How Much Do Owner Operators Make

How Much Do Owner Operators Make

Before buying new truck and starting a new business, owner operators might want to know how much money they can make. This can help owner operator trucking salary after expense and know how much they can save per month. However, the income might vary and can depend on factors. These factors include age, experience, and adaptability of truck driver in challenging terrain. 

This blog will show how much do owner operators make and what factors decide their net income. 

How Much Do Owner Operator Make Per Load Per Month? 

The average monthly income of a Truck Owner Operator varies greatly depending on factors such as location, experience, etc. On average, the base income for owner-operators is nearly $12,000 per month. However, this can vary greatly depending on experience and other factors. 

The figures change when we look at specific states like Florida and California. The average truck owner-operator salary in Florida is approximately $10,833 per month. In California, the average monthly pay for an owner-operator truck driver is $18,712.  

On the other hand, average pay per mile for truck drivers ranges from $0.94 to-$1.79 according to Indeed (data recorded of April 25, 2024). And they can make anywhere from $300 to thousands of dollars per load depending on miles driven and the load type. 

What are the Factors Deciding the Owner Operators Salary 

Many factors influence the salary of an owner-operator. It’s not just about the number of loads or miles driven but also the type of loads, the operator’s experience, and their business management skills. Let us understand all these factors in detail: 


One of the critical factors that can significantly impact an operator owner’s salary in the transportation industry is their ability and experience in handling difficult loads. Experienced operators with a proven track record of successfully delivering difficult loads on time and without incidents are in high demand, as they can mitigate risks and ensure the safe transportation of valuable cargo. 

The more experience owner operators have, the more they are trusted with valuable cargo, leading to higher demand and potentially higher earnings in the transportation industry. 

Clean Professional Record

Operators with no history of traffic violations, accidents, or suspensions are highly sought after by logistics companies. They are often viewed as more reliable and trustworthy. Hence, they pose a lower risk of accidents, violations, or incidents that could result in costly delays, damages, or legal liabilities, making them more attractive candidates for high-paying jobs.  

A clean record can lead to lower insurance rates, translating into substantial cost savings for the owner operators. So, if you had a clear professional driving record, your changes of earning more are high. 

Willingness to Travel to Remote Locations

An owner operator’s willingness to travel in remote locations can significantly impact their earning potential in the transportation industry. Remote areas often present unique challenges, such as limited infrastructure, harsh environmental conditions, and longer transit times, which can deter many operators from taking on these assignments. 

Industries in sectors like mining, oil, and gas exploration have operations and business activities in remote areas, and they are often willing to pay premium rates to secure reliable operators. Owner operators who possess these capabilities and are eager to undertake these challenging assignments can command higher salaries as they provide invaluable services to industries operating in remote regions.  

Consistently Drive More Miles

The number of miles driven is a crucial factor influencing an owner operator salary in the transportation industry. Longer hauls and increased mileage translate to more productive hours behind the wheel. It allows you to transport more significant cargo volumes over extended distances.  

This maximizes your earning potential and attracts clients and logistics companies seeking efficient and reliable long-distance transportation services. 

Efficient Load Delivery

Operators with expertise in safely and efficiently transporting challenging loads, can command higher salaries. They are expert in hauling heavy machinery, construction materials, or sensitive electronics. These jobs often involve intricate loading and securing techniques. Such drivers also need to adhere to stringent regulations, and the use of specialized vehicles or rigging equipment. 

Proper Documentation for Hazmat Shipping

Hauling hazmat loads pays really well. But transporting hazardous materials (hazmat) requires proper documentation to ensure compliance with safety regulations. Operators must possess the necessary paperwork, including shipping papers, placards, and emergency response information. Furthermore, hazmat truck drivers must carry proof of specialized training and certification, demonstrating their competence in handling dangerous goods.  

Truck Availability

As an owner operator, availability of different types of trucks can increase your chances of earning more. Trucks like Flatbed, Refrigerated or Dry Van, Hotshot trucks, etc. can give you flexibility to choose the truck based on load. The availability of these specialized truck types plays a crucial role in increasing your potential revenue and overall profit. 


If you’re an owner operator, you can easily make around $10,000- $12,000 per month. Moreover, with experience, your willingness to travel more miles and adaptability to travel in tough and challenging terrain can bring you extra income.  Or if you prefer someone to take the burden off your shoulders, you can team up with dispatch services provider for owner operators. The dispatchers will help you get high-paying loads, without the hassle of looking for loads. 

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