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How to Become a Truck Driver in the USA – Everything You Need to Know

Steps to Become a Professional Truck Driver With a CDL

by College Reporters Staff
Become a Truck Driver
6 Mins Read

Are you a smart driver or an individual who loves driving and wants to become a professional truck driver in the USA?

Being a professional and commercial truck driver is a good choice of career that can earn you huge pay especially if you enjoy driving and going places.

So, If you are planning to become a truck driver in the USA as your choice of career and don’t know how to get into trucking, Read on!

In this article, we at College Reporters have taken the responsibility of helping you find out all it requires to become a commercial truck driver in the USA and also get a CDL.

Why You Should Become a Truck Driver

If your choice of career is to become a truck driver, it’s certainly a good decision and worth giving proper planning, as the truck driving profession can be challenging to get the right start if you don’t know where to begin.

However, becoming a commercial truck driver in the USA offers an attractive salary as the business is serious profit driven and you also get to travel across different places (towns, cities and countries) if you love travelling long distances and depending on the organization.

There is a need for truck drivers, as long as there is a demand to haul goods. This simply tells that the job outlook for truck drivers is generally positive.

Responsibilities of a Truck Driver

What are the duties of a truck driver? According to workable A truck driver is a professional responsible for the safe transportation and delivery of all sorts of goods. You may want to know the responsibilities of truck drivers who work with companies.

Here are some major roles of a commercial truck driver and it does not vary much from place to place.

Loading and unloading cargo: A truck driver is responsible for hauling the cargo safely and efficiently. Some drivers are responsible for handling parcels, and others transport hazardous materials.

Drivers must ensure that the cargo is properly secured and protected to prevent damage during transportation.

Safe driving: Truck drivers must operate their vehicles safely and follow routes, traffic laws and regulations. They must be smart and avoid reckless driving, adjusting their driving based on weather and road conditions.

Vehicle inspection: Before starting the journey, the truck driver must conduct a thorough inspection of the vehicle to ensure that it is in proper working condition. The inspection includes preventive maintenance – checking the brakes, lights, tires, engine, and other essential components.

Documentation & Communication: Logging any safety incidents relating to trips and delivery of dockets and timesheets. A truck driver also communicates with the dispatcher regarding a trip and cargo status.

Is Truck Driving Worth It?

why become a truck driver

The career choice of being a truck driver can be a rewarding career path if you are planning to become a truck driver.

Yes, truck driving is worth it and a good choice of career if you enjoy driving the open road, and long distances, and don’t mind being away from home for a long time.

Many drivers earn a good living as professional commercial truck drivers and are willing to put in the work as a lucrative and fulfilling career.

In addition to the long-distance drive, the pay can be robust for most commercial truck drivers and you can be sure to get the most fun out of the career.

How Long Does It Take to Become a Truck Driver?

The length of time to become a truck driver depends on the truck driving training program you choose. However, smart trucking gives us a clue – a typical duration to become a truck driver is from 3 to 12 weeks to complete a driving program.

How Much Does It Cost to Become a Truck Driver?

The cost of a truck driving program differs slightly from company. However, the average cost to become a truck driver is between $1,000 and $10,000 and the actual cost depends on the type of truck driver training program you choose.

Do check with your selected CDL training company for the fee charged including other fees and available offers for an affordable price.


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Here Are Steps to Become a Truck Driver in the USA- Everything You Need to Know

How to Become a Truck Driver in the USA


Be at Least Age 21

To become a commercial truck driver, you need to be between the ages of 18 to 21, but here in the US, you will need to be over the age of 18.

As a student, you will need a driver’s permit and may start with a truck driver assistant/trainee and provide the support needed to increase your experience.

Enroll in a Truck Driving School

To get behind the wheel of a truck and pursue your truck driving career, you will need to enroll in any reputable truck driving schools offering a quality CDL training program.

As a prospective truck driver, you may start by getting a learner’s permit to allow you to drive vehicles – small and heavy vehicles.

To earn a CDL and become a truck driver – in most states, you are required to attend, take training programs and graduate from a reputable truck driving school.

There are many private and public truck driving schools and training programs available, ranging from a few weeks to several months.

Do make inquiries about the top truck driving schools near you for quality commercial truck driving training and begin plans to enroll.

Attend and Take Truck Driving Training Programs

Attending a truck driving school and completing a truck driving training program can help you gain the required knowledge and technical skills needed to pass the commercial driver’s license (CDL) tests and drive heavy automobile vehicles.

