Best 15 Driving Jobs to Turn Passion into Profit
These 15 Driving Jobs Could Bring You Extra Cash in this Down Economy
Driving Jobs are plentiful, but almost all of them do require some sort of preparation and requirements to be achieved. I compiled a list of 15 driving jobs for those of us that want bring their driving passion into their work life. There are some surprises in store, so sit back and enjoy!
Truck Driving Jobs
Under “Truck Driving Jobs” entry I could have entered ten separate options – tanker hauls, oversized hauls, ice road trucking driving jobs (it’s not just a reality show), OTR jobs, and the like. However, I will try to sum it up all in one entry. See, depending on work experience, licenses you’ve acquired and driving history, you may actually have a number of options regarding truck driving jobs – some pay better than others.
Short Internet research did reveal that of the most common OTR jobs (Over The Road), long-haul truck driving probably pays the best. According to some Internet sources, striking a deal with a good trucking company may land you an opportunity to take home $70,000+ before bonuses. According to truckerclassifieds.com research, the state that pays best for trucking jobs is Mississippi, with an average of $68,000 per year.
Ride-Sharing: Uber, Lyft and Others
If you want to get on board with a driving job as soon as possible, registering with a ride-sharing agency may be your best bet. Uber and Lyft are the most popular options and they do offer a fine opportunity for drivers.
Best part? You do not need any special training, license or experience. Sure, some requirements still exist:
- must be older than 21,
- own a car (younger than 2000 for Lyft and younger than 2006 for Uber),
- must have an auto insurance policy and pass a background check.
That is basically it, and in our experience, there were no more than 48 hours between application and our first drive for both Uber and Lyft, making it a very enticing option if you’re in need of quick work.
As it is rather easy to set up your driving job with Uber and Lyft, you probably want to know how much can be earned!?
Well, that, of course, depends on the number of drives you will make. Regardless, be ready for some “hidden” costs too. As some researchers suggest, ridesharing drivers should calculate in:
- car wash and interior detailing (you will do a lot of it),
- car payments (if you have some),
- self-employment taxes.
Apart from that, Lyft will take 20 percent of each drive you make. Uber has a few different services altogether – UberX which will take 20 percent, UberBlack takes 25 percent, and UberSUV takes 28 percent of each drive. We also cannot disregard that you charge relating to the city you are operating in – you may expect city sales tax and some other lesser expenses.
This one may be one of the most interesting entries on the list. Sure, it sounds dull, but many did report that package delivery can be fairly lucrative. It is almost a running gag on the Internet that UPS drivers can earn $70,000+ per year. I am not sure if it is true, so please do share your experience in the comment section. Nevertheless, driving jobs like this do not require a lot of qualifications. Some do require a commercial driver’s license or Department of Transportation certifications and physical strength.
Really, physical strength – you have to be able to deliver that 70 lbs package to the door with a smile on your face. More on that on the application of course.
If you are up to it, love to drive, and know how to drive a manual, then look into UPS, FedEx, Amazon, USPS and other. Work really hard and you’ll surpass that $70,000 mark.
Sure, delivering packages for a big company is far more lucrative than any other package delivery job. So, while you can deliver pizzas, kebabs or whatever, do not expect to earn a lot. Yet, if you do it right (and often), tips can definitely make up for some of the difference. Being a delivery driver definitely has some of its perks. If you love to drive, you will be on the road forever. As for money, expect upwards of $25,000. Sure, it really, really helps if you are delivering in wealthier cities, areas or states. It’s also a great idea in college towns, where you could easily pull in around $70 in tips alone in an average shift.
These jobs should be easy to get by and employees are not asked to obtain some mad licensing stuff. Have a clean record, reliable vehicle, be at least 18 years of age and have personal auto insurance. It’s also one of the most relaxing jobs out there; when you’re not stuck in the store, expect to be cruising the streets listening to your favorite music in your own private office on wheels.
Being a bus driver may not sound that cool, but this job is not as easy to come by as some may think. See, training and certification requirements for being a bus driver are quite extensive. After all, you’d be responsible for a large number of passengers.
The requirements for a bus driver include:
- Commercial driver’s license (CDL) with special Passenger training,
- Long-term In-class training,
- Frequent physical exams,
- Stern background check,
- Possibly high school graduate certificate or GED.
According to Bureau of Labor Statistics, “the best-paid drivers made $64,290, while the lowest-paid made approximately $23,840.”
Obviously, this is a rather challenging job as the person behind the wheel is responsible for a large number of passengers while at the same time making sure they are paying attention to the road and traffic. This driving job may well be one of the most demanding of all driving jobs listed here.
This may be really, really cool if you manage to find a job in this rather narrow driving jobs niche. See, the private chauffeur is not exactly an easy job to find. You can expect that 0.5 percent of the really wealthy in America require a personal chauffeur. Maybe. Regardless, to increase your chances of getting this driving job which may pay upwards of $60,000 per year, you should do some basic training. Defensive driving training is probably the best course of action. Government agencies and some non-profit organizations may provide it. Also, many car manufacturers do actually offer driving training – BMW most notably. Having previous experience in professional driving positions definitely helps.
