Landstar is the third-largest freight carrier in the US. The company describes itself as an asset-management company, meaning it tends not to own assets like trucks, trailers, warehouses and distribution centers. It manages them. What this means in practice is that Landstar doesn’t own its trucks and it has no company drivers. The distribution centers are also contracted out. Arranging the organization this way helped Landstar survive some of the economic devastation that hit the trucking industry from 2007-2010, because they didn’t have to let any employees go or continue paying people to whom they could give no work.
In order to work for Landstar, you must be an owner-operator with at least one year of verifiable OTR driving experience and a Class-A CDL with hazmat endorsement. You can either rent a trailer from your domicile agency, or you can provide your own. Renting the trailer will cut into your profits, so it’s a good idea to understand exactly how much it’s going to cost versus how much you can realistically expect to make.
Landstar’s dispatch system is a little different than many other companies: their system allows you to pick your own loads and routes. Landstar has an online load board that lets you sort through types of freight, destination, revenue and several other criteria to find a load you like. One benefit of this system is that it’s extremely flexible; you can schedule your routes and your home time however you like. The down side is that with so many drivers looking at the same load board, it could be difficult to find high-paying loads without some guidance from your dispatcher.
Dispatchers are also contractors, not direct employees of Landstar. This creates a situation where every domicile agency has a slightly different feel to it, and the environment depends much more on the local management than on the corporate atmosphere. In other words, one agency may be fantastic and the next one could be a nightmare. Be sure you find a domicile agency where you feel like you will be able to have good communication and positive relationships.
How much you make depends on what kind of cargo you are hauling. In general, the revenue share is from 65 to 75% of 100% of revenue. From that, fees will be deducted for trailer rental if needed, escrow, plates, permits, insurance, the seal and lock program, and your connection to the communications network.
For specific application information and instructions, call Landstar at 800-435-4010.