How to Get a CDL Truck License?

Driver's License Application Identification Concept

Last year, the Department of Transportation (DOT) and the Federal Prosecutor’s Office recorded a high number of those applying for the test to obtain a Commercial Driver License (CDL). One of the reasons for the rising interest in getting driver licenses is the sharply increased prestige of the profession of truck drivers.

How Much Do Truck Drivers Earn?

Nowadays, having a CDL in the driver’s arsenal is one of the guarantees of fast career growth and stable income. According to expert resources, the average truck driver earns $51 thousand per year, which is above standard income rates. What is more, it is not a limit. Experienced drivers make more money and boast of a long queue of regular customers. Drivers with experience of more than 10 years are like hot cakes in any state of North America. Interestingly, high demand is observed for both men and women. This profession has long ceased to be purely masculine.

What to expect from the profession in the coming years? Will its prestige decrease or you can still count on juicy earnings and lots of profitable deals? Should you sign up for training at the to obtain this license? Analysts at the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) predict great prospects for truck drivers. By 2024, their number will have increased by 11% and will have reached the mark of two million people.

Lack of specialists is already observed, as DOT officials put an end to a number of large-scale railway projects. Thus, trucking in the United States will be long associated with the brave drivers of giant trucks.

What Are the Basic Requirements for Obtaining a CDL?

There are requirements to comply with in order to get a Commercial Driver License for a truck.

  • You must be at least 21 years old.
  • Register the DMV (Department of Motor Vehicles) in your area.
  • Take the State Commercial Driver’s Manual, which contains truck driving rules and other important information.
  • Learn the rules.
  • Pass the test at the DMV.

What Other Documents Are Required to Get CDL?

Each driver must undergo a medical examination after receiving a CDL permit. Only in this case, you will be admitted to pass the final exam. The doctor who conducts the medical examination is called a Medical Examiner. The specialist checks to see if your health condition is appropriate for driving a truck. What does a Medical Examiner check?

  • Eyes are checked.
  • Blood pressure is measured.
  • The heart is monitored.
  • A general medical check-up is conducted.

A successful medical exam is issued with a Medical Examiner’s Certificate, which allows you to take a further step and pass the exam. At the final stage, you need to arrive at one of the examination centers on a truck and accompanied by a person who has a CDL certificate to pass a practical driving test. If the exam is passed, you will be issued a CDL driver license.

Obtaining a CDL Truck License – A-Z Guide

A CDL truck certificate allows a person to become a truck driver or trucker. In order to take on the CDL, you must have a regular driver’s license. With it, you need to go to your local DMV office and get a list of questions that you will have to answer on the exam.

Obtaining a driving license is an easy thing in the USA. The procedure is as simple as possible and will not require a lot of effort from an applicant. Although every state has its own rules and requirements, the application process is approximately the same in different parts of the country. A driver’s license is issued at your local DMV (department of motor vehicles).

  1. In order to apply for a CDL truck licence, one must score no less than 6 points when submitting the package of documents. For example, you can get 3 points for a Work Authorization, 2 points for an SSN, 1 point for a credit card, etc.
  2. If a person collects 6 points, then he is allowed to take the exam on driving theory. In the test of 20-50 questions, only one fifth of the questions can be answered incorrectly. Otherwise, an applicant fails and has to take an exam one more time.
  3. If the one manages to pass the exam successfully, he is asked to undergo a medical check-up and is issued a temporary driving licences, which allows driving a car for some limited time (3-6 months).
  4. Next, an applicant must take a 5-hour course of security lectures at any driving school. The cost of the course is about $40.
  5. After that, a person can sign up for a practical exam at the DMV personally or through a driving school. There are two scenarios here. In case you are ready to wait 2 months for the exam, then it will cost you about $10. However, if you need to speed up the process, then be ready to pay about $40, while an urgent test will cost you no less than $70.

No matter what option suits you best, you can yourself decide what vehicle to operate during the driving test. You can take the driving test in your own car or use the inspector’s car for this purpose. At the appointed time, you have to come to the driving office and demonstrate your driving skills to the inspector by following his instructions. The first exam is completely free, and if you successfully pass it, you will get your CDL truck certificate in a couple of weeks by mail. In case you fail in your first-try exam, be ready to pay for the second-session test.

It is worth considering that in some states, there is a restriction on obtaining commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) necessary for driving a heavy truck. Far from every person can apply for a CDL – it usually takes a year after you receive your Basic Driving License. Some companies also require a driver to undergo special training lasting from two weeks to nine months. Taking all the specs into account, it takes about a year to make a CDL in the USA.