About CDL-A Trucking
Simply put, Class-A truck drivers transport goods and materials from point A to point B. While there are many kinds of Class-A truck driving jobs, the job description of most of them would probably include some of the following responsibilities:
- 40 hour minimum work week
- Time away from home
- Pre-trip inspections
- Efficiently track using ELD/logbook
- Use inventory sheet to check cargo
- Load and unload
- Map best routes
To know your exact job description, you’ll need to figure out which company you want to be employed by and what type of Class-A truck driver you’re going to be. This includes choosing the types of endorsements you’re going to earn. Endorsements matter because the pay can be higher for those who possess the HAZMAT or Tanker endorsements. If you're looking to earn more and set yourself apart in the hiring pool, endorsements can be a great investment.
Common Types of Truckers
The most common types of Class-A truck drivers are owner-operators, company truck drivers, and independent owners.
Learn a little more about them here:
- Owner-operators own their own trucks outright or sometimes lease from their company. Owner-operators can pick up jobs through different channels or work for just one. It’s their truck, it's up to them.
- Company truck drivers work for a trucking company and are usually paid per mile. They drive company owned tractor trailers.
- Independent owners sometimes own their own small fleet of trucks. They get their own clients and manage all aspects of their own business.
Getting Your CDL-A Through School
Class-A commercial truck driver’s license training is pretty fast. Some schools offer programs in the 3 to 6 week range. You can also find Class-A training at trade schools and community colleges, with those programs generally taking a little bit longer.
Getting into truck driving school isn’t too difficult, but there are some requirements. We’ve listed a few of the common ones below.
- Have a GED or school diploma
- Minimum of 18 for in state employment
- Minimum of 21 to cross state lines
- Clean driving record
- Pass DOT physical exam
Some students also take the company sponsored training route where they get trained through the company that hires them. One of the benefits of this route is obvious, you have a job ready and waiting for you. Some companies even pay their trainees a salary while they learn. Learn more about company sponsored training here.
Become a Class-A Driver
Getting your CDL-A can open many opportunities for truck drivers. You can drive OTR, become an owner-operator, and even undertake specialized driving jobs like HAZMAT or tanker truck driving.
If you are interested in getting your CDL-A, now is a perfect time to do so. Our partner schools offer quick training to get you on the road as soon as possible.
Find a truck driving job near you.