Men make up the majority of Tractor-Trailer Drivers in the United States, and the nationwide average salary in this area lies in the neighborhood of $18.47 per hour. Including potential for bonuses and profit sharing — peaking near $5K and $10K, respectively — total cash payment to Tractor-Trailer Drivers can bottom out near $31K or peak near $68K depending on individual performance. Earnings for this group are mostly affected by the particular firm, followed by the particular city and years of experience. The majority of workers are highly satisfied with their job. Close to one-fourth of professionals in this line of work do not receive benefits; however, a fair number report medical coverage and the greater part claim dental coverage as well. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
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$31,594 - $74,799
(Median)
$32K
$50K
$75K
MEDIAN: $49,913
10%
50%
90%

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$14.19 - $24.53
(Median)
$14
$18
$25
MEDIAN: $18.00
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$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$31,594 - $74,799  
   
Bonus
$325.00 - $4,938  
Profit Sharing
$30.20 - $9,696  
Commission
$0.00 - $31,943  
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).
)
$31,082 - $67,650  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 4,464
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
$14.19 - $24.53  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $4.19  
Overtime
$20.22 - $35.77  
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
$325.00 - $4,938  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $31,943  
Profit Sharing
$30.20 - $9,696  
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).
)
$31,082 - $67,650  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 28 Oct 2016 | Individuals Reporting: 5,446
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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

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

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


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While not commonly seen, Tractor-Trailer Drivers who transition into a Truck Owner and Operator position may see a rise in pay. The median salary for Truck Owners and Operators is $92K per year. Tractor-Trailer Drivers most often move into positions as Heavy Truck Drivers or Light or Delivery Services Truck Drivers. Heavy Truck Drivers actually earn $8K less on average, however, and Light or Delivery Services Truck Drivers earn $13K less per year than Tractor-Trailer Drivers do.

Truck Driver Heavy Job Listings

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


Tractor-Trailer Drivers fill the offices of leading firms Ruan Transport Corporation, FedEx Freight, J.B. Hunt Transport, Inc., YRC Worldwide Inc., and Swift Transportation Corporation. The biggest paychecks can be found at XPO Logistics — the median salary there is $63K; however, employees are subject to a wide range in pay, with the lowest salaries sitting near $41K and highest ones in the neighborhood of $73K. Other employers shelling out big bucks include United Parcel Service (UPS), Inc., FedEx Freight, and ABF Freight System, Inc., where Tractor-Trailer Drivers typically earn around $60K, $59K, or $58K, respectively.

Swift Group Ltd offers the least money; the median income there is just $39K. The pay range is also pretty narrow, as compensation generally sits between $29K and $64K. Others at the bottom of the scale for this job include Swift Transportation Corporation at $41K, Ruan Transport Corporation at $42K, and Werner Enterprises, Inc., where $42K is the norm.

Popular Skills for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer


Survey participants wield an impressively varied skill set on the job. Most notably, skills in Less than Truckload Freight, tanker, hazmat, and Sales are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 10 percent and 12 percent. Skills that pay less than market rate include forklift, Driving, and Driver. 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.


Experience does not seem to be a strong driver of pay increase in this role. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $42K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $45K. Tractor-Trailer Drivers with one to two decades of relevant experience report an average salary of approximately $48K. Tractor-Trailer Drivers who surpass 20 years on the job report pay that isn't as high as one would expect; the median compensation for this crowd sits around $51K.

Pay Difference by Location

National Average: $45,952

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, 17 percent above the national average. Tractor-Trailer Drivers will also find cushy salaries in New York (+13 percent), Denver (+12 percent), Houston (+8 percent), and Portland (+8 percent). Richmond is home to the smallest salaries in the field, lagging the national average by 12 percent. Employers also pay below the national average in Phoenix and Orlando (7 percent lower).

Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Reviews

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

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

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Experience Affects Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Salaries



National Average
$46,000



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


up arrow 10%

up arrow 10%

up arrow 9%


Safety Compliance
up arrow 3%

Customer Service
up arrow 3%

Transport
up arrow 2%

Commercial
up arrow 1%

Jobsite Delivery
up arrow 1%

Machine Operation
0%

National Average
$46,000

CDL
up arrow 6%

up arrow 7%

up arrow 10%

up arrow 11%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 1157 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: 72%
dental benefits
Dental: 58%
medical benefits
Vision: 50%
dental benefits
None: 27%
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