Understanding the Cost of CDL School: A Guide for Aspiring Truck Drivers

If you’re considering a career as a truck driver, one of the first things you’ll need is a commercial driver’s license (CDL). To obtain a CDL, you’ll likely need to attend a CDL school. But how much does CDL school cost? Let’s break it down.

Tuition Fees

The primary cost associated with truck driving school is the tuition fee. CDL schools offer various programs, ranging from basic to comprehensive. The cost of tuition can vary significantly depending on the school, location, and the type of program you choose. On average, you can expect to pay anywhere from $3,000 to $7,000 for your CDL driver training.

Additional Costs

Apart from tuition, there are other expenses you should consider when calculating the total cost of CDL school:


  • Books and Study Materials: You may need textbooks, study guides, and other learning materials. These costs typically range from $100 to $500.
  • Permit and License Fees: Before you can start your training, you’ll need to obtain a CDL learner’s permit. The fees for this permit vary by state but generally fall between $10 and $25. You’ll also need to pay for your CDL license, which costs around $75 to $100.
  • Drug Testing and Physical Examination: To ensure safety on the road, truck drivers are required to pass a drug test and undergo a physical examination. The combined cost for these screenings can be between $100 and $200.
  • Endorsements: Depending on your career goals, you may need additional endorsements on your CDL, such as hazmat or tanker endorsements. Each endorsement typically costs around $10 to $20.
  • Fuel and Accommodation: If your CDL school is located far from your home, you’ll need to budget for fuel and accommodation during your training period.

Financial Assistance

Don’t let the cost of CDL school deter you from pursuing your dream of becoming a truck driver. Many CDL schools offer financial assistance options, including scholarships, grants, and loans. Additionally, some trucking companies may reimburse your tuition if you agree to work for them after completing your training.

Return on Investment (ROI)

While the cost of CDL school may seem daunting, it’s essential to consider the potential return on investment. Once you obtain your CDL, you’ll have access to a driving career with competitive pay and job stability. On average, CDL holders can earn between $40,000 and $80,000 per year, depending on experience and the type of driving they do.

Choosing the Right CDL School

When selecting a CDL school, it’s crucial to research and compare your options. 

Consider the following factors:

  • Accreditation: Ensure the school is accredited and recognized by the relevant authorities.
  • Program Length: Different schools offer varying program lengths. Choose one that fits your schedule and learning pace.
  • Job Placement Assistance: Look for schools that offer job placement assistance to help you secure a job after graduation.
  • Reputation: Read reviews and talk to current or former students to gauge the school’s reputation and success rate.
  • Location: Consider the school’s location concerning where you plan to work as a truck driver.

Start Your CDL Journey with Phoenix Truck Driving Institute

Understanding the costs of CDL school is crucial, and at Phoenix Truck Driving Institute, we offer top-tier training programs that provide excellent value for your investment. Our accredited school provides comprehensive instruction, job placement assistance, and financial aid options to help you achieve your dream career affordably. Don’t let costs hold you back — invest in your future as a truck driver with us. 

Contact us today to start your CDL training journey.


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