Best CDL Trucking Schools in Michigan – 2022 Round-up

| Last Updated: November 22, 2021

The demand for goods and services is only ever-increasing, which translates to more demand for truck drivers. Furthermore, the advantage in terms of little education requirement puts aspiring truck drivers at a highly secure career path. 

But there are a few requirements that need to be fulfilled before you can acquire your CDL and drive your vehicle of choice. The most important one is obtaining the necessary skills as well as experience on the road. 

This article lists some of the best CDL trucking schools in Michigan, bringing you one step closer to the job of your dreams. Read right head. 

Photo credit: wmcdl.com

How to Get a CDL in Michigan

To acquire your Michigan CDL, you’ll need to go through a rigorous process from documentation to meet physical requirements. Let’s discuss these in detail: 

Fulfill the Documentation Requirements

When you’re ready to apply for your CDL, you need to visit your local Secretary of State and present a list of documents, which may include, driver’s license, proof of social security number, permanent resident card, etc. 

Fill Out the CDL Certification Form

Next, you need to fill out the CDL certification form, which includes a statement that certifies that you meet all the commercial driver medical requirements. 

Meet the Driver Eligibility Requirements 

The driver eligibility requirements include no violations, revocations or suspensions, preventing you from driving a commercial motor vehicle. Other requirements include being a Michigan resident or a U.S citizen. 

Successfully Pass the Knowledge and Vision Tests

Because you must pass all the knowledge tests to acquire a CDL, passing this test is as crucial as any other step. 

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Temporary Instruction Permit

The temporary instruction permit or TIP permits you to practice driving under a CDL driver’s supervision. The driver should have a certification to drive the vehicle you want to operate. TIP is also required for taking any CDL skill test. 

Pay the CDL Group Designation and Endorsement Fee

Of course, every certification requires a few fees.

CDL Skill Test

After fulfilling all the requirements, you can contact an approved third-party testing organization to schedule a date and then take your CDL skill test. 

After Passing the CDL Skill Test

You will receive your Michigan Department of State Driver Skills Test Certificate. This test will be valid for one year. Take the certificate to the Secretary of State’s office and pay a correction fee to obtain a temporary CDL permit. 

You will receive your CDL about 10-14 days from the time your CDL permit was issued to you. 

How Much Does it Cost to Get a CDL in Michigan?

Getting a CDL license in Michigan can cost you anywhere from around $25 to $50. The fee for an operator license is $25 standard and $45 enhanced, while the fee for a chauffeur license is $35 standard and $50 enhanced. 

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CDL Variations Available in Michigan 

There are many different CDL licenses offered by the State of Michigan, depending on the type of vehicle you want to operate. Let’s go over what these are:

Class A CDL

This license is required to operate combination vehicles with a GCWR of above 26,000 lbs, and a GVWR of the vehicle being towed is more than 10,000 lbs. 

Class B CDL

The Class B CDL license is required to operate a single or combination vehicle. The GVWR of the single-vehicle should be more than 26,000, while the vehicle to be towed should be less than 10,000 lbs. 

Class C CDL

This license is required to operate a single or combination vehicle that is not included in Class A or B. The vehicle should be designed to transport 16 or more passengers, including the driver, or used to transport hazardous materials

Review of the Best CDL Trucking Schools in Michigan

This section elaborates on some of the best CDL trucking schools in Michigan. We’ve provided all the important details to make choosing the best school easier for you. 

1. Suburban Truck Driver Training School

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Suburban Truck Driver Training School

Suburban Truck Driver Training School is one of the best truck driving schools in Michigan. They have some great courses and programs meant to make you an expert truck driver. These include:

  • CDL Class A

There are two variations of this program, with one requiring around 162 hours to complete while the other requires 100 hours. This will include you going over Michigan CDL Manual, taking practice quizzes & tests, learning mapping, safety procedures, and much more. You will also learn other skills such as maneuvering, with one on-the-road driving lessons with experienced instructors. After your road training is complete, you will take your road tests and graduate.

