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What Licence Do You Need to Become a Bus Driver?

HGV Training Centre

Being a bus driver is a very rewarding, fulfilling job. You can be a part of the great metropolis, ferrying people of all shapes and sizes to their destinations, helping people make important meetings and making a real difference to the environment by saving unnecessary carbon emissions. But like everything in life, you can’t just become a bus driver overnight. Instead, there are a few things you need to do before your bus wheels can go round and round.

The Licence Requirements

When it comes to driving big vehicles, there are a lot of rules in place. This is to ensure the safety of everyone on the road – from the driver of the HGV to other cars, pedestrians and bikes. So if you’re looking to drive any form of HGV in a professional capacity, there are some basic requirements to meet, including:

  • Being over 18 years old
  • Having a full car licence
  • Holding a Driver CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence)

When you get into driving specialist vehicles (like busses), you need a little bit more training and a specific licence for the type of HGV you want to drive. For busses, this is a CAT D licence, or a CAT D+E if you want to drive a bus with a trailer. Once you have your Driver CPC qualification then getting these licenses is as simple as training, practicing and passing the tests. With a CAT D license under your belt, you will be able to drive any vehicle with over 8 passengers, as well as any tracked vehicle you choose. You know, in case you ever get the urge to drive a tank. But there is one catch – you need to get your CAT B licence first.

The CAT B Licence

You might be thinking that this is starting to get too much work. After all, that’s 3 separate qualifications you need if you want to drive a bus! But there is some good news. If you can legally drive a car, then you already have one of the 3. The CAT B licence is just the industry term for your full car licence, so you don’t need to worry about any extra training for that. If you look at the back of your licence you will see that you can drive vehicles of up to 3,500kg maximum authorised mass with up to 8 passenger seats – in other words, cars. It also allows you to tow trailers up to 750kg, and if you’re over 21 a motor tricycle with a power output above 15kW.

CAT D Training

So now you have your CAT B and your Driver CPC sorted, it’s time to get more specialised. The CAT D training is all about learning how to drive large passenger vehicles safely, how to maintain them properly and how to operate as a bus driver. Your CAT D licence training will cover:

  • The rules and regulations of the road, with a particular focus on busses
  • The maintenance and general fixtures of the vehicle
  • Customer service
  • Everything about the safety of yourself, the passengers and other people sharing the road with you
  • Risk management and farsightedness

By the end of your training, you will have to sit both theory and practical tests, and if you pass, you will be all set to be a bus driver.

So How Do I Train?

You come and speak to us! At The HGV Training Centre, we offer a range of HGV training courses, including Cat D and Driver CPC courses for new drivers. With our help, you can get a crash course in large vehicle driving in general, and bus driving in particular. Not only that, but our team will even help you find your first job as a bus driver, giving you the best possible start to your new career.

If you would like to know more, just get in touch with the team today.

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