Updated October 2022
One of the biggest challenges for over-the-road (OTR) truck drivers are spending so much time away from home, especially if you’ve got a family there waiting for you. It is not uncommon for an OTR driver to be away from home for one, two, or more weeks at a time. So how can you stay in touch with your family while on the road? Here are four tips to help you stay connected with the pros who have been driving for years!
Family Movie Night
Family movie night is a great way to bond and stay in touch while you’re on the road. It may seem like an impossible task to arrange, but trust us, it works! You can all watch the same movie, on the same night, at the same time⏤your family from home and you from the road.
Streaming services like Netflix and Hulu can make family movie nights from a distance a reality. It doesn’t matter which streaming service you use, they are all essentially the same. All you would have to do to get started is register for an account, fill out your profiles and tune in! Plus, both Netflix and Hulu also offer free trial periods so you can test it out before you commit to a monthly subscription.
But who gets to pick the movie? You all do if you take turns picking! Creating a schedule can help to keep things on track and avoid bickering. Decide ahead of time what day and time you’ll be tuning in so that everyone is ready to settle in to watch the movie pick of the week with a bowl of popcorn and a favorite beverage.
Your own private family Facebook group
Facebook is an easy way to stay in touch with your family while you’re on the road. If you’re already a Facebook user, you can set this up in no time at all. If you already belong to a secure, private Facebook group, you know that you and your family will be able to write and share posts, photos, ideas, and whatever you like, all in one convenient place.
Think about it, your spouse and kiddos would love to see what you’re having for dinner tonight or photos of interesting places and things in the cities you visit. Wouldn’t you love seeing what they’ve been up to? Creating a Facebook group makes it easy to keep up to date with sports practices or important upcoming events. Share photos and stories of what’s going on so you don’t fall behind on the family news. Sharing and caring⏤that’s what you all do when you’re home, right? Use technology to keep it going while you’re on the road!
Group Calls and Chats
Thanks to the technology nowadays, it is super simple to set up a family group chat via text or even a group FaceTime or video call. A family group chat will allow you to do similar things as the Facebook group above, such as sharing messages and photos and even playing games together (if you have an iOS device). Group FaceTimes or video calls are easy to set up and allow you to all be on at the same time. This is a great way to get everyone in one place to catchup and interact. Some of the easiest programs to use for this are Zoom or the FaceTime app on iPhones!
Just For You: Send Postcards
With all the junk mail we receive nowadays, doesn’t everyone love to get “real” mail from time to time? Just about every city in the US sells picture postcards of beautiful scenes they’re proud to share. Trucking stops like Loves Travel Shop and Pilot Travel Center sell postcards and may even act as a postal substation where you can buy stamps too.
As an OTR truck driver, you get to visit a lot of neat places across the US. Share these experiences with the ones you love! Pick out your favorite postcard, jot a short loving, or funny note, address the card, and send it on its way. You could even create a space at home for these postcards to live so you can talk about your travels when you get back home. Why not save all those postcards on one large corkboard? Buy a box of pushpins for easy mounting … and you’ve just created a memory you can all share anytime you’d like.
We hope these three tips will help you stay connected with your family while you’re on the road. By utilizing both old and new techniques, it can be easy to keep in touch. Use technology to your advantage⏤just because you’re far away doesn’t mean you need to fall behind.
A career as a professional truck driver will open up a wide world of possibilities for you and your family. Are you ready to join the exciting world of trucking? Or would even like to take a small refresher course to get back on track with your trucking career? Contact us now to get started on a rewarding career you’ll love!