  • CDL training for veterans

This is a training program for VA students and other eligible beneficiaries. 

  • CDL Refresher courses

Refresher courses are offered to individuals who have already completed a truck driver training course or own a CDL but have not been on the road for driving a CDL vehicle in a long time. 

Program Details

The school provides a detailed schedule for classes on their website if you are interested. They have some of the best skilled instructors available who have years of trucking experience. Suburban Truck Driver Training School has a great and positive environment meant to foster learning and to get you ready for the trucking lifestyle. They have an impressive fleet with some of the latest equipment for you to use in your learning. 

Furthermore, they have an amazing job placement assistance program that will help you every step of the way. Some of their partners include Swift Transportation, US Express, and Werner Enterprises.

2. West Michigan CDL

Trucking School Details

  • Locations: 3388 Busch Drive SW. Grandville, MI 49418
  • Website: http://www.wmcdl.com/4-week-course/ 
  • Average Tuition Cost: inexpensive
  • Average Class Size: not available 
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: recognized by the State of Michigan

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By West Michigan CDL

Testing services provided by West Michigan CDL include:

  • Class A CDL: hands-on experience for driving a semi tractor-trailer
  • Class B CDL: experiential training to drive straight trucks and trailers
  • Class C CDL: first-hand experience in terms of driving passenger vehicles and school buses

The course duration is three weeks for each training program.

Program Details

West Michigan CDL is the way to go if you’re not interested in in-classroom training and want to get hands-on experience on the road. The three-week CDL program is unlike any other because you’ll begin driving on your very first day. 

The school lays a strong emphasis on behind-the-wheel training to help its students master the art of safe maneuvering of a CDL vehicle. The course will provide you with maximum driving time to prepare you for your career. 

Furthermore, you’ll be equipped with all the necessary experience and skill requirements of an entry-level truck driver. The company provides modern equipment and a clean facility with numerous indoor bays to ensure that students remain safe and comfortable while training during inclement weather. Lastly, the company provides CDL skill testing at no additional cost. 

3. Tri Area Trucking School

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Tri-Area Trucking School

Tri-Area Trucking School proudly offers training courses in the following CDL programs 

  • Class A CDL

This is a training program for driving tractor-trailers to prepare candidates for the CDL driving exam. The full program is of 160 hours, while for those who only want on-the-road training and have passed their written test, it’s 80 hours. A refresher is for 24 hours for those who have prior truck driving experience

  • Class B CDL

The Class B CDL training program is designed to prepare candidates for the CDL examination and driving trucks. The full program is for 24 hours while refreshers are also offered who’s class times are scheduled on an individual basis. 

Program Details

The school helps its students in preparing for a Commercial Drivers License in three weeks. All their programs are hands-on and are specially designed to get candidates out of the classroom and on the road. 

Students have the opportunity to get behind the wheels as soon as the training starts. This field-based training, in turn, helps them learn on-the-job skills and acquire experience faster than usual. The program further aims to provide all relevant instructions and knowledge to aspiring truck drivers so they’re successful in both obtaining their CDL and their career. 

Lastly, the school helps its graduates in acquiring a job by encouraging them to contact them if they need help with their job search.

4. U.S. Truck Driver Training School

Trucking School Details

  • Locations: 6500 15. Mile Rd, Sterling Heights MI, 48312
  • Website: https://usdts.edu/   
  • Average Tuition Cost: ranges from $1500 – $8995 
  • Average Class Size: not available 
  • Licensing Credentials and Accreditations: approved as a third-party testing facility for the state of Michigan, accredited by the Council on Occupational Education, approved by the Michigan State Approving Agency for the training of VA students and other eligible beneficiaries

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By U.S Truck Driver Training School

U.S Truck Driver Training School provides aspiring truck drivers with the following programs and short courses:

  • Professional Tractor-Trailer Training Program 602

The program is designed for individuals interested in learning more and gaining certification beyond Class A CDL. Students will get the opportunity to learn to operate multiple vehicles, including but not limited to, sleeper cabs, day cabs, class B vehicles, passenger vehicles, flatbed trailers, and dry vans. 

