Virginia is a state blessed with a rich history and magnificent scenery, but it also has many transport companies that provide suitable, steady employment for qualified, safe drivers.
In this article, we look at some of the top companies and what they offer in terms of benefits.
How to Become a Truck Driver in Virginia
To become a truck driver in Virginia and hold a CDL, you’ll have to follow these steps, assuming you don’t have a CDL:
- Applicants must be 18 years of age for a state permit or 21 years of age to drive interstate. Hazmat endorsement also requires applicants to be 21.
- Applicants must have a valid Virginia driver’s license that’s not revoked or suspended. If you don’t have a license, then:
a. Go to your local DMV office with:
i. Your ID card or other proof of identity
ii. Two documents proving your residency in Virginia
iii. Proof of your Social Security number
iv. Current driver’s license if you have one from another state
v. Original birth certificate or US ID card or US passport
b. Fee for a learner’s permit ($3)
c. Medical clearance
3. Study for the learner’s permit test.
4. Take the knowledge test for the learner’s permit and any endorsements that you’re hoping to get.
5. Attend a CDL driving school to gain the necessary skills.
6. Undertake the CDL license test. This is a three-part test that includes a knowledge test, an endorsement knowledge test (for tankers, hazmat, double or triple trailers, busses, etc.), and the skills test undertaken on the road with an examiner.
Review of the Best Trucking Companies in Virginia
There are many trucking companies in Virginia. In this section, we look at a selection of the better-known companies or those that serve specific niche markets.
Best Trucking Company in Richmond, VA:
Who is Estes Express?
Estes Express was founded 90 years ago and is currently the biggest privately owned trucking company in the US.
The company has a network of over 260 terminals around the US and has a fleet of 7,000 tractors and 30,000 trailers.
This company provides several services that include:
- Transport of small loads (less than a truckload) all over the US, Canada, the Caribbean, and Mexico
- Next day service throughout the US
- Time-critical load logistics
- International shipping
Jobs Offered by Estes Express
Estes Express is always looking for people for a wide range of employment. They look for drivers (both skilled and trainees), corporate administration staff, regional office staff, dock workers to load and offload trucks, yard jockeys, and artisans to service their fleet of trucks.
Estes Express Salary and Benefits
This is a massive company with commensurate benefits, which include:
- Full-time pay that includes holidays, sick, and vacation pay
- The company matches employees 401(k) plan
- Medical insurance that provides for vision and dental plans
- Disability insurance (long-term and short-term)
- Life insurance
- Accidental death insurance
- Bonuses for safe driving
- General safety awards
Best Trucking Company in Norfolk, VA:
Who is Givens Trucking?
Givens Trucking was launched over 50 years ago. The company specializes in logistics and distribution within the electronics, mass merchandising, and automotive industries. These logistical and distribution services include:
- Complete distribution support
- Complete spectrum of transportation
- Logistical services
Jobs Offered Givens Trucking
Givens Trucking is a large company that offers a wide range of careers that span both administrative, logistical support, and driving. With the wide range of services provided, this company is always on the lookout for skilled, qualified staff in driving, yard work, warehousing, logistics, and logistical support, sales, administration, and management.
This company also offers contractual work to owner-operators of trucks.
Givens Trucking Salary and Benefits
This is a large, well-established company that can offer a commensurate range of benefits. Salaries are in line with the market, and they provide a range of benefits such as:
- Drivers are home every week
- Drivers are paid for both loaded and deadhead miles
- Drivers are assigned their own trucks
- 401(k) plan matched by the company
- Medical and dental insurance
- Life insurance (company supplied)
- Paid holidays, vacations, and personal days
- Performance bonuses paid quarterly
Best Trucking Company in Roanoke, VA:
Who is Fleetmaster Express?
Fleetmaster Express was founded by Bill B. Bumgarner in 1987 when he purchased a small transport company. In the beginning, Fleetmaster Express had just two tractors and trailers and concentrated on hauling refrigerated loads for a large grocery chain.
This has grown considerably, and the company now operates a fleet of over 300 trucks with 1,300 trailers. Their range of services has also expanded to include haulage, warehousing, and freight brokering.
The company has offices across Ohio, Arkansas, Texas, Virginia, North Carolina, Wisconsin, Tennessee, Indiana, and Georgia.
Jobs Offered by Fleetmaster Express
As can be executed from a major hauler, there’s a wide range of jobs on offer at Fleetmaster Express. These jobs range from driving, yard work, warehousing, logistics, social media coordinators, information technology management and technical staff, administrative staff, sales and management, and artisans to fix trucks and trailers.
