CDL Trucking Schools Georgia – 2021 Guide

| Last Updated: May 4, 2021

You may be wondering if earning a CDL and starting a career in the trucking industry is worth it.

If you have any uncertainties about a trucking career, know that qualified drivers enjoy a very independent lifestyle, earn impressive annual salaries, and a high level of job security.

By enrolling in one of Georgia’s CDL trucking schools, you can go from having no truck driving experience to landing your first trucking job within weeks!

Photo credit: katlaw.com

How to Get a CDL in GA

To earn a CDL in Georgia, an applicant must meet a series of requirements, fill out applications, and pass two tests. The steps required to earn a CDL in the state are as follows:

Meet the Basic Requirements

Applicants must be at least 18 years old to apply and at least 21 to use a CDL out of state. Applicants must also already possess a valid non-CDL Georgia driver’s license.

Pass a Vision Test and Pass the Knowledge Exam

Applicants must prove their vision is at an acceptable level and pass the written knowledge exam. The exam is $10 for each attempt, and a passing grade will grant the applicant a Commercial Learner’s Permit, which is needed before they can take the final exam.

Meet CDL Medical Certification Requirements

An applicant must prove they are medically fit to drive a commercial vehicle by undergoing a medical exam and submitting a medical examiner’s report.

Pass the CDL Road Skills Test

The skills test phase of the CDL process will grade the applicant’s ability to handle a commercial vehicle in a safe and controlled way.

While it is not mandatory, attending a CDL trucking school will give you the knowledge and skills required to pass the CDL road skills test. Without this learning opportunity, few applicants can pass the test, which means they waste their time and money.

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CDL Variations Available in Georgia 

Georgia has three CDL classifications. Each class of commercial license allows the driver to operate a specific set of commercial vehicles. 

What is a CLP?

Before you can earn a CDL, you must first pass a written exam and earn a CLP. A CLP, or Commercial Learner’s Permit, allows the carrier to practice driving a commercial vehicle, as well as take the road skills test.

Georgia’s CDL variations are as follows:

Class A CDL

Allows the carrier to drive a truck trailer or tractor-semitrailer combination with a combined weight of over 26,000 pounds and a towing unit that exceeds 10,000 pounds. In Georgia, applicants must possess a non-CDL driver’s license before they can obtain a Class A CDL.

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Class B CDL

Allows the carrier to drive single vehicles that weigh over 26,000 pounds and tow a load that weighs less than 10,000 pounds.

Class C CDL

Class C CDLs are for those looking to drive commercial vehicles that transport 16 or more passengers. 

They can also drive vehicles under the 26,000-pound limit used to transport hazardous materials if they have also passed the state’s Hazmat Endorsement Test.

If you are looking to start a trucking career, you will want to earn a Class A CDL. Most employers require new hires to have a Class A CDL because there are no restrictions on the types of vehicles that individuals can drive.

Review of the Best CDL Trucking Schools in Georgia

As mentioned above, one of the best ways to learn the driving skills required to earn a CDL and get started in the trucking industry is to attend a CDL trucking school. To help you get started, we have reviewed six of the best schools in Georgia:

  • Locations: 2314 Peachtree Industrial Blvd., Buford, GA, 30518
  • Website: www.dalystruckdrivingschool.com
  • Average Tuition Cost: $3,500
  • Average Class Size: 10
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Licensed by the Georgia Department of Driver Services
  • Student/Teacher Ratio: 10:1

Certifications and Endorsements Offered by Daly’s Truck Driving School

Daly’s Trucking Driving School offers two condensed CDL programs – a Class A CDL program and a Class B CDL program.

Unlike many other schools, Daly’s teaches their programs in as few days as possible, so students can take what they learn and earn their CDL as quickly as possible. 

  • Class A CDL Program – Full-time students learn from 7 am to 5 pm Monday to Friday for 15 days. While those with less flexible schedules can choose to take the same 7 am to 5 pm classes, but only on weekends.

