Many people think they can take a CDL training course and get a license without much work.

However, there’s a lot more to it than that. Most people know they need to be over 21 and that they’ll be away from family a lot, but there are other factors to consider.

It takes a lot of time and effort to obtain a license. So before committing, consider these five things to know before beginning CDL training.

Driving History

Your driving record will play a significant role in whether or not you can even begin training. Many trucking companies won’t hire individuals with a bad driving history.

Furthermore, your insurance rates will increase, affecting your ability to lease a truck. Before you begin the training process, check your state’s requirements and driving history to ensure you’re eligible.

Criminal History

Potential employers will also conduct a criminal background check. While a minor offense may not disqualify you, anything significant could.

Applicants with felonies might have difficulty finding a training program to accept them and could end up disqualified from certain positions. You should check your state’s requirements and disclose any convictions before beginning the training process.

Medical Record

Many people don’t realize there’s a strict physical requirement to be a trucking independent contractor. You sit for long periods, often in uncomfortable positions. This can lead to or exacerbate health problems like obesity, high blood pressure, and diabetes if you already have physical issues.

You’ll need to have a physical before trying to get your American or Canadian CDL.Be honest on your application and with the doctor performing the physical.

Driving With Responsibilities

Trucking is a very demanding job. You will be on the road for long periods, often without rest. The long hours of driving can lead to fatigue and inattention, which can be dangerous when operating a large vehicle.

If you have family members who you need to care for at home, such as young children or elderly parents, you’ll need to make arrangements for them before beginning training. Being a primary caretaker for someone is often not conducive to a trucking lifestyle.

Lots of Studying

Some people think that the most challenging part of getting your CDL is getting behind the wheel, but that’s not necessarily true. There’s a lot of studying involved in getting your license.

You’ll need to know everything from state and federal regulations to the different parts of the truck. Be prepared to spend long hours reading and taking practice tests before getting on the road.

Trucks are an integral part of the economy and society, but they require more than basic driving skills. Trucking independent contractors must have clean criminal records and good health to operate safely.

Furthermore, truck driving is very taxing on the body and mind. Before beginning CDL training, know these factors and decide if the job is for you.