Deciding to become a truck driver is a huge first step towards a new and exciting career. If you do not fit with the traditional 9-5 lifestyle and prefer having your freedom, truck driving may be the perfect choice for you. But once you have decided you want to be a truck driver, what do you do next? Here is where the schooling comes in. All truck drivers must be educated and licensed before they get behind the wheel. Truck driving school helps prepare you with the knowledge and skills needed to complete and pass the CDL exam. However, there are many schools out there, and not all are created equal. Here are some tips on what to look for in a driving school.
Paid Training Programs vs. Private Schools
There are two main types of truck driving schools: private truck driving schools and paid training programs. Paid training programs pay you while you gain your Class A Commercial Drivers License and during your extended training. Private truck driving schools require you to pay up-front for your education, and it is not guaranteed you will be placed in a job after your training. Whether you choose a private truck driving school or the paid training school, make sure to keep your options open and choose a fair and reputable program.
Minimum Requirements for a Truck Driving School
Each school will have its own requirements and policies depending on the state you live in, so make sure you do your research before deciding on one program. However, most schools will have these minimum requirements:
- Age: The required age of the driving program varies depending on the program. Usually, 21 to 23 years is the average age range for most truck driving programs.
- Drug test: You must pass a drug test to qualify for any truck driving program.
- Clean criminal history: You should have a clean criminal background; however, there are exceptions, depending upon the nature of the convictions/charges.
- U.S. citizenship: You must be a U.S. citizen to qualify for CDL or truck driving program in the U.S.
This is not an exhaustive list of requirements, always do your research and make sure you have all required documents when applying for a truck driving program.
Your ultimate goal after training is to find the right career path in the trucking industry. It is beneficial to ask about a school’s job placement program when choosing a trucking school. It would be best to choose a training school with an excellent reputation for placing drivers with top companies. Determine whether or not the program offers personal coaching or if they partner with local transport companies.
Baltimore Freightliner-Western Star for all Your Trucking Needs!
Whether you are looking to upgrade your fleet to tow trucks or simply interested in the latest trucking technology, you can rely on Baltimore Freightliner-Western Star. We have provided top-notch service for the trucking industry for 30 years and would love to assist you in buying a new top-of-the-line truck, finding the specialty parts you need, or repairing your truck. Give us a call toll-free at 800-832-7278 or locally at 410-685-4474, or contact us online. To find out more about what we are up to, follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest.