You must make an appointment to take the CDL skills test. "Walk in" applicants will not be permitted to take the CDL tests.
A skills test consists of pre-trip, backing and on road.
A scheduling deposit fee must be submitted to the Department before you may make an appointment for the skills test. Once the deposit is received you may make an appointment for the skills test. It is important that, whenever possible, you call for an appointment personally. The operator will have questions regarding vehicle class, endorsements and test history - information which someone else calling for you may not have available. If you appear for the skills test as scheduled and pass, the deposit fee will be applied to license fees. If you do not appear for the skills test at the scheduled time, you will forfeit the deposit unless you give the department 48 hours notice of cancellation. If you fail the skills test, a subsequent test will be scheduled without an additional deposit. However the subsequent test fee is still payable at the time of actual testing.
You can pick up a CDL application and commercial driver manual at any DMV Office. You should bring the completed forms with you when you go for your scheduled appointment.
When you come to your scheduled appointment, you must bring the following items with you:
- All Driver Licenses or Learner Permits issued to you by any state
- Birth certificate
- Proof of residency
- Proof of legal presence, if applicable
- Social Security Number
- Proof of liability insurance and a valid registration certificate for the vehicle you will use for your skills tests. You will not be allowed to take any of the skills tests without these
- The vehicle used for the skills test must have a valid inspection sticker and meet all inspection requirements
- For School Bus Endorsement: School Bus Endorsement Application (with knowledge test score recorded by examiner)
Skills Tests & Test Vehicles
You must provide a vehicle which represents the license class for which you have applied, for the pre-trip inspection and road test. The vehicle must have clean, operable safety belts - school buses are exempt. The cargo portions of all vehicles, especially tank vehicles, must be empty at the time of your road test. The vehicle must pass inspection, at the time of the test, to be used for the skills test.
If you wish to be licensed to drive a commercial vehicle equipped with air brakes, you must pass the air brake knowledge test and provide a commercial vehicle with air brakes for your skills test. If you take a skills test in a vehicle without air brakes, you will receive an air brake restriction on your license. This means you can only operate commercial vehicles, for the class license you have, that do not have air brakes.
If you take the skills test in a commercial vehicle equipped with air-over-hydraulic brakes, you will be issued a CDL with an air-over-hydraulic brake restriction. You will be issued a special restriction card restricting you from operating vehicles equipped with a standard air brake system, but not from operating an air-over-hydraulic brake system.
Pre-Trip Inspection Test
A pre-trip inspection will be required before the skills test. If your vehicle fails the pre-trip inspection for safety reasons, it will be considered a test failure and you must make an appointment to retake the pre-trip inspection test. A subsequent exam fee will be assessed for your next test. It will not be necessary to provide a new test scheduling fee. If you fail the skills test three (3) times, you must wait six (6) months before you can retake it.
The Motor Vehicle Examiner may give you an eye test before you take the commercial driver license knowledge tests. This test will measure how well you see. If you wear glasses or contact lenses to pass the vision tests, then you will be required to wear them when you drive. A corrective lenses restriction will be placed on your CDL. If you fail the eye test, you will be given an eye referral form which must be completed by an eye doctor and returned to the department within 30 days. Your vision must be corrected before you will be issued a CDL. If you have monocular vision, call CDL information in Montpelier (828-2000) for further information.