Big Cars, Big Life: 5 Compelling Reasons to Become a Commercial Truck Driver
The commercial truck driving industry is growing, and there’s a shortage of more than 900,000 drivers. Becoming a commercial truck driver assures you of job security if you’re good at it. Unfortunately, many young people associate commercial truck driving with grueling working hours.
The industry is also known for weeks or months away from home. Besides, there’s pressure for young people to look for white collar jobs that match their college education. What they might not know is the myriad of benefits that come with being a commercial truck driver.
Unfortunately, there’s a self-defeating attitude amongst existing commercial truck drivers. The view has long lingered in the industry. It makes it challenging to attract young talent into the sector.
The bad reputation of being a commercial truck driver overshadows the many benefits that exist. If you’d like to become a truck driver but have no idea how you’d benefit, read along for tips.
Benefits of Being a Commercial Truck Driver
There are many reasons why commercial truck driving should become a career of choice for young people. The pay, flexibility, freedom, and the fringe benefits are just a few of them. Here are closer details.
1. Growing Opportunities in the Industry
It’s unlikely that any school guidance counselor will mention this to young graduates. Trucking employment will grow by about 4% by 2026, but this information is not readily available. Trucking freight volumes are also increasing, and there’s need to employ more truck drivers.
Finding good people is among the biggest challenge facing the trucking industry. The majority of the existing workforce is above the employment age. Everyone now recognizes that there’s a need to inject more young people into the business.
The talent, knowledge, and experience of the aging workforce will soon be lost. If new energy isn’t injected into the industry, it may quickly dwindle. Commercial trucking is an industry that can adequately match what millennials want in a job.
Loyalty from the industry, benefits that match their values and advancing technology are among the incentives.
2. Better Earnings
A commercial truck driver gets better pay than the average starting salary for a college graduate. Many companies are willing to pay high wages to make up for the shortage of drivers. According to the American Trucking Association, the median salary by private companies is about $73,000.
The salaries vary from one company to another and also depend on the length of travel. Long-distance truck drivers also tend to attract higher wages. It’s also worth noting that trucking companies value commitment.
As such, they’re likely to give promotional pay to dedicated drivers. Besides, as a commercial truck driver, you’ll enjoy many bonuses for various reasons. For example, some companies offer rewards for maintaining an excellent safety record.
You may also get a bonus for remaining loyal to your employer.
3. Higher Job Security
There’s a bright future for every commercial truck driver. As earlier mentioned, there’s a growing demand for truck drivers. If you maintain good road conduct and driving record, you’ll be on your job for the long haul.
You also enhance your job security if you’ve got a special type of license called CDL. Some companies will offer you training for free, but on average, the CDL training cost is approximately $8,000.
Unlike other industries, truck driving jobs can’t be outsourced. Transportation of goods is necessary, and there’s no other way around it. Moving freight on the road happens to be cheaper and faster than rail.
The rising fuel costs might worry you, but they shouldn’t. Companies always have a way of passing the increasing costs to the consumer to make a profit.
4. Flexibility in the Work You Do
As a commercial truck driver, you’ll have a flexible working schedule. Many companies allow you to choose the type of haul you’d prefer to drive. Some of the plans you can choose from are long distance runs, local runs, and cross-region runs.
You also get to choose the types of loads you carry. You have the option of doing various kinds to increase your experience. It’s also possible that you choose one that offers the least aggravation and the most pay.
The more you become experienced, the greater your options. These are flexibility options that aren’t available for a person working a 9 to 5 job.
5. Change of Scenery
Being a commercial truck driver opens an opportunity for you to travel. You’ll spend a lot of your time on the road, going to places you’ve never visited. If you’re a fan of road trips and seeing new places, this is the job for you.
One good thing about it that you’ll be paid to travel as you work. The constant change of scenery will keep you motivated and rejuvenated. You can’t compare yourself to that office worker who only gets to travel once a year or only when time allows.
Another benefit of trucking is that you won’t always have a boss over your shoulders. If your trucking route allows, you’ll have an upfront seat to attractions, skylines, and mountain ranges.
The commercial trucking industry hasn’t been attractive to the young generation. This is mainly because it’s associated with rough drivers, long road hours, and separation from family. Many people also tend not to be aware of the lucrative earnings in the industry.
In addition to good earnings, truck drivers also get numerous benefits and bonuses. These vary from one company, but they are good enough to help the driver make a good living. Loyalty to your company will also attract valuable benefits.
Lack of exposure to the benefits of being a commercial truck driver has seen many millennials prefer office jobs. They fail to realize that commercial trucking comes with the flexibility they can’t get in a 9 to 5 post. It’s rare that an office employee gets to choose the type of work they’ll do and for what rate.
Don’t let the negative reputation of the trucking industry hold you back from seeking a job there. Get yourself a CDL license and enjoy the numerous benefits of working in the trucking industry.
Also, controlling your financial life as a commercial truck driver is important. You can check our toolkit for more information.