These Are The 10 Best States For Truck Drivers

Chris Kolmar
by Chris Kolmar
Best States For Professions, Rankings - 8 months ago
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Truck Drivers are one of the most common jobs in America. Additionally, a significant number of people work as truck drivers in every state in the union — it’s not like they are all just concentrated in California or the South.

Since truck drivers are such a prominent occupation, we at Zippia wanted to look at where truck drivers have it the best: where there are plenty of jobs to go around and people get paid what they deserve during every phase of their career.

To that end, we dove into the numbers from the BLS to figure out which states have the best opportunities for truck drivers.

After all the numbers had been crunched, we were left with this list of the best of best for America’s truck drivers:

  1. North Dakota
  2. Wyoming
  3. Indiana
  4. Nebraska
  5. Kansas
  6. Mississippi
  7. Oklahoma
  8. Michigan
  9. Texas
  10. Arkansas

So there you have it — Heavy And Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers is the best of the best when it comes to being a truck driver.

How did Heavy And Tractor-Trailer Truck Drivers end up here and does it really deserve this ranking? Read on to see how we completed our research on the best states for truck drivers and for more on the top ten states.

If you’re interested, you can read more about the job scene here:

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How we determined the best states to be a truck driver

Here at Zippia, we talk to a lot of people of all different backgrounds looking for jobs. Our research has concluded that there are two common things people want in a job:

  • Availability of jobs
  • Higher Pay

So in order to find out the best states for truck drivers in America we needed to figure out where the jobs are and how well truck drivers get paid. This led to the following criteria taken from the Bureau of Labor Statistics’s Occupational Employment Statistics for 2016:

  • Location quotient. A measure of how common a job is a given state.
  • Average annual salary.
  • Average annual salary for entry level work.
  • Average annual salary for experienced professionals.

To make all the salary numbers more apples to apples across states, we compared the salary data relative to the state’s cost of living.

Applying this standardization allows us to account for that fact that it costs more to live in certain in states. For example, the average salary for truck drivers in California is $44,900 and the average salary in Illinois is $46,970, but the Illinois salary actually goes further in paying for life’s essentials.

In order to develop and overall ranking, we ranked each state for each criteria from 1 to 50 where 1 was the best.

We then averaged all the rankings for a state into a Job Score with the state having the lowest overall Job Score earning the distinction of being the best state for truck drivers in America.

So without further ado, let’s get into just what made each state so great for truck drivers.

1. North Dakota

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 12,210
Average Annual Salary: $53,720
Average Entry Level Salary: $34,640
Average Experienced Salary: $76,810
Location Quotient: 2.36

2. Wyoming

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 6,210
Average Annual Salary: $49,210
Average Entry Level Salary: $33,740
Average Experienced Salary: $68,940
Location Quotient: 1.85

3. Indiana

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 52,640
Average Annual Salary: $45,870
Average Entry Level Salary: $28,540
Average Experienced Salary: $66,010
Location Quotient: 1.45

4. Nebraska

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 26,910
Average Annual Salary: $42,590
Average Entry Level Salary: $27,840
Average Experienced Salary: $62,080
Location Quotient: 2.29

5. Kansas

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 19,810
Average Annual Salary: $43,110
Average Entry Level Salary: $26,890
Average Experienced Salary: $63,020
Location Quotient: 1.19

6. Mississippi

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 22,460
Average Annual Salary: $40,440
Average Entry Level Salary: $23,940
Average Experienced Salary: $61,820
Location Quotient: 1.66

7. Oklahoma

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 23,250
Average Annual Salary: $42,040
Average Entry Level Salary: $26,970
Average Experienced Salary: $61,540
Location Quotient: 1.21

8. Michigan

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 53,040
Average Annual Salary: $43,010
Average Entry Level Salary: $27,280
Average Experienced Salary: $60,820
Location Quotient: 1.04

9. Texas

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 175,780
Average Annual Salary: $42,830
Average Entry Level Salary: $26,060
Average Experienced Salary: $63,050
Location Quotient: 1.23

10. Arkansas

Best States For Truck Drivers

Source: Wikipedia

Total Jobs: 33,210
Average Annual Salary: $39,430
Average Entry Level Salary: $25,250
Average Experienced Salary: $58,560
Location Quotient: 2.3

There You Have It – The Best States To Be A Truck Driver

If you’re looking to start out your career as a truck driver these are the states that should be at the top of your list. You’ll find high pay, available jobs, and chances for career advancement.

If you’re curious, here are the worst states to be a truck driver in America:

  1. Hawaii
  2. California
  3. New York

For more reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Best States For truck drivers

Rank State Average Salary Entry Level Salary # Of People
1 North Dakota $53,720 $34,640 12,210
2 Wyoming $49,210 $33,740 6,210
3 Indiana $45,870 $28,540 52,640
4 Nebraska $42,590 $27,840 26,910
5 Kansas $43,110 $26,890 19,810
6 Mississippi $40,440 $23,940 22,460
7 Oklahoma $42,040 $26,970 23,250
8 Michigan $43,010 $27,280 53,040
9 Texas $42,830 $26,060 175,780
10 Arkansas $39,430 $25,250 33,210
11 Illinois $46,970 $27,750 66,550
12 Iowa $41,620 $26,850 37,620
13 Ohio $44,110 $29,240 70,740
14 Tennessee $41,680 $24,170 58,120
15 Missouri $42,460 $25,210 42,400
16 Kentucky $42,100 $25,770 27,040
17 Idaho $42,260 $25,530 11,940
18 Utah $43,950 $25,500 22,350
19 Wisconsin $43,030 $28,680 49,140
20 Nevada $49,590 $33,900 10,680
21 Pennsylvania $45,270 $28,800 78,320
22 Colorado $47,340 $31,500 23,380
23 Minnesota $44,500 $30,660 34,580
24 North Carolina $41,300 $25,780 54,400
25 New Mexico $42,610 $26,080 9,910
26 Alabama $39,050 $23,980 31,890
27 Montana $44,700 $27,020 6,530
28 Washington $46,200 $31,560 31,090
29 Georgia $40,870 $22,370 56,120
30 Louisiana $40,900 $26,110 22,610
31 South Dakota $40,090 $28,100 7,770
32 South Carolina $41,110 $26,260 26,520
33 Arizona $42,310 $27,620 23,310
34 West Virginia $37,730 $24,590 10,850
35 Virginia $41,330 $26,480 40,450
36 Oregon $43,920 $31,760 21,670
37 Alaska $53,480 $34,480 2,740
38 Florida $39,330 $24,930 77,660
39 New Jersey $47,990 $31,660 42,990
40 Delaware $41,460 $26,300 3,910
41 Maine $40,130 $26,270 8,410
42 New Hampshire $43,030 $31,770 6,420
43 Vermont $42,990 $30,110 3,540
44 Massachusetts $49,920 $33,340 24,840
45 Rhode Island $45,290 $30,680 3,180
46 Maryland $46,010 $30,510 23,470
47 Connecticut $47,420 $31,740 13,900
48 New York $48,390 $27,170 57,330
49 California $44,900 $27,710 130,640
50 Hawaii $45,100 $29,000 3,510