How Much Do Long Haul Truck Drivers Make?

Long-haul truck drivers play a vital economic role by transporting goods long distances. However, many people need to learn more about this industry or the lifestyle of a long-haul trucker. In this article, we’ll take a closer look at some common questions about long-haul trucking.


Hours of Work for Long Haul Truckers

The government regulates the hours’ long-haul truckers work each week to ensure road safety. Under the current rules, a trucker can be on the road for up to 11 hours each day, with a 14-hour workday cap. In addition, they are limited to a minimum average of 70 hours per week. They can continue after 34 hours of consecutive rest if the weekly limit is reached. These regulations are designed to prevent truckers from driving while tired, which can lead to accidents. While the hours may be extended, they are necessary to ensure that goods can be transported safely across the country.

Pay Scale for Truck Drivers

Cents per mile is the most common pay scale in the trucking industry because it encourages truck drivers to drive as much as possible. The result is a good take-home wage for truckers. Salaries can also be affected by the type of goods being transported, with hazardous materials typically commanding a higher rate. 

In addition, drivers may receive bonuses for completing deliveries on time or working during peak demand periods. Experienced drivers earn more than new hires. Many factors contribute to truckers’ high wages, including long hours, dealing with traffic, bad weather, demanding customers, etc.

Truck Driving as a Retirement Job

For many retirees, truck driving offers the perfect solution as a new job that can provide both income and satisfaction. Truck driving can be an excellent retirement job for several reasons. First of all, it offers a good income. Truck drivers earn more than $50,000 annually; some even make six figures. 

In addition, truck driving allows retirees to travel and see different parts of the country, which is one of the most appealing aspects of the job. Finally, truck driving can be flexible. Some companies offer part-time or seasonal positions, ideal for retirees who want to work but avoid committing to a full-time job.

Home Time for Long Haul Truckers

Long-haul truckers typically come home every four to six weeks, depending on the company and driving route. Some trucking companies allow drivers to choose their schedules, while others are more rigid. A city or regional driver can haul trucks of varying sizes for shorter distances than a long-haul driver, resulting in more flexible schedules and the ability to come home more often. Being a trucker can be demanding and challenging regardless of where you drive or how often you’re on the road. However, it can also be rewarding, allowing one to see new places and meet new people.

Is Becoming a Truck Driver Worth It?

Becoming a truck driver is a career path that offers both freedom and independence. However, whether it is worth depends on individual circumstances and goals. Here are the factors to consider when deciding if becoming a truck driver suits you.

Earning Potential

Truck driving can be lucrative, with an average salary of $50,909 per year. Over-The-Road (OTR) drivers who transport freight over long distances can earn almost $64,000 annually. Private fleets, which deliver cargo exclusively for one company, often pay higher wages. Furthermore, many trucking companies provide benefits such as health insurance and retirement plans. Thus, truck driving is worth considering for those interested in a well-paid career.

Earning Six Figures

For truck drivers seeking to earn six figures, there are a few things to remember:

  1. Be willing to work hard and put in extra hours when necessary.
  2. Be open to jobs that others might avoid since these tend to pay more.
  3. Remember that you are your boss as a truck driver, and achieving a six-figure income requires hard work and risk-taking.

Reasons for Truck Driver Turnover

Two significant reasons truck drivers quit their jobs are low pay and poor working conditions. Truck drivers frequently work long hours without overtime pay and pay for fuel and other expenses, making it difficult to support themselves or their families financially. Additionally, they may need more access to showers, laundry facilities, or rest areas. They must deal with traffic congestion, bad weather, and dangerous roads, making truck driving stressful. As a result, truck driving has a high turnover rate, creating a worker shortage and negatively impacting the economy.


Truck driving is a vital industry that can provide a good income. However, it is essential to consider the challenges associated with the job before deciding to pursue a career as a truck driver. Truck driving can be a rewarding career if you are willing to work hard and take risks. However, consider other career options if you are unprepared for the challenges.

About the author, Laurence Perkins

Laurence Perkins is the passionate car enthusiast behind the blog My Auto Machine. With over a decade of experience in the automotive industry, Perkins has knowledge and experience with a wide range of car makes and models. His particular interests lie in performance and modification, and his blog covers these topics in-depth. In addition to his own blog, Perkins is a respected voice in the automotive community and writes for various automotive publications. His insights and opinions on cars are highly sought-after.