Getting A CDL Permit Before Going To Prime

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Sean's Comment
member avatar

I'm a bit unsure of the advantages and disadvantages of getting my CDL permit before I head Prime in Springfield, MO.

I'm not sure what state I'm going to be calling home yet. I'm currently in NC, but I may need to move to DE or PA to find a suitable "residence". I don't own a home and will not be renting while I'm out on the road. I just need to figure out which friend or family member's address to use.

So because of this I'm hesitant to get my permit now just to find out I need to move to another state later. I could just wait until I make my final decision, but my recruiter (Don) made it seem like the easiest thing to do is to get my permit and license in MO and then transfer it to my home state once I complete all the training.

I never doubted this would be the best move for me given my personal situation, however, it seems that a lot of people on TT who choose Prime recommend getting the permit prior to arrival.

Can anyone clarify the following for me?

1) If you obtain the permit from your home state (outside of MO) where do you take the final written and driving tests to get the license? Do you and your trainer drive back to your home state to take care of it?

2) What exactly are the advantages of having the permit prior to arriving as it relates to Prime? In what ways are you ahead of the game? I've heard that it does not create any major delays during orientation.

3) Basically the same question as above, but what are the disadvantages of waiting until I get to Springfield to get my permit? It's the same question really, but maybe it's easier to answer if you explain what the disadvantages would be.

I don't have a date from Prime as of yet, so I have plenty of time to figure it all out on my own. I'm just curious to hear how y'all see things in case I'm missing something.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Jopa's Comment
member avatar
Best Answer!

I'm a bit unsure of the advantages and disadvantages of getting my CDL permit before I head Prime in Springfield, MO.

I'm not sure what state I'm going to be calling home yet. I'm currently in NC, but I may need to move to DE or PA to find a suitable "residence". I don't own a home and will not be renting while I'm out on the road. I just need to figure out which friend or family member's address to use.

So because of this I'm hesitant to get my permit now just to find out I need to move to another state later. I could just wait until I make my final decision, but my recruiter (Don) made it seem like the easiest thing to do is to get my permit and license in MO and then transfer it to my home state once I complete all the training.

I never doubted this would be the best move for me given my personal situation, however, it seems that a lot of people on TT who choose Prime recommend getting the permit prior to arrival.

Can anyone clarify the following for me?

1) If you obtain the permit from your home state (outside of MO) where do you take the final written and driving tests to get the license? Do you and your trainer drive back to your home state to take care of it?

2) What exactly are the advantages of having the permit prior to arriving as it relates to Prime? In what ways are you ahead of the game? I've heard that it does not create any major delays during orientation.

3) Basically the same question as above, but what are the disadvantages of waiting until I get to Springfield to get my permit? It's the same question really, but maybe it's easier to answer if you explain what the disadvantages would be.

I don't have a date from Prime as of yet, so I have plenty of time to figure it all out on my own. I'm just curious to hear how y'all see things in case I'm missing something.

OK, it's really simple, actually . . .

1)Yes, since you have the time (no date set for Prime yet, right?) spend the time you need to do the complete "High Road Trucker" course on this website. Once you do that, go to your home state DMV and take the computer based tests (there are three parts) and get your CDL-A permit . . . while you are at it, take any endorsement tests they will let you take . . . you will FLY through the tests (guaranteed) and impress the heck out of the DMV clerk and your fellow test takers ("WHATTT?? You're done ALREADY? How'd you do THAT?") Why? Cause it's one more thing you don't have to think about in Springfield . . .

2) Advantages . . . well, your DONE with one big step and you don't have to devote any more time to it ever again . . . big advantage . . . AND you will impress your new friends at Prime ("Wish I had done that . . . you rock!" - well that's a bit over the top but you get my drift . . . ) . . . lots more time to concentrate on the Pre-trip stuff which is more complicated than you first think . . . for help on that find the thread here on TT by Daniel B. all about that subject . . .

