Highest Paying Trucking Jobs: Top Opportunities and Rewarding Careers in 2024

In a world where the open road feels like a second home, the search for the highest paying truck driving jobs unfolds as unpredictable as the paths taken by dedicated professionals who navigate the country every day. Every CDL holder has their tale of triumphs and challenges, detailing not just the hundreds of thousands of miles traveled, but also the numerous carriers worked for. The reasons for seasoned truckers hopping from one employer to another are varied, with the pursuit of better compensation, bonuses, benefits, and a friendlier environment being some examples. They are all reasons even entry-level Class A drivers are equally anxious to secure the highest paying cdl jobs available and start to see miles add up on their logs without incident.

It’s important to understand the multitude of truck driving jobs in this industry, their various compensation packages, and their overall role in a much bigger picture.

So, buckle-up tight and delve into the question: how do we identify and secure positions with top truck driving firms? Our journey begins by exploring the top opportunities for truck drivers and discovering the most lucrative positions available.

Highest Paying Trucking Jobs


  1. Top Paying CDL Jobs: What Are They?
  2. What Are the Different Types of Truck Drivers?
  3. Choosing the Highest Paying Truck Driving Job
  4. Highest Paying Trucking Jobs
  5. Advantages of Working at HMD Trucking
  6. Conclusion

Top Paying CDL Jobs: What Are They?

A truck driving job is not just about the pay, bonuses, miles or the home-time — it's about the personal preferences of every driver. Whether a company pays a fair wage, treats their drivers well, the relationship between dispatcher and driver, style and condition of the trucks, color, and brand of truck, working conditions, driving conditions and freight — are all a part of what makes a particular trucking job desirable! Essentially, what constitutes the ideal truck driving job is highly subjective.

The trucking industry is so diverse in terms of what you haul and how far you go, that it has led to different types of truck driving jobs, which can have a dramatic effect on how much money you can earn and the type of work life you can lead. Understanding the different types of Class A drivers is crucial to finding a job that meets your expectations.

Happy Truck Driver

What Are the Different Types of Truck Drivers?

Trucking jobs vary widely, each with their own unique set of responsibilities, lifestyle considerations, and compensation packages. Understanding these variations is the first step in selecting the job that best fits your preferences and career goals. The different types of trucking jobs include:

Over-the-Road (OTR) Trucking: These drivers cover long distances, often traveling through several states. This category of trucking involves being on the road for weeks, however OTR truck driving jobs typically pay more and offer the chance to see more of the country.

Regional Trucking: Regional truck drivers operate in a smaller area than OTR drivers and often are out one to two weeks at a time with a few days at home. It’s the perfect compromise between OTR and local routes, given drivers are home weekly — but likely not daily as local drivers are.

Local Trucking: Local truck drivers operate within a relatively small area, allowing them to return home at the end of each shift. Although the pay is generally less than that of an OTR trucking job, for example, the work-life balance it allows makes local truck driving jobs a very attractive alternative for many truckers.

Different Types of Truck Drivers

The pay of an OTR driver, on the other hand, runs between $0.44 and $0.58 per mile, according to indeed.com. These types of drivers run up to 3000 miles per week, but only 3.2% of them get weekly home time.
About 60% of regional semi-truck drivers get home time weekly earnings from $0.37 to $0.55 per mile. Their maximal weekly sprint is 2800 miles. Local drivers get home practically every day – 52.3% of them, indeed.com declares to get daily home time. Local drivers can spend up to 2500 miles per week, their CPM is $0.42-$0.71. But it doesn't mean that local drivers have a bigger paycheck for work done. According to ZipRecruiter.com, local truck drivers can expect to pull down an average of $63,000 per year but can top out at $88,000. OTR company drivers will average $78,846, while those that max out will clear $150,000.

Specialized Trucking: Specialized trucking includes flatbed, dry van and refrigerated (reefer) freight, as well as tanker trucks. Each type requires specific skills and certifications, but typically comes with higher pay rates.

