CDL Training in Michigan
You can easily get CDL training in Michigan, but making sure that you choose the program that is a good fit for your needs is a different story. With a commercial driver’s license (CDL), drivers from all over the United States operate commercial vehicles, such as school buses, semi-trucks, charter buses, tractor trailers and more. An MI CDL school is a vital aspect of getting such a license in the state of Michigan, as the commercial driving process is much more complicated than simply getting a standard driver’s license. There are many different types of commercial vehicle licenses available, and even more endorsements for these licenses that can be used to operate whatever type of large vehicle that you can think of.
Attending a truck driving school in Michigan is a smart decision for lots of future commercial vehicle drivers, but it is not the only one. As training is voluntary in Michigan, you can always choose to go for your CDL whenever you would like. However, working with the Michigan Secretary of State (SOS) office to get your license is always easier when you have already been given all of the information that you will need for your testing, as found through one of the state’s many training options. This article will help Michigan drivers to learn more about this training, and eventually get the CDL that they have been working towards.
What is CDL training in Michigan?
You can get Class A CDL training in Michigan if you would like to take a slightly harder training regimen and tests, in return for more driving options in the state.
These licenses open up driving vehicles that weigh more than 26,000 pounds, which can also haul more than 10,000 pounds. These vehicles are commonly needed for trucking careers, as they can carry a lot of product for a very long distance.
However, you may not need to get a Class A license for the job that you are looking at. Class B CDL training in Michigan is sort of a littler brother to the Class A, as this lets you drive vehicles over 26,000 pounds that carry loads under 10,000 pounds. This mostly applies to locally operated commercial vehicles.
Finally, Class C CDLs are useful for Michigan drivers who want to be able to drive hazmat trucks, or buses that have room for 16 or more passengers. Each of these license types requires a different amount of training in Michigan, and they all have different applications.
Is CDL school required in Michigan?
CDL classes in Michigan are not inherently required, especially if you do not have any endorsements to add to your base CDL type and you meet the physical requirements.
This is because the state of Michigan’s CDL eligibility requirements only list an age restriction of 21, a clean driving record and a certain level of medical and physical fitness. If you meet all of the correct qualifications, you could theoretically go straight from a standard driver’s license to a commercial one without taking any formal classes whatsoever.
However, the average Michigan CDL prep applicant would still benefit from this service greatly, as the right training could prevent them from needing to retake any tests.
Additionally, you may need to take some training after getting your CDL, if you have also signed up for the school bus endorsement in the state. Along with your passenger endorsement, this brings with it the requirement to take training for your license to kick into effect, and retraining every two years.
If this situation does not apply to you, however, you will not be forced to take training that you feel is unnecessary.
Curriculum of Michigan CDL Classes
Michigan CDL courses can come in all shapes and sizes, and choosing the right training program for you should come down to how you feel about each company’s facilities.
All CDL companies in the state offer classroom and road testing services, and have different kinds of faculty whose main jobs are to teach drivers like yourself how to get a CDL in Michigan.
In-Class Instruction for the CDL Written Test
While MI CDL training online is not entirely available in the state, most training programs have plenty of online resources that you can use as a supplement to an actual course.
The main portion of these training programs is the in-class instruction, which is often given in a small classroom setting by a CDL professional. This process usually involves interactive discussions about a number of different CDL topics in Michigan, including but not limited to:
- Road signs that commercial drivers should know.
- How to react to different hypothetical driving problems.
- Driver ethics, and the fight against human trafficking.
- General rules and regulations for driving a commercial vehicle.
Behind-the-Wheel Instruction for the CDL Driving Test
Your first CDL test in Michigan is the knowledge test, which will benefit from the previously described classroom instruction. However, have you ever driven a commercial vehicle before?
If the answer to that question is “no,” then taking a training course is probably a good idea. Most training courses allow for Michigan drivers to drive around in a commercial vehicle with instructor supervision, in order to learn how to turn, park, merge into traffic and more.
If you would like to prepare your CDL driving skills for future testing, training courses may be the only viable option.
How long is CDL training in Michigan?
Taking your CDL driving test in Michigan can happen anytime, but it is usually best to go through your entire training course first, to ensure that you are prepared for anything that may happen during the test.
The exact timeframe for these courses can depend on the course that you choose, especially since courses that are given throughout the week tend to go by much more quickly than those only given on weekends. However, you can expect to finish a MI course in between 4 and 8 weeks, with longer options available for those with busy schedules.
Best CDL Schools Near Me in Michigan
Where is the best truck driving school near me in Michigan? This question is relatively common among CDL applicants, and it can be hard to find the program that best fits your needs.
There have been many reviews of training programs all across the state, and certain programs are better received than others. Some positively reviewed sites in Michigan include:
- US Truck Driver Training School. Offering many different program options from 4 to 18 weeks, this versatile service allows students new and experienced to get the license training that they need from a knowledgeable group of professionals.
- Suburban Truck Driver Training. This program offers 162 and 100 hour CDL training options, which consist of in-depth analysis of all of the required information, driving skills training and finally ending in sponsored state testing.
- West Michigan CDL. This program offers a fast-paced 3 week program, as well as great financing options and even job placement services for exceptional students. They emphasize small groups and classroom sizes to help students learn faster.
Benefits of Completing Michigan Truck Driving School
CDL jobs in Michigan are actually much easier to get if you have the right amount of training.
This is partially due to the job placement services described above that many programs employ, but also in that many commercial driving employers only want trained professionals to drive for them.
While you can technically succeed in getting your CDL without the proper training, many employers would prefer you to up-to-date on all of the current CDL rules and regulations, and may be suspicious of your driving abilities. Training can not only help you to get a job in Michigan, but it can also help to make you a better driver overall.
CDL Training Costs in Michigan
A Michigan CDL training cost can be a very difficult factor to consider, as many training courses do not readily provide this information to non-customers. However, most courses in Michigan can be purchased for around $4,000 to $8,000.
This may seem like a rather wide range, but this can actually be the difference between a comprehensive 4-week program and a much deeper 18-week program. There are so many different options in Michigan, so it should be easy to find the program that fits within your budget.
In addition, many programs allow for tuition assistance and financing options, which can help students to pay off their tuition over a longer period of time.
Some Michigan drivers can even get free CDL training, if their current company or future employer would like to put them through the program. This can be an excellent way to expand your driving skills and further your career, while still saving a lot of money and working while taking classes.
You should always consider all of your financial options when looking into this training in Michigan.
How to Self-Prep for Michigan CDL Exams
Preparing for a MI CDL practice test is one of the best decisions that you can make leading up to your actual tests. Taking knowledge and driving tests can be scary, and not knowing what to expect could result in panicking, forgetting everything that you have learned and failing your test.
To limit this, it is important to take advantage of any practice tests that you can get from your training program. In addition, it can be a smart idea to study on your own online.
The Michigan CDL study guide can be found online through the Secretary of State in the form of the state’s handbook, which has all of the information that you will need for the tests. Using this information as a supplement to training courses can help you to be ready for what lies in store.