Should I take CDL Classes? Pros and Cons
Most truck drivers start with the trucking profession in their adult years, making the trucking profession generally an adult to senior population. There are a lot of factors to consider before making the shift, or jumpstarting the career.
Thinking about which type of license you’d apply for? Whether enrolling in CDL classes would be the best option? Or maybe how to pay for the tuition fees? These are only some of the struggles you’re immediately faced with. There are online tests you can try and answer to gauge your understanding of the profession. Let’s breakdown whether or not attending CDL classes is your best option.
Pros of Working as a Trucking Professional
Organized review process for the written part
The main reason why people settle for a driving school is the easy process of it all. You pay, and then they do the job of putting everything in front of you. To obtain your commercial driver’s license learner’s permit (CLP), passing the written subjects is needed.
In attending CDL classes, you don’t have to worry about which parts of the exam should you focus on, what can be the type of questions that would appear, and how you should prepare. These are all taught to you. Apart from the lecture hours, you really do not have to spend extra time and effort on researching.
Hands on teaching for practical examination
There’s nothing like an actual hands on experience to make you feel comfortable driving big vehicles. Apart from reviewing the contextual part, your tuition fee also covers the driving part once you obtain your CLP.
On this part of the CDL classes, an instructor or licensed driver accompanies you to prepare you in the second part of obtaining your license. Trucking schools have facilities that will make this task easier, focusing also on general knowledge, pre-trip inspections, maintenance, and of course application of all the road safety principles you’ve learned prior.
Job placement assistance
When you pay for CDL classes, one thing to note is whether or not the training school offers a bridge program, or if they have partners in the industry. This would give you a shorter downtime of being unemployed after passing your license exam.
The struggle most people have when not undergoing training in a trucking school is finding that immediate and well-compensated company that will hire them. This issue is lessened when you pay to study on a licensed, certified, or accredited school.
Cons of Becoming a Truck Driver
High tuition fees
This is generally the burden that makes a potential commercial driver shy away from the idea of a truck driving school. CDL classes can get expensive as most of them offer Class A license trainings, the license that allows greater flexibility in the trucking profession.
It is impractical to pay for tuition fees when you’re targeting a Class C license for example. CDL training is a program that can be a burden to pay for. Before you consider such, make sure to research their payment schemes. Also research if there are ways to obtain aid, and even work for the reimbursement of tuition fees.
Some schools train too much students per class
There are some schools that teach 5 students per class, and some that cramp up to 30 students per class. Immediately you can see that the smaller the class, the more focus an instructor can give to you. Trucking schools are still business operations after all, so don’t be at a disadvantage and don’t pay for a program you won’t be learning a lot from.
There are already available references online
Another reason on why you can opt out of CDL classes would be the magic of the internet. You can download the manual for the exam online. Though this varies by state, it basically tells you what to review. Practice tests also include other endorsements you might want to add, such as school bus endorsement, and hazardous materials transport endorsement.
All you have to do to pass the permit licensure exam or endorsement exam is to verify the subjects in the state manual, and find questionnaires online. It basically is the same process of the CDL classes you’ll be paying for. The only difference is that you are teaching yourself.
There really is no wrong or right option as training all depends on the person themselves. If there’s the issue of time constraint and financial obligations, then go for do-it-yourself reviews. You can gather other friends that may want to take the test and form your own study group.
If, on the other hand, you have prepared the finances for the program, and prefer to be taught than to do the effort yourself, then a trucking school is the way to go. All in all, your capability and desire to learn and achieve that goal will always be the first step towards a trucking career.