How to become a HGV Driver?
HGV stands for Heavy Goods Vehicle. It is also known as LGV which stands for Large Goods Vehicle. In order to become a HGV driver, one must acquire the HGV licence which is issued after one obtains the special training for it. HGV license is categorized into three categories which are C, C1 and C+E. The training for HGV license is given at HGV training centers. The price for this training vary according to training centers. The factors that influence the price of HGV training in United Kingdom are the location of training centers and the length of training courses. This means that short HGV training courses are cheap while long training courses are expensive. However, one should not assume that a short training course means a quick way to get a HGV license. Training centers with good reputation mostly charge higher prices as compared to others. This is because such training centres are known for giving effective training which increases the chances of a candidate to acquire the HGV license.
There are three parts of HGV training.
- Course learning material The course learning material includes a medical examination, DSA LGV/HGV Theory Test Book, DSA Hazard Perception DVD, DSA Guide to Driving Goods Vehicles Book and the Highway Code Book. The medical examination is done through the doctor, and it costs about £50 to £70. The rest of the material can be purchased on Amazon.
- Course module The course module has five parts. The first one is Module 1a Theory Test 100 Multiple Choice Questions that must be taken at an approved center; it costs about £35. The second part is Module 1b Theory Test Hazard Perception Clips which must be taken at an approved center, but it can be taken at different times. It costs only £15. The third part is Module 2 Driver CPC Case Studies in which 19 clips are shown. These clips demonstrate everyday road scenes; the price is only £30. The fourth part is Module 3 Practical Driving Test. It is a short practical test in which the candidate’s driving skills are tested, and his is questioned about vehicle safety checks, braking etc. The fifth part is the Module 4 Driver CPC Practical Demonstration Test that is 30 minutes long, and the driver’s knowledge in loading, contents and emergency situations is tested.
- Course offerings In UK, there are four course offerings for HGV license at the moment. These courses are different from each other on the basis of course hours. The first one is the 15 Hours Course, and it is for Experienced Category C1 7.5t driver; the fee of this course is £700 to £800. The second one is 16 Hours Course, and it is also for Experienced Category C1 7.5t driver; the fee of this course is £800 to £900. The third course is the 20 Hours Course which is for No Category C experience; the fee of this course is £950 to £1050. The fourth is the Driver CPC Periodic Training. This is the longest course consisting of 35 hours of training, and it must be completed every 5 years in order to remain a professional HGV driver. The fee of this course is just £300 to £400.
There are many training centers for HGV license in UK; however, four of them are the most popular ones.
- A-CLASS Driving School (Middlesbrough). It offers two types of courses. The first one is the 16 hours course that is 4 days long and costs £720. The second one is a 20 hours course that is 5 days long and costs £900.
- Steve Robertson – Training Services (Marsh Barton, Exeter) It offers a 5 day Driver Training Course that costs £880.
- Highfield Heavies Training (Scotland) It offers three types of training courses which costs from £115 to £800 depending on the course length.
- Angus HGV Training It offers two types of courses. The first one is a Practical 5 days Intensive Course that costs £700. The second one is the Use of Vehicle, Training and Vehicle; it costs £140.
As acquring HGV certification can be expensive; therefore, grants for HGV Training are also available. Many people do not know that these grants are quite easy to obtain. A few years ago, not many grants were available. However, things have changed now, and there are many more types of grants are available. The training schools are the best place to get information about various grants for HGV training. The grants are superior to loans because they do not have to be paid back, and they do not accrue any interest.
Government funding and free HGV training
The Government of UK provides funding for HGV training in various forms like grants, loans and other types of financial aid. Such fundings are very helpful for the students as they have to pay very little to none of their education costs out of their own pockets. It sounds a bit unreal, but free HGV training is also available. There are companies that are willing to pay for the student’s training fee in exchange for a work contract.