Top Ways You Can Earn More Money Driving
When we ask drivers why they joined the trucking industry, nearly everyone says pay is the most important factor in choosing to go out on the road. Many drivers believe that the only way to increase your pay is by investing time with a company, running more miles or becoming an owner operator. These are great ways to boost your income, but there are four other big ways to increase your value as a driver and, in turn, earn more money. Truck driving jobs can be incredibly lucrative.
- Get CDL endorsements.
Endorsements are a quick way to become a more competitive and better paid truck driver. The more endorsements you carry, the more loads you qualify to run. Some companies offer increased pay per mile for loads that require endorsements, like HAZMAT and tanker jobs. Options for endorsements include doubles/triples, HAZMAT, tanker and in some states, heavy haul. If you’re feeling bold, you can study for all endorsements and get every endorsement by taking one test. You can also ask your dispatch manager or hiring manager what types of endorsements would help you make money. Managers will know what opportunities are available in the company, and they may be able to share training resources or pay for endorsement test.
- Maintain a strong safety record.
Safety records show a carrier how cautious and detail-oriented a driver is over time. A strong safety record lets the carrier pay less in insurance fees and ensure shipping customers that product is delivered securely. If your safety record has issues, you may only be accepted as a driver with companies that offer lower-than-average pay or less-than-exceptional benefits. If you lose your CDL due to safety issues, you will not only lose income, but you will have to work your way back into the industry’s good graces if you decide to return. A strong safety record is the most important part of a driver’s work history.
- Earn carrier awards.
Drivers that have won awards from carriers or industry organizations can use the recognition to increase pay and find a carrier that fits closely with their personality. Example of awards Rookie of the Year, Driver of the Year, Outstanding Service recognition, safe miles driven and placing in trucking competitions. Carriers are happy to compete for strong drivers that stand out for good service and steady commitment.
4.Watch for new job offers.
Even when you’re happy with current carrier and job, keep a close eye on what other companies are offering drivers in your area and with your skills. If you see offers that compete with yours and you would be willing to switch carriers for the extra pay or benefits, talk to your current carrier about it first. They may be able to match or exceed the competitor’s offer. If they are unwilling to compromise, it may be time to move to a better opportunity.
CDL endorsements, safety records, carrier awards and new job offers can all impact your paycheck as a truck driver. If you proactively treat each part of your driving career as a stepping stone towards a better paid future, you will always end up at the top of well paid drivers.