While you explore new career paths, it’s important to research the average earnings in your industry. If you’re wondering how much money truck drivers make, check out what factors influence the pay and see how you can optimize your truck driver’s salary now!
Don’t feel like reading? Learn more about trucker pay in this podcast episode!
Truck Driver Salary FAQs
What’s the Average Trucker Salary?
Your truck driver salary will depend on a variety of factors. Your trucking company and the type of position you take will impact your wages. Truck driver salaries may also vary depending on which part of the country you’re working in. One of the biggest differences in trucker salaries is the method in which they’re paid. Some truck drivers are paid by time, while others are paid per mile. Keeping these factors in mind, salary averages range from $40,000 on the lower end and can reach up to $90,000 at the higher end.
Is My Truck Driver Salary Fair?
Although truckers have the potential to earn a substantial amount of cash, many feel that their wages are unfair. Although you may be spending hours on the road, you may not be getting paid for all of them. If you’re paid by the mile then you won’t be paid for the time you spend sitting in traffic or waiting for shipments to be loaded and unloaded. This time is unaccounted for, and you won’t be compensated.
How Will the ELD Mandate Impact My Truck Driver Salary?
The ELD Mandate requires electronic logging devices (ELDs) to track driving patterns. The device knows when your engine is running, and it sends the information to law enforcement officials and those managing shipments. The purpose of ELDs is to make driving conditions safer. There’s a lot of controversy surrounding the ELD Mandate, as people argue whether it will actually increase safety or just cause delivery and scheduling issues.
Optimize Your Trucker Salary & Save Money While on the Road
1. Take Advantage of Tax Breaks
There are plenty of tax breaks that may pertain to you. Truck drivers can claim tax deductions for a variety of reasons (including food costs, cell phone plans, truck repairs, etc.), but it’s important to understand the limitations. Your company reimbursements and type of employment can affect your eligibility. See what tax deductions you may be missing out on!
2. Get Rewards Cards
Since you’ll be frequenting a lot of the same gas stations and restaurant chains, look into the rewards they have to offer. Learning about deals and discounts can save you a lot of cash. You can also search for discount apps that will give you even more deals!
3. Cut Down on the Fast Food
Not only is fast food unhealthy, it can also get expensive. Instead of eating out, try packing your own food. By preparing your own meals, you can save money and have a healthier lifestyle. Check out these healthy meal ideas for your next travel assignment!
4. Avoid Lodging Costs
Most companies won’t pay for hotels. Spending nights in the cab is the best way to avoid lodging costs, but when you’re traveling for weeks at a time, the cab can get pretty uncomfortable. When planning out your truck driving assignments, map out your routes. See if you have any family or friends in the area that would allow you to spend the night. You can avoid the cab for a night, and avoid the cost of a hotel. If this isn’t an option, limit your hotel stays as much as possible. If you do decide to stay at hotels, try to stay at the same brand. You’ll earn rewards and get discounts on future stays.
5. Set A Budget
It’s easy to overspend. Being conscious of how much your spending can help put things into perspective. Come up with a budget for how much you’ll spend on the road. Allow a small budget for food and emergency spending. If you’ll be traveling on longer assignments, you may want to consider having a lodging budget so you can have a proper shower once in awhile.
Ready to make the next step in your career and start earning your own truck driver salary? Check out the truck driving jobs we have available now!