Best CDL Trucking Schools in Texas – 2021 Round-up

| Last Updated: April 9, 2021

A trucking career can be very rewarding, and you can enjoy a plethora of perks in both the short and long run. However, to enjoy these incentives, you need to get the right training.

A good CDL school will not only help you achieve your dream but will also provide you with an affordable yet good-quality avenue to do that. Most colleges in Texas offer a variety of programs, so you can choose the one that best suits your needs. 

This article is all about the programs offered by various schools in Texas. It also highlights other important features of different trucking schools, so you know which one is best for you. 

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How to Get a CDL in Texas

Contrary to what a lot of people believe, Texas makes it very easy for you to get a CDL. There are just a couple of requirements that you need to fulfill, and you are good to go. Here are some of the pre-requisites for obtaining a CDL in Texas. 

The person applying for the job must:

  • Be a resident of Texas
  • Be at least 18 or 21 years of age

  • Be able to speak and read English

  • Not have a loss of limbs

  • Not have serious physical ailments

  • Be free of any mental or physical disease

  • Have a vision of 20/40

  • Not have alcohol or drug addiction

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Get a CLP

CLP stands for Commercial Learner's permit and is required to move forward with the other steps of obtaining a Class A CDL. The person applying for the learner's permit must not have multiple licenses, or any of his qualifications dismissed or revoked. He should also not be convicted of any felony in the past or should not have indulged in any serious traffic violation.

Adding CDL Endorsements

Some endorsements that many drivers go for require a thorough background check. If you want endorsements such as Hazmat, you will need to pass a specific section of the written exam added for that purpose. However, getting endorsements may require extra time, effort, and money, so you should only add them if you are serious about using them in the future. 

Take the Exam

Once you have completed your education at a training school, it is time to sit for the exam. The driver must pass a two-part exam that will assess both his skills and his knowledge regarding driving. Once the driver passes this exam, they will be offered a CDL from the state of Texas. 

CDL Variations Available in Texas 

Texas works hand in hand with federal agencies to help ensure that all CDL regulations are timely met. This also ensures that safety regulations are met, and drivers enjoy maximum perks. Depending on what you want to do, you can choose from different CDL licenses, including:

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CDL Class A

If you are looking to get a CDL Class A license, then the weight of your vehicle must not exceed 26,000 pounds. The vehicle towed should weigh around 10,000 pounds. Class A licenses are quite common for drivers who drive interstate routes and mainly do one-day jobs. Such a license holder can also operate vehicles in Class B, C, and D ranges. This is only true as long as no additional endorsements are needed. 

CDL Class B

Vehicles that can carry around 24 people or more usually fall under the Class B category. These usually weigh more than 26,000, and the towed vehicle must weigh less than 10,000 pounds. Drivers who do interstate routes or short-haul commonly get this CDL license for commercial use. Moreover, operators who have a class B license can drive Class C vehicles as long as no restrictions or endorsements apply. 

CDL Class C

Drivers who possess Class C licenses can operate straight trucks, large buses, and box trucks. These include city, tourist, and school buses, dump trucks, and small trailers. Holders of CDL Class C can operate Class C vehicles but cannot operate vehicles falling in the Class A category. Vehicles under this category can also carry placards, waste, and toxins.

Review of the Best CDL Trucking Schools in Texas

We thoroughly reviewed a plethora of trucking schools in Texas to find you the most affordable yet worthy institutes for your training. These offer good job placement opportunities and training programs to help you kick-start your career in the best way possible. Here are some of the top-notch schools. 

Best CDL Trucking School In Dallas Texas:
Vision Truck Driving School

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Vision Truck Driving School

Vision Truck Driving School offers CDL training programs for drivers looking to enter the field. It also has exemption programs for insulin-treated and vision-treated individuals. Not only that, but it also offers certificate programs for drivers who have limb impairments, making it an all-inclusive institute. The school also offers special certification programs for anyone who has a missing or an impaired limb. 

The school's mission is to deliver high-quality and convenient training to entry-level truck drivers who are looking forward to being employed. The school is regulated and approved by the Career Schools and Colleges in Austin.  

Program Details 

If you are looking to start a career in truck driving, you certainly need a good education. Vision Truck Driving School offers an excellent training program that will help you get ahead in the game. The program is based on four simple ideas. The school ensures safety is placed first, which is why it will teach you the safety standards of all areas. 

