Long-distance courier jobs: can you earn a good living?

Open Road Long Distance Courier Jobs

‘Gig jobs’ or ‘side hustles’ are a good way to make money in a tight economy. Long-distance courier jobs are one option to make cash quickly. But just how much money is there waiting to be made by freelance delivery drivers?

We’ll be answering that question and others in this in-depth breakdown. Outlining the basics of the long-distance courier business, we’ll look at the state of the courier job market today and examine the current pay scale. We’ll also provide a few words of advice and encouragement for those just starting out.

Things to consider when diving into a long-distance courier job

The basic concept of long-distance courier work is fairly simple. Using your own vehicle, you transport goods, merchandise, documents, or even other vehicles from one location to another. The distances can vary from interstate courier jobs to cross-country deliveries.

Get Paid to Drive with CitizenShipper

Whether a freelancer or contracted at a delivery company, if you like driving odds are you’ll find the work rewarding and enjoyable. The constant travel offers something that most other jobs lack – a sense of freedom. Here’s just a few more of the advantages you might want to consider.

  • Low barrier of entry: Are you a reliable, responsible driver with a clean record? Do you have a smartphone that can help you manage your jobs and locate addresses quickly? Then you have what it takes to make it as a self-employed courier. The job requires little in the way of equipment – all you need is a registered vehicle and a GPS device.
  • High demand: Has it been difficult to find employment in your line of work? Private car transport jobs are a great side-hustle. The shipping industry keeps growing, and the demand is on the rise. If you’re a competent driver willing to put in the hours, you’ll always be able to find work.
  • Flexibility: Is the daily grind getting you down? Working as a self-employed courier lets you set your own price and follow your own schedule. You can push yourself to the limit, or enjoy time off at home with family and friends.

Current industry pay scales for long-distance courier jobs

Jobs of this type pay by the mile or by the load. On a cross-country courier job using your own vehicle, dollars per mile really do stack up. An average courier, employed at a big shipping company, makes about $16.20 per hour ($33,699 per year). This nationwide average doesn’t vary that much across state limits.

Source: ziprecruiter.com

But for self-employed couriers using your own car, it’s a whole different story. On average, a freelancer earns significantly more per job than a courier working for a big company. Using CitizenShipper’s platform as an example, the average independent driver makes between $8,000 and $10,000 per month.

It’s not that simple, of course – a freelance delivery driver also has expenses to think about. Covering the cost of fuel, repair, and insurance premiums can take as much as 40% off the top. Still, as a freelance courier, you end up more in your pocket than you would as a courier employed by a shipping company.

To explain this price difference in more detail, let’s take a look into the way the courier service industry operates.

Facts about the US courier service industry

Since the nineteenth century, the courier business in the United States has been a large and continually growing market. It’s a great big country, so there is always work moving essential items from one side to the next. Amazon Logistics ships over 2.5 billion packages annually in the U.S., FedEx delivers about 3 billion packages while UPS completes about 4.7 billion. As online shipping surges courier industry’s revenues have also been trending steadily upward

Sadly, this bounty hasn’t really trickled down to contracted couriers themselves. Wages have been stagnant across the board. Many shipping companies gradually increase their fees, cutting deeper and deeper into courier earnings.

So what’s the solution? Being your own boss, of course! As mentioned above, a freelance delivery driver has more freedom in choosing shipments and keeps a greater share of the profits. 

Other driving job side hustles

Driving as a side hustle has been popularized by the rideshare companies Uber and Lyft. While these gigs do offer similar flexibility as a freelance courier, the average driver (outside a major metropolitan area) only earns about $10 an hour. Which is okay, but pales in comparison to the average CitizenShipper driver who makes $22 an hour. And the hourly earnings only go up from there. The top 10% CitizenShipper drivers earn $42 an hour, the top 25% make $35 an hour.

Ready to give it a shot?

If you have solid driving skills and professional responsibility, long-distance courier jobs are an opportunity you really shouldn’t miss. Sign up as a driver on CitizenShipper, a platform that supports your journey as a driver and helps you build your business. 

