what is a driver?

As a driver, you drive vehicles, including trucks and trailers. Your job is to move items from one location to another. For instance, you transport finished products and raw materials using trucks. You work with a logistics company or as an in-house driver to assist in the transportation department. You deliver goods from the warehouse to retail stores or raw materials to a production plant. If you are a delivery driver, you deliver products to customers.

The duties of a driver include operating trucks and other vehicles to deliver items. You map the route of your delivery and stops to ensure efficiency. You also load and offload cargo on your delivery schedule. Drivers also perform various maintenance duties, such as pre-inspecting trucks before delivery and completing minor repairs.

As a driver, you are expected to follow driving instructions and road maps to find the correct delivery locations. You also follow safe driving regulations and practices. You require excellent navigation skills to find the best routes to excel in your role. Having good time management skills also helps you keep up with deadlines.

Would working as a driver suit your navigation and time management skills? Then read on to find out what competencies and qualifications you need to thrive in a driver role.

driver jobs

average driver salary

According to Job Bank, the average salary of a driver is $42,900 per year. Your earnings depend on your experience and qualifications. For instance, when you are new in the role, you start with an annual salary of $35,802. The most experienced drivers make up to $60,134 per year. Your area of specialization may also influence your earnings. For instance, a truck driver earns an average annual salary of $48,750 or an hourly rate of $25. A commercial driver earns an average salary of $55,000 yearly.

how to increase your salary as a driver

As a driver, your earnings depend on your qualifications and experience. You start with a lower salary at an entry-level position due to your minimal experience. As you improve your skills and gain experience, your earnings increase gradually. While a college diploma is not mandatory, professional certification improves your earning potential.

Aside from improving your qualifications, you can also increase your earnings by working additional hours. While most drivers work on shift schedules, adding extra work hours enhances your take-home salary. Working for a large company also increases your earning potential since they usually pay higher salaries than smaller companies.

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types of drivers

Some of the types of drivers include:

  • transport drivers: as a transport driver, you are responsible for driving passenger vans, tractor-trailers and flatbeds. You deliver goods and passengers to their destinations. The role requires familiarity with the vehicles allowed on certain roads and the ability to drive in all weather conditions.
  • bus drivers: as a bus driver, you drive buses carrying passengers. The role requires a commercial driver’s licence and the completion of a bus driving course.
  • courier drivers: as a courier driver, you transport packages to intended recipients. You deliver the packages to businesses and people’s homes, which requires good navigation skills to find the destinations on the map.
  • delivery drivers: as a delivery driver, you transport various goods, such as construction materials or food. You drive trucks, vans or trailers to transport items from the warehouse to their required locations.
truck driver
truck driver

working as a driver

Drivers transport goods or passengers by motor vehicle. Discover the duties, responsibilities and career outlook of drivers.


driver skills and education

Some of the requirements for becoming a driver in Canada include the following:

  • completion of secondary school: the minimum requirement for becoming a driver is completing secondary school. Most employers provide on-the-job training on the duties and expectations of a driver. You may need to pursue an accredited driver training course at a community college or vocational school, which takes around three months to complete.
  • professional certification and licensing: if your duties involve driving straight-body trucks, you require a Class 3 or D licence. A Class 1 or A licence is required for driving long combination vehicles. You may also need certification to work in some industries. For instance, to work in oil and gas transportation services in Alberta, you require certification from Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training. In Ontario, a tractor commercial driver job is regulated, and you can pursue your certification from the Ontario College of Trades. Truck drivers in Saskatchewan require certification from the Saskatchewan Apprenticeship and Trade Certification Commission.

competencies and characteristics of drivers

Aside from knowing how to drive, you need additional skills, including:

  • navigation: as a driver, you use different routes to deliver products or drop off passengers. To ensure you make timely deliveries, you require strong navigation skills to avoid getting lost on a new route. Navigation skills help you stay on track with deliveries and adapt to unfamiliar areas using a map.
  • customer service skills: as a driver, you collaborate with various professionals. For instance, if you drive a truck, you work with warehouse workers and speak with clients when delivering items. Due to the nature of your duties, you require strong customer service skills to provide a positive and enthusiastic work experience with people.
  • basic knowledge in maintenance: the truck or vehicle may break down on your shift, and it is beneficial to have basic maintenance skills. Your knowledge of trucks and vehicles helps you fix mechanical problems that may occur unexpectedly.
  • efficiency and time management: as a driver, your shift involves stopping to drop off multiple items at different locations. Since you have a strict schedule, your time management skills help you maintain the schedule and ensure every package arrives at its destination in a timely manner.
  • physical fitness and strength: your job involves moving in and out of the truck to load or offload items. Having physical strength and stamina helps you withstand long working hours.


Here, you will find the answers to the most frequently asked questions about the profession of a driver.


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