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Straight Truck vs. Expediting Van

Mrclickcola

New Recruit
Owner/Operator
Offline
Good Morning Expediters,

I know their is tons of info and I have browsed through it somewhat, but wanted to make my own post simply in comparison between the 3 things I was looking at for income.

Sprinter Van/ Expediting Van
Originally, I was looking into get a Sprinter Van or a van similar. After some research on LTL boards as a Owner/Operator, it seems the cost per mile offered is relatively low, sometimes as low as .22/mile. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong place, but with that being the bottom, seems to be a rip off. For those that are in the Sprinter Van/ Expediting Van business, is it that bad. I've read on the forums, but is work really that hard to find at the minimal cost. Is there a way around this? Is it simply because I'm looking at the LTL Boards verse contacting the brokers directly? From what it looks like, you'll do better driving uber verse a Sprinter Van locally.

Straight Truck / Box Truck
After looking at the Sprinter Van / Expediting Van business, I decided to look into the box trucks. I noticed that the pay per load is at least twice the amount to say the least and of course you have the ability to carry more, which means more money. On average, those using Straight Truck / Box Trucks how much are you guys normally getting paid per mile?

I look forward to hearing from someone, thanks.

P.S. Dont kill me for being a newbie on this posting. Thanks
 

Warrior

New Recruit
Fleet Manager
Offline
The van market is completely saturated, and honestly, you will starve if you buy a new one, and are not a team, or willing to do short high paying loads like deliveries into NYC. Box truck expediting is very lucrative, but you need between $150,00 and $250,00 for a truck to start, must be a team, and willing to stay out for 30 to 60 days at a time, or you will go broke once again. I suggest you work for a company first, either van or expediting, make sure you like the work, understand the business, then move forward.
 

Greg

Veteran Expediter
Owner/Operator
Offline
The van market is completely saturated, and honestly, you will starve if you buy a new one, and are not a team, or willing to do short high paying loads like deliveries into NYC. Box truck expediting is very lucrative, but you need between $150,00 and $250,00 for a truck to start, must be a team, and willing to stay out for 30 to 60 days at a time, or you will go broke once again. I suggest you work for a company first, either van or expediting, make sure you like the work, understand the business, then move forward.
I will agree on the saturation of the van market.
I would also agree that if you are new to the trucking industry, that you try driving for an owner first to see if you like/enjoy the lifestyle.
However, you do not have to spend upwards of $250K to get a truck, you do not have to stay out 30 to 60 days at a time, and you certainly do not have to be a team to succeed in this industry.
 

Worn Out Manager

Birthday Expediter
It's My Birthday!!!
Owner/Operator
US Air Force
Offline
Cost per mile can be as low as .22CPM?

Maybe, if you've been doing it for a while, van is fully paid AND deprecated, sign on with the right carrier and/or live in the right state for affordable insurance. I would put CPM at .35 - .40 as a safer guess to plan on. Then $25 a day living on the road using a conservative 1500 paid miles and your cost just went over .50CPM. Using a .90CPM return, that leaves you .35 - .40 for yourself. There will be good weeks & bad weeks so let's say you can keep $500 on average every week - Does meet your expectations? BTW - Target is paying $15/hr and you don't have to sleep in a truck.

Sent from my moto z3 using EO Forums mobile app
 

Warrior

New Recruit
Fleet Manager
Offline
I agree with Greg, and should have clarified, that my assumption of spending the $250k, staying out 30-60 days, and have to be a team are predicated on being an owner operator, rather than a driver for an owner, and wanting to be able to make truck payments, and a living for a husband and wife team over $100K, after expenses. Its really easier to be a driver for a fleet and have almost no financial responsibility, especially when starting out. I have seen to many people who "Got a great deal" on an expedite truck for $40k-$80k only to find out afterwards nobody will take you, but fleets that pay per mile, rather than per load. A worn out truck, that has expenses to fix, does not get great fuel mileage, and you don't know the personal history of, can sink you quicker than anything else. If your new, you also need some guidance on picking loads. A bad load at good money is still a bad load. The question will be, how long does it take before you know which loads are good or not, because it can be costly to take a bad one. Realize my experience is with FedEx and another flat rate carrier, so its limited, and take it with a grain of salt. Also, some peoples version of success is just to make a decent living and be on the road enjoying the lifestyle, and my perspective is about making a ton of money first, lifestyle second.
 

FlyingVan

Moderator
Staff member
Owner/Operator
Offline
Greg is right. As an owner operator you don't need 250k for a truck, nor do you need a team. However, you need to know what you are doing.

I didn't want to drive for someone when I got into the straight truck so my strategy was to buy a good truck cheap for cash and have a go at it. If it didn't work I wouldn't be out much money. I had 12 years of Sprinter experience though.

So I contacted a company I wanted to lease on with, I told them what truck I was looking for and I asked if they would take it. Then I started looking for a truck. I looked at a few until I found the right one, bought it for cash, leased it to my company of choice, and went at it solo. I am home most weekends, and I think I am doing pretty good. I am now actually in a position to upgrade the truck.

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