  • Class B CDL Program – The Class B program lasts six days and runs from 7 am until 5 pm. There is no part-time option for the Class B program.

Program Details

Both programs start in the classroom, where talented instructors teach students everything they need to know about earning a CDL and driving a commercial vehicle. Unlike other schools, Daly’s Truck Driving Schools helps students earn their CLP by working through the knowledge test. Most schools assume students already possess their learner’s permit.

After completing the classroom portion, students begin training with commercial vehicles at their 6-acre asphalt training facility. Students learn using recent-model vehicles similar to the equipment they will be tested on during their CDL road skills test.

After graduation, students can take advantage of the school's job placement program, which helps graduates land their first full-time trucking positions.

  • Locations: 5000 Austell Powder Springs Rd., Austell, GA, 30106
  • Website: www.katlaw.com
  • Average Tuition Cost: $3,795
  • Average Class Size: 8
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Licensed by the Georgia Department of Driver Services
  • Student/Teacher Ratio: 8:1

Certifications and Endorsements Offered by Katlaw Truck Driving School

Katlaw Truck Driving School offers two CDL training programs and a Class A CDL refresher course for those that need to renew their license or have one from another state and need to earn a Georgia CDL.

  • Class A Tractor Trailer CDL Training – The program runs 160 hours and consists of one week of classroom training to prepare students to take the CLP written exam. After which, students will take two weeks of range and road training.

  • Class B Straight Truck CDL Training – The program consists of 70 hours of training and is usually completed in seven days. Students will take three days of in-class lessons and four days of range and road lessons in a training vehicle.

Program Details

As part of the in-class segments of the programs, students will learn everything they need to pass the written test and earn their CLP. They will also learn all of the necessary skills and safety techniques needed to be successful truck drivers.

The school uses modern training equipment and a four-acre training yard to ensure all students have the chance to learn proper driving techniques. Not only will students have the opportunity to learn with a qualified instructor, but they will also learn how to perform proper pre-trip safety inspections and how to couple and uncouple trailers.

  • Locations: 1414 Blairs Bridge Rd., Lithia Springs, GA, 30122
  • Website: www.roadmaster.com
  • Average Tuition Cost: $5,000
  • Average Class Size: 10
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Licensed by the Georgia Department of Driver Services
  • Student/Teacher Ratio: 10:1

Certifications and Endorsements Offered by Roadmaster Drivers School

Roadmaster Drivers School is a national training school with locations in states across the country. Over the last 25 years, they have trained over 100,000 truck drivers.

Since they are focused on getting people started in the trucking industry, they only teach a single program – The Class A CDL Program.

Depending on the student’s availability, the course lasts between three and four weeks and consists of 160 hours of learning and training. During this period, they will have a hands-on practice driving a truck at the school’s practice pad. 

Roadmaster selects qualified and passionate instructors to lead the classroom segment of the program. Each instructor makes sure their students have a thorough understanding of road safety and vehicle operation before they graduate.

Program Details

Students will learn in spacious classrooms and have access to modern computer labs. Each learning facility also features its own specially designed field-driving course, where students will have the opportunity to learn with modern vehicles and trailers.

After completing the course, students will have access to job placement assistance. Roadmaster Drivers School also works with local trucking company representatives to help their graduates find their first jobs.

Best CDL School in Atlanta, GA:
Atlanta Technical College

  • Locations: 1560 Metropolitan Parkway, Atlanta, GA, 30310
  • Website: www.atlantatech.edu
  • Average Tuition Cost: $2,575
  • Average Class Size: 20
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (COS-SACS)
  • Student/Teacher Ratio: 20:1

Certifications and Endorsements Offered by Atlanta Technical College

Atlanta Technical College’s Commercial Truck Driving TTC Program fully prepares students for careers as truck drivers.

Because the program is hosted by a technical college, rather than a standalone CDL trucking school, it lasts much longer than a standard CDL program. Students learn for at least one full term (4 months) and take a variety of classes related to commercial truck driving.

