Hawaii Truck Driving Schools

Salary & Career Information

The average estimated salary for truck driving careers in Hawaii is $43,760. This is as presented by The Bureau of Labor Statistics. This salary is on the high side in terms of trucking salaries around the United States, though you can even earn more by considering different industries and maintaining a spotless driving record.

There are advantages and disadvantages to each of the industries. If you work in agriculture, you will predominantly work during the day, though if you work in HAZMAT, you will enjoy a higher salary. Weigh your options prior to making a decision.

When you are looking at overall career information for a truck driving career, consider growth. The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates a 21 percent growth in the next decade, leading to higher stability within your career.

Starting a Truck Driving Career

There are many advantages to a trucking career, particularly in Hawaii. While the cost of living is a little higher than other states, you can also enjoy a higher salary. There are many opportunities and you can access them all with just a CDL.

The weather is great all year round. There may be some rainy days, but you will never have to deal with snow and ice, which is a big advantage. You will, as a result, never have to worry about snow tires or chains, either.

Depending upon your long-term goals, you may eventually want to take on more responsibilities and become an owner/operator in the state, too.

Laws & Regulations to be Aware Of

One of the most important laws to be aware of as a truck driver in Hawaii is that you need to be at least 21 years of age to get your CDL. Once you have your CDL, then you can determine which industry you want to work in and even take additional exams so you can have more endorsements on your license.

Another law to be aware of is what’s known as an anti-idling law. This states that you cannot allow your truck to idle for more than 3 minutes at a time. This is one of the stricter states, so you will need to be conscious of it whenever you are parked – whether it’s at a truck stop or anywhere else.

The more you know about the laws, the easier it will be to drive in the state without being fined or penalized in one way or another. Too many penalties on your license can make it hard to obtain work as a trucker.

Links and Resources
Hawaii CDL Requirements

CDL requirements in Hawaii are a bit different than for states in the continental US. The major CDL requirement that sets Hawaii apart from other states is you must be 21 years of age to apply, instead of the normal 18 years of age.

Each county has specific offices that handle the CDL examination process. Also, since Hawaii is a set of islands in the ocean, and not connected to any other state – you don't need to worry about intrastate licensing, which is one less headache.

Applying for a Commercial Driver’s License in Hawaii is similar to the process in all other states with one notable exception. In Hawaii, applicants must be 21 years old in order to apply for and obtain a CDL. There is no exception for driving within the state.

Each island only has a few driver’s license offices. It is advisable to call ahead before visiting to verify office hours and whether the specific service you need is being offered during your expected visit. Some offices have curtailed hours due to staffing shortages or budget considerations.

Before you apply, you’ll need to gather several documents:
• Certified copy of your birth certificate.
• Original Social Security card.
• Your DOT 4-766 form. This is the medical report showing you are physically fit.
• A front-view passport-type color photo which shows the face. It can be 2" x 3".
• A completed CDL application, form DOT 4-764.
• Your current Hawaii driver’s license.

The next step is to begin the testing process. First you’ll need to pass the vision test with at least 20/40 vision in both eyes. Then you can take the written tests. All applicants must pass the general knowledge test. Other tests must also be successfully completed, depending on what endorsements you hope to receive. There are separate tests for air brakes, school buses, hazardous materials, tankers, doubles/triples, combinations and vehicles carrying 16 or more passengers. There is a fee for each test. The general knowledge test costs $15 and the endorsement tests are $5 each.

Once you’ve completed the testing phase, you are eligible to receive a CDL permit. The cost is $30 and the permit is good for one year. With your permit, you can practice driving under the supervision of a licensed driver.

When you feel ready, you can make an appointment to take the final driving tests. You’ll need to take three different tests, all at the same appointment. There is a $50 fee to take the Pre-trip, Skills and Road Tests. Once these are completed successfully and you pay the $40 fee, you’ll be the proud owner of a Hawaii Commercial Driver’s License which is valid for six years if you are younger than 71.  If you attend a CDL training school in Hawaii, most liekly they will arrange for your testing and may arrange for your permit as well.