News & Updates

Apps To Help You Manage Your Finances

Aug 19, 2019

 

different tips to managing your finances through your phone

Apps To Help You Manage Your Finances

A career in the transportation and trucking industry can be very exciting, with lots of interstate travel. However, being away from home and loved ones for long periods of time can make communication difficult sometimes. Managing finances from far away can also be a problem.

Luckily, with advances in technology, distance is no longer an unbeatable problem when it comes to managing money and performing financial transactions. Having a phone or other digital mobile device is all you need to deal with money-related matters in a convenient and safe way.

Many free and paid online applications and websites now provide easy-to-understand and secure platforms for your money management. Some of the best options are:

Mobile Banking

Your first step to managing your finances should be getting an application that is linked to your bank. Most banks offer this service as it is convenient and smoothens and aligns transaction processes for both the user and the bank. Using a bank app, you can safely pay most of your bills, transfer money, check your account balance and history, and so much more simply by using your mobile phone. These apps are very user-friendly, free, and available on many phone app stores.

LearnVest

By offering online tools to help you set up a monthly budget, LearnVest helps to keep your spending low when expenses are high. When you’re on the road most days of the week, expenses can add up pretty quickly. Setting up a monthly budget can help you track expenses and see where your money is going.

Acorns

Saving money just got a whole lot easier. Trying to remember to take out that extra $50 or so from each paycheck to put aside for a rainy day can be quite a hassle. With apps like Acorns, you can set up automatic withdrawals to a linked investment account. Instead of having to remember every paycheck, you can set it up once and forget it. All from the comfort of your truck.

The Penny Hoarder

Setting financial goals is essential to buying that boat you always wanted or fixing the furnace back home. It doesn’t have to be difficult with the help of blogs like The Penny Hoarder. The financial blog recommends setting goals and gives a step-by-step guide on how to do such. This blog also helps with other areas of personal finance, such as building an emergency fund, paying down debt, and planning for retirement.

Mint

One of the most popular budgeting and expense tracking apps, Mint allows you to monitor your expenses on all your credit, savings, checking and investment accounts. It enables you to include assets like houses and cars so you can better estimate your net worth. It also helps you to set financial goals for yourself and sign up for alerts about any unchecked spending. The app is great for getting a full view of your overall financial health, and the alerts and reminders are helpful if you want to analyze and observe how you spend money.

Trim

Is a free app that uses your bank transaction and credit card history to remind you of forgotten online subscriptions or memberships that may still be charging you money. It may not seem important, but those untracked and disappearing dollars can create a hole in your pocket with time. With Trim, you can plug any leaks.

Mvelope

The Mvelope app can track your past spending by combing through linked accounts, and then assign future bills to ‘mvelopes’ which help you adhere to a budget. It can also help you make sure you don’t run up a balance on your credit cards. It is not free, however, and after a free trial, has several payment plans.

Financial Blogs

We know these aren’t apps, however, blogs can be helpful too! There are several personal finance blogs available to offer advice and valuable information like investment opportunities, money-saving tips, and retirement plan options. Some of the top-ranked ones are I Will Teach You To Be Rich, SeedTime Money, My Money Blog, The Dough Roller, Investor Junkie, Don’t Mess With Taxes, and many more. You can research online to find the best financial up-to-date blogs, which are full of credible advice to help you achieve financial freedom.

With these options and many more, you can track your investments and financial status, perform transactions, and monitor your spending while on the road. Taking care of your loved ones will be easy, so you can focus fully on your job and advance your career, knowing your finances are secure.

As always, if you are interested in getting a job by earning your CDL – get in touch with us! We’d be more than happy to assist you with any questions you might have.

What Happens After Your CDL Training

Aug 6, 2019

 

What Happens After Your CDL Training

A CDL (Commercial Driver’s License) is a type of driving license necessary to operate large vehicles like large freight trucks, dump trucks, passenger buses, and concrete mixers. There are three CDL classes in the United States which determine the type of vehicle you are certified to drive; Class A, Class B, and Class C.

