Differences Between Short and Long Haul Trucking

Differences Between Short and Long Haul Trucking

Truck driving is definitely on top of the list of most popular careers in the United States, and this popularity continues to rise according the US Bureau of Labor Statistics. Trucking jobs vary, but they are all often described as either short hauls or long hauls. 

A short-haul typically involves only driving around a 150-mile radius. Long haul drivers, on the other hand, have a driving radius of 250 miles and more. 

Home Sweet Home

With longer routes, many long haul truckers spend considerable amounts of time on the road and away from home. Some may have routes to complete throughout the week and then have the opportunity to return home on the weekends while many others find themselves on the road for weeks or months at a time.

Long haul truckers definitely do sacrifice a lot for their careers because they spend so much time away from their family and friends and often miss special occasions because of their longer routes.

Driving and Loading the Truck

Depending on the company, some short-haul drivers can make up to four stops a day, and they will unload and load at each location. They will spend more of their time driving around local streets and need to possess good driving skills because they will find themselves having to maneuver through tight spaces, around corners, and backing up in smaller areas. 

Long haul drivers don’t face any of these issues because they are driving the majority of their time on open roadways and highways and they usually have a load in their truck for around two days before unloading. 

Pay Differences

Another big difference between short and long haul trucking is the pay. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that the median annual salary for a tractor-trailer driver back in 2010 was approximately $37,770. While some short haulers may have been included in this average, the information was mainly gathered regarding long haul truckers. 

For those that are considered delivery driver and sales workers that pick up, transport, and unload within urban areas have a median salary of $27,050. 


Making more money also usually means that more money is going to be spent while on the job. Since long haul drivers spend more time away from home, many of them do not see the need to maintain a home so to cut their living expenses; they choose not to rent or buy. 

Short-haul truck drivers, however, do spend time at home and find that they have far fewer on the road expenses to contend with.

Reaching Goals

Many long haul truckers have the ultimate goal of becoming an owner/operator. It is an expensive goal, however, because of the many expenses that are involved with this type of venture including the insurance, fuel, and maintenance that is needed and this is why it may be more feasible to look into getting trucks to be used for short hauls for much lower costs.

If you are interested in trucking and want more information, contact Spurlock in ((blog,city)), IN today.