Every year, we try to offer C.R. England drivers a list of helpful tips that make navigating the holiday season easier. Last year’s tips included things such as not overextending yourself and asking for help if you’re feeling overwhelmed by the anxiety of the season. This year we have a few more tips for truckers. We hope you will make use of them even if you don’t work for C.R. England.
Tip #1 – Be Extra Careful on the Road
As we get closer to Thanksgiving and Christmas, the volume of traffic should steadily increase. Thanksgiving week is the most heavily traveled on U.S. interstates, and things only slow down minimally between Thanksgiving and New Year’s. Be aware that your best defense against accidents is extra caution.
Tip #2 – Remember That Others Get Anxious as Well
Along with higher traffic volume is the inevitable anxiety holiday driving causes. If you’ve ever driven I-95 South into Florida in the days immediately following Christmas, you know exactly what we’re talking about. Remember that people are anxious and therefore prone to making unwise decisions. Expect to encounter some trying drivers on the roads.
Tip #3 – Make Plans with Your Family
The holidays can be very difficult for over-the-road truckers who spend most of their time on the road. So even if you have just one or two days to spend with your family during the holidays, one of the most beneficial motivators you can take advantage of is making plans. Make an effort to get with your spouse or other family members to plan what you’re going to do on your down time. Set plans give you something to look forward to while you’re away.
Tip #4 – Start Preparing for End-of-Year Finances
Whether you are an independent contractor or a salaried employee, the end of the calendar year brings with it certain financial obligations relating to taxes and any other business obligations you might have. If you start preparing now, doing a little bit here and there whenever you have the time, you’ll find closing the books on the end of the year a lot easier. Don’t wait until the last minute unless you enjoy the stress of doing so.
Tip #5 – Help Your Fellow Drivers
Truck drivers tend to be a fairly friendly bunch more than willing to help one another out under normal conditions. But with the stress of the holiday season comes tighter deadlines and more pressure. Don’t let that pressure inhibit your willingness to help others. An effort to help another driver so he or she can get the job done will pay off in equal dividends should you find yourself in need of help.
Tip #6 – Try to Be Appreciative
There are two groups of people that truck drivers should take the time to appreciate, especially during the holiday season. The first group are the customers that make a driver’s career possible. Between shippers and receivers, the work that keeps carriers busy is the trucker’s lifeblood. Drivers should find a way to show their appreciation in some small way – even if it is just a greeting card that says “thanks for the work.”
The other group includes all the other company employees that work in support of drivers. They would be the mechanics, dispatchers, office workers and management that all have to work together to keep the trucking company moving. Yes, truckers expect that their employers will show some kind of appreciation during the holidays; they owe the same measure of appreciation. Again, something as simple as a greeting card goes a long way.