In the world of trucking, it’s difficult to speak about an average flatbed truck driver salary. The range of compensation varies greatly depending on the hauling type, the driver's qualifications, the location, and many other factors. As a result, when looking for a job, you should consider all these factors in order to arrive at the approximate amount you may receive. However, the two factors affecting rates the most are the hauling type and location. Today, we will try to answer the question, “How much do flatbed truck drivers make?”
- What Are the Average Flatbed Rates?
- What Is a Flatbed Truck Driver Salary by Related Titles?
- What Are the Highest-Paying States for Flatbed Truck Drivers?
- What Are the Highest-Paying Cities for Flatbed Truck Drivers?
What Are the Average Flatbed Rates?
Flatbed Truck Driver Salaries in Numbers
The average flatbed wages in the United States are $57,751 - $65,880 per year, according to Salary.com. This total originates from an average flatbed rate of 55 cents per mile (CPM).
It should be noted that large and trustworthy companies do not normally give specific CPM rates, sticking to yearly or monthly amounts instead. That is why all CPM rates in this article are based on an average of 50 weeks of driving per year with 2,300 miles per week.
However, this is just an approximation. The actual flatbed driver salary ranges from $40,000 at entry-level to $90,000 for top professionals, who are able to carry the most complex loads on a flatbed trailer. It also might depend on whether a driver works solo or in a team or whether he has his own truck and trailer. Rates might also greatly vary from state to state. You can read more about this below.
What Is a Flatbed Truck Driver Salary by Related Titles?
Even within the highlighted range, salary prospects can differ depending on job complexity. Below are the rates broken down into categories for you to grasp the general idea.
How Much Is an OTR Flatbed Driver Salary?
ZipRecruiter shows a slightly higher annual OTR flatbed driver salary than that for flatbed in general, which is around $69,214. As expressed in CPM the rate is approximately 55. Newbies make as much as $56,500 per year making an average of 2300 miles per week, while the top 10% of experts can expect to receive up to $96,500 per year. The entry-level rate and the gap between the poles are impressively high, so you can expect a significant increase as you build experience with years of work.
How Much Is a Local Flatbed Truck Driver Salary?
This category of drivers make approximately $1,300 per week. The rate is equivalent to $62,400 per year. At some companies, the weekly base rate can reach $1,500–$1,700. At many companies, there is no fixed weekly mileage for this particular job, so the flatbed truck driver salary is based on hours as opposed to CPM.
How Much Is a Solo Flatbed Truck Driver Salary?
Looking at the pure rates, solo drivers get less than team drivers. Their salaries are tied directly to the CPM rate, with the most common flatbed driver pay per mile around 65 cents. However, their actual salaries can be higher than that. The secret behind this lies with the additional bonuses. Respectable companies who understand the tricky character of the job usually cover empty miles, detentions, extra stops, and layovers. All those bonuses are typically listed in job offers.
How Much Is a Team Flatbed Truck Driver Salary?
The salaries for these drivers are generally allocated for a team as a whole. Recent data at Ziprecruiter.com place the average $2,297 per week or $119,464 a year, which results in an average of 75 CPM. However, some companies like HMD offer more, with 77 CPM. That said, a pair of flatbed drivers working for HMD makes around $4,000 per week, equivalent to $2,000 per week each, plus various perks such as the load pay and the safety productivity bonus of + 5 CPM. While choosing a company to work for, thoroughly check these extra payments and bonuses, as they might make more than 10% of the total you earn.
How Much Is a Flatbed Company Driver Salary?
After analyzing around a dozen offers at Glassdoor.com we concluded that a company driver makes 50-60 CPM on average. This basically coincides with the results obtained by Indeed.com, giving even a wider range of 40-64 CPM.
The figure is generally lower than that for an owner operator. That is a national tendency. However, do not forget that they have to allocate a significant amount of money for the costs of running the business and truck maintenance. The salaries of company workers greatly depend on the type of work they do. All those types are outlined above, so you can check the figures once again and think of the best pay-to-effort ratio for you.
How Much Is a Flatbed Owner Operator Salary?
According to Ziprecruiter.com the average annual income of an owner operator can reach a total of $340,104.
The average CPM rate is 1.40, but owner-operators additionally get a fuel surcharge, i.e., extra compensation added to the rate to offset higher fuel prices. For comparison, in HMD owner-operators get $1.50 + FSC of 45 CPM and a safety/productivity bonus of 10 CPM.
The hourly rate is approximately $138.85, and the rate per month is $24,068. The gap between experienced and inexperienced drivers is significant: a flatbed owner operator's salary can range from $103,000 per year at the beginning of their career to $400,000 in their prime.
What Are the Highest-Paying States for Flatbed Truck Drivers?
Drivers’ rates depend not only on the type of hauling and experience. Location plays an important role as well. For example, the best-paying state is Montana, where drivers are lucky to make an average of $76,250 per year according to Talent.com. You can also consider Connecticut, with an average annual income of $69,276 according to Zippia.com. According to the same sources, drivers in the District of Columbia, Rhode Island, Wyoming, and Washington, freight truckers make an average of $68,000, with insignificant variations from state to state. For comparison, the least generous companies are located in West Virginia, where truckers make just the average of $54,813 by doing practically the same type of work according to Zippia.com.
What Are the Highest-Paying Cities for Flatbed Truck Drivers?
A city can also affect the final amount you put in your pocket. Zippia.com gives the top five cities that offer the best-paying opportunities for dedicated drivers:
- Dover, NH ($68,169);
- Des Moines, IA ($68,111);
- Minneapolis, MN ($67,826);
- Denver, CO ($66,742);
- Peoria, AZ ($66,489).
So if you are blessed to be a resident of one of these cities or would not mind moving there, you can find better career prospects and more attractive figures in the bill. Sometimes, the change in location can result in a significant income increase and become a strong impetus for your career. If you really like driving but you are not satisfied with your current employer, do not be afraid to consider this option.
So, like in any other driving job, the rates for flatbed truck driving differ depending on the location, driver title, and qualifications. The best thing you can do before applying for a job is to conduct a little research of your own and decide for yourself whether you are ready to change your place of residence for higher pay. Trucking companies are abundant, however we suggest checking out HMD Trucking, which offers above-average compensation always paid on time, while letting you maintain a healthy work-life balance with ample hometime. If you want to become a flatbed truck driver, then we recommend that you read our article on the pros and cons of flatbed trucking.
Working with HMD, you will be making as much as:
- Solo: 65 CPM
- Team: 77 CPM
- +5 CPM safety productivity bonus
- Health, dental, vision, 401k, paid time off
- Load pay for tarping or just securing
- Orientation, clean inspection pay, and referral bonus.
There is a lease purchase option available with multiple down payment options including
0 (zero) down, and you can also join our company as an owner operator with your own truck and trailer.
Feel free to contact us for any details!
On long trips, truckers need to somehow pass the time. To do this, we advise you to study our article on the best trucking songs, in which you will find a playlist on Spotify.