At the end of the program, a representative of the Georgia Department of Drivers Services will test the graduating students. If they pass the skills exam, they will earn their CDL and can start their career.

Program Details

The school’s commercial trucking program teaches students everything they need to know about their new career path. In the classroom, students will learn the basic principles of driving a commercial vehicle. After this segment of the program is complete, the students will practice their driving skills by driving commercial vehicles at the school’s driving range and on the roads surrounding the campus.

Students can also enroll in optional courses to learn about the logistics side of the trucking industry. These courses are beneficial for those with aspirations of moving into a management position after starting their trucking career.

Best CDL School in Savannah, GA:
Savannah Technical College

  • Locations: 5717 White Bluff Rd., Savannah, GA, 31405
  • Website: www.savannahtech.edu
  • Average Tuition Cost: $3,022
  • Average Class Size: 12
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (COS-SACS)
  • Student/Teacher Ratio: 6:1

Certifications and Endorsements Offered by Savannah Technical College

Savannah Technical College offers one CDL program – The Commercial Truck Driving Certificate Program.

The program gives students basic training in the principles and skills required to operate a commercial truck. To complete the program, students must earn nine credits, and each takes roughly 15 hours to complete.

After the student has graduated from the program, they can take the Georgia CDL Skills Test. The test is completed on campus using the school’s equipment, and the tuition includes the costs associated with the exam.

Program Details

The program is divided into three segments:

  • Fundamental Commercial Driving, which is taught in the classroom.

  • Basic Operation of Commercial Vehicles, which is taught at the school’s driving range.

  • Advanced Commercial Vehicle Operations, which is taught at the driving range and on surrounding roads.

By the time the student has earned the nine credits that make up the three course-types, they will be prepared to pass the state’s CDL skills test and earn their full license.

The school also offers employment assistance services so recent graduates can get help finding their first jobs. Learning from a technical college allows students to experience a more formal learning environment, as they learn directly on the school’s campus.

Best CDL School in Augusta, GA:
Miller-Motte Technical College

  • Locations: 621 NW. Frontage Rd., Augusta, GA, 301907
  • Website: www.miller-motte.edu
  • Average Tuition Cost: $3,600
  • Average Class Size: 12
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Licensed by the Georgia Department of Driver Services
  • Student/Teacher Ratio: 12:1

Certifications and Endorsements Offered by Miller-Motte Technical College

Miller-Motte Technical College offers a 150 hour CDL Class A Training Program.

The program combines classroom learning with real-world driving experience. Students will learn all of the fundamentals of truck driving in the classroom and then take what they learn to the schools driving range.

During the driving segment of the program, students work one-on-one with a qualified instructor. They learn proper driving techniques, alley docking, pre-trip vehicle inspection, and driver safety.

After graduating and completing the full 150-hour program, students can take the CDL Class A Skills Test and begin their career in the trucking industry.

Program Details

Miller-Motte Technical College offers flexible class hours for their CDL Class A Training Program. The program itself is similar to those offered at other technical schools and CDL training schools; however, where Miller-Motte Technical College stands out is with their career services.

Students get solid career preparation in the classroom and have the opportunity to visit the school’s career counselors. The college aims to get its students working in their chosen career path, rather than just educating them, which is a major advantage for those looking for more than a quick route to a CDL.

Why Start a Trucking Career in Georgia?

If you are looking to get a trucking career off the ground, Georgia is a great place to start. The following are just a few of the reasons why Georgia residents should seriously consider earning a CDL:

  • Georgia is home to many large urban centers, like Atlanta, which means the state needs qualified truck drivers to keep the economy moving. If you are qualified to drive a commercial vehicle, you will not struggle to find high paying work.

  • Georgia is a relatively flat state without difficult winter driving conditions, which makes it an ideal location for beginner truck drivers.

  • Georgia has numerous freight lanes that move in and out of the state. There are plenty of opportunities for high paying out-of-state driving jobs.

  • Georgia offers affordable housing and a relatively low cost of living, which means Georgia residents could live quite comfortably on a truck driver’s salary.

