My opinion on a career as a truck driver is this: if you're willing to make the sacrifices and take on the stress of a driving job, you could be rewarded with some of the best money out there. Long-distance or short-distance driving can be a grueling job, and it deserves a decent salary for all the long and strenuous hours behind the wheel, often many thousands of miles from home. High-paying truck driver jobs are usually found in what is called a “niche market” - a specialized segment in the transport industry. The work involved in these specialized niches is usually a little out of the ordinary, and often involves expensive and specialized teams and specially trained, experienced, and top-notch drivers.
This is where higher salaries for driving positions come into play. These niche specialist jobs often come with varying degrees of risk and danger involved, which is why they don't attract many truck drivers. To earn a higher salary as a truck driver, more experienced drivers are preferred and a more complex skill set is required, rather than the average truck driver carrying, for example, dry cargo loads on a van trailer. Walmart's private fleet requires a clean and pleasant driving record (no avoidable accidents, minimal movement violations, no serious violations, etc.), clean criminal control, just like any company offering a well-paid driving job. Expectations are higher than most companies, but in return they pay a higher than average salary.
There are many challenges and occupational hazards involved in a driving job on icy roads, such as extreme temperatures, excessive winter storms and poor road conditions. Transportation of hazardous products, such as gasoline and a variety of liquid caustic and explosive materials, provides good remuneration for work. Driving jobs that transport hazardous materials tend to pay well above the average salary for driving. You may need a TWIC CARD to do this kind of work - here's a simple guide to getting your TWIC CARD. The driver not only transports dangerous goods, but they are sometimes exposed to chemical fumes when channeling dangerous chemicals.
If you are with the right trucking company, tanker driving jobs can be quite lucrative. There are transport companies that specialize in transporting large loads. There are some carriers who have a high level of experience in transporting old and very expensive cars. You need a very patient driver and one who is meticulous when handling high-priced cargo. Some teams are doing very well financially. Team driving is often thought of as the quick and easy way to be a rich truck driver - one of the highest-paying truck jobs - but there are some drawbacks.
One of the problems with teams is that drivers often suffer from exhaustion and, although the schedule is technically legal, drivers cannot maintain the busy and stressful schedule for long periods of time. The rate of payment and the number of miles presented by the airline always seem attractive. However, delays in loading and bad weather reduce mileage for teams. Husband and wife teams can do very well if both are drivers. They can live on the road for long periods of time if necessary and have no time obligations at home.
The success of a team depends on many variables, including the ability of the transport company they work for to schedule their loads efficiently. Whether an owner operator leased to a trucking company (NOT TO BE CONFUSED WITH A LEASE OPERATOR) or an independent owner operator, they can make a good living. While owner operator jobs can be well-paying truck driver jobs, there is much more risk and liability in owning a truck. Union Truck Drivers Earn Better Wages Than the Average Driver. Unions establish a standardized wage rate and drivers are paid for all the work they do. Generally, there are increases in the standard of living incorporated into a union driver's salary packages, so their salaries are cut above the average truck driver whose salaries are not indexed to the cost of living. If you're looking for the best paying truck driving jobs out there, you'll need to make an effort to observe nine different niches we mentioned above: oil tankers; hazardous materials; oversized freight; ice roads; private fleets; Detroit; Cummins; Paccar; Cat; Mercedes; Mack; company vs owner operator; Schneider Trucking School+ Company; TWIC CARD; etc.
Then locate businesses near you and start your job search. Usually, oil tanker jobs pay well due to their danger and complexity - you need more skills and knowledge to do this kind of work so you should generate a higher salary. They often pay for delays, absences, stopovers etc., which makes their rate of payment higher. Private truck fleets often pay a higher rate of payment to the trucker but their standards for hiring drivers are also higher - they can look for drivers with more experience and a higher skill level than the average dry-load driver. Trucking jobs that require a higher skill set and where there is a higher level of risk than the average truck driving job can pay better than average - such as work on oil tankers; owner operator (more financial risk and liability); trucking on ice roads; etc. Ice road truckers have been found to be some of the highest paid in this specialty field - with oversized freight drivers and hazardous materials carriers following them closely due to their danger of work and high risk. Tips for getting the best truck engine include instructions, clear tips, videos and photos on truck drivers' skills, maneuvers and information for all professional truck drivers. Learn about advantages and disadvantages of being an owner operator vs working for a company that conducts job searches. Schneider Trucking School+ Company offers two forms of paid CDL training with post-training jobs - maybe Schneider might be right for you! Some articles may contain affiliate links - you can read our full disclosure policy here.