Moreover, it will teach you about keeping it simple. This means that it won't bombard you with unnecessary knowledge that you won't have to use during your career. Another thing that it focuses on is speed. The drivers are taught about effective time management and hence prepare them to always meet deadlines. Lastly, it helps provide students with a platform where they can get advice and consultation whenever they want.

Trucking School Details 

  • Locations: 14803 Camino Rancho Dr, Houston, TX 77083, United States
  • Website: http://cdlinhouston.com/
  • Average Tuition Cost: $350-$2000
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: BBB
  • Student: Teacher Ratio: 1:1 or 1:2

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By AAA CDL School

  • CDL Class A course

  • CDL Class B

  • CDL refresher courses

The school has been around for about 20 years, and in this duration, it has managed to form an unparalleled reputation for itself. It helps the student learn all the practical and knowledge-based skills and assists people in obtaining their commercial driver's license. It is a community-based trucking school that provides a combination of classroom and on-road training to help you get a commercial class A license.

The class B CDL courses are also four weeks long, whereas the refresher courses take around two weeks or less to complete. 

Program Details

The class A program is four weeks long and can be attended by students from Texas and all over the United States. Classes start on Monday of each week and end on Friday with weekends off. Moreover, once the training ends, the school gets you in touch with potential employers and helps you get a job. 

The school has produced thousands of graduates over the years and now offers inclusive education to all people. Around 25% of students are women, and the number also seems to grow every year. 

The students have also managed to grab jobs at some of the biggest trucking companies, like Schneider, Prime Inc, PAM, and Butler Transport. Some of the students that take admission here have never driven a truck. The mission then is to help train them professionally and provide them with much-needed safety training.

Trucking School Details 

  • Locations: 1611 Chisholm Trail, Suite 470, Round Rock, TX, 78681
  • Website: https://www.communitytruckdrivingschool.com/
  • Average Tuition Cost: $4200-$5000
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: Texas Workforce Commission; Career Schools and Colleges, Austin, Texas

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Community Truck Driving School

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Class A

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Class A Manual

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Class A and Tanker Endorsement Certification

The school is regulated and approved by the Texas Workforce Commission in Austin, Texas. It provides a combination of CDL road training and classroom training to help people get a Class A CDL. It accepts students from not only Texas but all over the United States. The program is around four weeks long, and the classes usually start on Monday of each month. 

Students get to attend from Monday to Friday and get the weekends off. The school stands out because it doesn't discriminate against students and doesn't require them to fulfill a lot of pre-requisites for the job. All this, along with cost-effective education, makes it easier for students to get enrolled. 

Program Details

The school is located in the heart of central Texas and is only a short drive from Austin. To apply for this program, you need to first fill out the form, and then you will be contacted online. The classes usually begin on the first Monday of each month. The major requirements for enrolling in this program include a valid driver's license, an age limit of 21 years, English eligibility, and more.

The students who enroll in this program open themselves to a plethora of job opportunities. They not only make around $40,000 to $60,000 every year, but they also end up getting things like an excellent insurance plan and paid vacation. The program also focuses more on practical than theoretical skills. This helps students be better drivers who follow all the protocols on the road.

Trucking School Details 

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Roadmaster Drivers School

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Class A, Manual

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) 

  • Class A and Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

This school will help you get a Class A CDL license quite easily. The training is both comprehensive and in line with modern requirements. The school is both spacious and has a plethora of classrooms and computer labs that help enhance your training. Moreover, the entire course helps you prepare for the test ahead. 

Once you prepare for the test, you will be eligible for a job at several trucking companies in not only Texas but all over the United States. The school not only helps open doors for you but also provides you with assistance to get that job. The career service is available to help ensure you get all the help you need. On top of that, students who qualify are also provided with different levels of financial aid services. 

Program Details

The school is located in Dallas and is one of the most popular institutes for preparation for the CDL exam. It not only provides hands-on practice with modern equipment but also allows individuals to enjoy an interactive classroom environment. The entire program takes about three to four weeks to complete their classes. 

Some of the things that you will learn here include automatic transmission truck training, map reading, trip planning, and logging. Moreover, you get to learn to back, turn, hook, and unhook an industry-standard 53-foot trailer. On top of that, you get to learn about emergency actions in case of different situations.

