The Best CDL Schools

LearnHowToBecome Team
Laura Leavitt
December 21, 2021

LearnHowToBecome.org is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

Discover your program in minutes

Driving trucks is a career that is in steady demand, sends you all over the country, and has competitive pay and benefits. However, it isn't for everyone — you need to be a skilled driver of very large semi-trucks commonly used for hauling freight.

Finding the best CDL training schools can help you get the training and practice to start a truck driving career.

15 Best CDL Schools

We chose the following 15 CDL schools because they all:

Here are 15 of the best CDL schools in the country in alphabetical order:

All-State Career School-Pittsburgh West Mifflin, Pennsylvania

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $14,969
Graduation rate: 50%

All-State Career School offers coursework specifically in tractor-trailer driving and prep for the CDL itself, either Class A or Class B. They have a special advantage of offering substantial employment coaching through interview prep and interpersonal relations practice sessions.

Apollo Career Center Lima, Ohio

School type: Public
Net price: $353
Graduation rate: 77%

Apollo Career Center's driving-based coursework includes a Class A CDL course, a Class B License course, and even Forklift operation courses. Working with Apollo can help you cross-train to be useful in various aspects of the freight transportation and supply chain world.

CET-Colton Colton, California

School type: Private not-for-profit
Net price: $16,084
Graduation rate: 71%

CET's accelerated 10-week course both helps you prepare for the commercial driving test while also getting you ready to maintain a vehicle and prep for job interviews and resume writing.

Delta Technical College Horn Lake, Mississippi

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $18,762
Graduation rate: 71%

With both a 20-day course in CDL training and a much more comprehensive 20-week truck driving course, Delta Technical College gives you options to get on the road immediately or to get a more thorough education first.

Fortis Institute Forty Fort, Pennsylvania

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $17,807
Graduation rate: 60%

The Fortis Advanced Tractor Trailer Driving program is helpful for getting the CDL license while also getting a diploma that shows future employers that you've invested in in-depth training about the career itself.

M T Training Center Grand Prairie, Texas

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $6,233
Graduation rate: 79%

M T Training Center offers multiple tracks, including different classes of CDL training and a specialized program trajectory that offers CDL training for people considering becoming entrepreneurs.

National Tractor Trailer School Inc Liverpool, New York

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $17,807
Graduation rate: 83%

A dedicated school with a very high graduation rate, National Tractor Trailer School is committed to both getting strong financial aid options for students and promoting excellence through behind-the-wheel elements of the courses.

New England Tractor Trailer Training School of Connecticut Somers, Connecticut

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $14,651
Graduation rate: 71%

New England Tractor Trailer Training School of Connecticut offers a particularly strong program because, unlike other vocational schools, it focuses almost entirely on tractor trailer-based courses. The expertise is strong, and the instructors are high-quality.

New England Tractor Trailer Training School of Massachusetts North Andover, Massachusetts

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $16,386
Graduation rate: 72%

This tractor-trailer training school has locations in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island, giving various location options for people looking to get their CDL in New England.

New England Tractor Trailer Training School of Rhode Island Pawtucket, Rhode Island

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $12,863
Graduation rate: 69%

NETTTS prides itself on offering substantial practice time and on-the-road practice so that you'll graduate fully comfortable with your new skills as a professional truck driver.

North American Trade Schools Baltimore, Maryland

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $12,361
Graduation rate: 82%

North American Trade Schools focuses on taking you from the theoretical, classroom-based parts of understanding truck driving through to practicing enough on an actual truck to feel confident when testing for your CDL.

Penn Commercial Business/Technical School Washington, Pennsylvania

School type: Private for-profit
Net price: $14,911
Graduation rate: 66%

The Penn Commercial course is offered in three formats, with daytime, evening, and weekend offerings. While the weekend program takes 12 weeks to the daytime's six weeks, the ability to work the weekdays can make this a great way to transition careers.

Rosedale Technical College Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

School type: Private not-for-profit
Net price: $19,732
Graduation rate: 86%

With 70 years of experience, Rosedale brings a lot of depth of understanding to the CDL truck driving program that they offer in a 10-week format. They partner with companies locally hiring truck drivers to do career introductions and placement.

Tennessee College of Applied Technology-Jackson Jackson, Tennessee

School type: Public
Net price: $8,799
Graduation rate: 79%

From strong defensive driving techniques to information on keeping your trip logs and records correctly, Tennessee College of Applied Technology offers a comprehensive eight-week CDL and truck driving course.

York County School of Technology-Adult & Continuing Education York, Pennsylvania

School type: Public
Net price: $8,228
Graduation rate: 81%

With a live simulator and on-the-road training, York leverages technology to keep you safe and get you comfortable with truck driving. Ask about their free options for eligible military members.

How to Choose the Right CDL Training School

Many of the best CDL training schools will include connections to particular companies in the area that hire graduates quickly. If the program can discuss how they help to place graduates, they are likely to be one of the best CDL schools.

You can also look at the training and experience of the instructors. There should be bios available for some of the instructors, and if they aren't on the website, you can ask the school who teaches the coursework. Ideally, these instructors will have experienced the day-to-day realities of truck driving but also have extensive experience teaching.

How to Become a Truck Driver

Typically, truck driving begins with having a valid standard driver's license and either a high school diploma or a GED. Then, either in a combined program or separately, you'll want to enter a professional truck driving program that teaches you about the job and the skills needed and prepares you for your CDL license exam.

A CDL training school course can be a few weeks, a few months, or even a year long.

Other Ways to Become a Truck Driver

If you have a background in logistics, have obtained your CDL for a different kind of driving career, or if you already work in another part of a company that employs truck drivers, you may be able to enter the career laterally rather than through a professional program. However, education programs often provide placement assistance, helping you transition seamlessly to your first job in trucking, so choosing one of the best CDL schools is a valuable path for those without relevant experience.

Paying for CDL Classes

Truck Driver Scholarships

Women Trucking Foundation Scholarship

Companies with Tuition Reimbursement Incentive Programs (TRIPs)

Many companies that employ truck drivers offer CDL classes which they'll reimburse after you spend a period of time working for the company. Check out some of the companies in your area and ask if any of them offer this option.

FAQs on CDL Training Schools

Do you have to take a CDL program to become a truck driver?

While self-study is technically an option for obtaining a CDL, most employers will want you to have the comprehensive education component of one of the best CDL schools.

What will you learn in CDL school?

You'll learn the mechanics of operating the truck, including road safety and strategies for driving the vehicle. You'll also learn how to plan trips, interact with customers and the trucking company, keep accurate records, and notice when your truck needs maintenance.

How long is CDL school?

Courses vary in length, with an average of four to seven weeks for programs that go full-time, five days a week, with longer programs generally being less intensive.

How much does CDL school cost?

While courses vary a lot, the best CDL schools on our list average almost $13,300.

Become Team
Laura Leavitt
Contributing Writer

Latest Posts

LearnHowToBecome.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

View the most relevant programs for your interests and compare them by tuition, acceptance rate, and other factors important to you.