3) Disadvantages? In a word "none" . . .

When you get through the orientation week, Prime will expect you to have your CDL-A permit AND a tanker endorsement . . .Permit?? Been there, done that . . . now when you go to the Missouri DMV for the tanker endorsement (don't forget to brush up on the rules with the "High Road Trucker" program) you will surrender your home state CDL-A permit to the MO-DMV and Prime will give you a form stating that the address of the Campus Inn is your current domicile - all very legit - so now you have a Missouri CDL-A permit WITH a (required by Prime) tanker endorsement . . . now you are all ready for you PSD training (Prime Student Driver) which will give you the skills to come back to the terminal in a couple of weeks and TRI-FECTA BABY!! (pass all three skill tests the first time - worth a fat $250 to you and a fatter $750 to your trainer) . . . now you have a n official Missouri CDL-A license (so you have to talk with a slight twang - after all, it's not the DEEP south, now is it? That's the hardest part for a California boy like myself because EVERYONE knows us Californians have NO accent at all - except WARSH - I have no idea where that "R" came from, I mean who ever heard of WARSHINGTON anyway?)

So, most states let you swap your new Missouri license for one from your home state for a fee . . . unfortunately, Nevada is not one of them so I still carry a Missouri license - I know, what's Nevada got to do with this whole thing? Long story . . .

Jopa

smile.gifshocked.png

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PSD:

Prime Student Driver

Prime Inc has a CDL training program and the first phase is referred to as PSD. You'll get your permit and then 10,000 miles of on the road instruction.

The following is from Prime's website:

Prime’s PSD begins with you obtaining your CDL permit. Then you’ll go on the road with a certified CDL instructor for no less than 75 hours of one-on-one behind the wheel training. After training, you’ll return to Prime’s corporate headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, for final CDL state testing and your CDL license.

Obtain CDL Permit / 4 Days

  • Enter program, study and test for Missouri CDL permit.
  • Start driving/training at Prime Training Center in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Work toward 40,000 training dispatched miles (minimum) with food allowance while without CDL (Food allowance is paid back with future earnings).

On-the-Road Instruction / 10,000 Miles

  • Train with experienced certified CDL instructor for 3-4 weeks in a real world environment.
  • Get 75 hours of behind-the-wheel time with one-on-one student/instructor ratio.
  • Earn 10,000 miles toward total 40,000 miles needed.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Brett Aquila's Comment
member avatar
Great Answer!

Sean, we always recommend getting your permit before you go to Prime because that will allow you to immediately move on to other areas of training while the rest of the class sits around studying the CDL manual and gets shipped back and forth to the DMV to take tests. So it puts you ahead of the group by a few days. You're not going to soar to glory if you show up with your permit, nor will you crash in defeat if you don't. But it will get you ahead of the class just a bit and impress the people at Prime just a bit.

These Company-Sponsored Training Programs are really more like tryouts to make a team more than they are a school. Yes, obviously it's a school and they'll train you very well. But the entire time they're evaluating everything about you because they're trying to determine as quickly as possible which students have the potential to become safe, hard working, reliable drivers and who won't. The company doesn't want to waste its time and money on people that won't pan out. You'll find that probably 1/5th of the people won't make it through the first day because they'll fail the physical or drug test or they lied on their application. By the end you'll be lucky if 20% of your initial class actually completes the training and goes on to drive for Prime. So you want to do all you can right from the start to show them you have an awesome attitude and that you're serious about becoming a safe, hard working, reliable driver.

As far as which state you'll be living in and ultimately have your license in, that definitely complicates things. Some states allow simple license transfers and it takes 20 minutes of paperwork - no problem. Other states, like Illinois, require you to start from scratch and do ALL of the testing over again - road test, pre-trip inspection - everything. So you'll want to look at the policies of the various states before deciding on a strategy. And if you find the policies are difficult to deal with you might want to pick the state you're going to live in and get established there with a regular license before getting your CDL permit and going to Prime.

