By Reagan Payne
Saving the money we make can be difficult for anyone in the work force. For those always on the road, even more spending temptations can arise.
Truck stops, restaurants, and restaurants within truck stops will nickel and dime product inflation until they bleed professional truck drivers dry. Minimizing spending at these is a tip we could all take, especially those long-distance travelers taking charge of their finances. The mark-up at these locations is ridiculous.
How to save
Bring your travel supplies from home. This will save you from falling victim to expensive snack stops. Meals from home will not break your wallet or your stomach, either.
Having the food and drinks you need already in the truck is also more convenient than any convenience store. Delivering on or ahead of time can even prompt a bonus. For owner operators, time is always profit. Make the most of it.
If you must stop in for a fast and hot bite, many big chain restaurants offer discounts to CDL holders. During this global pandemic, restaurants all around the country are coming to the trucker’s aid, whether it be with a special meal or access to meals when the dining rooms are closed. It is always worth it to ask about applicable discounts wherever you go, but here is a list of discounts and resources for truck drivers.
A few roadside discounts:
- Denny’s offers 15% discount on all online orders
- Long John Silver’s offers 10% discount to truckers every day of the week and 20% discount every Thursday
- Ruby Tuesday offers 25% discount to truckers on any to-go order between noon and 8 p.m.
To make sure there is room in your budget for these stops, it is important to document income versus expenses. Creating a budget and sticking to it will allow for occasional splurges without fear of overspending.
Manage the money
There are dozens of online solutions for finance organization. Consolidating accounts is the easiest way to keep track of it all. Reaching out to a financial advisor or any financial institution could guide you throughout this process.
Using online options to manage money is a must-have option for those on the road. Two of the most popular mobile options are Mint and Prism.
Mint allows you to see all of your bills and money at a glance, create budgets easily with tips tailored to you, and enjoy access to unlimited free credit scores, without harming your credit.
With this app, you can also receive reminders for upcoming bills so you can
plan ahead. It will also warn you when funds are low so you know what you can pay.
Prism offers the same basic features, however it has more in-app billers (Netflix, Capital One, etc.) than any other app of its kind. This way all your items truly can be in one place. It has processed over $1 billion in bills in the past six years alone.
Besides financial organization, being able to pay bills online while on the road for extended periods is vital to not accruing late fees. Home time should be spent on self-care and loved ones, anyway.
Why to save
Truck stops can be delicious experiences that help break apart your time on the road. Paychecks can be tempting to blow on some big boy toys, but the long-term benefits to resisting splurges and saving your cents are worth sacrificing it all. Use common sense to save common cents!
“Saving provides a financial ‘backstop’ for life’s uncertainties and increases feelings of security and peace of mind. Once an adequate emergency fund is established, savings can also provide the ‘seed money’ for higher-yielding investments such as stocks, bonds, and mutual funds,” Dr. Barbara O’Neill, a specialist in financial resource management, wrote in The State University of New Jersey newsletter.
Research done by the Northwestern Mutual insurance company also links feelings of happiness and life satisfaction with setting goals and taking steps for saving money. This sense of control over life circumstances leads people to be more resilient in times of stress. This could be a game-changer in the world of trucking.
Reagan Payne is a staff writer for Wright Media. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.