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How Much Do Sub-Contract Couriers Get Paid?

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For those who enjoy being on the move, working as a subcontract courier delivering various types of packages may be an appealing career choice. However, before you can make the decision to work as an independent courier, you need to know how much subcontract couriers get paid. Several factors have to be considered when answering this question.


Where you live and work will play a part in how much you are able to make as a subcontract courier. For example, in 2010 couriers living in Alaska made the most money annually at roughly $33,000, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics,. Other high-paying locations include Washington D.C., Massachusetts and Connecticut. These areas also have a higher demand for subcontractors.

Type of Delivery Services Provided

The delivery services you (or the company with whom you contract) provide affects your earnings power as a subcontract courier . According to the BLS's 2010 data, couriers employed by medical laboratories were paid $26,800 annually. Those employed by express-delivery companies were close behind at $26,000, while subcontractors for local and legal delivery services made approximately $25,000 annually.

How Many Hours You Work

One of the benefits of working as a subcontract courier is the flexibility it provides. You have the ability to work the hours that are convenient for you, making it a good side job for college students or those with a full-time job. However, the amount of money you will be able to make as a subcontractor will depend on how many hours a week you are able to work. Subcontractors are generally paid either by the number of packages delivered or by the miles traveled. Therefore, you will be able to make more money by working more hours.


Most companies consider their subcontractors to be independent contractors, meaning you provide your own vehicle and sometimes your own insurance for packages, which means you will also have to take out your own taxes. Independent contractors are not employees, and therefore are not entitled to the same benefits employees receive, such as health insurance, sick pay, 401(k) or paid vacations. This is something you will need to consider when looking at how much subcontract couriers get paid.


Kirsten Silven-Hoell began working as a freelance writer and editor in 2004 after spending six years in the financial services industry. She worked as editor-in-chief at "Kentucky Homes & Gardens" magazine for more than three years before becoming editor-in-chief and art director at "Club Solutions Magazine." Silven-Hoell holds a Bachelor of Arts in interdisciplinary humanities from Spalding University and graduated summa cum laude.

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