Fleetmaster Express Salary and Benefits
Fleetmaster Express is a big company, and reviews of their salaries and benefits are varied. The benefits the company offers include:
- Drivers can earn up to $0.46 CPM
- Drivers are home weekly
- Paid holidays, vacations, and personal days
- $100 paid on your anniversary
- Drivers children who receive “As” at school are rewarded
- Gifts for exceptional driving performance
- No slips required for hotels, etc., as the company pays a daily allowance for traveling and subsistence
4. UPS Freight/TForce Freight
Who is UPS Freight?
UPS, as a company, needs little introduction to the public. Everyone in the US is used to seeing their brown trucks on American streets.
UPS Freight is the less-than-a-truckload division of UPS. Toward the end of 2005, UPS purchased Overnite Transportation and renamed it UPS Freight which came into being in the second quarter of 2006.
On January 25, 2021, UPS announced that UPS Freight had been sold to TFI International Inc. and now goes by the name TForce Freight.
Jobs Offered by UPS Freight
This company offers an extensive range of jobs in most fields. They look for drivers, supervisory staff, logistics experts, information technology experts, administrative staff, customs brokerage staff, artisans to repair trucks and trailers, dockworkers, warehousing workers, and sales and customer service representatives.
UPS Salary and Benefits
With over 10,000 employees, this is a huge company, and in general, the staff seems satisfied with their working conditions and benefits. Benefits include:
- Pension & retirement plans
- Performance bonuses
- Stock options
- Medical, vision, and dental insurance
- Maternity and paternity leave
- Employee discounts
- Paid sick, vacation, personal, holiday, and bereavement days
5. Abilene Motor Express
Who is Abilene Motor Express?
This family-owned company was started in 1986 by brothers Kolen and Keith Jones. To begin with, they had just one truck, but now, 35 years later, they have 400 tractors that regularly ply the highways all over the continental US and Canada.
The company specializes in long-haul or over-the-road haulage and covers both temperature-sensitive as well as dry loads.
Jobs Offered by Abilene Motor Express
The majority of the jobs on offer from this company are for drivers. Reviews indicate that this is a good employer. It’s not difficult to believe that the company will also look for administrative and accounting staff as well as logistical support staff as this is a core competency that they require.
Abilene Motor Express Salary and Benefits
The salary ranges from this company are commensurate with other companies in a similar business and situation. The benefits offered to drivers include:
- Competitive salary
- Paid vacation (after one year of service)
- Stock ownership program for employees
- 401(k) plan
- Driver referral bonus
- Pay of $0.58 for team drivers
- Pay of $0.45 per mile for solo drivers (with more than two years verified experience)
6. Carroll Trucking
Who is Carroll Trucking?
Carroll Trucking is a family-owned business that started with one truck in 1977. The company has grown from that point to become a trusted partner in logistics, with their management team having an average of 40 years in the trucking business.
They offer full- and part-load transport, intermodal transport, warehousing, and a full range of commercial and residential transport.
Jobs Offered by Carroll Trucking
The most common jobs advertised with Carroll Trucking are for drivers and administrative staff.
Carroll Trucking Salary and Benefits
Unfortunately, this trucking company doesn’t make this information available at this time.
7. Cox Transportation Services
Who is Cox Transportation Services?
The Cox companies came into being in 1982, following the deregulation of the trucking industry with the Motor Carrier Act of 1980. The company started as a service provider assisting shippers with carrier selection, but soon after, the company began its carrier section dealing, with just-in-time haulage for the motor industry.
Over and above the Canadian provinces, Cox Transportation has depots in Georgia, California, Illinois, Texas, North Carolina, and Virginia.
Cox Transportation is a partner to the military and provides trailers that advertise support for the military. The familiar red, white, and blue color scheme of these trucks blends well with the advertisements for the military.
Jobs Offered by Cox Transportation
The jobs most commonly offered by this company are for drivers.
Cox Transportation Salary and Benefits
This company has good reviews from past employees regarding the salaries paid and benefits. According to the company website, these are some of the benefits offered to drivers:
- Driver assigned trucks
- Reimbursement for motel accommodation
- Paid holidays and vacation
- Company-sponsored medical and dental insurance
- Company-paid life insurance
- Company matched 401(k)
- Top drivers earn > $60,000 per year
8. IDM Trucking
Who is IDM Trucking?
This was a family-owned company when it started in 1989, and since 2000, it has been employee-owned.
The company started with 13 trucks and now hauls over 12,000 loads a year. They’re positioned in the Shenandoah Valley in Virginia and have easy access to the Port of Virginia. They service the entire mid-Atlantic region.
This company specializes in van freight and, in recent years, has partnered with clients requiring specialized services such as temperature-controlled transport, containerized transport, and scrap metals. The company is also licensed to transport alcoholic beverages.
