How Much Do Drivers Really Earn? It Would Take 8 Years for a Bus Driver to Earn What Sebastian Vettel Does in a Day!

With Formula One reaching its final months and Sebastian Vettel and Lewis Hamilton challenging for the top spot, it’s hard not to get caught up in the excitement! Countless drivers across the UK wish that they too could have such a thrilling career along with the attractive salary. No doubt, all keen motorists will have occasionally pondered the idea of driving for a living, but the chances of reaching such a glamorous career and the low expectations of the more conventional motoring positions, including the pay, will put most off. This is why we have researched into a variety of driving careers and have uncovered the full extent of the pay difference and the alternative benefits for each; it turns out that the average bus driver will have to work 8 years to earn what Sebastian Vettel does in a day! Read on to find out how much a driver can really earn behind the wheel!

Andrew Jervis, Co-Founder of ClickMechanic, said: “The wage will always have a great influence over any change in career, however, enjoying the work should also be a top priority. Despite the low average of pay, drivers can earn more than meets the eye whilst loving what they do, so the below career paths could be a brilliant step for any keen motorist. Alternatively, if the engineering of a car takes your interest, why not look into becoming a mechanic and using ClickMechanic to find your business?”

1. Professional Racing Car Driver – Formula One

Average Salary: From £116,000 to £38,580,000 p.a.

Holiday: 40 days p.a.

Time to Save for Average Housing Deposit (no tax): From 2 hours 30 mins to 5 months

How to Apply: Obtain an FIA Super Licence, accumulate 40 points over a three-year period from other motorsport series, have two years of experience in single-seater categories and pass a test on the Formula One sporting regulations as well as completing 300 kilometres of testing in a Formula One car

The dream driving job does indeed cost time and money to achieve, as can be seen by the lengthy application process. No matter how highly you rank, there is also little holiday to be had as the Formula One drivers only get a two week break in August and 6 weeks between November and January. Not to mention they often work weekends and are constantly on the road (ironically). Only the most dedicated and skilled drivers can reach this position, and even then they need to be the best to earn the most-impressive pay. However, if this fast-paced lifestyle really is your cup of tea, the investment of both time and money will be worthwhile and the route itself to this career will be an enjoyable one. If you can make it to the top and reach Sebastian Vettel’s salary, it’s nice to see that you could save up for a housing deposit in under 3 hours!

2. Tank Driver – The Army

Average Salary: £14,931 (during training), £18,488 (after training) p.a.

Holiday: 38 days p.a.

Time to Save for Average Housing Deposit (after tax): 2 years, 10 months

How to Apply: Apply online via apply.army.mod.uk, Phase 1 (basic) training lasts for 14 weeks and Phase 2 will provide training specific to the role; the duration of Phase 2 depends on the training required

Whilst the starting salary may not overwhelm you, there are countless benefits to be considered on this career path. A tank driver will receive subsidised accomodation, 38 days of holiday per year and travel opportunities. There is also the chance to climb the ranks and increase the wage over time; within a few years you could be commanding your own vehicle as part of a troop of tanks. Not to mention, with a top speed of 37mph, driving a tank is an experience which many motorists would happily pay for!

3. Bus Driver

Average Salary: £22,500 p.a.

Holiday: 20 days p.a.

Time to Save for Average Housing Deposit (after tax): 2 years, 5 months

How to Apply: Apply online and hold or train for a PCV Licence

If you’re looking for a career on the road and would welcome the chance to operate a larger, more powerful vehicle, then this role may be the one for you. Bus drivers do not boast huge pay or holiday, but they do generally have free transport when off-duty from the company they work for, get to meet the locals and drive multiple routes on a daily basis. The added free rein in the bus lane is just a bonus!

4. Chauffeur

Average Salary: £19,800 p.a.

Holiday: Varies

Time to Save for Average Housing Deposit (after tax): 2 years, 8 months

How to Apply: Apply online; it helps to have several years of driving experience as well as car maintenance skills

If you’re interested in more of a luxurious motoring career then becoming a Chauffeur may be the way to go! It’s true that the average wage is not overly impressive, however depending on experience, skills and the client, Chauffeurs can make much more money than meets the eye. This is particularly the case if you have added desirable skills such as car maintenance or the ability to speak another language. The hours can vary, however this role would be ideal for a keen motorist looking for variation and comfort on the road.

5. Taxi Driver

Average Salary: £23,000 p.a.

Holiday (pa): Varies

Time to Save for Average Housing Deposit (after tax): 2 years, 4 months

How to Apply: Outside of London, you must have held a full GB, EU or Northern Ireland driving licence for at least 12 months and apply via your local council, inside of London you can apply via TFL

A career as a Taxi Driver would suit any keen motorists who are looking for flexible hours and the chance to be their own boss. The wage varies, once again, depending on the hours worked and the rate charged – premium taxi drivers can take home much more, particularly if they frequently carry out airport runs. An obvious benefit of this career would be to visit new places and attain a great knowledge of the roads in and around your area; there’s no excuse to get lost!

6. Ambulance Driver

Average Salary: £20,000 p.a.

Holiday: 27 days p.a.

Time to Save for Average Housing Deposit (after tax): 2 years, 8 months

How to Apply: You need 3-4 GCSEs at grades 9-4 (A*-C), including English, Maths and a Science, excellent driving skills. Experience of working in a patient care setting and a first aid certificate is a bonus

Working as an ambulance driver or an Emergency Care Assistant will be, no doubt, physically and emotionally demanding; the services operate 365 days a year, meaning you would have to work evenings, weekends and bank holidays. However, it’s a career path which would use your motoring skills to help people and would present the opportunity to learn some life-saving skills. There are also steps you can take from this role to become a paramedic, should you wish to become the ultimate driving-doctor!