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Get the facts on CDL licensing and start your trucking career


What is a CDL and Why Do You Need It?

Driving a Commercial Motor Vehicle (CMV) requires a more significant level of information, experience, abilities, and actual capacities than that expected to drive a non-business vehicle. To get a Commercial Driver's License (CDL), a candidate should pass the two abilities and information testing outfitted to these better expectations. Moreover, CDL holders are held to better quality while operating any sort of motor vehicle on open roads. Serious criminal traffic offenses carried out by a CDL holder can influence their capacity to keep up with their CDL certificate.


A commercial driver’s license is required for the operation of any singular vehicle 26,001 pounds and over (including the combination of a truck/trailer, anything being towed, etc.). This may include many trucks, passenger vans, delivery vans, church vans, school buses, shuttles, etc.

Getting a CDL is an essential first step in beginning a profession in trucking, therefore it's critical to comprehend the minimal standards needed to be approved for one. These specifications include, but are not limited to, passing a physical examination, a written test, and a skills test; maintaining a spotless driving record; fulfilling age requirements; and possessing a current state driver's license. Starting your career as a professional truck driver requires that you comprehend these standards and ensure that you satisfy them.

CDL Requirements

General Prerequesites

At your local Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV), various theory tests must be taken on a computer or paper. They are available in English or Spanish. Tests will depend on the type of CDL you are looking for.  Applicants for a Commercial Driver's License are required; 

  • Valid Operator’s License

  • Pass vision requirement, 

  • Basic English (For Skills Test)

  • Pass Knowledge and Skills tests. 

  • Applicants must be at least 18 years of age. If under 21, intrastate operation restrictions will apply. Meaning, that you are able to only operate within your state.


A DOT physical examination with your preferred physician should be done before obtaining your permit.

When passing the required knowledge tests at your DMV,  a CDL driving permit will be given to you. This document allows you to start training but it is necessary to wait two weeks for the skills test.

Large Oil Truck
Delivery Trucks

DOT Medical Card

When operating a commercial vehicle, the DOT Medical Card is an essential element of your medical documentation. To keep you on the road, you'll need both a physical Department of Transportation (DOT) card and one that specifies your health condition, with a rapid turnaround time for processing at local clinics so you can be back on the road as soon as possible!

Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP)

The Commercial Learner Permit (CLP) is a permit issued by your state that permits you to practice driving in commercial vehicles. Obtaining one will be the first step before commencing preparation for the road test.

Entry-Lever Driver Training (ELDT)

If you are applying for your first Class A or Class B Commercial Driver's License (CDL), you must first take and pass the Class A or Class B Theory Course. A certificate will be granted once you have finished the ELDT Theory Course; you must deliver the certificate to your CDL Trucking School.

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