Ultimate Truckers Guide: How Long Does it Take to Get a CDL?

Source: www.nettts.com
Source: www.nettts.com

How long it takes to get your CDL license really does depend on with who and where the training is being conducted. There are federal guidelines in place, which the states must follow. They cannot be shortened or take away anything, however, they can add to it.

And, some states do have more restrictions and requirements than others. It will also depend on the added endorsements and such.

Source: www.calhoun.edu
Source: www.calhoun.edu

Also, if you go to a driving academy for driving training and attend fulltime, Monday thru Friday, it will be quicker than at the community college that holds class only once or twice a week.

You can choose to go to the less reputable places that will teach just enough to pass the driving test. But with them you get what you pay, most legitimate trucking companies won’t hire you.

Source: www.latruckdriving.com
Source: www.latruckdriving.com

To find out how long does it take to get a CDL you’ll need to check with your state. But you will also need to check with the driving schools. Hop on Google, do a little research, even call around; it will save you lot headaches in the future!

How Long Does it Take to Get a CDL It Will Depend on What Trucking School Option You’ll Choose

Full-Time or Part-time

I already touched on this above but I wanted to go into a few more details. Basically, I want to clarify a few things regarding how long does it take to get a CDL. Because CDL training and driving schools are like anything else.

Source: www.dec.edu
Source: www.dec.edu

They vary more that the models of trucks do! But, like the trucks the schools can be all things to all people. You’ve seen the big sleeper cabs. They have the nice captains truck driver chairs, seat cushions and the best mattresses. They are set-up with anti-siphoning systems, WIFI, GPS tracking and those other bells and whistles.

Then you have the day cab, you know the ones without the comfy beds and such. Well which would you rather drive a 1000 miles haul in? And which is best for moving trailers around the lot? The same goes for the driving schools. You don’t need to pay for all the bells and whistles up front.

Source: Youtube
Source: Youtube

Now, of course, you have a few other things to consider when determining how long does it take to get a CDL. If you are going to pay or are you using your GI Bill or other grants? Are you going to the community college? Is a trucking company that provides truck driver training picking you up?

That’s right, some companies will cover the cost of the driving school for you! Now they will usually handle this in a couple different ways.

They will pay for the school, at one of their locations. You will have to pay up front but then get reimbursed once you graduate (or after a probationary time). Or they deduct the cost of the training from your paycheck.

Source: www.cdlschooltexas.com
Source: www.cdlschooltexas.com

All of these have good points and bad. The most obvious is that you didn’t have to pay up front. The bad is they come with strings. What are these you ask? Well, usually you save to stay with the company a set period of time, 12 to 24 months.

Some of the companies that offer company sponsored training are:

One other thing to remember when you go to a driving school is the other cost. Oh yeah, another cost! Some might charge for all the licensing fees and such.

If you are not attending driving school in your neighborhood you will need to cover travel cost, eating, and lodging.  That can add up real quick!

Source: www.northcrosscdl.com
Source: www.northcrosscdl.com

So make sure you research, research and research! Go on some truck driver forums and ask about all of this ahead of time. If you are taking a lone out, try to cover these added costs.

The last thing you want is the added stress and a surprise while you’re trying to learn how to operate an 80,000-pound vehicle!

How Long Does it Take to Get a CDL and Will you Need Additional Truck Driving Hours?

Time is always a factor in figuring just how long does it take to get your CDL. No matter what the training program is, time will always be an issue.

So once you have decided this is the career field for you and you start your research remember that. Especially when you are trying to decide exactly which truck-driving route you should take.

Heck, you might decide to become an ice road driver and make some fast dollars! After all, the average ice road trucker salary is not same money like the regular local CDL jobs salary. But, for that, you will need a lot more training and hours spent in the classroom!

Source: www.latruckdriving.com
Source: www.latruckdriving.com

So, consider are you going to a Class B? Or are you going for the full month and getting a Class A with all the added endorsements? This can be the difference between getting it in say 30 days and getting in 60!

Not only it can be a matter a few hundred or more dollars in added cost (more likely thousands). So you got to be ready for that.

So like I said the physical license is the most important step: A or B? B or A?

Source: www.douglas.co.uk
Source: www.douglas.co.uk

But then comes those endorsements. These are really something to keep in mind when determining how long does it take to get a CDL. Now, of course, there are the trucks air brake, but that is like saying your truck needs lights. However, there are other ones that are less obvious and more time-consuming.

Do you need to get a passenger endorsement? Are you planning on a driving tanker and hauling fuel or other hazardous cargo?

Then you better study up on and commit the time for getting the HAZMAT endorsement. Perhaps you’re an ambitious driver to be.

If that is the case then you’ll consider doubles and even triples! So, no meter which endorsement you decide to do, you need to do some extra tests and studying!

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