How to Become a Freight Broker in Alaska

People who enjoy a fast-paced work environment and know a good deal when they see one may enjoy a career as a freight broker. Freight brokers arrange transportation for items, negotiate the price of that service and keep their clients up-to-date on the shipment’s progress. They must also carry a license and insurance, while freight agents by contrast do not. Freight agents often work as independent contractors for the brokers and are typically responsible for conducting sales and researching carriers to find the right one.

Requirements for Becoming a Freight Broker in Alaska

To become a freight broker in Alaska, applicants must meet the minimum federal requirements, which include having a high school diploma or equivalent. The state does not require any additional certifications. It may be helpful to enroll in a training program, which teaches some of the skills necessary to be a successful freight broker and walks applicants through the certification process. All brokers must carry a $75,000 surety bond in addition to cargo and general liability insurance.

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Alaska Schools for Freight Brokers

While there is no formal training necessary to become a freight broker in Alaska, enrolling in an educational course can provide specialized knowledge and basic information for people who have not previously worked in the trucking industry. Here are some options for prospective freight brokers in Alaska:

  • Brooke Training Brooke Training offers students across the country the opportunity to learn both basic freight brokerage skills and advanced techniques. Tuition is free for qualifying veterans, and all students receive job placement assistance after they complete a course.
  • Freight Movers School The Freight Movers School has been in operation for more than 40 years. It provides two online programs. One teaches freight brokerage basics, while the other focuses on how to increase sales. All course materials for both classes are available online, making it easy to get started.

Certifications for Becoming a Freight Broker in Alaska

Freight brokers in Alaska must receive a license from the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA). First, brokers must register the name of their business and get a U.S. Department of Transportation number, which must be submitted along with the license application. Applicants also need to pay a licensing fee. The FMCSA will then review the application and issue a license.

Applicants do not have to take a formal exam to become a freight broker in Alaska. New brokers interested in receiving additional certifications for a competitive advantage can take a Certified Transportation Brokers exam, which is administered by the Transportation Intermediaries Association.

Career Outlook and Salary Expectations

Careers in freight brokerage, specifically for cargo and freight agents, continue to show promising growth. While specific growth predictions beyond 2020 are not provided, the ongoing expansion of the online retail market suggests a positive trend in this field.

Salaries for cargo and freight agents average $46,860 per year nationwide. In Alaska, the average salary is slightly lower, with workers earning an average of $46,000 annually.

National vs. Alaska Salaries:

Percentile United States Salary Alaska Salary
10% $32,720 $36,500
25% $38,400 $37,470
Median (50%) $46,860 $46,000
75% $58,710 $60,940
90% $70,280 $77,190

Salaries by Region in Alaska:

Location 10% 25% Median (50%) 75% 90%
Alaska Statewide $36,500 $37,470 $46,000 $60,940 $77,190
Alaska nonmetropolitan area $38,790 $47,420 $58,760 $75,920 $81,520
Anchorage, AK $34,920 $37,470 $44,200 $58,520 $65,670
Fairbanks, AK $37,360 $37,360 $44,820 $61,240 $72,480

Freight Broker Trends in Alaska

The employment trends for Cargo and Freight Agents in Alaska (43-5011.00) indicate a positive outlook for the period from 2020 to 2030. In 2020, there were 610 employees working in this occupation in Alaska. This number is projected to increase to 730 employees by 2030, representing a significant growth rate of 20%. Additionally, there are projected to be around 80 job openings annually over this decade, which includes openings due to both growth and replacement. This trend reflects a robust and expanding job market for cargo and freight agents in Alaska.

In comparison, the national trend for the same period shows a 10% growth rate, which is considered much faster than average. In 2022, there were 95,900 employees in this occupation across the United States, with projections indicating an increase to 105,200 employees by 2032. Nationally, there are expected to be about 11,000 job openings annually over this period.

Employment Trends in Alaska

Location Employment (2020/2022) Projected Employment (2030/2032) Projected Growth (2020-2030/2022-2032) Projected Annual Job Openings (2020-2030/2022-2032)
Alaska 610 employees 730 employees 20% 80
United States 95,900 employees 105,200 employees 10% (Much faster than average) 11,000

Sources of Data:

Alaska Data: The employment figures and projections for Alaska are sourced from Projections Central, specifically their 2020-2030 long-term projections. Projections Central specializes in state-level employment projections, offering detailed insights into various occupations.

United States Data: The national employment figures and projections are obtained from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), specifically their 2022-2032 employment projections.

Working as a Freight Broker in Alaska

People who would like to work as freight brokers have two options for finding employment. Many find jobs at existing brokerages, and operations located in larger cities – like Juneau or Anchorage, Alaska – typically offer the highest salaries. However, brokers can also start their own businesses from anywhere in the state. The job offers a large amount of flexibility, and entrepreneurial people may find starting their own business to be particularly rewarding. Being a freight broker allows people to maintain their own schedules and a consistent income while keeping them out of the usual office space.