Types Of Trucking Jobs and Preferences in The United States

4 types of trucks

Truck driving is a massive industry, with 3.6 million employed as professional drivers and 7.95 million working in the transportation field. Which accounts for 5.8% of the overall United States workforce. But do you know every truck driver is different from one another in terms of job titles and specialized job types? Some work on a contractual basis, while others work permanently. Despite these differences, no driver will deny the fact that CDL certification opens a wider range of opportunities. Given the many routes and responsibilities, one might wonder what type of trucking jobs would best suit them. It is always a good idea to learn about the types of trucking jobs, explore all your options and then make a wise decision!

Let’s look at some types of trucking jobs and their CDL classifications that a person with a CDL can consider!

1. Dry Van

Dry Van trucking is an ideal job situation for drivers. Truckers usually start their careers by hauling dry van shipments. They are a 53-foot single trailer best suited for items like consumer goods. 

CDL License You Need – 

Dry van drivers need to obtain Class A CDL, which gives them authority to drive interstate.

Did you know? These drivers are not required to unload the goods by themselves.

2. Freight Hauler

Anything that Dry haulers are not allowed to carry comes under the freight hauler. Loads may include hazardous, liquid material, or oversized cargo. 

CDL License You Need – 

The freight hauler needs to obtain an H or X CDL endorsement.

Did you Know? These drivers receive a higher pay rate because it’s tough being a freight hauler as companies expect them to haul all kinds of goods. 

3. Auto/ Car Hauler

Drivers with a CDL and a clean driving record can consider driving an auto hauler. Auto hauler is used to transport automobiles from one point to another. These haulers can be heavy, so only well-trained drivers can handle them. 

Did you know? Such drivers should take up a training course by a Professional Truck Driver Institute (PTDI), which entails in-class, and out-of-class learning.

4. Tanker Hauler 

Tanker hauler is one of the most dangerous and in-demand trucking jobs. A tanker is used to transport hazardous or non-hazardous liquids. 

Drivers must always be conscious and careful, and one small mistake could result in a major horrible accident.

Did you know? Being a tanker hauler it’s not an easy task. A driver needs to learn how to handle their loads masterfully. The higher the risk means the pay is high as well. So, it is always a good opportunity for truckers to look for tanker jobs. 

CDL License You Need – 

Tanker haulers need a class A or C CDL; Tanker haulers will also need a Tank (N) endorsement or an (X) endorsement if transporting hazardous materials. 

5. Refrigerated Freight

These shipments involve a refrigerated trailer (also called ‘reefers’) used mainly for frozen products. They are most suitable for items like perishables that are usually time-specific and are to be stored at specific temperatures. Since there is more responsibility, the pay is also usually higher in this case.

CDL License You Need – 

Reefer drivers require a CDL classification based on the type of truck they’re driving. A refrigerated truck/trailer blend requires a Class A license, although drivers can haul refrigerated boxes or straight trucks with a Class B CDL. 

Did you know? Besides perishables, many other products like electronic equipment, flowers, medicine, cosmetics, and fine art are also hauled in reefers.

6. Flatbed 

Those loads that don’t usually fit in a standard trailer may be carried through flat beds. The driver should know to tie down oddly shaped objects to avoid mishaps. Since there is extra responsibility for securing the cargo, the pay is much higher in this case. 

CDL License You Need – 

Flatbed truckers need class A CDL. Endorsement for flatbed drivers varies by cargo. If hauling hazardous materials, drivers need an (H) or (X) endorsement, and for liquid tankers, Tank (N) endorsement is required.

Did you know? Flatbeds are usually 60 inches high, which means they can accommodate freight up to 8’6” in height without any issues regarding bridges or overhead wires.

7. Less Than Truck Load Haulers

Those drivers often are dry van haulers that drive smaller, more localized loads and loading and unload their own shipment. 

CDL License You Need – 

Alike a Dry van driver LTL loads hauler also needs to obtain Class A CDL.

Did you know? They are one of the most popular professional drivers. LTL haulers earn less than long-distance drivers but often deliver multiple loads daily, so you can choose this as a career preference if you are looking for home daily or local jobs.

8. Hotshot Hauler

Hotshot trucking is attaching a trailer to your small truck and transporting goods using that setup. Goods are expected to be delivered as quickly as possible, often taking multiple loads at a time. 

CDL License You Need – 

According to the regulation, CDL is not required in many until you are hauling vehicles commercially over 26,000 lb. Still, for flexibility and a backup plan, you must have a commercial driver’s license.

Did you know? If you like trucking but don’t have a semi, there is no need to be disappointed anymore. A class 3 or 5 truck paired with a small trailer attachment can also do a job. 

image which represents driving preference

Truck drivers can prefer to be Local, Regional, or OTR drivers. 

Local driving requires you to stay in and around the city, whereas regional driving involves driving around the state. OTR drivers drive anywhere in the country. It all depends on how far you drive as a part of your job. 

Did you know? Local trucking can be more difficult than OTR or regional trucking as you’ll need to be able to navigate smaller roads regularly rather than the highway and back into tight loading docks multiple times a day.

We hope you got a better understanding of the types of trucking jobs you can get your hands on! 

Are you wondering where to start? Worry not; we’ve got it all covered for you!

TruckBook is the #1 app for & by truckers which helps you find the best jobs that match your interest. 

For a step-by-step guide on how to land the best trucking jobs, hop on to our blog, How to apply for a job via TruckBook

Have questions? Drop them in the comment box! 

We’re always here to ease the process of hunting a trucking job. Reach out to us at support@truckbook.us. Happy trucking!

You may also like