Choosing the Highest Paying Truck Driving Job

Owner operator truck driver job: While getting your start as a truck driver with a trucking company can be a great way to break into the business, many drivers eventually look to go into business for themselves as owner-operators. It requires a large upfront investment, but offers the highest level of independence and, potentially, earnings. According to ZipRecruiter, the USA is offering owner operators an average annual income ending in $228,575. Virtuosos, they add, score even $399,500. However, as they rightly stress, they bear all the burdens of their business – customers, invoices, and trucks. There's no company (carrier) behind owner operators to lend support, fix their truck when it breaks, get them a spare truck, and/or keep the flow of orders constantly high to maintain a good money income, flow of orders or not.

Choosing the Highest Paying Truck Driving Job

Choosing the highest paying truck driving job is no small task. It will impact your career trajectory and personal life far beyond the amounts listed on a salary offer. As you weigh your options, consider a wide range of factors that will influence satisfaction and quality of life for the duration of your truck driving career. Drivers must balance pay with home time, particularly when considering many high-paying jobs (Occupational Outlook Handbook), like OTR, that take drivers away from home for weeks or months at a time. Other benefits, such as health insurance, retirement plan options, or bonuses for mileage or safety performance, will also make a big difference in your long-term job satisfaction.

The type of freight and driving conditions themselves – local routes versus runs that will take you cross-country, for instance – will dictate a great deal of what your day-to-day life on the job will look like. The appeal of predictable schedules that most local and regional jobs offer, or the independence that comes with working as an owner-operator, will be of paramount concern as you make your choice. Your preference for working solo or a team engine will also be a major factor in your decision-making.

In thinking critically about these and other elements of potential truck driving jobs, CDL holders can ensure their jobs match their desired balance between home and the open road, their career long-term goals, and their financial needs.

Types of Trucking Jobs

Highest Paying Trucking Jobs

In the search for the top paying truck driving jobs, the roles of owner operators, heavy haul truckers, and hazmat tank drivers are at the top. Owner operators usually make the most money because they have the flexibility to negotiate their rates and choose the loads that are the best fit for them. The trade-off for greater earnings potential is the responsibility of managing their own business, including covering all truck payments, fuel, insurance, and maintenance expenses. This role requires a strong business sense that allows you to manage your costs effectively.

Highest Paying Trucking jobs

Heavy haul, tankers, and HazMat are specialized freight areas that command higher trucking salaries. The certifications and additional training required for these positions reflect the added risk and skill necessary to transport hazardous materials or oversized loads safely. The pay often reflects that increased level of responsibility and expertise.

You will get $57,554 on average ($28 an hour) if you are a HazMat driver in the United States. While the entry-level positions start at $31,000/year, most experienced workers make up to $110,000 per year.

And you will bring in $71,196 on average as a heavy haul company driver in the United States, ZipRecruiter says. The top positions are said to offer you $104,000.

Team driving, especially on long-haul routes, is also an area where drivers often earn more. Trucking companies reward the ability to keep trucks moving around the clock, and offer premium pay to teams who are willing to share the long hours, driving responsibilities, and work to minimize delivery times.

According to ZipRecruiter, as a company team driver you can make $90,312, and its most generous offer is $151,000. Team driving can be one of the highest paying truck driving jobs, especially if you have a reliable and easy-going partner to keep up with the long-haul pace for weeks.

Drivers Near the Truck

Advantages of Working at HMD Trucking

Take a look at the bonuses you can get before you join any trucking company's workforce. HMD Trucking's offer meets the top paying CDL jobs standards:

  • you will receive 60 CPM with a 10 CPM safety/productivity bonus if you are a dry van solo;
  • 65 CPM all miles and home weekly if you a regional dry can solo;
  • 77 CPM split plus a 5 CPM safety/productivity bonus if you are a dry van team;
  • 65 CPM if you are a flatbed solo and 77 CPM split for teams plus a 5 CPM productivity (11k miles monthly);
  • for hazmat/doubles teams, you will get 81 CPM all miles paid plus a 5 CPM safety/productivity bonus; $100 if you get a clean inspection bonus;
  • $2,000 with their referral bonus;
  • health, dental, vision, 401k, PTO for all positions;
  • and much, much, much more.


As we've discovered, finding the best paying trucking jobs is as diverse a journey as the industry itself. Drivers have a roadmap to success through understanding the various types of trucking jobs, employing fail-safe tactics to navigate the highest paying opportunities, and identifying the best companies to work for. By finding the right type of job – local, regional, or OTR; dry van, flatbed, or specialized freight – that aligns with one’s personal and professional goals, and working to continuously improve one’s skills and specialize, drivers can take great strides toward bettering their careers and their lives. In this vital, swiftly changing, and exponentially expanding field, there are ample opportunities for growth and prosperity by those with the knowledge, skills, and drive, to embark on it.

