General Labor vs Attending a CDL School

Attending a well-known, reputable truck driving school and earning your CDL will provide you with many benefits over the quick and “easy” route of simply going into general labor.  While General Labor jobs might seem like a line of work that’s a bit more consistent and stable, the ever-increasing demand for truck drivers, as well as the numerous benefits that drivers can be offered makes truck driving a perfect alternative.  Most general labor positions will place you at around $30,000 a year, while the average pay for a truck driver is around $50,000 per year, with much more potential to move up in the company and earn more.  Positions applied for through can start drivers off with making up to $50k per year, with possible earnings potential of up to $93k!

Did you know that many truck driving schools will even provide employment and job placement assistance before or after you graduate? This keeps your employment prospects secure even if you decide to switch between different companies or routes.  Some schools have deep roots and connections to well-established trucking companies who routinely hire new graduates as well, which can lead to better and better positions.  If you have another company in mind that your school doesn’t necessarily work with, you can still pursue that opportunity as you’re now a fully qualified truck driver with real-world knowledge and experience. Having a CDL can create so many more opportunities for earnings and lifestyle that a general labor position otherwise might not.

Truck Driver Employment

In 2017, the American Trucking Association reported on their 2017 Truck Driver Shortage Analysis report that the trucking industry needs to hire around 900,000 more drivers over the next decade, roughly 90,000 per year on average in order to meet a constantly increasing demand. To draw in more prospective drivers, NBC News reports in their interview with Dan McMackin, UPS public relations manager and former truck driver, that companies are even offering signing bonuses as high as $7,000 or more, on top of providing huge benefits such as healthcare and 401(k) matching. In addition, many of these companies will Start new drivers out with making $0.50 per mile, or $50,000 per year!  After gaining 6 months’ worth of experience, your pay can then increase to $112k per year, or even higher in some cases. If you’re a new driver, or you don’t yet have any experience in trucking, many companies will offer to cover the cost of your tuition so long as you remain employed with them under contract.  Our article, Employment Contracts vs CDL Schools highlights some of the pros and cons of each so you can figure out which is best for yourself.  After you get your CDL, you can use to find a local truck driving position in your area.

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