Is 43 too old to be a newbie trucker?

by Cynthia A, Mieske
(Belleville ON Canada.)

Me and my 'ride' .  Summer of '08.

Me and my 'ride' . Summer of '08.

Hey,hey! Here I am, 43 yrs old and in this point in my life, I now have the luxury of time and a good husband who has a good-paying white-collar job. I now want to put into action what my mind has always said to do: get my AZ and be a professional truck driver.

I do have a few caveats that have reared their ugly heads and might just throw a spanner into the hole: my age, and the reality that I am the mother of 3 very young girls.

I do have a solid marriage, so that's a good thing, though the dynamics and logistics I suspect will drive my husband sparky! (You know, the whole getting the kids to and from school thing, rearranging work hours to accommodate the same said getting the kids to and from school thing, and so the soap opera least for my hubby, because I will be living my dream, free at last as an asphalt cowgirl.)

I could really run on with the whole dream thing and choke up a whole lot ta keyboard time, so here I is...with the short of it: my age. I can surmise that many an employer won't not hire me because I'm older, but, in the back of their mind the fact still sits; an older person is more likely to incur health issues, they are less flexible to adapt and be proactive to new methodologies, or that they have established families and not as apt to run the roads more. These views were pointed out to me by my older peers, most notably my mother. I am definitely not looking at trucking for the money, I just want a job that I will love and not cringe every time I turn around when it's time to go to work.

My other concern was brought to my attention by a good friend of ours, a 40 yr veteran trucker for TANKER truck: "...this line of work is a shitty job and I just don't think you've got the balls for it. There's a lot a immigrants who will come in and work a lot harder for a lot less, and you'll sit there and after all is said and done, you might come out with $35 bucks in your hand at the end of the day, girl." Marwin is simply looking out for my well-being, and I get it, but surely not all carriers are that senseless, are they? I beg the question. I have a really good work ethic, and I always believed that what I put into something is a reflection of how I am, my 'currency' so to speak. If I can't honestly do a good job and put my name on it, I don't do it. My ultimate goal as a Canadian female truck driver is to become a Road Knight, and be an ambassador for professional truck drivers.

I am looking forward to your response to this here diatribe of effluvium. I might not have balls, but I do have fairly broad shoulders, and can take a fair bit before I go off and chuck a mental! LOL.

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Apr 29, 2018
Is 43 too old to be a newbie trucker?
by: dennis shipman

Most of the women I know in trucking started as a second or even third career. Canada is a little tougher with speed limiters that some interest groups are now trying to implement here in America. But that being said, it can be quite a rewarding career for someone like yourself with her eyes wide open, a strong marriage, good kids, and an adventuresome spirit.

Once you gain some solid O-T-R experience, you can basically set your own schedule. You're pretty young actually. I see drivers all day, every day, male and female, so old they can barely climb into the cab of their tractors.

I'm smiling here, because unless these legislators force their latest scheme down our throats, I'll probably drive until I can no longer climb into my cab either. I love it that much.

And I, too, had a white collar job but never quite fit into the corporate culture. Not that I hated it, but was weary of all the social conventions.

Nothing like the freedom of the big road, though. With the advent of 5G (millimeter-wave technology) in a few short months, your away time will only be as far as your laptop, tablet or smartphone.

Follow your dreams. And go for it. But do you homework. Make sure the carrier is right for you, and you right for the carrier. Make it clear coming out the gate that you're there for a career, not romance.

The lonely cowboys will back down in short order. Best of luck. 10-4. Kazoo hopes to see you on the flip flop.

Apr 17, 2018
From a Truckin Granny
by: Gyp’c Ryder

It’s NEVER too late. I started at 48.. do your thing girl & don’t let nobody slow you down! ! Hammer down & best wishes to ya

Jan 10, 2018
Go For IT!
by: Anonymous

I'm a female driver.. got my DL's at 44 when my youngest graduated high school. It was a little rough on me physically at first. I figured how hard can it be, i drive all of our road trips and always loved the longer trip. But it does take a toll on you.. but it's nothing more than building up your stamina. I say go for it. I love the peace and tranquility of driving. Sure beats my corporate sales job, no more business suits- no more panty hose.. woo hoo!

Enjoy every minute you're out on the road, take in the sites- and you;ll get to see how marvelously beautiful our country is and how diverse the landscape is from region to region.

Good luck!