Gain access to hundreds of shipments to bid on, contact customers directly, and negotiate your price. We have a community of freelance delivery drivers, always ready to offer advice or a helping hand. Join us today, and start exploring self-employed courier job opportunities!

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240 Comments
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richard a. emich
richard a. emich
2 years ago

seeking a long distance courier job. have been working as an independent contractor for nearly 15 years, mostly performing on -demand type of work. truly enjoy getting out of the big metropolis (i.e., chicago) and delivering throughout the midwest and beyond. have performed all types of work: medical/biological/
pharma/live animal/research/specimens, have specialized as field service tech delivering/distributing and installing dialysis equipment in-home and clinics. have delivered anything and everything with the highest level of customer service. i am well equipped with a late model grand caravan, all the tools and accessories to function and have more than the required commer-
cial insurance that companies demand in this day and age.
i will deliver anything and anywhere . i am a self-starter, highly-organized and perform in a very professional manner. i want to be kept busy and continue to exact an attractive income as an independent contractor

richard a. emich
richard a. emich
2 years ago

oh yeah: you can contact me directly at 708-473-0627

Teresa cabral
Teresa cabral
2 years ago

Based central fla love drive to north central and northeast flawless drive record and cory and clean

Israel Ogundare
2 years ago

I have special interest in this kind of carrier, I Have Toyota Corolla 2018 and Toyota Camry 2012, I will very glad if am consider for the job. Thank,

stephen bernin
stephen bernin
2 years ago

I have a 2016 dodge grand caravan with 30,000 miles, I am a self employed carpenter. I would be interested in learning more about the cross country courier service industry. I live in downtown Chicago.
Thank You for you Consideration,
Sincerely
Stephen M Bernin

Melvin Mosely
Melvin Mosely
2 years ago

I have a 2027 Nissan Frontier, love to travel. Would really like to offer my time and service.

daniel
daniel
2 years ago

I am intrested in being a courier i live in Oregon and i have drive all over United States. i currently have an 08 acura tsx, clean driving record!!!

Mickey Millen
Mickey Millen
2 years ago

I’d like to learn more about long distance transport and small loads. I have a 2013 Jeep Patriot. I’m semi retired. Was an OTR for 21 years. I am at this time a certified Penn. State Constable and my time is very flexible. I would be open to chauffeur. I live in northern central PA. Just about 10 miles south of Elmira NY.

DJ
DJ
2 years ago

Single adult female is seeking a driver position across country.
Want to travel and get paid for it.

Very responsible and trustworthy. Very detailed and organized.
I love the outdoors and helping people get to their destination.

Can provide driving record and character refs if so needed.
Thank u for your cooperation

Brett Dingey
Brett Dingey
2 years ago

Love to travel. Been to almost all states in the US. Good driving record, single and am seriously seeking employment.

Lori Miller
Lori Miller
2 years ago

I keep trying to click the Become a Driver link and keep getting this error message “No input file specified.” Could you please tell me how I can become a long distance courier for your company please. Thank you and have a wonderful evening!

Matthew White
Matthew White
2 years ago

I am interested in the long distance courier work of delivering cars or possibly merchandise. Cocoa Beach/Orlando Florida area.

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  Matthew White
2 years ago

Hello Matthew, if you are interested in becoming a driver for CitizenShipper, you can sign up here for free: citizenshipper.com/new-drivers

Kathy Stacker
Kathy Stacker
2 years ago

Are husband and wife teams accepted as drivers? If so, we are interested in obtaining additional information.

Thank you.

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  Kathy Stacker
2 years ago

Hello Kathy, husband and wife teams are awesome! All we ask is that both receive a security screening before driving on the road:)

Vinny C
Vinny C
2 years ago

I live inScottsdale,AZ. Retired Firefighter 30 years. I was a Courier for 2 years during my career. Have a low mileage Lexus.

