How Much Does the Average Truck Driver Make?
Is the road calling your name? If you’ve been considering a career as a truck driver, you’ll be happy to know that trucking is one of the most accessible careers out there. And at Warrior Logistics, we do everything we can to make it a fun career. But you have questions as well, like what is the income of a truck driver? Or is driving a logistics truck worth it? Below is a guide to help you understand the salary and potential bonuses to expect from a truck driving career.
How Much Money Do Truck Drivers Make?
So how much money does the average truck driver make? Although the question is simple enough, unfortunately, the answer is not so straightforward. That’s because truck drivers don’t receive a regular paycheck. Instead, commercial haulers pay by the mile or charge by the mile if they work independently. So, the amount that a truck driver gets paid relates directly to the amount of work, meaning the miles they drive.
The average pay for truck drivers depends on your experience, what company you work for, your licenses, and what area you drive in. Some areas pay more than others.
Many companies, such as Warrior Logistics, invest heavily in their truck drivers to ensure that they can earn a good trucking salary while still providing excellent value. The goal is to allow each driver to share in the culture of excellence, developing them into truck warriors who fully understand how the industry works. This method helps everyone involved, including clients, since truck drivers are committed to their work and apply the highest standards to distribute goods around the country.
The good news is there are many opportunities for truckers to increase their pay. For instance, sometimes, there are bonuses for hauling specific materials or driving through a unique territory. Drivers can also increase their income through specialized training and by earning specific certifications. Some companies, like Warrior Logistics, provide attractive OTR opportunities enabling drivers to maximize their potential by driving thousands of miles coast to coast weekly at a desirable pay rate. Furthermore, wages are rising due to high demand as competition increases for each truck driver’s time.
The Types Of Bonuses Available To Truck Drivers
While truck drivers receive basic pay for the miles they drive, they also have opportunities to earn even more from the companies that hire them. A Class A CDL-trained truck driver, for instance, can earn the following types of bonuses:
- Referral pay: Trucking companies love it when they get business from trucker referrals. Not only does it show the driver’s commitment, but it can also bring in a lot of extra cash. Therefore, companies will regularly pay drivers commissions or bonuses each time a referral joins the company.
- Onboarding bonus: Some haulage firms will offer a kind of “golden hello” to drivers who sign up to work for their company. In some cases, they may pay a lump sum, while others will spread out bonus pay over several months or years.
- Safety bonuses: Carriers will often offer safety pay as part of truck drivers’ jobs. For instance, they may provide drivers who never get involved in accidents or receive violations for unsafe driving a higher wage than those who have a history of collisions and errors.
- All-clear Department of Transport (DOT) inspections bonus: DOT inspections typically check that carriers and drivers comply with all regulations. Therefore, carriers will often offer drivers bonuses as a reward for following the rules.
- Long-distance bonuses: Carriers will sometimes show their appreciation for drivers who go above and beyond when it comes to total miles driven. Often, driving longer miles means that the driver is actively helping the company meet the needs of its clients.
- Layover bonus: Some carriers will pay drivers compensation if circumstances prevent them from carrying on with their work and making a delivery.
What Are The Benefits That Come With Being A Truck Driver?
Money is not the only compensation that companies offer their truck drivers. We also offer many other rewards and benefits that make your work considerably more enjoyable and improve your work-life balance.
For instance, some companies offer total job security; at Warrior Logistics, this is a big focus of our company. Truckers know that they can get work whenever they want it without worrying about the carrier going bankrupt. Warrior Logistics has been around for seven years and has been scaling every month.
Companies may also offer rewards, such as paid vacation and sick leave. Benefits like these prevent truckers from feeling like they must work all the time to make ends meet. And it encourages regular vacations to make the work more manageable.
Many companies also offer flexible schedules and healthcare benefits. Truckers can, therefore, better organize their lives around their work.
How Do Trucking Jobs Compare?
The average pay for truck drivers depends on their specific roles. Entry-level drivers, for instance, can earn slightly less than their team trainer or an experienced driver until they gain a few months of hands-on experience. This varies from company to company, but the more substantial companies that put people and safety first ensure the appropriate investment in the new driver is made to guarantee a successful start. After this initial training period, new drivers transition to the same rate as other company drivers.
Dedicated drivers, meaning drivers who run the same route every day or week, have a predictable weekly pay as the miles driven from one week to the next don’t vary. The reward is the predictability, unlike “Wild/OTR,” which has a high-potential upside that depends on the drivers’ desire to get out and get as many miles as possible each week. This is great for the company, but a driver has the opportunity to earn as much as $100,000 per year or more. This attractive salary is very doable with reliable companies like Warrior Logistics.
If you have qualified experience, you can apply to become a lead driver or trainer. You can earn an increased rate per mile as you are being paid to take on additional responsibility to develop new drivers. Many companies are willing to pay substantial sums of money for anyone with the needed skills. If you are interested in learning more about starting an exciting new career in truck driving, reach out to Warrior Logistics and apply here.