But let me be clear....no matter what you do it will work out so don't stress yourself over this stuff. It's administrative garbage and it's annoying, but nothing more. None of these decisions like which state you live in, where and when you get your permit, etc are "make or break" decisions. I know preparing for a start in trucking is overwhelming, stressful, and confusing - it is for everyone. I just don't want you to stress yourself over these particular issues. They'll work out fine one way or another.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

Company-sponsored Training:

A Company-Sponsored Training Program is a school that is owned and operated by a trucking company.

The schooling often requires little or no money up front. Instead of paying up-front tuition you will sign an agreement to work for the company for a specified amount of time after graduation, usually around a year, at a slightly lower rate of pay in order to pay for the training.

If you choose to quit working for the company before your year is up, they will normally require you to pay back a prorated amount of money for the schooling. The amount you pay back will be comparable to what you would have paid if you went to an independently owned school.

Company-sponsored training can be an excellent way to get your career underway if you can't afford the tuition up front for private schooling.

Sandman's Comment
member avatar

I'm a bit unsure of the advantages and disadvantages of getting my CDL permit before I head Prime in Springfield, MO.

I'm not sure what state I'm going to be calling home yet. I'm currently in NC, but I may need to move to DE or PA to find a suitable "residence". I don't own a home and will not be renting while I'm out on the road. I just need to figure out which friend or family member's address to use.

So because of this I'm hesitant to get my permit now just to find out I need to move to another state later. I could just wait until I make my final decision, but my recruiter (Don) made it seem like the easiest thing to do is to get my permit and license in MO and then transfer it to my home state once I complete all the training.

I never doubted this would be the best move for me given my personal situation, however, it seems that a lot of people on TT who choose Prime recommend getting the permit prior to arrival.

Can anyone clarify the following for me?

1) If you obtain the permit from your home state (outside of MO) where do you take the final written and driving tests to get the license? Do you and your trainer drive back to your home state to take care of it?

2) What exactly are the advantages of having the permit prior to arriving as it relates to Prime? In what ways are you ahead of the game? I've heard that it does not create any major delays during orientation.

3) Basically the same question as above, but what are the disadvantages of waiting until I get to Springfield to get my permit? It's the same question really, but maybe it's easier to answer if you explain what the disadvantages would be.

I don't have a date from Prime as of yet, so I have plenty of time to figure it all out on my own. I'm just curious to hear how y'all see things in case I'm missing something.

You need to use whatever residents is on your licence. If you don't it may cause complications with you trying to get your cdl class a. If you change your state licence this can cause bigger complications. I would say wait till you have your CD in hand before you change it. Your advantage to having your cdl permit is.. you won't have to worry about that step of the process when arriving at prime. If your home state and Missouri have different standards then your permit would be no good and you would have to pay the cost to get your cdl permit again. My home state is Georgia and I have wondered if I got my cdl permit before going. If it would be any good once I got there. Still no clear answer on that. At this point I'm just going to wait and get it in Missouri. Maybe I will see you there I go on the 9th of February.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Timothy L.'s Comment
member avatar

How do I apply for the CDL permit and how much does it cost? I actually already have a Class B CDL so I am wondering if I will need a new permit for the Class A? Does any of this make sense?

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.
Sandman's Comment
member avatar

How do I apply for the CDL permit and how much does it cost? I actually already have a Class B CDL so I am wondering if I will need a new permit for the Class A? Does any of this make sense?

The best I know is you may have to take the tests again. Call your closest DMV and ask.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

Jopa's Comment
member avatar
Best Answer!

I'm a bit unsure of the advantages and disadvantages of getting my CDL permit before I head Prime in Springfield, MO.

I'm not sure what state I'm going to be calling home yet. I'm currently in NC, but I may need to move to DE or PA to find a suitable "residence". I don't own a home and will not be renting while I'm out on the road. I just need to figure out which friend or family member's address to use.