Jan 02, 2018
Don't give up
by: Anonymous

You can do it you're never too old to something do you even yourself I've been driving for 28 years just be safe

Jan 25, 2010
43 TOO OLD ?
by: Steve " Aligat 1 " Hite

Well 4355 , I am 51 , and am not anywhere near being too OLD , as you so politely put it . Hope to see you out there .

Jan 06, 2009
43 too old?
by: jimmy

No, 43 is not too old. can you walk, read English,pass a basic physical, hold on to a steering wheel etc? this is one profession that age is no problem. however in reading your blog, i get the impression you're looking for adventure first.

You must realize that trucking is a hard job. highly unlikely you would find a local job to be home daily. (at first) can you handle being 1000 miles from home and talking to your youngins every nite on the phone and not being there to tuck 'em in? living on the road is a different lifestyle you may or may not like. keep asking questions------good luck

Oct 17, 2008
Go for it!!
by: Jennifer Schnittker

Hi Cynthia,

43? hmmm no way girl, We are just starting to live in our 40's!!!!! Our kids are raised (or almost) we finally feel some "freedom" in our lives, and want to finally go after the goals we, have for so long, put on the back burner.

43 is not even old girl (god I hope not, cause I will be 40 in a few months) and if 43 is old, then I have to start thinking that way--and oh but hell no! lol.

My husband started 6 months before turning 43. So no its not to old, its just young enough ;)

Next, I do agree with Hervy---you have got to look at your family as well. There are other things you can do outside of Long-haul though. Perhaps looking into local companies that you can either get home every few days, or even at least every week-end with regional.

Good luck, and Let me know how it goes. I will be starting to get my CDL when I am about 47-I will be teaming with my husband for retirement.


Sep 27, 2008
Too old to be a newie trucker
by: The Crazy Trucker

Hello Cynthia,

You are like a ray of sunlight through the open window in a dull room!

LOL, I think you have the perfect personality (as much as I can tell from text on a page) and attitude to be a great addition to our force of professional drivers.

You are right there is a huge difference in what companies has to offer out here. You'll have to find the right company based on your needs (home time, benefits) and location.

Your friend is right pointing out that its not all fun and games but I think you are fully aware of that and prepared for challenge and adventure. My worry for you is not that part of becoming a trucker.

What I wonder about is your daughters and your husband.

You do need to know that starting out you will be away for weeks at a time (most likely) before going home. You also will not be able to guarantee the attendance of your daughters at school.

You husband need to fully understand these things also.

If your relationship is truly that good with your hubby and he understands this and yous guys agree for you to do this I would say try it. Even if you just do it long enough to say you did it. Especially if its something you always wanted to do. Get it out of your system.

And by the way, if your husband supports you to go out there and drive you really have a very understanding husband.

Oh, but I would make sure your daughters support you and understand also. All kids are not built for a parent leaving them like this. I got the feeling that you have one of those supporting families with that strong bond and understanding.

However, if I am wrong and you actually have problems with the kids, you know discipline problems, respect to your husband, etc. you might not want to do it.

If your husband is stressed out by his new level of responsibilities because of you leaving to pursue your dreams then he may become resentful and that will start to deteriorate your relationship.

That's not fair to the kids or your marriage. There are some cases in which we have to let go of our dreams. If it will destroy what your have now built with your family, let it go.

As far as the age. It appears that your have probably been taking care of your body. If you can pass the dot physical I think the trucking companies would give your a chance. Especially if you have a good health record.

Call a few of the companies and ask what their age requirements are before your move forward in getting your license.

Hope this helped, let us know what you ended up doing. This is very interesting situation. I wonder how many other ladies are in your situation.

By the way If you want to talk to a female recruiter I will email you her number let me know. I talked to her a while, she's good people at US Express.

Take care

Jul 14, 2018
Never too old
by: Kate 'the Tourguide'

Well, I first 'began to start truck driving' at 23 and got washed out and married. At 33 I got back into it, did the co-driver thing for a few years (part time long haul co driver!) then got brave and hired on with a coast to coast reefer company (not home much living in the truck). I resolved to keep my record absolutely clean so that I could get a good local, union job. At 43 i got that good job. Now i am retired. The most important thing is to be able, willing to run team, to be a co driver 'second seat', an apprentice. If you are married or raising kids you can't do that. But if you can do that it is a great relief to be on a truck with someone who knows what they are doing. You can relax, learn, see the country, learn, bounce questions off the 'first seat' and
listen to the 'yap' on the cb (of other drivers learning!).

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