Explore the highest paying trucking jobs we offer and take your career to the next level. If you haven't yet, fill out the form below to apply and start your journey towards a rewarding and well-compensated career with HMD Trucking!

Best Paying Truck Driving Jobs

Rate the article
Back to blog


By pushing the button, you agree to our Data Use Policy & Consent to Contact and our Terms and Conditions.

Most Popular in the HMD Trucking Blog

How to Get Your CDL: A Detailed Step by Step Guide

Learn how to get a CDL and how old you have to be to get a CDL: all you need to know in our guide.
See more

Tools for Semi-Trucks: Big Rig Must-Have Items

Discover essential tools for semi-trucks and ensure your semi-truck tool box is prepared for any situation on the road.
See more

Semi-Truck Interior Cleaning: Giving the Ride Freshness and Cleanliness

Find out the best way to clean truck interior with our semi-truck interior cleaning guide. Keep your cabin spotless and fresh!
See more

What is a Commercial Driver Record: Understanding MVR Report and CDL Record

An MVR report, often called a commercial driver's record, enables the record-keeping of an individual's driving history and safety.
See more

How to Become a Truck Driver: Essential Steps for Launching Your Trucking Career

Learn how to become a truck driver, from obtaining a CDL to finding the right training and landing your first job in the trucking industry.
See more

Best WiFi for Truckers: Top Connectivity Solutions for Life on the Road

Discover the best WiFi for truckers, ensuring reliable and fast internet on the go.
See more

How Do Truck Drivers Stay Awake? Essential Tips for Alertness

Explore how truck drivers stay awake with essential truck driver tips to stay alert on long journeys.
See more

Cool Gadgets for Truck Drivers: Essential Trucker Accessories Every Driver Should Own

Explore the latest cool gadgets for truck drivers and find the best trucker gadgets to enhance your journeys!
See more

Speed Limit for Trucks: Navigating Safety, Efficiency, and Road Regulations

Speed limit for trucks: Delving into the reasons for semi-truck speed limits, with a focus on safety and road efficiency.
See more

Truck Driver Mental Health: Strategies for Support and Well-being on the Road

Truck driver mental health: addressing its significance and why truck driving is so stressful, with strategies for improving well-being.
See more

Best State for Truck Drivers: Top Picks for Pay, Routes, and Lifestyle

Best State and Best City for Truck Drivers: Navigating Ideal Locations for Work & Life
See more

Emergency Kit for Truck Drivers: Essential Gear for Safety on the Road

Truck driver survival kit essentials: Prepare for the road with must-have safety gear & tools. Stay safe & ready for any situation.
See more

What is a DOT Inspection: A Comprehensive Guide for Truck Drivers

DOT inspection checklist and insights into what is a DOT inspection: the quick guide to understanding and preparing for inspections in trucking.
See more

How to Wash a Truck: Tips on How to Clean a Big Rig Effectively

Learn how to wash a truck and explore semi-truck washing methods, interior cleaning tips, and costs in this concise guide.
See more

Discover the Best Dash Cam for Truckers: Top Picks for Safety and Quality

Explore our guide on the best dash cam for truckers, featuring top-rated cameras for truck drivers for safety and reliability.
See more

Discover the Best Cell Phone Service for Truck Drivers in 2024

Explore top picks for best cell phone service and plans for truck drivers, ensuring reliable connectivity on the road.
See more

Best Coffee Makers for Truckers

Explore the best 12-volt coffee maker for truckers: Compact, efficient brewing for the perfect trucker's cup.
See more

Best Truck Seat: Understanding the Need and Selecting the Right One

Why is there a need for a quality semi truck driver seat, and how do you choose the best truck seat? Let's delve into it.
See more

Trucker Lingo Decoded: The Ultimate CB Radio Codes List Explained

Explore the unique world of trucker lingo and dive into the comprehensive CB radio codes list. Decode the road's secret language!
See more

Tips for New Truck Drivers: Advice to Navigate the Road Like a Pro

Discover tips for new truck drivers and delve into insights on how to become a better truck driver, ensuring safety and efficiency on the road.
See more