Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Salary

Men make up the majority of Tractor-Trailer Drivers in the United States, bringing in about $18.55 per hour. In the world of Tractor-Trailer Drivers, total cash compensation ranges from $31K on the lower end to $68K on the higher end; this includes bonuses that reach $5K and profit sharing that approaches $10K in rare cases, with some high rollers snagging commissions as high as $37K. While the particular city and years of experience impact pay for this group, the particular firm is the most influential factor. While roughly one in four report receiving no health benefits, a fair number do receive medical coverage, and more than half have dental, as well. For the most part, Tractor-Trailer Drivers enjoy their work and report high levels of job satisfaction. The figures in this overview were provided by individuals who took PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$32,040 - $75,875
$32K
$50K
$76K
MEDIAN: $50,310
10%
50%
90%

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$14.37 - $24.61
$14
$19
$25
MEDIAN: $18.55
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$26K$52K$78K
Salary
$32,040 - $75,875  
   
Bonus
$255.78 - $4,979  
Profit Sharing
$29.80 - $9,744  
Commission
$0.00 - $36,950  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$31,341 - $68,292  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 4,286
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$12$24$36
Hourly Rate
$14.37 - $24.61  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $4.13  
Overtime
$20.35 - $35.75  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Take the PayScale Survey to find out how location influences pay for this job.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Bonus
$255.78 - $4,979  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $36,950  
Profit Sharing
$29.80 - $9,744  
Total Pay (?
XTotal Pay combines base annual salary or hourly wage, bonuses, profit sharing, tips, commissions, overtime pay and other forms of cash earnings, as applicable for this job. It does not include equity (stock) compensation, cash value of retirement benefits, or the value of other non-cash benefits (e.g. healthcare).
)
$31,341 - $68,292  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 25 Mar 2017 | Individuals Reporting: 5,298
© PayScale, Inc. @ www.payscale.com

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Job Description for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer

Truck driver/tractor-trailer drivers must have knowledge of commercial driving regulations in order to transport all types of goods from livestock to materials over long-distance hauls. They must know how to maneuver the truck into the unloading and loading positions. Truck drivers must know how to go through a weigh station before and after loading. They also have to go through weigh stations while on the road. Truck drivers must maintain a log according to I.C.C. regulations. The log is presented to any law enforcement that requests it or to an employer. Some only drive during the day on short haul trips. Others may drive cross-country and take many days to get there. They are only allowed to drive 11 hours after 10 consecutive hours off duty. Truck drivers must navigate through big cities, small towns, rain and snow. Knowledge of how to drive in any weather condition is a must. Truck drivers have to go to school to get the special license. They must complete a CDL (Commercial Driver License) class. They must have a CDL-A in order to drive a heavy truck. Tests and classes are given at a truck driving school. Truck driving must be taken very seriously. Truck drivers put their own lives and other people's lives in the line of fire by being careless. Safety is essential for this job.


Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Tasks

  • Transport, deliver and pickup goods or equipment by heavy truck.
  • Keep accurate driving log and may be responsible for general truck maintenance.

Common Career Paths for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer


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While Tractor-Trailer Drivers do not often become Truck Owners and Operators, the job pays $93K per year on average. Tractor-Trailer Drivers most frequently become Heavy Truck Drivers and Light or Delivery Services Truck Drivers even though median compensation is $9K lower and $14K lower, respectively.

Truck Driver Heavy Job Listings

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Popular Employer Salaries for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer


J.B. Hunt Transport, Inc., FedEx Freight, YRC Worldwide Inc., Ruan Transport Corporation, and Swift Transportation Corporation are all popular places to work. Although United Parcel Service (UPS), Inc. boasts the highest average salary in town at $65K, employee compensation still varies greatly — workers can make as little as $36K or as much as $83K. XPO Logistics, ABF Freight System, Inc., and FedEx Freight also offer top salaries for Tractor-Trailer Drivers. Workers at these firms can expect to earn about $62K, $60K, and $59K, respectively.

Though lagging the field in terms of compensation — Swift Group Ltd offers the lowest median salary at $40K — pay within the company still varies considerably between $33K and $63K. Other low-paying employers include Ruan Transport Corporation at $42K and Swift Transportation Corporation at $42K, though some Tractor-Trailer Drivers there earn up to $66K.

Popular Skills for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer


Tractor-Trailer Drivers report using a deep pool of skills on the job. Most notably, skills in hazmat, Sales, tanker, and Safety Compliance are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 5 percent and 8 percent. Skills that pay less than market rate include Driving, forklift, and CDL. Those proficient in Commercial are, more often than not, also skilled in Safety Compliance and Jobsite Delivery.

Pay by Experience Level for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer

Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.


Tractor-Trailer Drivers with more experience do not necessarily bring home bigger paychecks. In fact, experience in this field tends to impact compensation minimally. Those in the early stages of their career can expect to make around $42K; however, individuals with five to 10 years of experience bring in $46K on average — a distinctly larger sum. Tractor-Trailer Drivers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $49K. Folks who have racked up more than 20 years in the field report incomes that aren't that much higher than less experienced individuals' earnings; the veterans make just $51K on average.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $46,477

Larger city markers indicate a job is popular in that location.

Chicago offers some of the highest pay in the country for Tractor-Trailer Drivers, 16 percent above the national average. Tractor-Trailer Drivers will also find cushy salaries in Denver (+11 percent), Portland (+8 percent), Houston (+7 percent), and Dallas (+6 percent). The lowest-paying market is Phoenix, which sits 7 percent below the national average. Workers in Orlando and Jacksonville earn salaries that trail the national average for those in this profession (7 percent less and 6 percent less, respectively).

Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Reviews

Q: What is it like working as a Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer?

Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer in Portland:
`"$Slave labor industry."`
Pros: When you're rolling at 60 mph down the road and getting paid its a great job. Not a highly physical labor job. Relaxing job for the most part.
Cons: Long hours for menial pay. Best to have no attachments luring you away from the job and back to home.

Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer in Clearfield:
`"$It's very enjoyable albeit having to deal with other drivers."`
Pros: Freedom from someone breathing down my neck 24/7 and trusting me to get my job done no matter what. Flexible schedule. Great people to work with, very cheery place to work. Mostly always have something to do. Good start time and end time.
Cons: Promised 80 hrs. Per pay period, but frankly now hardly meet those numbers, barely make 70 on a good period. Sometimes come back to warehouse with more work to do and hours to make, sometimes not. Would prefer a more solid schedule or salary pay. I know it's not my employers fault that customers dwindle down but I need hours.

Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer in Kirkwood:
`"$Fun Career enjoy the stores I deliver to."`
Pros: I love driving truck and working with the customers we deliver to.
Cons: Under paid and not appreciated by the company I work for.

Related Job Salaries

Key Stats for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer

Gender

Female
4 %
Male
96 %

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 1176 votes.
Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
29%
5-9 years
17%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
24%
Location:
Years in Fields/Career:
United States (change)

Experience Affects Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Salaries

▲9%

▲5%

National Average
$46,000

▼1%

▼10%

Skills That Affect Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Salaries

▲8%

▲6%

▲5%



▲1%



Commercial
▼0%

Machine Operation
▼0%

Less than Truckload (LTL) Freight
▼0%

National Average
$46,000

CDL
▼8%

▼8%

▼10%

▼12%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 1176 votes.

Gender

Female
4 %
Male
96 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
3%
1-4 years
29%
5-9 years
17%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
24%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits
Medical: 71%
dental benefits
Dental: 58%
vision benefits
Vision: 51%
dental benefits
None: 27%
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