Commercial licensing is complicated. Applying for a CDL can be easy with our ID guide to your CDL.

Basic Requirements For A Commercial Driver’s Permit/License

  • You must be at least 18 years of age and either possess a Class D (non commercial license) or have taken the required tests to get the license. If you wish to take the Class D and CDL tests at the same time, you must have at least one year’s driving experience.
  • Must meet requirements for an Idaho’s Driver License.
  • Certify that you are in agreement with state motor carrier safety regulations. See Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration. This includes the DOT medical card requirements.
  • Provide a valid Medical Examiner’s Certificate. You can obtain one by having a licensed medical professional fill out the appropriate Medical Examination Report for Commercial Driver Fitness reports. The medical examiner should provide you with a Medical Examiner’s Report. This certificate will be valid for two years.
  • Provide proof of identity and legal presence.
  • Provide proof of Idaho residency.
  • Provide your Social security number.

Steps To Apply For A CDL Permit/License

  1. You must meet the requirements for an Idaho driver’s license.
  2. Pay a $19.50 fee for your permit.
  3. Pass the CDL knowledge (written) exams. See the CDL Manual for the required information. The exam can be taken at any DMV location.
  4. After passing the knowledge tests you will have to make an appointment with a CDL skills tester to take the skills test. Some testers have vehicles that can be rented. Carry proof of identification, insurance proof, and the receipt showing you have passed the knowledge test and paid the fee for the skills test.
  5. Pay license and endorsement fees.

Skills Tests

The skills test is divided into three parts:

  • The vehicle inspection.
  • The basic control skills test.
  • The road test.

The test will take about three hours to complete. You must take the test in the vehicle in the same kind of vehicle you will use eventually. If you take the CDL test in a vehicle that does not have air brakes, your CDL license will have a restriction that states you are not licensed to drive a vehicle with air brakes.
A CDL will be issued to you only after you have passed the knowledge and skills test. The test results remain valid for a year. If you do obtain the license within a year of taking the tests, you will have to take the tests again and pay the fees as well. If you fail a test you will have to wait for three days before you can take the test again.
You are not permitted to drive until you receive the CDL.

Instruction Permit

In order to be eligible for an Idaho CDL, you must first obtain a CDL instruction permit. First, you must fill out the CDL application form. Then show proof of legal presence and US residency. Next, pay the $19.50 permit fee. Lastly, pass the CDL general knowledge exam and skills test. Also, you must have your instruction permit for 30 days before obtaining a CDL. Idaho Instruction Permits expire in 180 days and are non-renewable.


The cost is $28.50 for a four year CDL license. Please see the list of fees below for more information:

  • CDL license (4-year) $28.50
  • CDL instruction permit $19.50
  • Duplicate CDL or permit $11.50
  • License upgrade $15.50
  • Endorsement addition (after issuance of a CDL) $11.50
  • Written tests (each) $ 3.00
  • Skills test ($5 to Driver’s License Office, $50 to Skills Tester)$55.00

CDL Endorsements

The following is a list of endorsements you can get on your CDL:

  • Hazardous Material (Class H).
  • Tank Vehicles (Class N).
  • Passenger-Carrying Vehicle (Class P).
  • School Bus (Class S).
  • Towing a Double or Triple Trailer (Class T).

Federal Guidelines For Interstate Drivers

The following is a list of federal requirements for interstate drivers.


  • If you already have a CDL, see CDL renewal. CDL tests are not required at the time of renewal with the exception of the Hazardous Materials test which must be passed before each renewal.
  • For more information regarding test centers and hours and locations see you local DMV office.
  • See Idaho’s Commercial Driver’s Manual for knowledge exam information.
Last updated on Thursday, February 15 2018.

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