Trucking School Details 

  • Locations: 6614 South R.L. Thornton Freeway, Dallas, TX 75232, I35 Between Camp Wisdom Road 
  • Website: http://www.wetraincdldrivers.com/
  • Average Tuition Cost: $3500-$4500

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Continental Truck Driver Training and Education School

This is a Class A CDL training school that is committed to providing all the skills you need for a successful trucking job. Over the years, it has trained around 6000 students and has helped them get their licenses. It has been around since 2000 and also offers a Class A CDL refresher course that lasts for around four weeks. The best thing about this school is that it hires only the best faculty members that help provide comprehensive knowledge. 

The placement department is also known for its excellent placement ratio that puts people in the required job. Once you are through the training, you can get hired as a CDL truck driver easily. 

Program Details

One of the best things about this program is that it provides graduate placement service to place all its graduates into good and reputable entry-level jobs. Employers all over Texas are influenced by factors like class attendance, technical skills, and character traits. This training program emphasizes all of these things and ensures that drivers are taught everything they need to know to stand out. 

The job assistance program doesn't end as soon as you graduate. Even in the future, if you decide to leave your current job and require any further assistance, you can always contact your school and get the required help you need. 

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By ATDS Truck Driving School

Class A CDL Tractor/Trailer Driver Program

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Class A, Manual

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL) Class A 

  • Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

  • CDL Class A refresher courses

The tractor/trailer driver program is a complete and comprehensive program that teaches you both safety and professionalism. It not only includes textbook lectures but also provides you with behind-the-wheel training to help you pass the CDL exam easily. The fleet includes modern training equipment and helps enhance training. The equipment includes cab-overs and weighted trailers.

ATDS provides automatic trucks that prove easier to drive for amateur drivers. The school has been in business since 1990 and has managed to stay in the limelight in Texas. The entire program is four weeks long, and you will get access to all the information you need during the time. Some programs may also take about two weeks.

Program Details

The best thing about this program is that it is both short and comes with flexible scheduling options. This flexibility helps make things easier for part-time workers to get the training they need. The weekend option lets you attend classes on Saturdays and Sundays from 7 am to 6:00 pm. Upon the completion of your program, you will earn not only your CDL but also a diploma from the school. You will also get a defensive certificate and a certificate from the local community college. 

Before you get selected for the program, you will need to obtain a DOT physical and drug screen test. Although a learner's permit is not a fixed pre-requisite for the program, it is still recommended so that you don't have to miss any class time to go to DPS for the test. Another thing that the school ensures is that students attend all the classes. The entire program is only 20 days long.

Moreover, those looking for a refresher course can either get enrolled in the three-to-five-day course or the two-to-three-week refresher course.

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Fort Worth CDL School

The school is known for offering a CDL training program for all people interested in working as truck drivers in the future. The best thing about this school is that it is free and there is no contract or no deductions for students studying. The institute prepares students to either become truck drivers, work solo, or work in teams. Graduates usually go on to earn around $70,000 each year and around $13,000 every week. 

Fort Worth CDL School and Raiders Express go hand in hand. The former prepares students for their CDL exam, and the latter hires them as paid professionals. This means the company pays drivers to attend the school so that they can be freed from any financial burdens. 

Program Details

The school understands what a driver should be and what the company needs from an applicant. And this is why it goes up and beyond to inculcate the proper skill set in individuals. The school also caters to the needs of individual students and helps them get access to all the knowledge without them having to compromise on their schedules. Flexible timings can also help you attend classes according to your preference. 

Once hired at Raiders Express, drivers get good compensation for their job. Not only that, but they also get things like an excellent insurance plan and monthly and yearly bonuses to help ensure success. 

Why Start a Trucking Career in Texas?

Working in Texas is one of the most rewarding experiences, especially as a truck driver. Whether you are a resident or a non-resident, the opportunities and perks that you get to enjoy are plenty. Here are some of the main reasons you should consider working here.

Living Conditions

One of the best things about Texas is most definitely its living conditions. The state does not only have a strong economy, but it also offers a plethora of job opportunities in the trucking business. Moreover, the population is expected to rise each year. This means that the number of people availing of trucking service is also going to go up. All this translates to fast job growth in the states.

Well-Developed Network

Another great thing about Texas is that it's a very developed state that has a large number of urban settlements. This has led the government to prioritize road networking and, hence, construct many bridges and underpasses. A well-developed road networking system not only enhances your experiences but also allows you to finish your deliveries on time. 

Ease of Starting a Career

A state can offer you all the amenities of life, but if it doesn't provide favorable conditions to start your relevant career, then it's of little to no importance to you. When it comes to building a trucking career, Texas makes it very easy for you. There are a great number of very good yet affordable schools in the vicinity to help get the required knowledge and training. It is also relatively easy to get a license and permit in Texas.

