How to Get a CDL in Alaska and Nebraska

cdl in alaska
Written by Sheryl Posnick

This article is useful for anyone who wants to get your CDL in Alaska and Nebraska. If you want to learn about earning a CDL at other states, we have put together a comprehensive guide on how to get a CDL in every state of the country.


Anyone working temporarily in Alaska with a CDL from another state can work using their home state CDL. But if transferring to a permanent position or moving to Alaska full time, one must get an Alaska CDL.

To apply for a CDL in Alaska, you must:

  • Provide proof of birthdate and identity
  • Be 21+ years old when you apply if planning to drive inside and outside of Alaska
  • Be 19+ years old when you apply if planning to drive only within Alaska
  • Have held a regular driver’s license for at least one year
  • Provide your Social Security number
  • Pass the vision, written, and road tests
  • Have a valid medical card
Written Test

The first part of the written test is a general knowledge test covering road rules, commercial vehicle laws, basic operation knowledge, and safety procedures. Ever applicant takes the general knowledge test. Once you pass this, you will be tested on other technical areas if they are applicable to your chosen vehicle.

Road Test

Once you’ve passed your written tests, you must take a road test, which is broken down into three parts:

  • Pre-trip Inspection. You must pass the pre-trip inspection before you will be permitted to go on to the basic skills portion of the road test.
  • Basic Skills Test. This test will cover maneuvers like parallel parking, backing, alley docking, the forward stop, backward serpentine, and straight line backing. You must pass this portion of the road test before you will be permitted to go on to the driving skills portion of the road test.
  • Driving Skills Test. In this part of the test, the examiner will ask you to perform a number of basic and complex driving maneuvers: right and left turns, intersections, urban and rural straight driving, urban and rural lane changes, freeway driving, stopping and starting, driving on curves, upgrades, downgrades, railroad crossings, bridges and under/overpasses.


When applying for a CDL in Nebraska, you must provide:

  • Proof of valid U.S. citizenship or Proof of Lawful Status
  • U.S.-based identity
  • A current address in Nebraska
  • A valid social security number

You must

  • Be 21+ years old when you apply if planning to drive inside and outside of Nebraska
  • Be 18+ years old when you apply if planning to drive only within Nebraska
  • Take a knowledge and skills test
Knowledge Test

You are required to take one or more knowledge tests, depending on the class of license and  endorsements you need.

  • The general knowledge test is taken by all applicants.
  • The passenger transport test is taken by all bus driver applicants.
  • The air brakes test is taken if your vehicle has air brakes, including air over hydraulic brakes.
  • The combination vehicles test is taken if you want to drive combination vehicles.
  • The hazardous materials test is required if you want to haul hazardous materials as defined in 49 CFR 383.5.
  • The tank vehicle test is taken if you want to haul any liquid or gaseous materials in tank(s) with an individual rated capacity of 119+ gallons.
  • The doubles/triples test is taken if you want to pull double or triple trailers.
  • The school bus test is taken if you want to drive a school bus.
Skills Test

Finally, if and when you pass the required knowledge test(s), you can take the CDL skills tests. There are three types of general skills that will be tested: vehicle inspection, basic vehicle control, and on-road driving. You must take these tests in the type of vehicle for which you wish to be licensed.

About the author

Sheryl Posnick

Sheryl Posnick is an editor and writer living in Brooklyn, NY. She is the founder and president of Red Letter Content, an editorial company with a focus on educational, test preparation, and career readiness materials.