EVANSVILLE, Ind. — When it comes to life on the road, professional van operators (PVOs) are staying more connected than ever through technology and social media.
Not only are they more technologically advanced, they are increasingly health-conscious and aware of the environment according to Atlas Van Lines’ King of the Road survey.
The survey provides insights from Atlas van operators on their preferences, healthy habits, technology use and more while working on the road.
This year, 457 Atlas Van Lines PVOs completed the survey.
“Our drivers are very informed about life on the road because they log millions of miles each year for Atlas and its customers,” said Jack Griffin, chairman and CEO of Atlas World Group. “Our King of the Road survey provides these valued individuals the chance to share their expertise and opinions, so our company and industry have an accurate assessment of what life on the road is like today.”
Highlights of this year’s King of the Road survey include:
PVOs are health-conscious and eco-friendly. Seventy-eight percent of PVOs surveyed said they exercise while on the road by moving furniture, and 31 percent walk, run or do other forms of exercise while at truck stops. In addition, PVOs are making healthy eating choices while on the road. Eighty-two percent of PVOs choose to drink water throughout the day over sugary drinks such as teas, sports drinks, juices and sodas. Fresh fruit was the top choice for favorite snack while on the road (55 percent), followed by peanuts/mixed nuts (44 percent). For the first time in King of the Road Survey history, Chick-Fil-A was the frontrunner for the favorite fast food restaurant, where PVOs can make healthy choices such as grilled chicken sandwiches, wraps and market salads. With the environment being at the forefront of everyone’s mind, PVOs and Atlas agents are doing their part to be environmentally friendly while on the road or in the office, Griffin said. Fifty-three percent of PVOs are limiting unnecessary idling at a standstill, while another 40 percent are using Prepass/EZ Pass/Best Pass to reduce emissions. See how Atlas agents are taking action for a sustainable future at https://www.atlasvanlines.com/move-green.
PVOs are connected through technology. Ninety-one percent of PVOs surveyed use smartphones to keep in contact with family, check email and utilize social media. The iPhone outpaced the Android by 1 percent (54 percent and 53 percent respectively) as the smartphone of choice for van operators this year, while Verizon Wireless remains the preferred wireless network for the fourth consecutive year. PVOs continue to take advantage of the latest technology, with 71 percent using GPS for navigation and 57 percent using tablets, such as Apple’s iPad and Samsung’s Galaxy tablet.
In addition to using the latest and greatest tools, PVOs are also employing technology to stay more connected to work, family and friends while on the road, with 96 percent of PVOs accessing email daily (up from 94 percent in 2016) and 92 percent of respondents saying they have access to internet daily. Nearly 71 percent of PVOs are checking social media outlets, such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram daily. With many PVOs spending 40 weeks or more on the road, today’s technological advances are helping them stay connected—no matter their geographic location.
Favorite brands and other highway essentials include:
- Best coffee: Dunkin’ Donuts
- Favorite fast food restaurant: Chick-Fil-A
- Favorite hotel chain: Super 8
- Best truck stop chain: Flying J
- Favorite on-the-road snack: Fresh fruit
- Favorite on-the-road music genre: Talk/news/sports radio
- Best tires: Michelin
- Most-used motor oil: Shell Rotella
- Best tractor: Kenworth
- Favorite grocery store/supermarket: Walmart
- Most common-used smartphone: Apple
- Most common-used cell service/network provider: Verizon
This year’s King of the Road Survey results were released just ahead of Atlas Van Lines’ annual driver appreciation event, known as BRAVO (Boosting Recognition of Atlas Van Operators), which is scheduled for September 26-28. This event takes place at participating Atlas agencies around the United States and Canada and recognizes PVOs who travel across the country and interact with Atlas Van Lines’ customers on a daily basis.
For complete survey results, visit atlasvanlines.com/media-room/king-of-the-road-survey. To view the infographic, visit https://www.atlasvanlines.com/infographics/keep-on-trucking.
The Trucker News Staff produces engaging content for not only TheTrucker.com, but also The Trucker Newspaper, which has been serving the trucking industry for more than 30 years. With a focus on drivers, the Trucker News Staff aims to provide relevant, objective content pertaining to the trucking segment of the transportation industry. The Trucker News Staff is based in Little Rock, Arkansas.