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Truck Driving Salary and Job Outlook in Texas

It's the perfect time to enter into the trucking business in Texas. According to the projected data collected by the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, it is seen that almost all commercial vehicle driving jobs in Texas are trending in an upward direction. 

The trends are mostly collected in terms of three different truck types. For heavy trucks that carry loads in bulk, the projected growth is seen to be around 21% years in the next few years. This will add around 7000 new jobs for the people of Texas in the upcoming years. Delivery services and light trucks are expected to grow by at least 23% in the next ten years. This will add around 2500 or more jobs. 

Passenger vehicles or school buses are very much in demand, and the drivers of this field are well-respected and revered because their jobs involve a lot of customer dealings. They mostly make around $36,000 annually. Moreover, there are expected to be around 6500 jobs in the coming years. 

As with other professions, truck drivers also earn according to their experience in the field.

Entry-Level

People who are just entering the field make the least amount of money. The amount equals around $60,000 per year. This is still a relatively good amount as compared to what people entering many other professions make in Texas.

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Mid-Level

This category includes people who have had an experience of around six to nine years or even more, and they are expected to earn around $66,000 every year. They also enjoy other perks, like paid holidays and more promotion opportunities.

Master-Level

People who have dedicated a major part of their lives to the trucking business and have been working for around ten years or more earn close to $70,000 every year. They also earn extra money through bonuses and other incentives. 

Conclusion 

Good salary, great job opportunities, and amazing incentives are in store for you if you decide to become a truck driver in Texas. However, before you become a professional, you will have to get the required education from a school. Unlike many other states, Texas offers not only quality schools but also institutes that are rather affordable.

There are a great many training programs offered that will allow you to train for the different types of CDL. You can opt for the program that most suits you. Another thing that you need to keep in mind is scheduling and affordability. All the options we have mentioned will provide quality education, so you should never look for the most expensive option available. 

People Also Ask

People who want to start a trucking business in Texas have a lot of questions regarding the opportunities and incentives offered. Here are some of the questions we have answered for you to help clear your confusion regarding the issue. 

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

Most companies will want you to have a CDL before you apply for the job. They will also require you to have some experience in the field. This will increase your chances of hiring. However, there are some trucking schools that not only offer paid CDL training programs but also pay for the student's exam and help provide a job. 

Can You Get Financial Aid for Trucking School in Texas?

Like with any career, you can also enjoy the perks of financial aid in this field. There are two kinds of aids that you will be eligible for. The first is the one you can get directly from your trucking school. Another way you can get this is by filling out a form of FAFSA, which makes you eligible for federal student aid. 

How Much Does it Cost to Get a CDL in Texas? 

Before you get a CDL, you will have to sit for an exam and clear it. But like with any career, you will have to get the required education from a CDL training school. Currently, the cost of applying for a CDL license is around $61.3. The cost varies according to the type of license you want to get. 

How Many Questions are on the Texas CDL Permit Test?

A lot of people worry about the number of questions on the exam before they sit for one. There are around 25 multiple choice questions on the permit test.

The test is fully computerized, and you will have to get 70% of these 25 questions right to pass the exam.

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When Do You Need a CDL in Texas?

CDL stands for a commercial driver's license, and you need it when you want to operate a single vehicle that has a GVWR of around 26000 or more. Moreover, if the vehicle towing another weighs around 10,001 pounds, you need a CDL too. Similarly, you will need a CDL to operate a bus that carries 24 passengers or more.

How Old Do You Have to Be to Get a CDL in Texas?

The age varies according to the state you live in, but for people residing in Texas, the age limit is between 18 and 21 years. For people who want to drive intrastate or within Texas state lines only, the age requirement is at least 18 years. However, people who wish to drive interstate or within the state must be 21 years old before they can apply for CDL.

How Long Does it Take to Get CDL in Texas?

This also depends on the training program that you opt for. On average, the CDL training program is about seven weeks. This is usually when the program runs five times a week. In comparison, those taking Class A programs will spend more time in the classroom than those enrolled in Class B programs. This is because the Class A license allows you to drive a variety of trucks. 

How Long is a CDL Permit Good for in Texas?

A permit and a license are different because, although both allow individuals to drive on the roads, the former still comes with a specific set of restrictions. The permit does not have universal requirements like the CDL in all fifty states. Moreover, a permit will last for 180 days.



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.