CDL without trucking school

by JT
(Nebraska)

I recently obtained my class A CDL after driving a flatbed locally with a friend. Over several weeks of local driving on my own time after work I took the class A test and failed. I studied up on the stuff I missed then took it again and passed.
I then called a local trucking company recruiter to ask about their company, benefits etc etc. His first question was "do you have OTR experience". Of course I had to say no that all my experience was local. He immediately ended the conversation and said he could only hire OTR with minimum of 2yrs experience.
My question to you is did I make a mistake by getting my CDL without the help of a school? Do all companies require formal CDL schooling?

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Oct 09, 2012
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trucking school
by: Anonymous

I have experience in driving trucks. i am 17 most kids my age brage about driving a pick up at that i learned how to drive in a log truck.

i run 18 in march.I don't want to go to a trucking school when i have the resources to do it my self i just want to know how to go about it thank you

May 15, 2009
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Thanks for the trucking school advice!!!!!!!!!!!!
by: JT (in Nebraska)

Thanks for all of your comments/advice. It is great to talk to positive people who are willing to offer good advice. I'll take that advice. I plan on driving with my buddy (he has a Freightliner Century) every chance I get after I get off work.
I think the saying goes.. if you do what you love then you'll never work a day in your life. So until I get on with a company I guess my buddy can enjoy the free labor by letting me drive!
Thanks again.

May 15, 2009
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JT does it big in Nebraska getting CDL without formal training
by: Hervy

Great Job getting those CDL license JT!

Some great advice for you in all the comments too, thanks everyone.

They are right JT, getting that CDL without training was definitely not a mistake. I mean you saved a lot of money, even if you were to have to go to training later just to say that you did (Which you shouldn't have to do)

By the way, if you went to school would you learn something? Yeah, so don't let no one fool you there? I only mention that cause I don't want people to feel like they went or are going to truck driver training school for nothing. Now do some get carried away with pricing, sure but its the trainee's responsibility for checking around for a price that is resonable. Schools serve a purpose and a lot of guys wouldn't get in the industry without them.

But anyway back to you JT, as was stated, you really have to just keep calling like everyone said, someone will give you a chance.

To be honest, with you, there is a chance that you might not like the job you get which might be why there is a vacancy because it is true that most people will want experience but you just never know. You never never know.

Nebraska has a lot of small operations, expecially large farmers with their own trucks for grain and such. Check those thrifty nickel papers and stop at these farmers yards where you see trucks too and see if they need a driver, you may even want to agree to going a couple of weeks without pay if it comes down to that just so they can see how bad you want the job. Make sure what every opportunity you get to shine and be on time and fulfill or exceed expectations. Let your attitude shine when you talk to people to.

Your attitude and personality will have to make up for your lack of over the road experience. If people like you as a person they are more likely to give you a chance.

That's in trucking, and in life.
Good luck,
Hervy

May 14, 2009
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The Old Man
by: Anonymous

You cant get experience without the opportunity!
The voters of this country just put a man in the highest office HELLO! "without experience".
Truck driving has been around since trucks were invented - over 100 years!

Truck driver schools- 10-20 years maybe?
Wonder how this industry got to where it is today?
I'm all for improvement, and that said, all the problems in this industry are not the drivers!!!!
Ask anyone how you get experience and you will probably hear- "start doing it"

You are already qualified by your home state to legally drive a commercial vehicle anywhere in the U.S. and probably Canada and Mexico.
Keep driving local till opportunity get better!

When some company says they cant hire you, just take it that you wouldn't be happy there anyway.
Best of luck to you!

May 14, 2009
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You done good getting your CDL and without formal training
by: Anonymous

I am proud of you. Too many fall victim to the schools and big company scams. Keep on keepin on and you will find something.

May 14, 2009
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JT has gotten CDL and now needs training
by: Jimmy

Some trucking companies will give you a chance, some won't. Just call around. You're OK having gotten you CDL on your own. You will need training cause you're not experienced yet. Jimmy

May 14, 2009
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COOL. CDL without the extra expenses.
by: Anonymous

You didn't make a mistake, you have shown yourself and everyone else that you can get what you want without being ripped off by the trucking schools! I have seen rookies from schools that don't need to be on the highway!

Most of us old school drivers started the same way, and these guys are the backbone of the trucking industry! It doesn't take a corporate policy committee meeting to make a truck driver or to make sure freight gets delivered!

It takes the roll up your sleeves and get it done people like you and me, and alot of hard work and dedication! Now you need a chance to get rolling and get some windshield time! The big companies can't see the forest for the trees, or they would be trying to get you on the road!

The bad thing is the economy now and finding your way to get started. It's not easy because the big companies want to control everything to their advantage, but don't give up!

Somewhere someone is going to give you a chance, start talking to people face to face, and get your foot in the door ,even if it is switching trailers on a yard, which is good experience too, bug the people till they hire you or run you off!

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