Being an Owner Operator vs. City Unionized Driver

Discussion in 'Ask An Owner Operator' started by Trucker K, Sep 21, 2019.

  1. Trucker K

    Trucker K Bobtail Member

    Sep 21, 2019
    I'm been trucking for 23 years and worked as a City Driver at a well known Unionized Trucking company for 17 years with a pension, benefits etc. I earn around $1600 to $1800/week with OT for around 50 to 52 hrs avg. sometimes having to work on weekends unfortunately but not really a big deal because I drove OTR Highway for 2 years before this job.

    I'd like to know after the weekly Truck lease payment, Insurance, Fuel after company cap, parking expenses for those who pay for a company spot or arrive at a Truck stop late and have to pre book parking spots & after you pay all your expenses weekly. How much to you average weekly gross for your pocket?

    Also if you had to skip the line for a senority job position at a Unionized company to be paid $30 plus per hour would you sell or return your truck for a City job if you could?
    LtlAnonymous Thanks this.
  2. LtlAnonymous

    LtlAnonymous Road Train Member

    Dec 23, 2016
    Well...I know someone who made a similar move successfully.

    Trucker K Thanks this.
  3. JonJon78

    JonJon78 Road Train Member

    Jul 1, 2018
    I would sell my truck in a heart beat if I could skip the seniority line and make what you do with benefits for 52 hours of work!!

    Being owner operator is never ending work LOL...
  4. starmac

    starmac Road Train Member

    Apr 11, 2019
    Fairbanks Ak
    Describe lease payment on truck. If you are talking about what I think you are, you just might be better off driving a pizza delivery car.
  5. Atlanta trucker

    Atlanta trucker Heavy Load Member

    Jan 25, 2017
    If your lucky you might get up to minimum wage .... oh that’s before @&$$)((;/-!?((& and a few other charges that no one on earth could figure out.
    Rideandrepair and LtlAnonymous Thank this.
  6. Banker

    Banker Road Train Member

    Aug 19, 2012
    The real issue that I see is finding a niche form of trucking that many can’t or won’t do that you might actually like. Most of these that I am aware of you won’t walk right in the door and start making top money. Pulling a van for a mega carrier may not net you drivers wages and definitely not union wages with benefits. There still is money in some forms of trucking and it seems like some forms of specialized will generally keep rates up. I wouldn’t personally leave a good paying Union job that you like, just to own a truck. If there were other factors in your decision, I would research the pay before I made the leap. The city job vs the road is a whole different issue that only you can decide. I usually run short and am home most every night, but when I want I can run the road. I left a good Union Gig to get away from nights and weekends. If I had a day job, I may still be there. If I could rewind 30 years to being a young city driver at CF again I would, but I don’t have that option.
  7. Banker

    Banker Road Train Member

    Aug 19, 2012
    I left out a part of my experience of transitioning to my current gig. When I left my Union Job working nights and weekends I became a company driver for 4 years in the field I am in now to get experience in this new field. That job was union also. When I felt I had enough experience in my field to become a successful owner op, I had to leave the union company because they did not have owner ops.
  8. Ridgeline

    Ridgeline Road Train Member

    Dec 18, 2011
    Stay where you are, you never will have it better.
  9. LDLWells

    LDLWells Medium Load Member

    Jan 14, 2019
    Stay in the union!

    50 hours a week? I would be so happy if I only had to do that plus benefits. You guys hiring?
  10. Tropsnart

    Tropsnart Heavy Load Member

    Jun 8, 2015
    Pavilion New York
    I was a Teamster for 4 years always at or near the bottom of the seniority list. Great money for the hours worked although running near junk equipment and having incapable management made the job not worth it.
    I'm making more money and have less stress as an owner operator. Freedom is priceless!
    bzinger, starmac, dwells40 and 3 others Thank this.
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