If you're interested in a different career direction or are searching for obtaining a livelihood, getting your CDL will open up a lot of stimulating opportunities. Drivers with CDL Class A and Class B licenses are currently in high demand. As a result, there are plenty of businesses trying to recruit skilled drivers in the United States.
The best thing is that attending a trucking school and getting your CDL helps you begin a new profession easily. So, just how long is the truck driving school? What variables decide how long the plan is really going to take?
To address the question, "How long do you have to be in school to become a truck driver?" Let's explore a few key factors that have an effect on the overall length of the learning duration.
- Type of CDL
The CDL classifications permit you to drive a truck with differing weight ratings. The type of license you select can be the most critical factor that decides the duration of your program. Assess the amount of time you are able to spend at school with your long-term career ambitions.
Class A is the primary classification for Schneider drivers. Any combination of vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 26,001 pounds or more can be driven.
A Class B CDL allows the carrier to carry lower loads than the Class A license does. The distinction between Class A, B, and C CDLs is based on the GVWR for the vehicle or trucks transporting hazardous materials. A vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds needs a Class B CDL.
A Class C CDL is necessary for vehicles which do not apply for a Class A or B license, transport 16 or more individuals or hold hazardous materials. Class C CDLs require different permits, based on the model of car. For example, a school bus license is required to drive a school bus. In addition, a Hazmat endorsement is required to transport hazardous materials.
- Amount of Driving Hours allowed in your State
In order to take the CDL driving test, you will ride with a certified CDL driver in the passenger seat. This will take time in the school. Programs may differ, but it is important to select a school that provides a reasonable amount of drive time to start a good career. State laws may be a bit elaborated and complex when it comes to commercial drivers, so this aspect will be a significant one to weigh before you agree to a truck driving school in Oklahoma or any other state. Find out how many driving hours each school grants for practice. While extra driving hours can entail a longer duration for training, they can also make you a more skilled driver.
- Full time VS. Part Time
This will have a dramatic impact on the duration of the curriculum. The amount of time spent in the classroom depends based on whether it is a full-time or part-time program, which can vary from 30 to 80 hours. More classroom time and instructor time can make it easier for you to pass your written exam and head out on the road. If you're going to get your CDL with as little time as possible, full time will be the better choice. If you want to attend school part-time rather than full time, you may have to spend a longer amount of time earning your license.
- Authorization by Third Party CDL Administrator
A State may authorize a third party to conduct tests on CDL skills. This may comprise of a different state, employer, private driver training service or other private organization or government entity. With all these alternatives present on possible CDL testing, it's best to ensure what are the available options in your state by contacting your local driving school.
If you’re aiming for an additional endorsement to your license, such as passenger, HAZMAT, or doubles/triples, this can increase to countless career opportunities you have once you attain your license. The decision is based mainly on what your personal interests are and what you plan to do with your CDL license. Each endorsement may add additional time for your training schedule. There are six different endorsements that can be put on your CDL that will impact the overall duration of your time in school:
(P) Passenger Transport Endorsement
(S) School Bus/ Passenger Transport Combo Endorsement
(T) Double/Triple Endorsement (Tanker)
(N) Tank Vehicle Endorsement (Tanker)
(H) Hazardous Materials Endorsement
(X) Tanker/HAZMAT Combo Endorsement
If you equate driving school with other career options, it's clear that this choice helps you to get ready for a new job easily and cost-effectively. Get started by calling nearby truck driving schools and figuring out how long their classes are going to operate.