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What is the Commercial Learner's Permit?

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The Commercial Learner's Permit (CLP) is the written portion of the CDL testing. It will allow the driver to operate a commercial motor vehicle, while supervised by a valid CDL holder. The CLP will be valid for up to 180 days, but the driver is not permitted to take the driving skills test until at least 14 days after getting the CLP.  

Why do I Need a Permit?

Basically, before you can do any practice driving in a commercial motor vehicle, you will need a learner's permit, the same as you would for a regular driver's license.

FMCSA - How do I get a Commercial Driver's License?

The Learner's Permit  (CLP) Test

At a minimum, you will need to pass (General Knowledge, Air Brakes, & Combination Vehicles) tests to get your Commercial Learner's Permit. If you fail the CLP test, you'll be allowed to take it again, and the rules vary by state. 

Most states will allow you to just walk-in and take your permit test without an appointment. You will need to check with your state DMV or licensing bureau on specific requirements for what kind of identification you need to bring. 

What areas will be covered on the CLP exam?

For just the basic learner's permit, there are 3 sections:


  • General Knowledge Test

  • Air Brakes Test

  • Combination Vehicles


Here is the Link to the GEORGIA CLASS A  (CDL PERMIT TEST) 


Most states will allow you to take all of the additional endorsement tests, except for hazmat, at the same time as your general permit test.

How Many Questions are on the CLP Test?

It will again vary by state, but generally about 50 for the General Knowledge, and 20-25 each for air brakes and combination vehicles. 

How Many Times can I
re-take the CLP Test if I fail it?

If you fail the permit test, you will be able to re-take it, but the rules on that will vary by state. Normally, there will be a minimum waiting period, which will increase each time you fail. 

Site Map


  Government Websites:


  A Guide to Getting Started


  Truck Driving Schools

  Truck Driving Jobs

  Get In the Game


  Surviving The First Year


  A Few Tips For Owner Operators


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