Truckers Pay - Minimum Salary

Topic 22605 | Page 3

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Steve L.'s Comment
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Nobody (in any profession) ever thinks they're getting paid what they're worth. Even the original poster here, had issues with the work environment, where the pay was good.

Of all the career moves that have been suggested to me, truck driver was never one of them. And, though I once thought it would be an interesting job, I was disappointed when I found myself needing a good-paying job at the age of 53. Schooling was quick, jobs were readily available and pay (at the time) was much better than any of the opportunities in my area.

The original poster thinks the medical requirements are too stringent when compared to his pilot's license. But then, he's neither transporting people nor cargo on a regular basis. We (company drivers) enjoy the benefit of per diem pay, which gives us higher "take home" pay than most people earning the same salary. We enjoy (in many cases) the opportunity to do our job on our terms (e.g. taking loads to interesting places, choosing where we'll take our home time and often when) and running hard when we want.

I won't pretend the truck driving life is easy or desirable for a lot of people. Heck, I'd even take plenty of other jobs if it meant I got to see my sweet child every night. But for now, this IS my job. It provides WELL for my family and I'm pretty good at it. If you're a good engineer, find a suitable outlet for the things you love to do. I know people who play in bar bands (and are really good) while owning and operating their own small businesses (which has its own set of issues). And hopefully, we'll one day see driver pay increased. But in the mean time, I'll just keep on keepin' on and thank God for the blessings of this life.



Substance Abuse Professional

The Substance Abuse Professional (SAP) is a person who evaluates employees who have violated a DOT drug and alcohol program regulation and makes recommendations concerning education, treatment, follow-up testing, and aftercare.

Per Diem:

Getting paid per diem means getting a portion of your salary paid to you without taxes taken out. It's technically classified as a meal and expense reimbursement.

Truck drivers and others who travel for a living get large tax deductions for meal expenses. The Government set up per diem pay as a way to reimburse some of the taxes you pay with each paycheck instead of making you wait until tax filing season.

Getting per diem pay means a driver will get a larger paycheck each week but a smaller tax return at tax time.

We have a ton of information on our wiki page on per diem pay


When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Tom C.'s Comment
member avatar

I haven't even been to school yet, starting next week, I know that I will be in for a massive uphill climb. The time away from home is going to stink, the pay will seem to be poor at first, I will have challenges I am not comfortable with coming at me. I know I will be stressed, Ill get sick of turning a wheel, I know I will get ticked off at my DM and may get my DM ticked off at me in turn (Ill try NOT to make such a situation permanent). I know I will have to deal with ignorant people in cars looking for a cash out on my front bumper, traffic that comes to a complete stop, possible sights of a lethal accident, bad weather and so much more that I don't even realize I will see/experience. I can't just walk out of the truck like a regular job in a rage quit. I have my wife, my father-in-law, 2 friends from when I was barely into my 20s that are in the industry and my grandfather who was also in the industry I can communicate with.

I have been told I can earn up to $55k a year, going in, I am aiming to do the best I can, I know I more than likely will NOT make $55K, I am aiming towards at least $45K and won't get too fussed if I don't make even that. My first year will be purely learning, improving, adjusting (not just for myself but my family as well) and making money that will keep my head above water.

I will keep my hopes up, ignore the naysayers ( terminal rats? ) do my job, and do what I can to get better as I said before, I will keep in touch with the people on this forum as well, ask for advice from those more experienced and not jaded. It will take time before I become a top earner and I know this.

I better wrap this up before I look like a rambling idiot smile.gif

I guess what I am trying to boil it down to is I am walking in knowing I know VERY little, not expecting $50K+ yearly off the bat and knowing some parts of it is going to seriously have me question my sanity but, the potential for this becoming something I will come to love is there.


A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.


Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.


Operating While Intoxicated

LDRSHIP's Comment
member avatar

Tom, that is the perfect attitude to have. You should have no issues making your planned $45k for the first year. $55k+ after that. Those are both very real numbers that are achievable.


Hours Of Service

HOS refers to the logbook hours of service regulations.
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