Wisconsin CDL Requirements

In State Driving Age:
Driving Between States Age:
Hazardous Age:
Exams Required:
  • Vision
  • Health
  • Written Test
  • Driving Test
IDs Required:
  • Driver's License

Obtaining a Class A commercial driver license (CDL) in Wisconsin first requires that applicants obtain specialized training on the commercial vehicle. To do this, they will need to earn their learner’s permits. In order to qualify for the CDL permit, applicants need to meet the following requirements:

  • They must have had their regular driver licenses for at least one year
  • They will be at least 21 years old to drive outside of Wisconsin’s borders
  • They will be at least 18 years of age to drive within the state
  • They must have a valid social security number
  • The must pass the vision and knowledge tests
  • They must pass a medical examination

What Tests Are Required for the CDL?

All applicants will need to pass a general knowledge test that shows that they are familiar with Wisconsin’s driving rules and laws. This test will also demonstrate that the applicants have an understanding of how their commercial vehicles work and how to operate them safely. The written test covers the Wisconsin CDL Manual

Some applicants will drive a commercial vehicle that has air brakes, is carrying hazardous materials or is pulling a double or triple trailer. They will need to take additional exams after they pass their general knowledge tests so that they can add these extra endorsements to their licenses.

Those who pass the written and the vision tests receive a learner’s permit. Their permits allow them time to practice driving the commercial vehicle of their choice until they are ready to take the driving skills tests.

The Road Test

Applicants will need to be prepared to show their examiners that they know how to inspect their vehicles to make sure that they are ready to be taken on the roads. As they inspect each part, they will need to be able to explain to their examiners why they chose to inspect that particular part. If the part appears to be in working order, applicants will need to be able to state why this is so.

Before leaving the testing site, applicants will demonstrate to their examiners that they can control the vehicle. They will be asked to parallel park, move backward and forward and make turns. The last part of the exam will be the road test. The applicants will take their vehicles on the roads so that they can demonstrate their abilities to make lane changes, merge with traffic, make right and left turns, drive around curves and drive the vehicle safely over bridges. In the event that there is insufficient space to perform a maneuver, applicants will need to be able to verbally explain how to perform the action.

What Are the Required Fees?

Every part of the application process will require that people pay fees, except for the written knowledge exams. Applicants obtain their six-month learner’s permits for a fee of $30. The driving skills test has a $20 fee, and the Class A CDL carries a fee of $74. Those who have time left on their regular driver licenses will receive a prorated rate.

Wisconsin re-licensing information is important to understand; many forget the information, as the licenses are good for an 8-year period. Those who miss the renewal date will be expected to retake and pass a written exam and driving skills exam.

View Truck Driving Schools in Wisconsin that offer CDL License training. 

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