  • Entry Level Tractor-Trailer Training Program 160 for Class A CDL

This is an entry-level tractor-trailer training program. It’s designed to prepare individuals for the entry-level requirements needed to obtain the Class A CDL. Students here will receive lab, range, and road instructions throughout their training. The full-time course for Class A CDL students is a minimum of four weeks long. On the other hand, the part-time course for Class A CDL students is a minimum of ten weeks long. 

  • Class A CDL Refresher Courses

The refresher course is designed for individuals possessing a temporary instruction permit or those that are to be employed or are already employed by a company. There are two courses offered under this term with a duration of one week (40 hours) and two weeks (80 hours). 

  • 40 Hour Class B CDL Course

The CDL B course is designed to teach individuals about a box truck’s basic operations with a six-speed manual transmission with air brakes. This is a strictly hands-on course. Upon successful completion of this 40-hour program, students will be assigned a designated time to take their State of Michigan CDL skills exam. 

  • 16 Hour CDL “B/P” Training Program

This program is made to teach individuals about the basic operations of a passenger bus with an automatic transmission with air brakes. This certification is necessary for anyone who wants to operate a commercial motor vehicle weighing 26,001 lbs or more and a towed vehicle weighing no more than 10,000 lbs. This is a hands-on course. After completing this course, students will be allotted a designated time to take their State of Michigan CDL skills exam.

  • 80 Hour Class B CDL Training Course

The 80-hour class B CDL course is designed to teach individuals how to operate a box truck with a six-speed manual transmission with air brakes. This course incorporates 40 hours of classroom instructions and 40-hours of hands-on training. Once the course is completed and the student has successfully passed the exam, they will possess an unrestricted Class B CDL. 

Program Details

Each training program provided by the school has been carefully designed to cater to very specific criteria and requirements. So, this is an excellent school for individuals who have specific needs regarding the acquisition of their Commercial Drivers License for a particular vehicle. 

The programs are a conglomeration of classroom instructions and behind-the-wheel training, so you can pick and choose whichever suits you best. Students will be taught valuable skills, including how to safely operate on public roadways and pre-trip safety inspections. 

There’ll also be rigorous training regarding basic controls and skills associated with the State of Michigan CDL exam, including straight-line, 90-degree, and offset backing. Knowledge of things like lane control, sign identification, hazardous perceptions, and maximum heights of bridges will also be taught. 

5. Michigan Truck Driving School

Trucking School Details

Certifications and Endorsements Offered By Michigan Truck Driving School

Michigan Truck Driving School is known for providing two of the following CDL certifications

  • Class A CDL

This is a 162-hour training program encompassing classroom, yard, and on-the-road training. This is a certified program that meets and exceeds the criteria set by a majority of truckload freight companies. 

  • Class B CDL

This is an 80-hour training program constituting classroom, yard, and on-the-road training. This program covers knowledge of air brakes and pre-and post-trip inspections. 

Program Details

Both programs offered by Michigan Truck Driving School are administered by third-party examiners and provide the right kind of knowledge and skills to acquire your CDL A or B license. 

The CDL A program provides additional behind-the-wheel training and eligibility for Hazmat endorsement. This course is specially designed for individuals who have never driven a manual transmission vehicle.

CDL B provides on-the-road navigation through some different roadways. The course also helps you in training for procedures such as straight-line backing, coupling, and uncoupling of the trailer, 45-degree pull up, right-hand turn, 90-degree alley docking, and sliding of the tandems.

6. All Stars Truck Driving School

Trucking School Details



After spending years on the road, I had a lot of time to think about the hardships that came with the trucking industry. I realized there was an opportunity to lend a hand a create a resource for truckers by truckers. With the help of my tech-savvy son, I built Trucker Geek as a way to show people that becoming a driver doesn’t need to be a stressful headache.