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CDL Classes

Following the Federal standards, states issue CDLs to drivers based on three license classifications:

CDL Classes Comparison Table
What is a Class A CDL? What is a Class B CDL? What is a Class C CDL?
A combination vehicle with a gross combination weight rating of 26,001 pounds or more if the vehicle(s) being towed has a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of more than 10,000 pounds. A Class B license is required to drive a single vehicle with a gross combination weight of at least 26,001 pounds, including a vehicle that is towing another vehicle scaling up to 10,000 pounds. A Class C license may be required if the vehicle does not meet the guidelines specified for either the Class A or Class B license. If the vehicle is meant to transport at least 16 passengers, including the driver, or any hazardous material, a Class C license is needed as laid out by federal guidelines.
Class A CDL vehicles include:

  • Tanker vehicles
  • Flatbeds
  • Tractor-trailers,
  • Tractor-trailer buses
  • Livestock carriers
  • Truck and trailer combinations, including double and triple trailers
Class B CDL vehicles include:

  • Dump trucks with small trailers
  • Straight trucks
  • Segmented buses
  • Box trucks, such as delivery drivers, couriers, and furniture delivery
  • Large buses, including city buses, tourist buses, and school buses
Class C CDL vehicles include:

  • Passenger vans
  • Combination vehicles not described in class A or B, such as a small truck towing a trailer
  • Small hazardous materials vehicles
Class A CDL fees may vary depending on the state where you’re currently residing.

  • Original License: $78
  • Renewal: $46
  • Commercial driving or skill retest: $36
  • Duplicate: $34
  • Name change: $28
  • Adding the following endorsements (Tank, Doubles/Triples, Hazmat): $46
  • Adding a motorcycle license (Class M1/M2): $28
Class B CDL fees may vary depending on the state where you’re currently residing.

  • Original License: $78
  • Renewal: $46
  • Commercial driving or skill retest: $36
  • Duplicate: $34
  • Name change: $28
  • Adding the following endorsements (Tank, Doubles/Triples, Hazmat): $46
  • Adding a motorcycle license (Class M1/M2): $28
Class B CDL fees may vary depending on the state where you’re currently residing.

  • Original and Renewal License: $46
  • Commercial Driving Retest: $36
  • Duplicate: $34
  • Name change and adding a firefighter endorsement: $28
  • Adding the following endorsements (Tank, Doubles/Triples, Hazmat): $46
Class A CDL Test

Knowledge Test – The expected fee is between $5 and $20, this often covers the issuance of a Commercial Learners Permit (CLP), although some states have separate fees for the test and the CLP.

Road Skills Test – The expected fee is between $30 and $60. Take note that some states may charge more for endorsements.

Standard CDL License – The expected fee is between $75 and $100. Some states may charge more.

Endorsements – The expected fee is between $5 and $10 for each endorsement, which can allow you to accommodate additional knowledge and skills examinations.

Class B CDL Test

Knowledge Test – The expected fee is between $5 and $20, this often covers the issuance of a Commercial Learners Permit (CLP), although some states have separate fees for the test and the CLP.

Road Skills Test – The expected fee is between $30 and $60. Take note that some states may charge more for endorsements.

Standard CDL License – The expected fee is between $75 and $100. Some states may charge more.

Endorsements – The expected fee is between $5 and $10 for each endorsement, which can allow you to accommodate additional knowledge and skills examinations.

Class C CDL Test

Knowledge Test – The expected fee is between $5 and $20, this often covers the issuance of a Commercial Learners Permit (CLP), although some states have separate fees for the test and the CLP.

Road Skills Test – The expected fee is between $30 and $60. Take note that some states may charge more for endorsements.

Standard CDL License – The expected fee is between $75 and $100. Some states may charge more.

Endorsements – The expected fee is between $5 and $10 for each endorsement, which can allow you to accommodate additional knowledge and skills examinations.

A Class A CDL is regarded as the most universal commercial driver’s license because it will enable you to drive (almost) any Class A, Class B, or Class C commercial vehicle or carrier.  Class B CDL training programs are being provided by vocational schools and community colleges to give proper training and practice the skills and knowledge required to pass the state CDL examination.  A Class C CDL enables a person to operate any vehicle with a GVWR of 26,000 pounds or less. Such vehicles towing a vehicle with a GVWR not in excess of 10,000 pounds is also covered in the Class C CDL.
Annual Salary: $55,272

Monthly Salary $4,606

Weekly Salary: $1,063

Hourly Salary: $27

Annual Salary: $55,272

Monthly Salary $4,606

Weekly Salary: $1,063

Hourly Salary: $27

Annual Salary: $31,445

Monthly Salary $2,620

Weekly Salary: $605

Hourly Salary: $15

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the fastest way to get my Class A CDL?

The fastest way to secure a class A CDL license is to follow all the necessary guidelines provided by your state. There are no shortcuts when it comes to getting a CDL certification. If you want to learn how to get a class A CDL in a timely manner, just follow the right process and you’ll eventually get there.

How to get a Class B non-CDL driver’s license?

There is no standardized process when it comes to getting a Class B non-CDL driver’s license. Moreover, if you own a non-commercial RV, no state requires you to operate it with a CDL.

Can a Class A CDL drive a bus?

Yes, you can. However, ONLY if you have a passenger endorsement and there are no restrictions on your license that prohibits you from operating that type of vehicle.

How long does it take time to get a class CDL?

It would take about 7 weeks on average estimation.

What do I need to study for my Class A CDL permit?

You can utilize these training materials and CDL study guides to prepare for the exam:

  • CDL Practice Test General Knowledge Books
  • Class A CDL Practice Test PDFs
  • Class B CDL Practice Test PDFs
  • Class C CDL Practice Test PDFs
  • Free CDL Training and Test Materials
  • Free CDL Practice Test Online
  • CDL Practice Test Combination

Can you drive a dump truck with a Class B CDL?

A Class B CDL license is required to drive a straight dump truck. Class B CDL permits you to drive heavy and tractor trailer trucks and buses. 

What are the CDL classifications and their meaning?

Class A CDL – A Class A license is needed to operate any vehicle with a gross combination weight of at least 26,001 pounds, including a towed vehicle heavier than 10,000 pounds.

Class B CDL – A Class B license is required to drive a single vehicle with a gross combination weight of at least 26,001 pounds, including a vehicle that is towing another vehicle scaling up to 10,000 pounds.

Class C CDL – A Class C license may be required if the vehicle does not meet the guidelines specified for either the Class A or Class B license. If the vehicle is meant to transport at least 16 passengers, including the driver, or any hazardous material, a Class C license is needed as laid out by federal guidelines.

What does the class on your driver’s license mean?

The class on your driver’s license indicate what type of vehicles you are allowed to drive.

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