Why Do Reefer Drivers Make More?

Why Do Reefer Drivers Make More?

The trucking industry is one of the most important industries in the U.S., with over 1.5 million truck drivers employed across the country.

They play a key role in the U.S. economy and are responsible for the constant movement of goods and services across the country.

And when we talk about goods transporters, reefer drivers are among the most in demand and best paid truckers.

So a question may arise, why do reefer drivers make more money? 

The fact is that food and medicine are in high demand, and the perishability of such items requires the use of refrigerated trucks.

Is this why they’re making more money? Maybe.

You never know!

Read this complete guide to find out! Here we go.

What Is Refrigerated Trucking?

Let me first explain what refrigerated trucking is.

Refrigerated trucking, also known as reefer trucking, is the transportation of goods that require temperature-controlled environments to remain fresh or frozen.

These goods include anything from food and beverages to pharmaceuticals, plants, and other goods that can spoil when not stored at the right temperature.

Reefer drivers are responsible for transporting such items across the country safely and on time, following strict delivery schedules and regulations.

Why Do Reefer Drivers Make More?

The answer is pretty simple – Since goods like fresh food and medicine are always in demand and need to be transported on time, this demand translates into higher earnings for those drivers who are willing and able to transport these products.

And another reason is that they are responsible for the perishable goods to stay at a certain temperature throughout the journey, which requires a lot of experience and knowledge to be able to do it successfully.

Let’s explore this in a bit more detail.

Factors That Affect Reefer Driver Salaries

It’s obvious that if a job has high demand, the pay for that job increases.

And when it comes to reefer drivers, the demand is always high.

Aside from the sheer demand for reefers, there are a few other variables that affect their salaries.

1. Skill and Experience: 

Reefer drivers, as the name implies, drive trucks that are equipped with refrigeration units and other specialized equipment.

This type of job requires a lot more skill, experience, and knowledge than other commercial truck driving jobs due to the nature of their load.

Because of this, reefer drivers are usually paid more than other commercial truckers.

2. Time Management: 

Time is money,” and this is especially true for reefer drivers.

They have to meet tight delivery deadlines and make sure that their cargo is delivered in perfect condition every time.

In simple words, you can say reefer drivers have to make sure that all of their deliveries are on time, every time. 

If they delay too often, the chances of goods being spoiled due to time lapse can happen, resulting in reduced pay or even job termination.

And for this kind of responsibility, they are paid more than other commercial truckers.

3. Long Working Hours:

There is no rest for the wicked“; no one can know this better than a reefer driver.

Reefer drivers often have to work long hours once they get on the road since they are transporting perishable items that must be delivered on time.

This means that they have to sacrifice their free time to make sure their deliveries are on time, and it’s not as easy as it looks.

4. Vehicle Maintenance:

Reefer drivers need to maintain their vehicles regularly and make sure there are no issues with the refrigeration unit, as that can affect the quality of the goods they are transporting.

This means that they must take care of their trucks, which includes checking the oil and fluids like freon and performing regular maintenance, which can often be time-consuming.

And for all their hard work, reefer drivers are highly sought after, and their salaries are higher than other commercial drivers.

How Much Do Reefer Drivers Make?

So, it’s a fact that reefer drivers make more money than other commercial truck drivers.

But how much do they make?

Well, there is no definite answer, but I can surely give you a rough estimate.

The amount they make depends mainly on the nature of their job and the location they are working in, their experience level, and of course, the company they are working for.

But on average, a reefer driver can expect to make between $50,000 and $60,000 a year, with the potential to make more depending on the above mentioned factors.

Please remember that this is merely an average estimate, and actual wages could be higher or lower depending on the job.

What Are The Pros Of Reefer Driving?

There is no doubt that reefer driving is a highly challenging job that requires a great deal of skill. But if you work hard, you can make a great living.

On top of that, here are some other benefits that reefer drivers enjoy:

1. Higher Pay: 

As I discussed above, reefer drivers are paid more than other commercial truckers due to the nature of their job.

An average reefer driver in the U.S. makes around $29/h, which is significantly more than other commercial truckers.

2. Be Your Own Boss:

Reefer drivers usually work for themselves, and it gives them the freedom to work when and where they want to.

This means you can make your own working hours, stop wherever you want, and take breaks when necessary.

3. Steady Demand Through The Year:

Reefers don’t just transport fruits and vegetables; they also deliver frozen goods, dairy products, and other temperature-sensitive cargo.

This means that there will always be a steady demand for reefer drivers throughout the year, regardless of the season or weather.

You won’t have to worry about a lack of work since there is always something that needs to be shipped.

Is It Difficult To Become A Reefer Driver?

Nothing is impossible, and anyone can become a reefer driver if they are willing to work hard.

You will need to find a truck driving school that offers reefer-specific training.

You’ll also need to get your Commercial Driver’s License (CDL), which requires you to have a certain amount of experience driving large trucks.

Overall, it can be difficult to become a reefer driver, but not impossible, and it can prove to be highly rewarding if you are willing to put in the work.

Wrapping Up

In a nutshell, reefers drivers are the backbone of the commercial trucking industry.

It’s worth noting that while reefer drivers do tend to make more money due to their high demand, the job also comes with its own set of challenges.

The work can be physically demanding, and there is often a lot of pressure to meet tight delivery deadlines.

However, for many drivers, the rewards of the job outweigh the challenges.

Reefer drivers can surely make a great living, and they have the added benefits of being their own boss and having greater flexibility with their work schedule.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: Do reefer drivers make more money?

A: Yes, it may sound strange, but it’s the truth. Reefer drivers make more money than other commercial truck drivers due to the specialized nature of their job.

Reefer drivers transport temperature sensitive cargo and are highly experienced individuals with more skill and knowledge than other truckers.

Q: Can Reefer trucks ship non temperature sensitive cargo?

A: Absolutely. Reefer truckers are often used to transport items such as fruits and vegetables, but they can also transport other cargo such as furniture, electronics, and more.

Q: What is the most important factor that affects a reefer driver’s salary?

A: The most important factor is experience. Reefer drivers need to have a lot of skill and knowledge to be able to handle the specialized cargo that they are transporting. The more experienced and skilled a driver is, the more money they can make.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *