What Heavy Equipment Operator Jobs Allow for Travel?

Blog, Heavy Equipment Jobs


While some people are content working a job that never requires them to go on a business trip or move, there are others who would love a job that gives them an excuse to travel the nation—or the world. Fortunately, if your ideal career path is that of a heavy equipment operator, you can do both! Construction is an industry that’s often in high demand everywhere, so looking into traveling heavy equipment operator jobs is a fantastic way to live in interesting places on a paid contract.

But what type of heavy equipment operator jobs let you travel? Should you specialize in certain fields or generalize? Also, how do things change if you want to work around the United States compared to working around the world?

Types of Traveling Heavy Equipment Operator Jobs

Here’s some good news: in terms of what types of heavy equipment operator jobs can be traveling ones within the United States, the answer is, nearly all of them, which is nice. Obviously, people with more specific skill sets can specialize in different environments—if you’re an offshore oil driller, you may take some getting used to working in Arizona, for instance—but for the most part, all heavy equipment operator certifications are transferable throughout the United States.

This means, if you pass a training course for the NCCER (National Center for Construction Education and Research) or the NCCCO (National Commission for the Certification of Crane Operators) and get certified to operate bulldozers, earthmovers, and cranes in Minneapolis, you can work in Poughkeepsie, Tuscaloosa, San Diego, or Spokane too.

Some jobs may require you to move, or otherwise, you can typically find traveling construction jobs online using job boards like Indeed.

Commercial Driving License

One very useful type of equipment operator license you can obtain is a commercial driving license, or CDL. This will let you operate all sorts of road-legal machines, most notably trucks. Like all drivers’ licenses, a CDL is valid in all 50 states in the country.

However, that’s not all. The United States has CDL reciprocity with our two neighbors, which means that if you have a CDL, you can work in Mexico or Canada without any additional need for certification. Though, you will of course need to comply with any immigration restrictions for those nations.

International Traveling Heavy Equipment Operator Jobs

So, we know that you can operate heavy equipment all around the country once you have your certification, right? But what about the world?

The answer to this is: it depends. For the most part, other countries won’t require additional licensing if you have a valid certification here in the United States. The rest of the world knows that our heavy equipment operators are some of the best, after all.

However, this may differ on a nation-to-nation basis, so if you’re interested in working as a heavy equipment operator around the world—sometimes in some truly adventurous locales—then this is a career to consider. Of course, as with our neighbors to the north and south, you will need to go through proper immigration channels, acquire a passport, and so on.

Being a heavy equipment operator is an excellent way to see the country and the world! If you’re interested in traveling heavy construction equipment operator jobs, apply to train and test for your license at West Coast Training.