How much money do truck drivers make in the United States?

How much money do truck drivers make in the United States?

How much money do truck drivers make in the United States?

Trucking is one of the booming industries in the United States. There is a high demand for truck drivers in the US. This is partly due to the tight labor market. The bustling US economy also had an effect on the trucking industry.

According to the report of the United States Bureau of Labor, the average annual wage of a tractor-trailer truck driver is around 43,680 to 45,570 dollars. The wage of a truck driver depends on many factors such as location, years of experience and CDL training.

The wage of the driver depends on how much they are paid. Many trucking companies pay their drivers by the mile than by the hour. There are regions that pay more than others.

Factors that Impact Truck Driver’s Income


Truck driving is a tough work and it has a high turnover rate. Truck drivers who have more experience have a higher pay.

Type of Job

Trucking is used to transport different goods. Truck drivers transporting oversized loads and hazardous materials are paid higher. The more risk involved in the job, the driver is paid higher.

These types of jobs are usually given to drivers who are with the company for several years. This is for safety purposes.

Type of payment

Different companies have different pay structures. Two of the most common ones are Pay per Hour or Pay per Mile. It is found though that Pay per Hour provides the most financial security for the driver.

Hazmat certification

A truck driver that has hazmat certification and has experience hauling hazardous materials can request or command for a higher pay.

Type of Truck

Truck drivers that have experience driving tankers, refrigerated trucks and flatbed trucks can have a higher pay. This is because of their knowledge and skills that are required to handle these types of vehicles.

Type of Driver

There are two basic categories of truck drivers. These are the company drivers and owner-operators. Owner-operators are like small business owners. Company drivers are salaried personnel.

Owner-operators can charge higher rates but they also have a lot of expenses. This includes vehicle maintenance, overhead costs and insurance.

Work Record

Trucking companies give high value for those drivers who are reliable and also safe on the road. Drivers who have proven track records of being cost effective (under budget), sticking to the schedule and delivering the loads in good condition are paid extra.

The best drivers can even request compensation. This is for long delays due to weather or traffic.


Regional LTL carriers and private carriers typically pay higher than others. Searching for a company that pays high rates and give the best benefit packages can improve the salaries of the drivers.

Best Paying Trucker Jobs

Team Driving

This type of job entices many truck drivers. This is because both members are paid for all the miles they spend on the road. This gives both drivers a chance to rest while still being on the road. They can switch with each other on who takes the wheel.

Private Fleet

Large companies that can afford private fleets usually pay higher than an average trucking company. The prime example is Walmart with a median income of around 86,000 dollars.

Union Drivers

Workers usually find better pay through union labor. This is because unions have a standard rate of pay. They typically pay higher than the average job.

Truck drivers often ask, “How much do truck drivers make in the US?”. Well the answer is, it depends on the location. The following are average annual wages for the different regions:

East Central- $45,850

North Central- $45,990

South Central- $43,025

Southeast – $43, 340

Northeast- $45, 579

Northwest- $48,660

Southwest- $47,350

There are lowest and highest paying states for truck drivers. The following are some of the highest paying states for truck drivers:

Alaska- $57,630

District of Columbia- $52,760

North Dakota- $52,080

Nevada- $50,920

New York- $50,460

Massachusetts- $50,310

Wyoming- $50,200

Some of the Lowest-Paying States for Truck Drivers:

West Virginia- $39,520

Maine- $40,040

Alabama- $40,580

South Dakota- $41,590

Mississippi- $41,900

Virginia- $42,660

The following are average annual wage of truck drivers per state:

Alabama- $40,580

Alaska- $57,630

Arizona- $45,430

Arkansas- $41,980

California- $47,300

Colorado- $48,840

Connecticut- $49,880


District of Columbia- $52,760

Florida- $42,020

Georgia- $43,260

Hawaii- $48,910

Idaho- $42,010

Illinois- $48,650

Indiana- $ 46,210

Iowa- $43,820

Kansas- $46,180

Kentucky- $45,550

Louisiana- $42,090

Maine- $40,040

Maryland- $47,940

Massachusetts- $50,310

Michigan- $43,450

Minnesota- $48,710

Mississippi- $41,900

Missouri- $45,070

Montana- $46,100

Nebraska- $44,710

Nevada- $50,920

New Hampshire- $45,030

New Jersey- $49,080

New Mexico- $44,460

New York- $50,460

North Carolina- $44, 030

North Dakota- $52,080

Ohio- $45,010

Oklahoma- $43,880

Oregon- $47,410

Pennsylvania- $46,650

Rhode Island- $48,360

South Carolina- $44,270

South Dakota- $41,590

Tennessee- $43,660

Texas- $45,260

Utah- $45,600

Vermont- $45,250

Virginia- $42,660

Washington- $ 48,620

West Virginia- $39,520

Wisconsin- $45,950

Wyoming- $50,200

What are the bonuses and benefits of truck drivers?

Easy Access

Trucking requires few qualifications. Post-secondary education is not required to operate trucking vehicles. Truck drivers just need to have a license and training.

The training time doesn’t usually take more than seven weeks. Training requirements can be affected by the state’s policies. Same states have more rigorous standards.

Job Security

As long as the driver keeps their license up to date and doesn’t get into any vehicular accidents, trucking is a secure employment. There is no major labor gap in this industry. This means that companies are not going to downsize on their drivers.

No Commuting or maintenance cost

The trucking company covers all repair cost and gas cost. This means you don’t have to worry about price at the pumping station. This may be an obvious perk but the money saved from gas and repairs certainly adds up.

This means more take home money and increased savings.

The wage of a truck driver depends on his efforts, experience, skill set and location. Trucking is a financially stable job. One just need to undergo required training, be safe on the road and keeps license up to date.