Jobs Offered by IDM Trucking
IDM Trucking is another company that mostly offers positions for drivers.
IDM Trucking Salary and Benefits
IDM Trucking is largely employee-owned, so many employees have more than 15 years of service with the company. The benefits offered to drivers include:
- Competitive salary
- Bonus paid quarterly for safe driving
- Stock ownership program for employees
- Employer matched 401(k)
- Medical Insurance
9. Owens & Minor
Who is Owens & Minor?
Owens & Minor is a very specialized global logistics company that exclusively services the healthcare sector. The company is massive, with over 15,000 employees worldwide.
The company provides a link between health care producers and health care providers by managing the supply chain between the two. The company is a Fortune 500 company with a revenue of over $9 billion a year.
Jobs Offered by Owens & Minor
As can be expected from such a huge company, there are jobs in almost every facet of running such a large distribution company. The company has a wide range of positions in management, administration, accounting, information technology, warehousing, distribution, logistics, and driving.
Owens & Minor Salary and Benefits
Again being such a large company, the salary scales and benefits are primarily structured and don’t leave a great deal of room for flexibility. The company is proud of its support for the military, veterans, and people with disabilities. The company will make every effort to employ veterans and people with disabilities.
The company offers competitive salaries, performance bonuses, education assistance, health insurance, and 401(k) plans.
10. Carry On Trucking
Who is Carry On Trucking?
This company was founded in 2004 by Billy Singh. He started with three employees and six trucks and has grown the business to now have 40 tractors and 80 trailers. The company has yards in Virginia and Tennessee.
The business is located just off the I-81 and I-77 corridors and takes full advantage of the location and services of the mid-Atlantic area of the continental US.
The company specializes in dry-van loads, and all the tractors are monitored by satellite.
Jobs Offered by Carry On Trucking
The majority of the jobs on offer from this company are for drivers. As a reasonably sized company, they do look for administrative staff, but most of the jobs are for their fleet of trucks, either as drivers or artisans to service and repair trucks.
Carry on Trucking Salary and Benefits
This company doesn’t provide transparent details on salaries and benefits.
Why Start a Trucking Career in Virginia?
Virginia is a great place to start a trucking career. We’ll go over some of the reasons in this section.
There are three excellent driver training schools in Virginia, so you won’t have far to go from home to get a CDL. This is the first step to launching your career as a truck driver.
It’s clear that there are many trucking companies situated in Virginia. These companies undertake long-haul as well as local deliveries, so your choice of employer is very varied. Trucking companies transport a vast array of goods, and any specialized licenses that you have will make you a desirable employee to any of them.
The benefits offered by the trucking companies in Virginia are excellent. Almost all of them provide good medical insurance, performance bonuses, retirement plans, and market-related pay scales. One offers stock options. Nearly all companies say that they’ll get you home for the weekend so your family life won’t be impacted too severely by your driving.
Job Outlook and Salary for Truck Driving in Virginia
Truck driving has been the backbone of the US economy for years. In all states, small rural communities have no means of getting goods delivered other than by road, so the demand for drivers is constant. Virginia isn’t any different, and the ridges of mountainous terrain make it more important that the road network provides goods to communities not built on a rail line.
Salaries in Virginia are commensurate with other states, and the benefits offered are excellent.
Currently, the average annual pay rate for a CDL driver with an A license is $52,026 per year or $25.01 per hour or $4,335 per month.
This is the average pay, with the highest pay recorded at $87,107 per year and the lowest at $27,894. The majority of salaries fall within the range of $40,617 to $61,660.
The variance in this salary range suggests that there’s room for advancement based on skill levels, experience, and upgraded licenses.
Virginia Cities With Highest Average Trucking Salaries
As with any type of employment, the location also plays a part in determining salaries. Below is a list of the cities in Virginia that pay the highest salaries.
Not many locations pay above average for Virginia, so the opportunity to improve your financial standing by moving to one of these locations should be carefully assessed. Factor in all the reasons for these higher salaries, such as housing, local taxes, and general cost of living expenses.
Locations paying above average salaries in Virginia:
The trucking industry is alive and very well in Virginia, and the outlook for jobs is steady. Good schools are providing CDL training, and with the number of companies looking for staff, it bodes well for junior drivers. Salaries are in line with other states, and the benefits provided are well in line with the industry.
People Also Ask
To assist our readers, here are some commonly asked questions.
Which Virginia Trucking Companies Pay You to Get Your CDL?
Many of the companies already mentioned in this article will pay you while you train. Some additional companies include Stevens Transport, US Foods, and Montgomery Transport.
What States Offer Reciprocal CDL Licensing With Virginia?
Several states have reciprocal licensing with Virginia. These include:
- North Carolina