Let us see who wins in Owner-Operator vs Driver battle. Both are fine. None will be going to buy a farmhouse, except feeding bread and butter. Now a day’s people are coming back to driving. I personally met former owner-operators who got rid of their unpaid Sunday stress. They said, we already wasted so many Sundays on a mechanic shop or fixing it in the yard. Now we have more family time and the same income.
Changing jobs Owner-Operator vs Driver
Jumping around trucking companies is far easier when you are only a driver. It takes 2 to 3 days or maximum a week to change your job as a driver. It may take 2 to 6 weeks to switch your company as an owner-operator. As a driver, you can easily switch the type of work. Can go to flatbed or tanker to make check larger. It is harder to change job type as an owner-operator, because of your equipment limitations.
Local O/O vs highway driver
Earnings almost the same nowadays, whatever a professional truck driver make, local owner-operator makes about $500 more a month. Being an owner operator you have an extra feeling of own business also. Highway drivers, sometimes make more than local owner-operator. Local owner-operators save for months and one big repair flush away months of savings. Repairs like transmission, clutch, motor cost big money. So why to take extra burden for no difference. Here is the average payment calculation
Local owner-operator monthly income
If he gets paid= $42/hr if working 250/hours a month then total earnings are $10500
Now come to expenses fuel = $2000, plates and parking = $500, oil, brakes, and other regular maintenance expenses = $800, Truck Loan Installments = $1200 and grand total expenses of local truck = $4500
10500-4500 = 6000
Highway driver monthly income
$.60 per mile average monthly miles 10000, total earning = $6000, on top of this HST and border crossing bonus and net income is around $7000.
Highway driver can come home daily also.
Highway Owner-Operator vs Driver
Earnings are good on the highway. Long haul owner-operators make around $2500 more than a driver. It may look bad if you calculate hours, home time, risk and vehicle maintenance. It looks like a factory worker. If you have your own truck on the highway, it will run more, resulting in more wear and tear needs more frequent non-regular repairs? So best is be a driver. Drive new equipment, leave the keys with dispatch on weekend and have fun.