The structure of remuneration for truckers OTR

Portrait of a senior truck driver posing next to his truck.

Road transportation (OTR) is a specialized sector of the trucking industry that involves long—distance transportation, often covering several states or even the entire country. OTR truckers usually spend weeks on the road, which distinguishes them from regional or local truck drivers, who usually return home more often.

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The pay structure of OTR truckers compared to other trucking positions varies depending on several factors, including experience, distance traveled, employer and type of cargo transported. Here’s a general overview of what OTR truckers earn compared to other jobs in the trucking industry:

OTR Truckers

  1. The payment structure. Payment is often made per mile. Some companies offer bonuses for safety, fuel efficiency and timely delivery.
  2. Income. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the average salary for drivers of heavy trucks and tractor-trailers, including truckers, was about $47,130 per year as of May 2020. However, OTR drivers often earn more because of the long distances they travel and the ability to cover more miles. Experienced OTR trucker drivers can earn more than $60,000 per year, and in some specialized sectors (for example, transportation of hazardous materials), the pay is even higher.

Local truck drivers

  • The payment structure. Usually the payment is hourly.
  • Income. Local truck drivers in general can earn less than OTR truck drivers due to fewer hours on the road.
  • The average annual salary can range from $35,000 to $45,000, but it can vary greatly depending on location and company.

Regional truckers

  1. Payment structure: it can be a combination of monthly and hourly pay, depending on the company and the specific job.
  2. Earnings: Regional truck drivers usually earn more than local drivers, but less than OTR drivers, with salaries often ranging from $40,000 to $55,000 per year. They find a balance between time spent on the road and time spent at home.

It is important to note that while OTR freight transportation can provide higher income, it also requires significant time away from home and long hours on the road. The best choice depends on a person’s lifestyle preferences, career goals, and personal circumstances.

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