Truck driving companies require you to have completed a truck driving training program, have CDL and at least one or two years of driving experience with a clean driving record before hiring you as a full-time truck driver.

The more experience you have combined with training gives you a competitive edge over other truck driving job applicants.

You may start as a driver trainee or work as an independent contractor to gain the necessary experience.

Obtain a Valid Drivers’ License

A CDL is a license given to drive a motor vehicle – awarded upon passing a driver’s exam and meeting other state requirements for training.

For truck driving, a Commercial Driver’s License (Class A) qualifies you to drive heavy motor vehicles (any combination of vehicles weighing 26,001 pounds or higher.)

You have to complete your training program and pass the CDL exam. The final exam includes – vehicle inspection, road test, and basic control test.

You can pursue your career of becoming a professional and commercial truck driver if you have a valid commercial truck driver’s license and a clean record of driving.

And you must renew your driver’s license every four years and complete any required continuing education or training courses.

Find or Look for Truck Driving Opportunities

To get hands-on experience after completion of the training program and obtaining a CDL, you will need a job placement.

When it comes to driving a truck on the road, it requires more smartness, skillfulness and ability to control that truck and not excluding a valid driver’s license.

Looking for truck driving opportunities, job placement can be much easier if you attended and completed your program at a paid CDL training program. As there is an opportunity for automatic job placement as a truck driver with your CDL training school and instructors’ recommendation.

And if you have successfully completed the program at a private truck driving school, the school may have arranged for a placement program for students with some selected trucking companies.


7 Best Truck Driving Schools in Tampa to Get CDL Training

Best Truck Driving Schools in the US to Attend


becoming a truck driver in the US

So, what are the top trucking schools in the USA to enroll in for truck driver training? when it comes to becoming a truck driver and having your commercial driver’s license – There are many schools across The USA offering training programs for all levels.

it can be challenging to find the best training institutes if you don’t know where to be on the look.

But here is a list of some of the best truck driving schools recommended by instructors and drivers for you to enroll in and take your training.

Roadmaster Drivers School

Roadmaster is a well-established truck driving school with locations in various states. They offer hands-on training and have partnerships with several major trucking companies, providing job placement assistance to their graduates.

Sage Truck Driving School

Sage Truck Driving have wide branches of school located across the country that provide in-depth training program at affordable cost

Also, SAGE has an exhaustive online curriculum that teaches all the lessons necessary to complete a CDL training program.

Truck Driver Institute

The Truck Driver Institute is among the top truck driving schools in the US offering CDL training classes in more than 11 training centres located across the country for ease of enrolling to become a truck driver.

The institute has long recognition for its reputable professional CDL training with instructors under safe training environment and constantly maintained trucks.

Yuma Truck Driving School

For students who are interested in CDL- A and CDL- B training programs, Yuma Truck Driving School is among the well-recognized truck driving institutions to get the best hands-on practice and complete your training within a few weeks.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I Need a License to Become a Truck Driver

Truck driving is not only about being a smart and experienced driver but having a valid driver’s license.

Individuals need to obtain and hold the right type of driver’s license to be able to steer the truck on the road.

Definitely, you will need to have your commercial driver’s licence to become a truck driver in the US.

What License Are Needed for Truck Driving

It is important you have the right CDL in order to get your truck driving career started. Your choice of CDL training program will determine the truck driving license to be issued to you after the completion of training.

The different types of commercial driver’s licenses (CDL) are – Class A, B and C

CDL – A: Know as class A license are offered for driving vehicles with a gross weight of 26, 001+lb i.e semi truck with trailer combo (van, temperature controlled trailer)

CDL – B: Class B license are for vehicles with a net weight of 26, 001+lb such as delivery trucks, city buses, school buses, straight trucks, and dump trucks with small trailers.

CDL – C: Class C, for single vehicles with a gross vehicle weight under 26,0001 lb or for vehicles pulling a trailer under 10,000lb e.g. buses, triple trailers, tanker trucks, and double trailers.

Are There Truck Driver Online Training Programs

When it comes to training to become a truck driver – not all CDL training is conducted online, since you do need good hands-on practice and physically present in class with your instructor.

However, there are some CDL online training courses available and provided by some truck driving schools. The training courses differ from free to paid CDL training courses which might cost you a few bucks.

Watch Video of How to Become a Truck Driver



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