After talking to hundreds of drivers at truck shows and truck stops, I am amazed at the high percentage of truckers who don't have email addresses. This speaks to a larger problem within our industry of professional drivers who are lacking the technology skills to thrive in the business. Sure you can buy a truck and buy yourself a job, but chances are that you won’t be as successful as you could be if you don’t use technology to your advantage.

I’m probably preaching to the choir here because if you’re reading this, you’re accessing the Team Run Smart website so you’re already ahead of 75% (my estimation) of professional drivers who don’t use the internet to stay informed of their industry. The Team Run Smart website is one of the best resources for company drivers and owner-operators alike as the content is always fresh and from industry experts and real owner-operators on the road every day. In addition to this site, I actively use Facebook, Twitter and Linkedin so please use the links to connect with me.

Besides the aforementioned websites, here are some other websites and applications that I use every week while on the road from my iPad. 

  1. Internet Truck Stop (load board)
  2. (gives me cash price and price before state diesel tax anywhere in country)
  3. ( if I need to find a hotel that will accommodate 18 wheelers)
  4. or which allows me to find help out on the road
  5. MobiMaps and Apple Maps (gives me street view, birds eye view of places I'm delivering to)
  6. TruckSmart app - TA/Petro's app that gives fuel prices, directions, reserved parking/showers, displays location amenities, etc.
  7. Road Ninja app - gives detailed information on what services are available at every interstate exit. Not trucker specific but detailed helpful information.
  8. Camscanner app- allows me to scan documents and email them from my truck

There are more sites and apps that I use, but these are the most common.  As members of the trucking industry, we can benefit the most by the advances in mobile technology. Staying connected with family back home is easier than ever not to mention the myriad of free resources available to us to find fuel, food, repair, weather, etc.

Comments (13)

Joey Slaughter

Joey Slaughter is the owner of Blue Ridge Transport, LLC. Joey has been in the trucking industry since 1992.

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May 31, 2018

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Wow, great tips Darren, thanks for sharing about them. I agree Beth and Tyrone, these apps definitely make out lives easier!

August 09, 2014 8:12:26 AM

Yep your rite!!!! Technology is here to stay. Like I always say, get on board or get left. 😉

August 08, 2014 18:40:05 PM

One really good app for fuel tracking that I use is called Road Trip by Darren Stone it lets you track all your fuel and expenses across multiple vehicles if required. Lots of definable options.

August 08, 2014 15:03:31 PM

Joey, CoPilot is a stand alone app by ALK (the same people who created PC Miler). It's the most expensive app on any of my devices at $149. That said, it's been indispensable to me. It gives truck routings including height, width and weight restrictions as well as HazMat routings. Updates are free for lifetime of app and the maps are saved on your device, either by region or all North America. Active traffic is $2.99 a year and requires a network connection. Another app I'm exploring that is super at from CoPilot but runs in the background is Drivewyse. It's similar to PrePass but operates as an app instead of a separate device. It's $15.75 a month (I'm just running a trial for now and can update later).

August 08, 2014 13:34:44 PM

This is such a great article, Joey! Apps are so helpful, and can make our lives much less stressful (which is always a good thing).

August 08, 2014 9:23:59 AM

Thanks Darren for sharing the apps that you use. I completely forgot about the weather apps. They are SO important. When hauling freight that I have to keep dry, I really use those weather apps ( I use WeatherBug) to decide if I need to tarp or not. Is the co-pilot an app or a GPS accessory?

August 08, 2014 5:26:11 AM

Great comments Tommy. Most seasoned drivers like yourself don't embrace technology as well has you have! I am interested in your GPS. Which two do you use? I know you mentioned a Garmin. I use a standard car Garmin. I tried the Rand McNally truck GPS and couldn't stand it. It took me so far out of route thinking trucks weren't supposed to be on certain roads when they were. And yes, I had the settings set up correctly.

August 08, 2014 5:22:31 AM

Great article Joey and bang on target! I use CoPilot for Truck with the active traffic option. It gives me the ability to compare routes and see where time consuming delays might be. Apple or Google satellite maps are great for getting a feel for what the customers location may look like and where the truck access may be as well as what may be in the local area for services.
Beyond the apps mentioned above by Joey, I also use TornadoSpy, Accuweather, ThermoKing locator and others.

August 07, 2014 12:31:52 PM

When I started driving OTR 36 years ago computers was just in their infant stage with GPS for trucks and smartphones waiting to be invented. Pay phones and fax machines were the quickest way of communications during that time. For directions you more than likely depended on a person that only knew how to drive from and to work and they always made you feel like they knew what they was talking about for directions when directions included words like "I think", "I believe", "I was told", or "I could be wrong but". You than copied this down and compared them a paper map or atlas and if you did get lost you had two options, park and find someone to ask or find a pay phone. And this would never happen in the "good" part of town.

One other map app is for which you can download only the maps you need by state and they work off-line as will as on line and you can update your maps when updates are available. Want to save a fuel stop, repair shop, shipper or receiver location than drop a pin on the map with information for this POI and have it saved for later use that shows up on your map.

Yes, I am a trucking geek with a two GPS units, smartphone, tablet, and a laptop. I also build GPI files from excel for my Garmin for POI locations and put them on an SD card to be used on the Garmin. As of right now I have all of the Walmart stores and DCs, over 30,000 shipper and receivers within the US, truck stops, and Cat scales on an SD card for use in a Garmin. I like the driver that says he has no use for smartphones or GPS units while they are asking you for directions or mileage to a location.

There were so many things from the "good old days" that was not so good.

August 07, 2014 10:41:17 AM

Great comments all! I know I'm a young pup Jeff, but I started before cellphones and computers too! If you were to tell me that I had to drive across country with no cell phone or GPS, I could do it, but I wouldn't like it.

August 07, 2014 8:49:22 AM

Joey a good article. For us company drivers many companies now allow scanning of trips from your phone/pc. Find out what program then use (like Transflo). It has several times ensured I get paid on time if there was a paperwork issue such as a missing or unreadable receipt. Or I was delayed at a shipper or receiver and could not get to a scanning location in time for the payroll deadline. Also having a page scanner that you can use with your pc is handy for e-mailing of documents whether back home or to work. In the 9 years I have been driving hard to imagine how I got along with out all this tech. That was not as available or affordable when I first started.

August 07, 2014 8:37:33 AM

I am not much of an app guy. Our operations are different, but I do use the DAT app on my phone. I am more apt to use my computer to look at a map of the area surrounding a new customer. The street map is great, but I love getting the satellite view. You gotta remember Joey, that many of us started trucking before cell phones. It sure is easier now.

August 07, 2014 6:17:53 AM

Not sure how "Drivers" got anything done without apps. Could you imagine having to stop to find a telephone anytime you need information or ask a question. We have come a long way.

August 07, 2014 5:29:23 AM