So because of this I'm hesitant to get my permit now just to find out I need to move to another state later. I could just wait until I make my final decision, but my recruiter (Don) made it seem like the easiest thing to do is to get my permit and license in MO and then transfer it to my home state once I complete all the training.

I never doubted this would be the best move for me given my personal situation, however, it seems that a lot of people on TT who choose Prime recommend getting the permit prior to arrival.

Can anyone clarify the following for me?

1) If you obtain the permit from your home state (outside of MO) where do you take the final written and driving tests to get the license? Do you and your trainer drive back to your home state to take care of it?

2) What exactly are the advantages of having the permit prior to arriving as it relates to Prime? In what ways are you ahead of the game? I've heard that it does not create any major delays during orientation.

3) Basically the same question as above, but what are the disadvantages of waiting until I get to Springfield to get my permit? It's the same question really, but maybe it's easier to answer if you explain what the disadvantages would be.

I don't have a date from Prime as of yet, so I have plenty of time to figure it all out on my own. I'm just curious to hear how y'all see things in case I'm missing something.

OK, it's really simple, actually . . .

1)Yes, since you have the time (no date set for Prime yet, right?) spend the time you need to do the complete "High Road Trucker" course on this website. Once you do that, go to your home state DMV and take the computer based tests (there are three parts) and get your CDL-A permit . . . while you are at it, take any endorsement tests they will let you take . . . you will FLY through the tests (guaranteed) and impress the heck out of the DMV clerk and your fellow test takers ("WHATTT?? You're done ALREADY? How'd you do THAT?") Why? Cause it's one more thing you don't have to think about in Springfield . . .

2) Advantages . . . well, your DONE with one big step and you don't have to devote any more time to it ever again . . . big advantage . . . AND you will impress your new friends at Prime ("Wish I had done that . . . you rock!" - well that's a bit over the top but you get my drift . . . ) . . . lots more time to concentrate on the Pre-trip stuff which is more complicated than you first think . . . for help on that find the thread here on TT by Daniel B. all about that subject . . .

3) Disadvantages? In a word "none" . . .

When you get through the orientation week, Prime will expect you to have your CDL-A permit AND a tanker endorsement . . .Permit?? Been there, done that . . . now when you go to the Missouri DMV for the tanker endorsement (don't forget to brush up on the rules with the "High Road Trucker" program) you will surrender your home state CDL-A permit to the MO-DMV and Prime will give you a form stating that the address of the Campus Inn is your current domicile - all very legit - so now you have a Missouri CDL-A permit WITH a (required by Prime) tanker endorsement . . . now you are all ready for you PSD training (Prime Student Driver) which will give you the skills to come back to the terminal in a couple of weeks and TRI-FECTA BABY!! (pass all three skill tests the first time - worth a fat $250 to you and a fatter $750 to your trainer) . . . now you have a n official Missouri CDL-A license (so you have to talk with a slight twang - after all, it's not the DEEP south, now is it? That's the hardest part for a California boy like myself because EVERYONE knows us Californians have NO accent at all - except WARSH - I have no idea where that "R" came from, I mean who ever heard of WARSHINGTON anyway?)

So, most states let you swap your new Missouri license for one from your home state for a fee . . . unfortunately, Nevada is not one of them so I still carry a Missouri license - I know, what's Nevada got to do with this whole thing? Long story . . .

Jopa

smile.gifshocked.png

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PSD:

Prime Student Driver

Prime Inc has a CDL training program and the first phase is referred to as PSD. You'll get your permit and then 10,000 miles of on the road instruction.

The following is from Prime's website:

Prime’s PSD begins with you obtaining your CDL permit. Then you’ll go on the road with a certified CDL instructor for no less than 75 hours of one-on-one behind the wheel training. After training, you’ll return to Prime’s corporate headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, for final CDL state testing and your CDL license.

Obtain CDL Permit / 4 Days

  • Enter program, study and test for Missouri CDL permit.
  • Start driving/training at Prime Training Center in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Work toward 40,000 training dispatched miles (minimum) with food allowance while without CDL (Food allowance is paid back with future earnings).

