How Much Do Truck Drivers Earn in Canada?

This article outlines the typical truck driver salary or wage that a trucker earns in Canada, and discusses the job marketplace.

Money and job search

The immediate future is bright for truck drivers in Canada as there are currently more jobs than applicants to fill them. Truckers fill many roles in the nation’s economy. How you apply and qualify as a driver depends on the laws and procedures of your province.

What is the Salary of a Truck Driver in Canada?

The full-time earnings for truck drivers were between $35,000 and $50,000 in 2014, according to Living in Canada. The median hourly pay is $18. Pay varies widely based on the job and the experience that drivers bring into it.

The Glassdoor.com website posts an average truck driver salary in Canada of $46,880, based on a survey of 529 drivers.

How Do You Become a High Earning Driver?

The answer is that since income relates to experience, the longer you stay and accumulate the time the higher will be your expected earnings. Long distance drivers earn the highest incomes as much as $71,000 per year.

Regional variations can be quite large as some areas such as Alberta-based long haul drivers can make as much as $100,000 in a year.

The trucking business does have a turnover of people who come into the industry and give it a try. After some time they either decide they don’t like being out on the road or they move into other non-driving positions.

How Do Truck Drivers Earn?

Apart from monthly salaries and punching a time clock for an hourly wage, employers often pay by the kilometers you drive. Long distance truckers usually get paid per kilometer; the more kilometers you drive, the better you earn.

The mileage method of payment is arguably one of the issues that contribute to the driver shortage. Drivers who do take these jobs and self-employed truckers make more than the average for the industry. However, it comes at the cost of uncertainty, paying your business costs, and the hassle of bookkeeping. Pay by the kilometer means that delays, wait times and heavy traffic means lowered earnings.

The Canadian Trucking Job Marketplace

black truck

Driving trucks commercially is a rewarding occupation with great responsibilities. When you are in charge of a vehicle that weighs tens of thousands of kilograms you need to be alert and physically fit at all times. You will go out on the open road but also navigate narrow streets safely, racing the clock, in search of final destinations.

Depending on the truck-driving career you choose you might work a daily delivery route or haul point-to-point between regional depots. If you enjoy the road and you can be away from home for days at a time you can haul freight across the continent as a long haul driver.

Are There Any Jobs for Truckers?

Thousands of trucker jobs go unfilled each year in Canada, and that number appears to be growing, according to The Globe & Mail. The average age of drivers climbs as fewer new drivers enter the industry and senior drivers retire. One of the reasons may be changing priorities of younger Canadians, who seek a different balance between personal life and work.

Additionally, as an important mode of transportation, trucking is connected directly to industries that have a demand for reliable and responsible people. Truck drivers also find opportunities that take them into higher paying careers in management.