The decision to attend trucking school is very important. Not only are you entering into a great industry, but you will learn all kinds of new skills! There are a lot of things to consider when going to trucking school for your CDL license. You have to know where you want to go to trucking school and what type of license you want to get. The most important thing to consider if you’re thinking about going to trucking school is the cost. How much will trucking school cost and how will you pay for it? We’ve broken down the cost of trucking school as well as helpful resources for financing.
Average Trucking School Cost
The cost of trucking school varies depending on where you go. There is also a big difference between an independent program and a company-sponsored program. If a company offers to pay for you to go to trucking school, that does not mean trucking school is free. There is usually a long-term commitment involved. You are expected to stay with the company for an extended period of time after you obtain your CDL. If you fail to do so, you will be fined or expected to pay for your schooling. These fines can sometimes be up to thousands of dollars.
As for private trucking schooling, the costs are very different. The private trucking school cost in the U.S. ranges from around $2,000 to $6,000. This may seem like a steep number, but in this case, you do not have to commit to a company before you even get your CDL. With the price comes a high level of freedom. There is the alternative route of community college. Community college CDL programs vary in cost depending on the location. They can be anywhere from $1,500 to $6,000 depending on where they are.
Trucking School Financial Aid and Resources
One of the most obvious ways to save money when going to trucking school is to avoid private programs. Unlike other types of learning programs, CDL training is not necessarily better at a private institution. Many community college programs are very good and offer the knowledge you need to be a truck driver. You may also be interested in getting your CDL with a company and working for them after school. This is the cheapest option, but as we previously mentioned, there are also contractual obligations.
There is a lot of financial aid out there for hopeful truck drivers. Usually, each CDL training program will offer their own versions of financial aid. For community college programs, there are often public funds available that you need to qualify for. If you prove that you cannot afford to pay for the program on your own, the county, state, or federal government will offer you some sort of aid. There are also plenty of scholarships for veterans, active-duty military members, or their spouses.
Another way to afford CDL training is to have a payment plan or financing. The biggest hurdle if you are considering financing is being confident that you will have income after. Do not try to finance your tuition if you will be unable to pay it off later. Many programs have payment plans that allow you to pay in installments. This is a helpful option if you will have money coming in at a later date or will not have the entire amount upfront.
Trucking companies value your CDL and your knowledge. In order to be a great truck driver, you have to be willing to learn. Now that you have more information about trucking school cost, you can research trucking schools and find the perfect program! Start browsing our list of trucking jobs and line up a great position for yourself.