On-the-Road Instruction / 10,000 Miles

  • Train with experienced certified CDL instructor for 3-4 weeks in a real world environment.
  • Get 75 hours of behind-the-wheel time with one-on-one student/instructor ratio.
  • Earn 10,000 miles toward total 40,000 miles needed.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Sean's Comment
member avatar

Sandman-Part of my situation is that I still have a DE license and I am now living in NC. There's drama in my life that I'm trying to eliminate; I hate drama. I wish I had a set date. It would be awesome to have a like minded, TT, thinker to talk to once I get to Springfield. Once I get a set date I will pass it along to everyone 'cause it would be cool to know that someone's got your back (so to speak) when you're in the trenches. I wonder what people do or how they think when they show up and realize that a bunch of people from all over the country already know each other and had a rapport before they showed up.

Jopa-That is the answer I was hoping for. My questions even seemed vague to me, but you got it. One last thing to worry about while focusing on pre-trip right out of the gates makes sense. I've been through The High Road Training Program almost 2 full times and have also looked at Daniel B's Pre-Trip Inspection - My Way! A must see! a couple of times. I am going to keep studying both until I get there or I get my permit/endorsements. Also, you answered another question I had, which was if I get my permit outside of MO then Prime/I have to have it transferred to MO. I never thought of that, which is exactly why I posted this thread. It still might be easier for me to wait until I get to Springfield before I get my permit, but that would be because of my own crazy life.

Timothy-I see you're new to the forum, I just joined a couple months ago myself. Welcome :D If I were you I would try posting your question in a new thread to get better responses. I'm not sure what the best route is for you in your situation because I'm a new guy as well, but you might get more attention if you start a new thread.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.
Sandman's Comment
member avatar
double-quotes-start.png

I'm a bit unsure of the advantages and disadvantages of getting my CDL permit before I head Prime in Springfield, MO.

I'm not sure what state I'm going to be calling home yet. I'm currently in NC, but I may need to move to DE or PA to find a suitable "residence". I don't own a home and will not be renting while I'm out on the road. I just need to figure out which friend or family member's address to use.

So because of this I'm hesitant to get my permit now just to find out I need to move to another state later. I could just wait until I make my final decision, but my recruiter (Don) made it seem like the easiest thing to do is to get my permit and license in MO and then transfer it to my home state once I complete all the training.

I never doubted this would be the best move for me given my personal situation, however, it seems that a lot of people on TT who choose Prime recommend getting the permit prior to arrival.

Can anyone clarify the following for me?

1) If you obtain the permit from your home state (outside of MO) where do you take the final written and driving tests to get the license? Do you and your trainer drive back to your home state to take care of it?

2) What exactly are the advantages of having the permit prior to arriving as it relates to Prime? In what ways are you ahead of the game? I've heard that it does not create any major delays during orientation.

3) Basically the same question as above, but what are the disadvantages of waiting until I get to Springfield to get my permit? It's the same question really, but maybe it's easier to answer if you explain what the disadvantages would be.

I don't have a date from Prime as of yet, so I have plenty of time to figure it all out on my own. I'm just curious to hear how y'all see things in case I'm missing something.

double-quotes-end.png

OK, it's really simple, actually . . .

1)Yes, since you have the time (no date set for Prime yet, right?) spend the time you need to do the complete "High Road Trucker" course on this website. Once you do that, go to your home state DMV and take the computer based tests (there are three parts) and get your CDL-A permit . . . while you are at it, take any endorsement tests they will let you take . . . you will FLY through the tests (guaranteed) and impress the heck out of the DMV clerk and your fellow test takers ("WHATTT?? You're done ALREADY? How'd you do THAT?") Why? Cause it's one more thing you don't have to think about in Springfield . . .