Choosing to live in Georgia is a great idea if you are planning to get your career off the ground. The low cost of living and abundance of jobs means that the state’s entry-level truck drivers do not have to struggle as they get their careers off the ground.

It is also a great place to start a family and offers the perfect mix of urban and rural communities.

Photo credit: savannahtech.edu

Truck Driving Salary and Job Outlook in Georgia

Average truck driver salaries in Georgia tend to sit above the national average. You will earn more as a truck driver in Georgia than you would in many of the surrounding states. 

Not only is the salary high, but job prospects are also plentiful in the Peach State. Few of the state’s truck drivers struggle to find work, and there are just as many jobs available to beginners as there are for experienced drivers.

Truck driver salaries usually correspond to how many years of driving experience the driver has. Average truck driver salaries in Georgia are as follows:

  • Entry-Level (Less than one year of experience): $63,299

  • Mid-Level (five to nine years of experience): $71,977

  • Master-Level (More than ten years of experience): $76,120

It is important to remember that the figures stated above are just average salaries. For most trucking positions, the individual’s earning potential is determined by how much driving they are willing to do. If you are young and ambitious, you could earn far more per year than the state’s average salary figures.

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Conclusion 

As you can see, driving a commercial vehicle is an excellent choice, especially if you live in the state of Georgia. Enrolling in a trucking program at a CDL trucking school is one of the best ways to get your new career moving in the right direction. Choose any of the schools we reviewed, and you will be on the road in no time.

People Also Ask

Here are some of the most common things that people ask when thinking about starting a trucking career in Georgia.

Do Trucking Companies in Georgia Pay You to Get Your CDL?

Most trucking companies in Georgia will not directly pay you to get a CDL; however, some individual companies do compensate newly hired employees by reimbursing them for the cost of their CDL training program. Many will also cover their employee’s CDL renewal fees.

Can You Get Financial Aid for Trucking School in Georgia?

While not every CDL trucking school offers financial aid, many of the technical colleges that offer CDL programs do. The best thing to do is phone around to the trucking schools in your area and ask about their financial assistance options.

How Much is a CDL License in GA? 

The actual fees you need to pay to earn a license are fairly low in Georgia ($32 for the license, $50 for the test). However, the cost of tuition at a CDL school can range between $2,000 and $5,000. If you fail, you will have to retake the test and repay the fee until you receiving a passing grade.

When is a CDL Required in GA?

You need to possess a valid CDL if you plan on driving any commercial vehicle in the state of Georgia. The particular classification you need will depend on the vehicle, but it is a safe bet that you will need a Class A or B if you are planning on getting into the trucking industry.

How Old Do You Have to Be to Get Your CDL in Georgia?

You have to be 18 years of age to start the application process for a CDL in Georgia; however, you have to be 21 if you plan on driving out of state once you have your license. 

How Does HAZMAT Show Up on GA CDL License?

After you have earned a CDL HAZMAT Endorsement (HME), it will show up on the CDL License. You need to complete the HAZMAT test to haul any sort of hazardous materials in the state.

Which GA Tech Schools Offer CDL Training?

Miller-Motte Technical College, Savannah Technical College, Atlanta Technical College, Bainbridge College, and Athens Tech all offer CDL training programs.

How Many Questions are on the GA CDL Permit Test?

The test contains 50 questions. To pass, an applicant must receive a grade of at least 80%, which means answering at least 40 of the 50 questions correctly.

How Long Does it Take to Get Your CDL in GA?

Technically, a person could earn a CDL in as little as one week, but this would mean not taking a CDL training program. With the correct learning opportunities, an applicant could realistically earn a CDL in two to four weeks.



After spending years on the road, I had a lot of time to think about the hardships that came with the trucking industry. I realized there was an opportunity to lend a hand a create a resource for truckers by truckers. With the help of my tech-savvy son, I built Trucker Geek as a way to show people that becoming a driver doesn’t need to be a stressful headache.