To be certified as a truck driver, you must obtain the appropriate license, and CDL training prepares you for this. Trucks are notoriously more difficult to maneuver because of their size, and specialized training is required. Licensing requirements may vary from state to state, and cover regulations that range from how long you can drive daily to how long you can operate in one state.

How do you get CDL training?

You will be required to go to a CDL school, like GDA, which will first give you classroom training (instructing you on things like the safety instructions, regulations, and state-specific driving requirements). It then moves on to field training (teaching basic and specialized truck driving/maintenance skills and providing experience). You can pay for the training yourself, use financial assistance/sponsorships, or use company-sponsored CDL training programs.

What Happens Next?

After completing your CDL training, you will have to take the CDL test, which certifies you as a truck driver and earns you your license.  This CDL test usually involves both a written and a driving section. Several steps can make this process a success:

Study Hard

Start preparing for the CDL test as early as possible. Save relevant booklets and notes for future reading and reference. Make out time to study daily because keeping your studies fresh in your mind will help in any interview process and in showing technical skills. Also, ask CDL school instructors to help you get practice tests, so you are prepared for all the questions coming your way.

Find Your Dream Job

Having a plan for who you want to work for, will help to make your job search easier. Some carriers even offer CDL schooling reimbursements and mentorship programs to help you fit into new environments. Plenty of research will go a long way into helping you make the best choice.

Be Prepared Financially

After paying for your CDL training, there are several fees you must pay to get your CDL. You have to be prepared to pay for things like a learner’s permit, writing the CDL exam itself, and a road test. Do the research and ask questions about what fees are required in whatever state you are in, so you are not caught unawares and start saving. We’ve even gathered some apps to help you with your finances – which you can read about here.

Additional Training

Even after passing the CDL test, you may need to complete an orientation program which requires extra training by any company or carrier you want to work for. This training is usually free, and requirements differ depending on the company’s policies. You will need to complete such programs before you can earn the company’s confidence in your ability to drive their trucks and represent them.

Once you complete all these, you are ready to hit the road with your brand new license and start your truck driving career. To get more information about the exact requirements for achieving a smooth transition from CDL training to certified truck driving, don’t hesitate to contact us at Georgia Driving Academy today.

Pros and Cons of Over The Road

Jul 25, 2019

 

Pros & Cons of Over The Road (OTR) Trucking

Have you recently earned your CDL? Congratulations! You’re probably looking forward to starting your new career. Trucking companies usually start their new drivers in an Over The Road (OTR) position. OTR trucking is also called long haul trucking because OTR truckers have longer routes than local or regional drivers. Some OTR routes cover a few states. Other routes could take you across the country and perhaps into Mexico or Canada. While there are some drawbacks to OTR jobs, you may find the benefits outweigh the cons.

Pros

  • In the United States, most freight travels by truck. When you become an OTR driver, you have an in-demand career with plentiful job opportunities.
  • Since many OTR drivers are paid by the mile, long haul drivers are paid well. The Bureau of Labor Statistics says that in 2018 the median pay for a truck driver was $43,680 per year or $21.00 per hour, however, many OTR truck drivers make significantly more.
  • Unlike most local drivers, you don’t have to unload and load freight. Shippers and receivers have employees to handle it.
  • As an OTR driver, you get paid to travel and see the country. You’ll meet lots of new and interesting people.

Cons

  • OTR drivers are away from home, family, and friends for days or weeks at a time. Fortunately, it’s easy to keep in touch with loved ones until you have a few days off at home.
  • You may become fatigued. It’s not unusual for an OTR driver to spend 8 to 10 hours a day behind the wheel. However, you may find you enjoy having hours to listen to podcasts, music, or audiobooks.

CDL Training in Georgia

If you’re interested in a local, regional or OTR position, but you don’t have a CDL, contact Georgia Driving Academy for more information about CDL training.