2) Advantages . . . well, your DONE with one big step and you don't have to devote any more time to it ever again . . . big advantage . . . AND you will impress your new friends at Prime ("Wish I had done that . . . you rock!" - well that's a bit over the top but you get my drift . . . ) . . . lots more time to concentrate on the Pre-trip stuff which is more complicated than you first think . . . for help on that find the thread here on TT by Daniel B. all about that subject . . .

3) Disadvantages? In a word "none" . . .

When you get through the orientation week, Prime will expect you to have your CDL-A permit AND a tanker endorsement . . .Permit?? Been there, done that . . . now when you go to the Missouri DMV for the tanker endorsement (don't forget to brush up on the rules with the "High Road Trucker" program) you will surrender your home state CDL-A permit to the MO-DMV and Prime will give you a form stating that the address of the Campus Inn is your current domicile - all very legit - so now you have a Missouri CDL-A permit WITH a (required by Prime) tanker endorsement . . . now you are all ready for you PSD training (Prime Student Driver) which will give you the skills to come back to the terminal in a couple of weeks and TRI-FECTA BABY!! (pass all three skill tests the first time - worth a fat $250 to you and a fatter $750 to your trainer) . . . now you have a n official Missouri CDL-A license (so you have to talk with a slight twang - after all, it's not the DEEP south, now is it? That's the hardest part for a California boy like myself because EVERYONE knows us Californians have NO accent at all - except WARSH - I have no idea where that "R" came from, I mean who ever heard of WARSHINGTON anyway?)

So, most states let you swap your new Missouri license for one from your home state for a fee . . . unfortunately, Nevada is not one of them so I still carry a Missouri license - I know, what's Nevada got to do with this whole thing? Long story . . .

Jopa

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Thank you jopa. This is the info I was looking for.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Terminal:

A facility where trucking companies operate out of, or their "home base" if you will. A lot of major companies have multiple terminals around the country which usually consist of the main office building, a drop lot for trailers, and sometimes a repair shop and wash facilities.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

DMV:

Department of Motor Vehicles, Bureau of Motor Vehicles

The state agency that handles everything related to your driver's licences, including testing, issuance, transfers, and revocation.

OWI:

Operating While Intoxicated

PSD:

Prime Student Driver

Prime Inc has a CDL training program and the first phase is referred to as PSD. You'll get your permit and then 10,000 miles of on the road instruction.

The following is from Prime's website:

Prime’s PSD begins with you obtaining your CDL permit. Then you’ll go on the road with a certified CDL instructor for no less than 75 hours of one-on-one behind the wheel training. After training, you’ll return to Prime’s corporate headquarters in Springfield, Missouri, for final CDL state testing and your CDL license.

Obtain CDL Permit / 4 Days

  • Enter program, study and test for Missouri CDL permit.
  • Start driving/training at Prime Training Center in Springfield, Missouri.
  • Work toward 40,000 training dispatched miles (minimum) with food allowance while without CDL (Food allowance is paid back with future earnings).

On-the-Road Instruction / 10,000 Miles

  • Train with experienced certified CDL instructor for 3-4 weeks in a real world environment.
  • Get 75 hours of behind-the-wheel time with one-on-one student/instructor ratio.
  • Earn 10,000 miles toward total 40,000 miles needed.

OOS:

When a violation by either a driver or company is confirmed, an out-of-service order removes either the driver or the vehicle from the roadway until the violation is corrected.

Sandman's Comment
member avatar

Sandman-Part of my situation is that I still have a DE license and I am now living in NC. There's drama in my life that I'm trying to eliminate; I hate drama. I wish I had a set date. It would be awesome to have a like minded, TT, thinker to talk to once I get to Springfield. Once I get a set date I will pass it along to everyone 'cause it would be cool to know that someone's got your back (so to speak) when you're in the trenches. I wonder what people do or how they think when they show up and realize that a bunch of people from all over the country already know each other and had a rapport before they showed up.

