Look on any trucking forum and one thing’s clear: Life on the road has its ups and downs. You spend your days traveling long stretches of road that showcase the beautiful scenery around you (generally considered an up), while fielding phone calls, text messages and emails inquiring about your estimated time of arrival (generally considered a down).
Yes, life on the road can be both a fulfilling experience and a challenge.
That’s why we’ve compiled a list of the top online tools for life on the road. Not all of our picks are designed specifically for truckers, but that doesn’t mean you can’t incorporate them into your next road trip. So keep reading to learn how to gain 24/7 access to free calling, free online faxing and more!
Navigation and Mapping
When you spend significant amounts of time on the road, it’s inevitable that you’re going to run into traffic. But when traffic flow slows to a standstill – and doesn’t let up for hours – you could find yourself facing stiff financial penalties from your receiver or shipper.
Why deal with trip delays when you can route yourself around bad traffic and other road interferences utilizing a top-rated navigation and mapping app like Waze?
Waze gives you real-time traffic and road information, letting your avoid accidents, hazards, traffic and construction areas for free. By routing yourself around unfavorable road conditions, you can maximize time and make your deliveries faster – avoiding those pesky missed-appointment fees.
Truck Stop App
The brain child of former real life trucker Scott Moscrip, TruckStop was created with a single goal in mind: Make it “easier” for truck drivers to find loads.
Today, the app has expanded to include rate data, negotiation tools, and logistics solutions. You can even use the app to locate truck stops, rest stops, fuel, restaurants, dining, services, weight stations, parking, maintenance, and amenities.
You need to flag a potential issue with your dispatcher, but don’t want to run down the minutes on your calling plan. What do you do? Simple. Sign up for WhatsApp.
WhatsApp Messenger lets you send and receive text messages, voice calls, video calls, and other virtual media from your cell phone. What makes WhatsApp ideal for truckers is that the app does not store your messages once they’re sent. You can communicate discretely with your dispatcher or other truck drivers without worrying about the safety and confidentiality of your data. Only your intended recipient will have a copy.
Online Fax App
When you’re a truck driver, you’re bound to rack up as many miles as you are stacks of paperwork. And while you can’t do much about the extra miles on your truck’s odometer, you can do something about how you manage your paperwork on the road.
That’s where the eFax mobile app comes in. This free app lets you send and read documents from your smartphone, eliminating the burden of having to fax your paperwork the old-fashioned way. You can even easily attach a fax cover sheet to your faxed document to ensure your paperwork goes directly to your recipient.
Digital Log Book
As a professional truck driver, you’re expected to have your paperwork in order. And BigRoad, winner of Frost & Sullivan's 2017 North American Electronic Logging Device (ELD) Solutions Customer Value Leadership Award, is here to ensure that you do just that.
According to the company’s website, the BigRoad app lets you “create error-free logs, while tracking complicated hours of service rules.” Online services are also available.
This handy app lets you search diesel prices at over 7,000 truck stops nationwide, so you never again have to overpay at the pump. FuelBook also offers a roadside assistance and repair shop finder, GPS check-in and truck stop specials.
It is said that to be a professional truck driver, you must have patience, a sense of adventure and a suite of beautifully designed, user-friendly apps! While we can’t help you to become a more patient person, we can help you to:
- Avoid heavy traffic
- Locate rest stops
- Send faxes from your smartphone
- Stay connected to your dispatcher without incurring extra phone charges
- Organize your paperwork for easy sharing nationwide
- Enjoy cheaper diesel prices
Now, go hit the open road!