While driving fine cars wearing white gloves may seem awesome, you would also be responsible for maintaining the fleet of automobiles, running various errands, and keeping all of the registrations and insurance coverage current. A lot of work for sure.
Pet Taxi Service
Now, this is not something I expected to reach this list of driving jobs, but here it is. It’s actually quite common – especially in massive cities. You know, where people have more important things to do than feed their pets and drive them to the vet in time?
Depending on your location, driving someone’s pet around the city may pay a pretty penny. It seems that New York Pet Taxi service charges $90 to $190 for a pet trip to the vet and back. You should definitely try this out in your community. It may work. However, if you aren’t in New York or San Francisco, do not expect to be paid this much.
School Bus Driver
As per BLS research, the median annual wage of school bus drivers is $28,330. It is not that much, is it? However, these drivers work part-time and only when the school is actually in session. If you want to land this driving job, you simply have to be good with kids. This is, logically, really important. As for other requirements, you have to own a valid driver’s license and have First Aid and CPR training (not in all states). Obviously, a clean driving record and driving at the speed limit is common sense here – and patience. A LOT of it. After all, you would deal with kids here – you know, those little monsters.
It is difficult to calculate what an average taxi driver can earn annually. Yes, those in larger metropolitan areas definitely have a lot more work, but even in their case, it is reported that top salaries generally don’t reach much more than $40,000. In less developed areas, Taxi drivers can expect to earn up to $24,000. However, many argue that Taxi drivers do not report all of the tips they receive.
It may come as a surprise, but as many as 235,000 drivers work as taxi drivers in the U.S. alone.
Becoming a taxi driver is a time-consuming process too. For example, a New York Taxi Driver requires:
- a valid New York State DMV Chauffeur’s License,
- Completed defensive driving course,
- Covering approved taxi school for either the 80-hour or 24-hour course,
- English proficiency test and written exam,
- Passed drug test.
Have a cool car? In that case, you may consider renting all that free space on it and getting an advertising deal. If you live in a high-commute area, you may actually find some companies that are more than interested in promoting their services or products by placing advertisements on your car. In this case, you would not even need to drive more or less than before. Just stick to your regular driving pattern.
See, some can earn $300+ by placing advertisements on the car. Will they look a bit cheesy? Well, probably, but that is what it takes for an additional $300+ per month. Actually, I am not sure this fits this category of driving jobs as it is actually a marketing job. However, it could be good for you if you need some additional funds in your account. Google companies that would pay for this kind of advertising; they are out there.
Road Maintenance is not something you would only see in a movie. Seeing a truck with a plow is a thing. See, after landing an agreement with the district you may be involved in road maintenance. Sure, the work is seasonal and in areas with a lot of snow, however, before starting, some investments have to be made.
Of course, buying a plow is a no-brainer. That could set you back by $3,000 or so. Depending on the deal you made with the district, you could pay that out in a few days. It is hard to precisely assess how much you can earn but some suggest $175 – $350 can be made per work hour.
What the hell are Event Services? Well imagine, let’s say, a team building event Wal-Mart made for a small team of their best store workers – it could be 7 people or 400! They fly them to somewhere and your job is to welcome them at the airport and shuttle them further.
Imagine driving journalists to a press conference someone organized in your city. Or driving workers to build a new building! The possibilities are endless.
Film And Television Stunt Driver
You know that there is such a thing as a stunt driving school!? It does exist and if you really want a high-paid driving job, this is it. Sure, making it to the A-list is a hard process, but if you make it you will have a lot of work. With this many movies, TV-series, and documentaries coming out every year, wrecking cars on camera can be required every single day.
Apart from attending stunt driver school, you need exceptional physical health and fitness, as well as balls of steel.
Honestly, this may be, apart from the last entry on the list, the most engaging of the driving jobs. It just sounds cool and badass, and it pays well, too. Top-notch stunt driving jobs can get you more than $100,000 per year.
Factory Test Driver
Sure, car manufacturers have their own test car drivers but they tend to be professionals who are into professional driving their whole life. However, there is a whole other type of factory test drivers. If you have a college degree in automotive or automotive engineering or have been in the automotive industry for years, you can actually land a job as a factory test driver. In short, you could drive prototypes of upcoming vehicles, affect the tune of the finished product and enjoy it all while simply driving in different conditions.
As for the money, you may be looking at around $70,000+ per year, but you have to keep your eyes open. It is not every day that jobs like this pop up.
Race Car Driver
Here it is, the king of all driving jobs: Race Car Driver! Do I really have to write anything about race car driving? It is the most exciting thing about cars there is. You get paid to drive as fast as possible.
However, becoming a professional race car driver requires a couple of things – a LOT of money, lifelong dedication, a lot of talent, even bigger balls than a stunt car driver, and did I mention a lot of money? As for the payments – you could go broke in a minute, but at the same time, there really isn’t an upper limit on what you could make. Just drive faster and smarter than anyone else. Easier said than done for sure.
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