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Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Salary

Men account for the majority of Tractor-Trailer Drivers in the United States. The overall average income for this group is approximately $17.17 per hour. Total cash compensation to Tractor-Trailer Drivers approaches anywhere from $30K on the lower end to $63K on the higher end; in exceptional cases, this can include more than $2K from bonuses and upwards of $5K from profit sharing. Compensation for this group is mainly affected by the particular firm, but the particular city and years of experience are influential factors as well. While some workers in this profession — close to one-fourth — do not have any health coverage, a fair number do receive medical benefits and more than half have dental insurance. Most Tractor-Trailer Drivers report high levels of job satisfaction. Participants in PayScale's salary questionnaire provided the particulars of this report.
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$30,104 - $72,401
(Median)
$30K
$48K
$72K
MEDIAN: $47,982
10%
50%
90%

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$13.35 - $22.82
(Median)
$13
$17
$23
MEDIAN: $17.00
10%
50%
90%

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National Salary Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$25K$50K$75K
Salary
$30,104 - $72,401  
   
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,045  
Profit Sharing
$201.34 - $4,877  
Commission
$0.00 - $25,760  
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).
)
$29,743 - $63,476  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 16 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 3,677
National Hourly Rate Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$12$24$36
Hourly Rate
$13.35 - $22.82  
   
Hourly Tips
$0.00 - $2.53  
Overtime
$18.54 - $33.92  
National Annualized Data (?
XAll compensation data shown are gross, national 10th to 90th percentile ranges. Pay can vary greatly by location. To view local data, take the PayScale survey.
)
$0$24K$48K$72K
Bonus
$0.00 - $2,045  
   
Commission
$0.00 - $25,760  
Profit Sharing
$201.34 - $4,877  
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).
)
$29,743 - $63,476  
Country: United States | Currency: USD | Updated: 16 May 2015 | Individuals Reporting: 5,485
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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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Though it's uncommon, some Tractor-Trailer Drivers move into roles as Truck Owners and Operators, where pay is an average $89K per year. A lot of Tractor-Trailer Drivers advance their careers by becoming Heavy Truck Drivers and Trucking and Transportation Fleet Dispatchers. However, those positions offer $5K less and $6K less per year on average.

Truck Driver Heavy Job Listings

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


Ruan Transport Corporation, FedEx Freight, United Parcel Service (UPS), Inc., Swift Transportation Corporation, and Ryder Integrated Logistics Inc are all popular places to work. Although YRC Worldwide Inc. leads the field in pay with a median salary of $63K, employees there receive a wide spread of salaries, from $41K on the low end all the way up to $80K at the top. Other big spenders include United Parcel Service (UPS), Inc., FedEx Freight, and Federal Express Corporation (FedEx), top-paying firms where Tractor-Trailer Drivers see paychecks nearing $59K, $56K, or $52K.

Salaries are easily beat at Lowe's Home Improvement Inc., where median pay comes to just $32K, the lowest in the field. What's more, with base pay starting at $26K and ending at $41K, range in salary is rather small. Other low-paying employers include Schneider National Company at $34K and C R England at $35K, though some Tractor-Trailer Drivers there earn up to $53K.

Popular Skills for Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer


Survey results imply that Tractor-Trailer Drivers deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, skills in Driver, tanker, hazmat, and Driving are correlated to pay that is above average, with boosts between 10 percent and 17 percent. Skills that seem to negatively impact pay include forklift and CDL. Most people skilled in Safety Compliance are similarly competent in Commercial 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.


For Tractor-Trailer Drivers, more experience in the field does not usually mean bigger paychecks. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience have a median salary of $39K. Those who have been around for five to 10 years can expect to take home more — $42K on average. After working for 10 to 20 years, Tractor-Trailer Drivers make a median salary of $46K. People who have worked for more than 20 years report a median income of $49K, which is barely higher than the median for folks with 10 to 20 years of experience.

Pay Difference by Location


Chicago is home to an above-average pay rate for Tractor-Trailer Drivers, 18 percent higher than the national average. Tractor-Trailer Drivers will also find cushy salaries in Seattle (+15 percent), New York (+13 percent), Houston (+12 percent), and Indianapolis (+11 percent). Phoenix ranks last in the field for pay, reporting salaries 5 percent below the national average. Employers in Columbus and Detroit also lean toward paying below-median salaries (4 percent lower and 3 percent lower, respectively).

Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Reviews

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

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.

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Experience Affects Truck Driver, Heavy / Tractor-Trailer Salaries



National Average
$43,000



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

tanker
up arrow 17%

Driver
up arrow 17%

up arrow 10%

Driving
up arrow 9%

Hazardous Material
up arrow 5%

Commercial
up arrow 4%

Driver/Core Development
up arrow 3%

Jobsite Delivery
up arrow 2%

Machine Operation
up arrow 2%

National Average
$43,000

Transport
up arrow 1%

Safety Compliance
up arrow 1%

Customer Service
up arrow 1%

Sales
up arrow 1%

CDL
up arrow 7%

forklift
up arrow 12%

Job Satisfaction

Highly satisfied
Rated 4 out of 5
based on 1406 votes.

Gender

Female
3 %
Male
97 %

Years of Experience

Less than 1 year
4%
1-4 years
23%
5-9 years
24%
10-19 years
27%
20 years or more
23%

Common Health Benefits

medical benefits Medical: 74% dental benefits Dental: 60%
vision benefits Vision: 50% employee benefits None: 24%
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