...
  4. Falligator

    Falligator New Recruit

    Been gettin enough miles lately to just "pay the bills". Of course, living in florida doesn't help me mileage wise either, but it would prob not be much better if you were living in primary area. The only difference is you would be sitting in with a bunch of other trucks. All in all, Panther hasn't been a bad company to me if you are still looking to be a fleet owner.
  5. OntarioVanMan

    OntarioVanMan Expert Expediter

    thats weird taint it? Turtle and some others are treading water and doing ok...not burning up the road but getting along...

    Florida and South Dakota....good home bases!!!:rolleyes:
  6. chefdennis

    chefdennis New Recruit

    I have said it before and I'll say it again, if freight is slow for O/O's of vans, how can anyone make money as a DRIVER FOR an Owner (i know we all have different situations)? Yes the driver doesn't have the same expenses as an O/O, but you still have them, and with O/O's just getting by in most cases, what makes anyone think they can make good money as a DRIVER in a VAN!?!?

    If you feel the need to do this and can't buy a van and afford all that that entails, (and I understand , that is not a put down at all) then drive for a owner in a S/T, preferably as a team, but if it has to be solo, you need to do it in a S/T, not a van...

    I could be wrong, i know there are people driving vans for Owners, but I don't see how you can make a good living (i know we all have different situations) even when freight is good, but now!?!?
  7. OntarioVanMan

    OntarioVanMan Expert Expediter

    Dennis I am with ya on your thinking....I've crunched the numbers upside and back....its real bad for van drivers....
  8. mjolnir131

    mjolnir131 New Recruit

    i don't think there is much future as a solo driver really unless your really great and running your business solo is a dying breed
  9. flattop40

    flattop40 Rookie Expediter

    If I were not an O/O I would make more money sitting at home collecting unenjoyment. On second thought I could make more sitting at home then being an O/O.

    However, something deep inside says you can't just live off the fruits of others.
  10. Moot

    Moot Expert Expediter

    Transit 350
    I agree! Even when times were good I couldn't understand why someone would drive a van for an owner. Unless it was short term to get a feel for the industry.
  11. OntarioVanMan

    OntarioVanMan Expert Expediter


    Ban the Van Fleet Owners!!!:D
  12. whitewolf

    whitewolf New Recruit

    1500 loaded miles from Jan 1st in a cargo van with TriState and maybe more empty
  13. RLENT

    RLENT Seasoned Expediter

    As has been said previously, if you are considering driving for an owner in a cargo van ..... well, then ....... consider having your head examined as well, as you could very well be nuts. Just not enough money in that equation even in good times, at least from where I'm sittin'.

    With the slowdown in the economy, and the situation with the auto companies, and them recently being shutdown for extended periods you have had everyone in expedite chasing a smaller "pie" - this creates (downward) pressure on freight rates, at least for some - just the laws of supply and demand. I don't like it, but there's not alot I can really do about it.

    I have certain fixed costs every month associated with this business (vehicle payment, insurance, QC, etc.) - whether I am running or not - and I need to generate revenue and profit in order to cover those expenses, otherwise I have negative cashflow - which has never been a solution to any of the problems I generally have.

    I posted my numbers before in another thread (that thankfully, is now gone) and was accused of "boasting" - nevertheless, you asked, so I'll tell ya:

    Dispatched miles by week:
    Week ending 1/11: 1848 loaded, 389 deadhead
    Week ending 1/18: 1180 loaded, 270 deadhead
    Week ending 1/25: 3045 loaded, 468 deadhead
    Week ending 2/1: 419 loaded, 179 deadhead
    Week ending 2/8: 2953 loaded, 269 deadhead

    Total miles: 9445 loaded, 1575 deadhead
    Average loaded miles per week: 1889
    Deadhead as a percentage of loaded miles: 16.68%
    Deadhead as a percentage of total miles: 14.29%

    The total loaded miles number is on par with the same period last year (slightly up), but revenue per mile is down a significant amount. No numbers for "just before Christmas" as I went out-of-service on 12/19 ... a week before the holiday.

    Whether you can do even remotely similar to the above will depend on a whole host of factors - such as being in the right place at the right time ..... and probably most importantly: you

    Just a thought ..... you may wish to consider other carriers beyond the ones mentioned in the title of this thread ..... dunno .... could be that some are a little more hungry than others .... :cool:
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2009
  14. OntarioVanMan

    OntarioVanMan Expert Expediter

    whippin out my handy dandy calculator...lets see...if your real lucky right now and get...
    1000 miles a week x .77= $770 x40%= $308 a week....
    Can you live on that? Don't forget you have to eat and stay warm.
    Consider you were available 24/7 that is 168 hours of earned $1.83 per hour....:eek:
  15. RLENT

    RLENT Seasoned Expediter


    Yeah ...... that calculator of yours do put the light on it :D .... like I said, anyone considering same should have their head examined - it's tough enough when you actually own the vehicle.
  16. OntarioVanMan

    OntarioVanMan Expert Expediter

    Hey I even used the HIGH end of the rate...if your unlucky to run enough of the NLM type you'd prolly be looking closer at the .70 cent per mile type loads.

    BTW..I guess we just made a lot of friends of the fleet owners of vans eh?? hehehe
    Last edited: Feb 8, 2009
  17. pjjjjj

    pjjjjj New Recruit

    The driver who goes with the 40% doesn't pay the fuel, and doesn't get the fsc, however, do they not cover any of the QC, insurance, tolls, cellphone, or other charges? (ie not sure if you have to pay for sending your paperwork into carrier, or if there's a charge for using comdata, or who pays for worker's comp, what if a motel is needed, do you need an accounting service to do your taxes, whatever, etc?)
  18. Mike99

    Mike99 Rookie Expediter

    The question here is ,can they make more money somewhere else? I think for somebody with no education and no skill $300 per week it's no bad....
  19. The Enemy

    The Enemy New Recruit

    I started in this business running a cargo van for an owner. After getting my feet wet and understanding the business, I ended up leaving. I was with him for 4 months, would have stayed longer if I would have been treated better. After those 4 months I went and bought myself a Sprinter and been doing good ever since. Recently my gf started driving with me so revenue is up a little. We keep our overhead preety low, no house/apartment payment, no kids, just Van payment, ins, qc, phones food.

    Is it hard to make it? In my opinion yes. Can you make it? With the right owner, maybe. Would I advise someone to come into this business now, ummmm probably not.
  20. OntarioVanMan

    OntarioVanMan Expert Expediter

    WTF!! NOT bad....thats 168 hours!! Minimum wage is about $7.45 an your 40 at McD's and be home every day and weekends!! Not bad my's absolutely disgusting!!!:eek:

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