A common question in our industry is, “What’s the difference between Class A and Class B driver’s licenses?”
If you type it into Google, you’ll likely get a bunch of different answers, so we wanted to take a moment and simplify it for anyone looking to break into the trucking industry.
Below we’ll talk about the major differences between a Class A and Class B license and detail how each license works in the logistics industry.
What Is a Class A Truck Driver License?
Class A CDLs are also known as universal commercial driver licenses. Why universal? Getting a Class A license certifies you to drive virtually all commercial vehicles that trucking companies require you to drive.
A Class A driver’s license allows a driver to operate any combination of vehicles with a total weight of 26,001 pounds or more. They can also operate a vehicle with a towing weight of more than 10,000 pounds. This includes all semi-trucks, 18-wheelers, and flatbeds.
Additionally, someone with a Class A license can also operate the vehicles someone with a Class B can drive, which is what we are talking about next.
What Is a Class B Truck Driver License?
A Class B truck driver’s license allows a driver to operate a vehicle or a combination of vehicles weighing 26,000 pounds or more. This license also allows you to tow something weighing less than 10,001 pounds.
In the logistics industry, Class B drivers typically drive straight trucks, box trucks, and delivery vehicles.
Class B CDLs are a step down from Class A licenses. If you get this license, you will not be able to drive as many types of trucks as a Class A CDL holder.
Class A vs. Class B Truck Licenses: What’s the Difference?
Most people who want a long-term career in the trucking industry get a Class A CDL. That prevents you from having to upgrade your license. But if you only want to drive Class B trucks, a Class A license may be unnecessary.
Still can’t figure out which type of CDL is for you? Learn more about the similarities and differences between Class A and B CDLs below.
Class A vs. Class B Training
You have to undergo classroom and behind-the-wheel training to receive a CDL license, no matter the license class. However, the training and coursework required for some CDLs are easier than others.
For example, Class A CDL training can be intensive. You need more training and better skills to maneuver larger trucks. Depending on what you haul, you may also need special endorsements that will increase your workload.
Class A vs. Class B Job Opportunities
One of the most significant differences between Class A and Class B CDLs is the types of job opportunities they confer. A Class A license is best for those wishing to make a career in logistics.
With a Class A CDL, there will be no limit to your job prospects and the companies you can work for.
Class B CDLs, on the other hand, limit your job opportunities. You cannot work for most trucking companies without a Class A license. Additionally, there aren’t many employers looking for Class B drivers, so competition is fierce.
Already Have Your CDL? Apply for a Job at 24/7 Express Logistics
Are you looking for a CDL job? 24/7 Express Logistics is a locally-owned and operated Midwest logistics company that has been around for over 20 years.
We’re looking for both Class A and Class B drivers in Kansas City and St. Louis with two or more years of experience to join our team.
Some of the benefits of working for 24/7 include:
- Company drivers receive full benefits, including medical, dental, vision, pet insurance, company-provided life insurance, voluntary legal plan, and voluntary short-term and long-term disability plans.
- We offer a 401k retirement plan with up to a 4% company match.
- You get holiday pay and paid time off.
- Our drivers’ work hours are because we take a personalized approach to schedule to give them time to take care of personal items or family events
- Work is consistent and full-time (overtime is available if desired)
- Home every day because we only operate throughout the Midwest
- Quarterly safety bonus for eligible employees
- Our fleet management performs quick repairs
- Our dispatch team communicates well with drivers to limit confusion
- Our leadership cares about you not just as a driver but as a person
- All employees go through a comprehensive training program and receive continued education