Skip to main content
How much does it cost to get a CDL?
A man in a plaid shirt holds an open jar with money in it. There is a sticky note on the front that says "truck driving school."
Author Headshot
April 8, 2021

Truck driving school costs and CDL fees will vary based upon the school you choose and where you live, but the total cost typically falls somewhere between $3,000 and $10,000.

But what other features determine the price of getting a CDL and what factors should you consider when choosing a truck driving school?

What variables affect the cost of a CDL?

There are a variety of factors that determine the cost of getting a CDL, and these variables differ depending on which state you live in. Drivers should consult their Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) office to see if their state charges the following fees for getting a CDL:

  • CDL application fees.
  • Road test fees.
  • CDL skills test fees.
  • The license itself (Class A, B, C, etc.).
  • Additional endorsements (e.g. hazmat, doubles, etc.).

In addition to the costs associated with getting a CDL, drivers should also consider the cost of the truck driving school they attend. This price can also differ due to a variety of factors.

What affects the price of truck driving schools?

Although most schools have a 160-hour training program, each driving school may have their own training preferences and practices. These differences can often affect the price of a school’s courses and training programs. So, before choosing your driving school, consider how these factors could impact the price of each school:

  • Public vs. privately funded schools: Publicly funded schools are usually less expensive than privately funded driving schools. However, this often means that there is generally a longer wait time for attending publicly funded schools.
  • The school’s reputation and job placement record: Schools with better reputations and job placement records are typically more expensive. However, quality of education is more important than a low cost, so don’t just go with the cheapest option.
  • Equipment options: The trucks, technology and equipment available during training may impact the cost of truck driving schools. Auto-only options are growing in popularity within the industry.
  • Lodging and additional amenities: Some schools include lodging if the school isn’t close enough to commute from home, which can increase costs.

Covering the cost of CDL training

Getting a CDL shouldn’t have to be financial burden to potential truck drivers. That’s why Schneider offers seven ways to cover the cost of CDL training, including three options where Schneider helps drivers pay for training.

Schneider’s unique payment assistance options are as follows:

  • Tuition reimbursement
  • Paid CDL Training
  • CDL Apprenticeship Training (CAT)

The diagram and information provided below will help you discover which of these three Schneider funded training options might best fit your needs.

A chart displays the three options for getting a Class A CDL: Tuition reimbursement, Paid CDL Training Program and CDL Apprenticeship Training Program.

1. Tuition reimbursement - up to $400/month

If you have already received your Class A CDL and already attended a truck driving school or refresher course, Schneider’s tuition reimbursement program may be the perfect option for you.

Who is eligible for tuition reimbursement?

Schneider offers tuition reimbursement to drivers (21 years or older) who have received a Class A CDL within 12 months of accepting a full-time job with Schneider.

What forms do I need for tuition reimbursement?

  • Copy of receipt or loan agreement as proof of payment.
  • Copy of enrollment agreement or invoice from the truck driving school with the total cost of the CDL training program.

How does tuition reimbursement work?

The Schneider tuition reimbursement process differs depending on how drivers initially paid for their driving school education. Schneider can reimburse driver paid tuition, GI payments as well as lender paid tuition (loans). The processes for both options are as follows:

  • Driver paid for tuition (maximum reimbursement is $7,000)
    1. Solo drivers are reimbursed $200 per month (non-taxable) toward the tuition cost of the truck driving school.
    2. Team drivers are reimbursed $400 per month (non-taxable) toward the tuition cost of the truck driving school.
    3. The reimbursement is on the driver’s third paycheck each month.
    4. The first reimbursement is processed following 30 days of employment provided that the required documents are entered by the first Friday of the month in which the reimbursement occurs.
    5. Additional reimbursements are processed each month provided that the driver remains actively working with Schneider in a full-time driver capacity until the approved amount of reimbursement has been paid in full.
  • Military GI paid tuition: Candidates can pay for tuition using GI benefits. However, the reimbursed amounts will be taxable.
    1. Solo drivers are reimbursed $200 per month (taxable) toward the tuition cost of the truck driving school.
    2. Team drivers are reimbursed $400 (taxable) per month toward the tuition cost of the truck driving school.

Call our driver recruiting team to talk through GI tuition payment options at 877-872-1766.

  • Lender paid for tuition: loan (maximum reimbursement is $7,000)
    1. Lenders for solo drivers are reimbursed $200 per month (non-taxable) on behalf of the driver toward the tuition cost of the truck driving school.
    2. Lenders for team drivers are reimbursed $400 per month (non-taxable) on behalf of the driver toward the tuition cost of the truck driving school.
    3. The first lender reimbursement is processed on the 15th of the month following 30 days of employment, provided that the documentation has been entered by the first Friday of the month in which the reimbursement occurs.
    4. Additional reimbursements are processed each month provided that the driver remains actively working with Schneider in a full-time driver capacity until the approved amount of reimbursement has been paid in full.

This program is available for all driving jobs. 

Search and apply for positions near you or call our driver recruiting team to talk through options at 877-872-1766.

2. Paid CDL Training Program - Up-front payment and reserved job

Schneider is currently partnered with select truck driving schools. These schools offer automated transmission paid CDL training options. The courses offered at these schools include the classroom instruction, driver time, practice backing, practice shifting (manual only) and much more.

Who is eligible for Schneider’s Paid CDL Training program?

  • Candidates (21 years or older) looking to obtain a Class A CDL and either already have their Class A permit or are willing to get a Class A permit.
  • Candidates who live in an area with paid CDL training opportunities available.

What is included in Schneider’s Paid CDL Training program?

Through this program, Schneider pays for the candidate’s tuition to attend a truck driving school for two to four weeks in order to obtain their CDL. Schneider may also cover lodging expenses (if applicable). Candidates are guaranteed a Schneider driving job once training is complete.

Availability of this program is based on location. 

Search for Paid CDL Training opportunities near you or call the Schneider driver recruiting team at 877-872-1766.

3. CDL Apprenticeship Training (CAT) program - paid five-week course

Schneider offers a paid five-week CDL Apprenticeship Training (CAT) course at our Indianapolis and Charlotte locations. This program allows candidates to drive an automated transmission truck and even take the skills test at a Schneider facility.

Who is eligible for Schneider’s CAT program?

This option is available to individuals (21 years or older) who are willing to get or currently have a commercial learner’s permit from their state of residence and can travel to the specified training facility.

What is included in Schneider’s CAT program?

  • Paid on-the-job training.
  • Training held in Indianapolis and Charlotte
  • Training in automated transmission trucks.
  • Lodging and lunch are included.
  • Upon completion of the course candidate will take the Commercial Driver’s License Class A skills test at the Schneider facility.

Availability and eligibility for the Schneider CDL Apprenticeship Training (CAT) program may vary. 

Search for available CAT program opportunities in your area or call our driver recruiting team at 877-872-1766.

      Looking to start your truck driving career?

      Let Schneider help you get started by connecting you with the perfect, affordable training option for you. Search from a variety of available truck driving schools near you and begin your CDL training.

      About the author
      Author Picture

      Schneider Guy loves the "Big Orange." He's passionate about the trucking industry and connecting people to rewarding careers within it. He's been the eyes and ears of our company since our founding in 1935, and he's excited to interact with prospective and current Schneider associates through "A Slice of Orange."

      © Copyright 2021, Schneider. All rights reserved.