Jopa-That is the answer I was hoping for. My questions even seemed vague to me, but you got it. One last thing to worry about while focusing on pre-trip right out of the gates makes sense. I've been through The High Road Training Program almost 2 full times and have also looked at Daniel B's Pre-Trip Inspection - My Way! A must see! a couple of times. I am going to keep studying both until I get there or I get my permit/endorsements. Also, you answered another question I had, which was if I get my permit outside of MO then Prime/I have to have it transferred to MO. I never thought of that, which is exactly why I posted this thread. It still might be easier for me to wait until I get to Springfield before I get my permit, but that would be because of my own crazy life.

Timothy-I see you're new to the forum, I just joined a couple months ago myself. Welcome :D If I were you I would try posting your question in a new thread to get better responses. I'm not sure what the best route is for you in your situation because I'm a new guy as well, but you might get more attention if you start a new thread.

Make sure to take note of these and ask your recruiter. I will be getting my permit before I go. So I was hoping I wouldn't have to pay twice. Already know my bp and everything else is in order. My recruiter is lane Williams. Great guy and I really make him work with the question I ask. I will be getting a call tomorrow morning from him. So you bet I have even more.

Pre-trip Inspection:

A pre-trip inspection is a thorough inspection of the truck completed before driving for the first time each day.

Federal and state laws require that drivers inspect their vehicles. Federal and state inspectors also may inspect your vehicles. If they judge a vehicle to be unsafe, they will put it “out of service” until it is repaired.

CDL:

Commercial Driver's License (CDL)

A CDL is required to drive any of the following vehicles:

  • Any combination of vehicles with a gross combined weight rating (GCWR) of 26,001 or more pounds, providing the gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of the vehicle being towed is in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any single vehicle with a GVWR of 26,001 or more pounds, or any such vehicle towing another not in excess of 10,000 pounds.
  • Any vehicle, regardless of size, designed to transport 16 or more persons, including the driver.
  • Any vehicle required by federal regulations to be placarded while transporting hazardous materials.

Dm:

Dispatcher, Fleet Manager, Driver Manager

The primary person a driver communicates with at his/her company. A dispatcher can play many roles, depending on the company's structure. Dispatchers may assign freight, file requests for home time, relay messages between the driver and management, inform customer service of any delays, change appointment times, and report information to the load planners.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Sean's Comment
member avatar
Make sure to take note of these and ask your recruiter. I will be getting my permit before I go. So I was hoping I wouldn't have to pay twice. Already know my bp and everything else is in order. My recruiter is lane Williams. Great guy and I really make him work with the question I ask. I will be getting a call tomorrow morning from him. So you bet I have even more.

That's part of my thinking as well. Why shell out the money up front if Prime will pay for the permit initially then I'll only have to pay out of pocket one time to have the actual license transferred to the state of residence when it's all said and done.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

Sandman's Comment
member avatar
double-quotes-start.png

Make sure to take note of these and ask your recruiter. I will be getting my permit before I go. So I was hoping I wouldn't have to pay twice. Already know my bp and everything else is in order. My recruiter is lane Williams. Great guy and I really make him work with the question I ask. I will be getting a call tomorrow morning from him. So you bet I have even more.

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That's part of my thinking as well. Why shell out the money up front if Prime will pay for the permit initially then I'll only have to pay out of pocket one time to have the actual license transferred to the state of residence when it's all said and done.

Well its $35.00 application fee in Georgia plus $10.00 test fee which would pay for the permit if you pass. I have the money for it so I will just do it and hope for the best when I get to Missouri. Heard it was $32.50 in Missouri not sure though.

TWIC:

Transportation Worker Identification Credential

Truck drivers who regularly pick up from or deliver to the shipping ports will often be required to carry a TWIC card.

Your TWIC is a tamper-resistant biometric card which acts as both your identification in secure areas, as well as an indicator of you having passed the necessary security clearance. TWIC cards are valid for five years. The issuance of TWIC cards is overseen by the Transportation Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.

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