How to Get Your Class A CDL With CRST
CRST is the nation’s largest team carrier and trains thousands of new drivers every year. We train students to become professional drivers better than anyone else. We take great pride in bringing many new professional OTR drivers into the industry each year. We contract with about 30 independent driver training schools across the country and as of mid-July of 2013, we are operating our own driving school located in Cedar Rapids, IA. These schools provide our students with a quality education and training program, which leads to the student’s earning a Class A Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) from the state where the school is located. We send you to a school that regularly trains students for CRST in a 2, 3, or 4-week program. They lay the foundation for you as a student driver. Classes generally start every week of the year. This is Phase I.
After graduating from school, you will attend a 3 or 4 day Orientation program at one of CRST’s terminals to prepare you for your actual training on the road. Orientation is considered Phase II. When you graduate from Orientation, you will be matched with a CRST Lead Driver (trainer) and enter Phase III. This is the hands-on finishing program that provides actual on–the-job training. You will move freight across the nation’s roads and highways, develop your skills and knowledge, and experience life on the road. After Phase III, you will head to one of our terminals for a one day exit interview and road test. Afterwards you will be set up with a co-driver and go on the road for up to 2 weeks then go home for up to 5 days.
You have two choices regarding who pays for your training: CRST’s company-sponsored training or you may prepay your training costs. Each has its advantages.
CRST-sponsored training to get your CDL with an 8-month contract
If you need to obtain your class A CDL, but lack the funds to do so, we offer an outstanding company-sponsored training program. With no credit checks! In return, we ask that you work for CRST Expedited for eight months. At the end of eight months, you are free to stay or leave, it’s that simple. You will sign an 8-month contract and be what we call a “contract” student. CRST will not deduct the cost of your training from your paychecks.
Payroll Deductions to Expect
The items listed below are paid for by CRST up front. These items are only for costs associated with school. Paycheck deductions will begin after your sixth week of employment with CRST. Your total payroll deductions will not exceed $40 per week for all of these items combined.
Bus Ticket to school – This cost depends on the distance traveled. If you provide your own transportation, there will be no deduction.
- DOT Physical/DOT drug and alcohol test – The total cost is $100 ($50 for each).
- Lodging – The average cost is $150 per week. If you do not use our lodging, there will be no deduction.
Prepayment plan to get your CDL with no contract and a higher starting rate of pay!
Another option to obtain your CDL is to prepay your training costs. In return, you do not have to sign any contract and you will start driving at a higher rate of pay than a contract student. (You would be a “non-contract” student.) The prepayment amount is $2,500 and must be paid prior to starting orientation by money order, or it may be charged to a credit card. Compare this to private truck schools that charge $3,000 to $7,000 for a class A CDL!
Under this plan, you do not have to pay the CRST processing fee of $50, for transportation to school, for the physical or drug test, or for lodging. You do have to pay for any CDL permit or licensing fees.