Trucking is what keeps North America going. Trucks carry everything from food, clothing, car, livestock, fuel, and more. Truck drivers transport almost everything we consume in our daily lives. While the world has made great strides in equal pay and gender equality in the workforce, the trucking industry has a shockingly low number of women. In fact, according to the American Trucking Association, women only make up roughly 6% of the industry.
While men have historically dominated this industry, that is now beginning to change. More women are realizing the significant opportunities a career in trucking can provide.
Trucking Offers Fair and Equal Pay
The wage gap between men and women is shrinking, but it’s completely nonexistent in the trucking industry. Women and men are paid the same as drivers, an upside that most other industries cannot claim. Pay is based on mileage, hours or percentage of load. Those factors are not influenced by age, ethnicity or gender.
Not only is the pay equal among genders; it’s also a fair wage. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual income for truck drivers is $44,500. That amount can increase too depending on bonuses, how long one has been in the industry and one’s position. The majority of trucking companies also offer paid leave and 401(k) plans. Due to a driver shortage, many companies are also providing extra incentives and benefits.
It’s a Quick Career to Get Into
It only takes about seven weeks to get a commercial driver’s license (CDL) if attending a full-time driver training program. Comparatively, it takes 2 to 4 years of full-time college education to get a degree. Many companies also cover the costs of training, and there are government grants and scholarships available to cover the costs.
Drivers can begin as young as 18, although they need to be 21 to cross state lines in the US. So while everyone else is racking up debt, drivers can start a lucrative career early in life in a matter of weeks.
Trucking Provides Freedom
Most jobs have a rigid schedule that just does not work for everyone, especially for women with families. The flexibility and freedom a career in trucking provides are two of the most appealing aspects. For women that love to travel, cross-country trucking routes should be appealing. Truckers swear there is no better way to see the country than behind the wheel. Who wouldn’t want to wake up every day to a new beautiful view?
If sticking close to family and friends is more appealing, there are also local routes, which provide the same sense of freedom just closer to home. Women truckers report loving not having to sit behind a desk, being their own boss, setting their own schedule and still getting to sleep in their own bed every night. It’s a win-win!
It’s a Community and Lifestyle
Most careers are nothing more than long-term jobs. With trucking, it’s so much more than that. Most drivers describe it as a “lifestyle” and build strong communities to support one another. Due to there being a smaller number of women in the industry, they have built an extremely tight community with each other. No one truly understands the day-to-day experience of being a female truck driver like another female truck driver!
Trucking has Job Security
Although the technology industry is currently exploring self-driving cars, we’re still a long way off from that disrupting the trucking industry. Truck drivers are sticking around, and that means job security. There is also a current shortage of drivers across North America, meaning those that join and stick with it will enjoy unprecedented job security. Not to mention, no matter where you live or move, it’s always possible to get a job!
With any job, there are pros and cons. But for women looking for a lucrative stable career path that allows them to be in control, trucking is the right industry. Women shouldn’t let the stereotypes of trucking being for men only keep them away from such an amazing opportunity. Call or fill out an online application to become a member of the Traffix team!