GDA Online CDL Training : Enjoy Flexibility and Convenience

Jul 15, 2019

 

computer, coffee mug, newspaper and glasses with online cdl training verbiage

The United States heavily relies on truckers, and they are responsible for the movement of about 71% of the entire country’s freight. This industry also takes up approximately 6% of the nation’s full-time jobs, and each year, millions of drivers enter the industry. So if you wish to enter this adventurous career, then it is never too late. Georgia Driving Academy now offers you the convenience of training for your Class A CDL at the comfort of your home.

The 60-hour classroom instruction can be completed in our online CDL training and is available whether you live within the state or beyond. The online option lets you save seven days of on-campus training, and you can choose from these convenient programs:

  • Full-time program for three weeks
  • Part-time program for nine weekends

Benefits of Georgia Driving Academy’s online CDL training

Here is why you should consider online training through GDA:

  • The futuristic curriculum is a product of the collaboration between the institution and the Bumper-to-Bumper. This is a well-respected and recognized curriculum used by CDL training schools in the country and overseas.
  • The study program meets all the regulations established by the FMCSA to govern CDL training.
  • You can schedule your 120-hour practical to your convenience.
  • If you reside outside Georgia and you have already finished the training courses and issued the Class A CDL Permit from your home state, you can schedule your training at any GDA campuses in Conyers, and Columbus.
  • You can access the online platform through your laptop, desktop, smartphone, or notebook
  • Out of state students can save time and money

GDA classroom training still works

If you have sufficient time, you can still dedicate your efforts and attend the Class A CDL classroom training at GDA. The ultra-modern instruction employs the use of the ‘Clicker’ instructional program alongside digital interactive equipment. During these training sessions, you will learn the following:

  • CDL basics and laws
  • Safety around trucks
  • Speeding and stopping
  • Air brake systems
  • Pre-trip inspections
  • Backing
  • Shifting
  • Uncouple/couple trailers
  • Electric and fuel systems
  • Logbooks
  • Combination vehicles
  • Loading and dispatching
  • Everything about the state’s permit test

In conclusion, get out to explore the available options, and you can rest assured to land a position that is perfect for you. If you need more guidance on job placement at GDA, or just want to learn more about the Class A and B training options, feel free to talk to any of our knowledgeable career advisors via 1-800-711-4301 or start here.

Class A or Class B CDL? Which Is Right For You?

Jul 1, 2019

 

Starting a career in trucking can be intimidating, but learning the ins and outs of the industry can help you be prepared to make the best decisions for you. To begin your career, you will need to decide whether you want to obtain your Class A or Class B CDL. We will help you understand the differences between the two options so you can decide which option fits best for you.

What You Can Drive?

For both Class A or Class B commercial driver’s license, you must possess a Class C driver’s license and be at least 18-years-old. At Georgia Driving Academy (GDA), we offer exceptional programs to guide and instruct our students to become Class A or Class B commercial drivers.

Class A – Drive the Eighteen Wheelers

The Class A CDL allows you to drive “truck trailer or tractor-semitrailer combination in which the combined weight exceeds 26,001 and the unit being towed exceeds 10,000 pounds.” An example would be the typical semi truck you would see on the highway. Additionally, a Class A driver has the option to apply for both over-the-road and local jobs. However, please note although you can obtain a Class A CDL at 18, you are only allowed to drive within your state’s boundaries (intrastate) until you reach 21 years of age. Twenty-one (21) years of age is also the requirement for drivers to obtain CDL Endorsements.

Class B – Limited to Type and Weight

The Class B CDL allows you to drive “single vehicles weighing 26,001 or more pounds and the unit being towed is less than 10,000 pounds.” This training prepares students for employment as a passenger bus driver or straight truck driver (tow trucks, dump trucks, delivery trucks and utility trucks) in a local setting.

What You Can Make with a Class A CDL vs Class B CDL

As there is a weight, load, and vehicle difference, there is also pay differences for Class A versus Class B drivers. As the Class A curriculum requires more time and therefore Class A drivers usually qualify for higher paying jobs.

GDA is the Place to Train for Your CDL

If you’re ready to get your Class A or Class B CDL, we’re ready to hear from you. Start by completing our online application, and we’ll get the wheels turning.