Truckers use online load boards to plan their trips according to the best profit potential. The boards allow load bearers to post their payloads on various sites for free — with the required delivery dates and price — then truckers scan the site for cargo, their delivery prices, deadlines and contact information. Truckers can also fill in gaps in their trips while on the road, at Wi-Fi hotspots or even via 3G smart phones, by logging in to their load boards and monitoring available jobs along their routes. Guidelines: (1) Sign up for load boards with a good reputation among your fellow truckers. Log on to the sites regularly. Some of these services cost about $40 a month or more; others are free but may not offer as broad a range of jobs where you need them. (2) Plan the major legs of your trips as far in advance as possible. You may need to be in, say, Houston on Friday morning for a half trailer of bananas bound for Cleveland. In this example, scan the sites for northbound cargo in Houston or on your way to Houston to fill up you trailer to capacity. (3) Click “Find Loads” or “Loads” on your load board site(s). Fill out as many fields as possible on the resulting search page. Select your origin and destination cities and states, as well as the desired radius from those locations. Many sites also allow you to arrange your results in a variety of ways, such as by pickup date or weight. Fill in these fields. (4) Type pickup and delivery dates into the subsequent search fields, as well as minimum and maximum weights, to fine-tune your search. the sites will often require other information, such as trailer type and payload size. Click “Search” once you’ve finished filling out your search template. (5) Broaden your search before you abandon your quest and hop to another load board. Select other origin cities along your route to other payloads you’ve already arranged, leave either your origin or destination fields blank, or choose to browse by region if your particular site allows it. (6) Scroll down the results page, looking for jobs that align with your trailer size, weight limits, origins and destinations. (7) Scroll across in the entries for jobs that look promising to access the company’s phone number. Call them to arrange the details of the job.
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