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Is the open road calling?
There is always a demand for good quality delivery drivers, and with options ranging from local deliveries for those who want to be closer to home to long-distance haulage, there are a variety of options out there for delivery drivers.
With median wages starting around $40,000 at entry-level and many companies offering comprehensive benefits packages, including dental or medical, paid holidays and 401K retirement plans, delivery driving can turn into a lucrative and rewarding career for the right person.
There is always a demand for good quality delivery drivers, and with options ranging from local deliveries for those who want to be closer to home to long-distance haulage, there are a variety of options out there for delivery drivers.Tweet This
But what about if you’re setting your sights higher? What are the top-paying jobs in the industry today? And what kind of education do you need to break into delivery driving?
Long Distance Equals Big Bucks
From local pizza delivery to the rigors of ice road trucking, the delivery driving industry is a varied one.
For those wanting to build a well-paying career in driving, it’s vital to sort the wheat from the chaff. A local delivery job might be a good start, but the real money is in longer-haul over the road driving and more specialized types of trucking.
Experienced and highly skilled drivers in these areas can make upwards of $70,000 a year. For truckers looking to earn good money for their driving skills, these are some of the best careers in the delivery business:
- UPS driver – experienced UPS drivers can earn a good wage (around $73,000) collecting and delivering packages. Drivers undergo extensive training to familiarize them with UPS’ way of doing things;
- Over the road – over the road, or OTR, driving is one of the top-paying jobs in the delivery industry, with companies like Walmart paying around $71,000. OTR drivers are expected to have top-notch driving skills, attention to detail, and the ability to keep to a tight schedule;
- Specialty drivers – hauling specialty materials or potentially hazardous substances takes extensive training and knowledge of current laws and policies, which means a bigger pay packet for qualified drivers;
- Ice road truckers – these are the highest-paid specialty drivers, combining a high level of skill with no small amount of bravery. An experienced ice road trucker can earn the equivalent of a year’s wages in a couple of months, due to the dangerous nature of the job and the resulting high wages;
- Coal mine dump truck drivers – loading coal onto the truck at coal mines takes exacting skill and attention to detail. One mistake can risk a partial collapse of the mine, so a steady hand and patience are requirements for this well-paid trucking job;
- Oversize load drivers – another job that requires a lot of patience. It’s not easy to navigate oncoming traffic when hauling an oversize load, but for truckers that have the skill to do it, the rewards are good.
No Degree Necessary
Delivery and truck driving is a viable career option for people who love driving and have physical fitness and strength to embrace life on the road. Drivers don’t require a college degree.
A love for driving is, of course, a necessity, and a good clean, driving record is also important. Most positions require drivers to have their CDL or commercial driving license, which can be obtained by going to a local education provider.
For those looking for experience as well as qualifications, many companies will provide CDL training on the condition that the new driver stays with them for a minimum period of one or two years.
Being a driver can have other side benefits too – those wondering does your education level impact your car insurance rates? will find that regardless of education, many trucking companies are able to team up with insurance companies to offer drivers better deals on their personal insurance, for example.
In order to drive commercial motor vehicles for a living, you are required to get a Commercial Driver's License. Our comprehensive CDL study guide and training manual will prepare you to pass the CDL exam
With a CDL and some experience under your belt, it’s possible to make a good living as a delivery driver or trucker.
For those who love the open road and enjoy driving, the challenges are well worth it, resulting in good pay for a well-liked job – and no college education loans to worry about, either.