4 Canadian Trades With the Highest...

4 Canadian Trades With the Highest Earning Potential

by Meghan Brown
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

A lot of people think of the trades as being low-skill, low-paying jobs.  However, this isn’t true.  Tradespeople are some of the most highly skilled workers in the workforce, and because of their expertise and capabilities, tradespeople are always in demand and able to command high salaries.

Below are a few of the trades that have the highest earning potential:

Oil and Gas Drilling

The oil and natural gas industry historically has high earnings potential, and this is especially true for the skilled trades.  The specialized nature of much of the work means that those working in this field require a great deal of training, which leads to higher wages over time as you gain experience and skills.  Specific positions can vary, such as Rig Technician, Driller – Oil & Gas, Well-Testing Operator, Downhole Tool Operator, and more. Currently, the highest demand region is the Alberta oilsands.

Most of these jobs start out with wages around $20 per hour, but with age and experience can reach $60 per hour or more, for a yearly salary ranging from $49,000 to $149,000.


Whether you choose to work as an industrial electrician, or a residential and commercial electrician, this essential trade is always in demand since every new building, factory, or house needs the attention of an electrician during the construction process.  Electricians can also troubleshoot problems and repair electrical systems in buildings, machinery, or vehicles.

Thanks to high demand, electricians earn high salaries starting around minimum wage, but rising over time to reach $45 or more per hour.  This is a salary range between $35,000 up to $102,000 per year.

Construction Management

Jobs which have a managerial component tend to earn higher wages, and construction management careers are no exception. These tradespeople oversee construction projects of all sizes, manage contractors and workers, work with architects, and maintain budgets.  While becoming a construction manager requires a bit more in the way of education and experience than some trades, the potential earnings more than make up for the extra effort.

Most construction manager position wages start around $20 per hour, with potential earnings reaching $60 to $90 per hour. This means the annual salary starts around $57,000 and can reach as high as $142,000.

Steamfitter or Pipefitter

These are essential tradespeople who are responsible for planning, laying out, fabricating, installing, and repairing the piping systems that carry water, steam, oil and gas, chemicals, and other liquid or gaseous compounds.  Pipefitters are vital to many industrial and commercial projects, including fire suppression systems, mechanical equipment, factory machinery, and more.

Wages begin around $20 per hour for entry level positions, up to $50 per hour with experience, which makes for an annual salary range between $39,000 and $147,000.

These are only a few of the trades careers available across Canada, and many trades are high paying with lots of room to build your skills and advance in responsibility.  Whatever you’re interested in, from machines to cars, the outdoors to something artistic, there’s a great-paying trades career waiting for you.













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