My dad was excited about the NBA finals this year. He’s a huge Stephan Curry fan, and he thinks Lebron James is the best all time basketball player. My dad is 86. He played High School Basketball and has been watching college and professional basketball for more than 70 years. I can’t imagine what it would be like for him to miss a finals game or the Cincinnati Reds, but that’s another story. We take TV for granted, with smartphones, laptops, and tablets we assume everyone can watch what they want to watch when they want to watch, but if you’re on the road—that’s not always the case. How can a truck driver binge on his or her favorite series on Netflix or watch the Reds, when they’re on the road for 21 consecutive days?

What are the Options?

Currently, Dish Network is catering more to the mobile market than DirecTV is. Antenna products made for Dish tend to be a bit less expensive than those for DIRECTV …However, the special programming choices, pricing, and even the basic channel lineups, can vary quite a little bit between these two U.S. content providers. – Diesel

For Example,  CDL Life gave this review of  Tailgater,

Tailgater is a 100% portable satellite TV module. It was built with truck drivers in mind. It’s also a great option for company drivers who aren’t allowed to alter the semi-truck they drive. Tailgater mounts semi-secure on nearly any truck window, and can be easily stored in the sleeper area when not in use. It also doesn’t come with any subscription contract. It’s a pay as you go satellite TV system.

  • Winegard offers satellite TV designed with commercial carriers in mind using portable and over-the-air antennas, and it works with Dish Network as well as DIRECTV.
  • King VuQu – Portable Satellite TV for trucks and RV’s.
  • EpicVue is another option designed with truckers in mind. They offer more than 100 channels including HBO, Cinemax, and sports such as NFL Sunday.

Should this Matter to Carriers?

Fleet Owner said it best,

As more carriers seek solutions to solve the driver shortage crisis, which is now pegged at about 30,000, a new alternative is popping up. Raising pay and more home time are among the common solutions put forth, but now some fleets are turning to satellite TV.

I know this; we watch a lot of TV in America.  Here are some facts from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, “Watching TV was the leisure activity that occupied the most time (2.8 hours per day), and accounting for more than half of leisure time of adults…” After we watch the big game we talk about it with friends and neighbors, we bond over sharing story lines from our favorite show with our family, and we recommend series to our co-workers. TV is a big deal, and it’s a big deal to OTR drivers. If you want to retain talented drivers pay them well, help them manage their health, show some flexibility and…entertain them.

Photo by Robert Bejil / CC BY-SA