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  Vinny C
2 years ago

Hello Vinny, thank you so much for your service. You sound like you could be a perfect driver on our site! To sign up, or just learn more, click here: citizenshipper.com/new-drivers

Kawal D Singh
Kawal D Singh
1 year ago

Hello I live in Rockland county ,NY. Intrested in log distance courier work.Own a Honda van.

Ron steinhoff
Ron steinhoff
1 year ago

Please get hold of me. Have a 2017. Suv. Traveled the states and canada Thanks

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  Ron steinhoff
1 year ago

Hey there Ron,

Thanks for reaching out! We’d be happy to assist you with whatever you may need. Just send us an email at support.com or give us a call at (903) 213-5321‬ and we’ll get it figured out:)

Cheryll H.
Cheryll H.
1 year ago

Hi, I am very interested in being a long distance courier. I’m located in the Metro Atlanta area and willing to hit the road! Would love to learn more about this opportunity please contact me. Thanks.

Matthew
Matthew
Reply to  Cheryll H.
1 year ago

Hey there Cheryll, you can learn more about becoming a driver on our site at citizenshipper.com/new-drivers

David
David
1 year ago

I have been a long distance courier since 2013. I have a Toyota Camry.

Sami A
Sami A
1 year ago

I have been a long distance courier since 2015
I gave 2014 Honda CR-V
708 670 4364

Juan Alvarez
Juan Alvarez
1 year ago

Hi, I am very interested in being a long distance courier. I’m located in California. Can I use a rental car for this job?

Russell Paulson
Russell Paulson
1 year ago

Where do I apply?
Lets roll!
Russ
Suzuki SX4 2012

Rebecca B Williams
Rebecca B Williams
1 year ago

How do I sign up

Rozemberg d Queiroz
Rozemberg d Queiroz
11 months ago

Interesting. but I know that the practice is far from the reality of the theoretical arguments. but, yes, I have always been interested in this self-employed mail.

Jay Newland
Jay Newland
11 months ago

Good afternoon. I retired from a 25 year job but not ready to quit working. I have my own business but a little slow right now. I like the thought of the distance Courier idea. I have my class a commercial license and own a 2012 ram 2500 flat bed pickup. I would certainly appreciate any assistance regarding how to put my truck to work. I live in north Texas.

Michael O'Grady
Michael O'Grady
10 months ago

I would like to find out more about your long distance courier opportunities

Roberto Muniz
Roberto Muniz
9 months ago

I like driving along ways and l have A clean driving record and l am dependable and prompt. I am very interested in this position but l would like to rent A car.

Andrene swader
Andrene swader
8 months ago

I’m an AGM of a local fast food restaurant. I’ve been with them for 6 years. Love my job, however, I’m ready for a career change. I travel a lot using my own vehicle. I drive from Va to Cali 6 times a year to one of my children. I just love to drive, and it would be a blessing to have a career doing what I love.

rana
rana
6 months ago

hello, can i get more information please?

Bill Mooneyhan
Bill Mooneyhan
3 months ago

I am recently retired, just over a year, and looking to earn some extra money with light delivery. Interstate or intrastate works for me. I retired from Autozone as a commercial driver so have a F endorsement. Thanks

Dorjee
Dorjee
2 months ago

Are there odd jobs for people who move through the interstate with a truck rental? I’m renting a box truck to pick up some things from Indiana to Massachusetts and back. It’s a business trip and the truck will have lots of left over room on the way back. Interested in hauling goods for people/businesses for a fee. Curious if there a Door Dash service for this kind of thing? Thank you.

Danny James Taylor
1 month ago

i have a 2020 Kia Soul small suv seeking long distance courier driving . i have a clean driving record and is now ready to hit the road.

Lazar
Lazar
Editor
Reply to  Danny James Taylor
1 month ago

Please visit https://citizenshipper.com/register to sign up! We don’t charge any commission fees on your quotes!

If you want to know more about how our marketplace works, we suggest you to sign up and complete our new drivers guides – https://citizenshipper.teachable.com/courses

And let us know if you have any additional questions. Good luck and happy shipping!

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