If you are looking for changing your career or looking to start a completely new career in trucking and confused about the hefty fees for getting CDL, then don’t worry we will show you how you can get your cdl for free or you can also get paid to get your CDL.
if you are already aware about what CDL is then you can skip to this section in which we have explained how to get CDL for Free
What is a CDL
CDL stands for commercial Driving License and it is required to drive heavy vehicles like Buses, trucks, Tractor- Trailers and concrete Mixers etc. across country and there are various different versions of it depending upon the type of vehicle you would like to drive like class A, B and C etc. also you can take additional training for Hazardous vehicles etc. as they have a class of H.
Trucking is a very profitable business in United States because of the shortage of drivers and basic education required to qualify for driving a heavy vehicle.
In order to be eligible for driving a Heavy commercial Vehicle you have to acquire a CDL and go through proper training for it.
and that is where all the catch is, Getting a CDL is neither easy nor cheap , getting a CDL can range from anywhere between 3k to 6k and that’s the reason a whole lot of people don’t pass through it and hence a lot of companies are in this area which help people get through the process of getting a CDL.
Cost of getting CDL
Cost of getting a CDL depends on major two factors i.e. are you getting it through Sponsored School or a Private School.
If you are getting it through a private school then the cost varies from $3000- $6,000 and can also reach up to $10,000 but if you are getting it through a sponsored school then you will almost get it for free or in some cases they will pay you for taking the training and becoming a driver which is usually $500 per week.
But this varies from school to school, so you need to check the terms and conditions of the school before applying to it.
What is the Process for Getting the CDL
The process of getting a CDL is you have to find a trucking School which will prepare you for the CDL exam (both written and practical) and will give you formal training of truck driving and will also educate you about all the regulations set by the government for trucking and once you clear the test you will get your CDL and you will be able to apply for a job in a trucking company as a truck driver.
Now, the problem in this is, you will have to pay a large amount for getting training for getting your CDL which is anywhere between $3k-$6k
So, that’s where the need for Paid CDL training arises, in which the company pays for your CDL training and in most cases your CDL training becomes completely free.
What is Paid CDL Training
So, by now you know that the usual process for getting a CDL is you have to sit though an exam and pay an amount to the Training School to teach you.
So, the Training schools are divided into mainly two categories i.e. Private and Sponsored.
As self explanatory from the name, these are private schools which provide you all the things you need for getting your CDL but they are costly and not everyone can afford them and you have to pay them for their training.
These are also schools but they are usually owned by Big trucking companies which usually provide training free of cost but with a few conditions like you have to work in their company for a set period of time till they recover the cost of training.
Let’s look at some of their pros and cons:
|Private CDL Schools||Sponsored CDL Schools|
|You will have the convenience of location because these schools are mostly everywhere||You might have to travel a lot and arrange for your accommodation because they are usually in specific locations.|
|You will have less intensive sessions and you will get time for other things as well.||Training is intense and can be 10 to 15 hours per day i.e. you may need to Spend weeks away from home during training|
|There will be no traveling cost and accommodation cost because they are usually nearby.||You will have to arrange for the traveling and accommodation because they are not near generally.|
|You can get into any company of your choice because you are not under any contract.||You will get job in the same company that got you the training from because you might have signed a contract.|
|You might have to borrow money to get training because the cost is usually high.||You will likely be reimbursed for the training (It depends on company to company)|
|Lack of Job security because you have search for trucking companies unlike sponsored where the job is guaranteed.||You will get the Job in the Same Company most likely|
|You don’t need any prior experience for getting the training||You don’t need any prior experience of any kind for getting the training|
|No Bonus will be available||Sign-on bonuses are available|
|Usually The Actively Working Drivers will not be there but it depends from School to school||Work with a trainer during training to get better hand on expereince (There will be actual drivers on the site to give you on site expereince)|
|You will have to pay for the training and you are free to go anywhere.||The training will be practically free of cost becasue the company will pay for it and adjust from your salary over a period of time or also might not take the training money at al|
|You can work in any company you wish for||You must work for the sponsoring company according to your contract|
|Cost is usually $3000-$6000||Cost is usually free|
Why Would Someone Pay for My CDL
Since there is a shortage of drivers in the country, a lot of transportation companies don’t have enough drivers for transporting their material and hence they come up with the Idea of giving training to people interested in getting a CDL and pay for their CDL and have them work for them for a certain period of time (usually 1-2 years) so that it is a Win-Win situation i.e. the Drivers will get the Job and the company will get skilled Drivers .
Eligibility for Getting CDL
There are no very strict eligibility criteria for getting your cdl you just have to qualify for the following things
- You must have a Regular driver’s license
- You must be 18 years old in most states*
- You must be 21+ to drive across state lines or haul hazardous material
- You should have 2 years driving experience (depending on the state)
- You have to be an US citizen or allowed to work in the US legally
- Pass a DOT medical exam
- Pass a DOT drug test
- You have to Undergo a background check
- Verifiable employment for the past three years (depending on the sponsor)
- No DUI/DWI convictions for 5+ years
- No moving violations in the last 3 years
How Can I Get my Paid CDL Training
You can Get your Paid CDL training by directly applying into one of the Sponsored CDL training schools and following the procedure, Here are the list of popular schools you can apply to for getting your Paid CDL Training
Companies Offering Paid CDL training
|Midwest Coast Transportation|
|Millis Training Institute|
|Cypress Truck Lines|
|Frozen Food Express|
|Jim Palmer Trucking|
Tips for Choosing the Paid CDL training Companies
Choosing the right Training company is very important because they are a ton of spam companies out there, so be sure to follow the tips below:
- Read the Brochure/ prospectus carefully
- Read about the repayment of the training i.e. will they cover it in the salary or any other way.
- Sign an official written contract and see the contract length
- Talk to people / professional drivers about the program and company
- Search online on Quora or Reddit or any trucking community about the company
- Do they specialize in produce hauling, flatbed work, tanker hauling, dry vans?
- Do they run OTR (long-haul trucking)? Short haul? Or just in a specific region of the country?
- Check the average salary of type of truck you are going to drive
Paid CDL Training Schools Review
If you are looking to apply to any of the above Schools and want a full in depth review of the school then you can refer this article.
We hope that we were able to provide you with all the information needed, but if you would like to know more about something you can comment down below.