Oregon Driver’s License Classes – And How to Get Each One

Oregon Driver’s License Classes - And How to Get Each One

Preparing to get a driver’s license? 

In Oregon, there are several driver’s license classes that you might get confused with.

And this can delay your application process. 

Don’t worry – we’re here to help. 

Today, we’ll go over the Oregon driver’s license classes – detailing each class so you know the one you need. 

Moreover, we’ll show you the steps on how to get each driver’s license class. 

So welcome to your complete guide!

Let’s begin…

What are the Driver’s License Classes in Oregon?

In Oregon, there are 4 driver’s license classes: 

  • Class A CDL 
  • Class B CDL
  • Class C CDL
  • Class C non-CDL

On top of that, you can also get endorsements on your license, such as:

  • M Endorsement

Let’s go over them one by one. 

Class A CDL

A Class A CDL is the highest commercial driver’s license. 

It can operate any commercial vehicle, single or combination. However, you must have the proper endorsement for certain vehicles you drive or loads you transport. 

For example, if you drive a double-triple trailer, you must have a T endorsement. 

If you transport hazardous materials, you must have an H endorsement. 

Class B CDL

As for Class B CDLs, they can only operate single commercial vehicles. 

These vehicles should have a Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) of more than 26,000 pounds. 

If towing a unit, it should not exceed 10,000 pounds. 

If towing a vehicle, it can exceed 10,000 pounds but the total weight should not go over 26,000 pounds. 

Since it’s the second-highest CDL, holders can also operate commercial vehicles that fall under the Class C CDL. 

Class C CDL

Class C CDL is the last commercial license. This operates commercial vehicles that: 

  • Do not weigh over 26,000 pounds.
  • Are designed to carry 16 or more people (including the driver)
  • Are assigned to carry hazardous materials that require placarding
  • Can tow a trailer up to 10,000 pounds.
  • Can tow a trailer of more than 10,000 pounds as long as the weight does not go over 26,000 pounds. 

Class C Non-CDL

Class C non-CDL is the most common driver’s license in Oregon. This is your standard license. 

You use it to operate any single vehicle that has a GVWR of fewer than 26,000 pounds and does not fit the description of a Class C CDL. 

With this class, you can drive regular passenger cars, SUVs, pickup trucks, emergency vehicles, and recreational vehicles.

For emergency and recreational vehicles, it must not exceed 26,000 pounds. Plus, you may need to get an endorsement. 

M Endorsement

If you want to operate a motorcycle, you need to add an M endorsement to your driver’s license, whether commercial or non-commercial. 

How to Get a Class C Non-CDL License in Oregon

Whatever license class you need, you should always start with a Class C non-CDL. 

So yes, to get a CDL, you first need this license class. 

Since it’s the most common, and important, let’s go over the steps on how to get this license class first. 

Get an Instruction Permit (required for 15- to 17-year-olds).

  • Schedule your visit to a DMV office. Walk-in is allowed, but you’ll be on standby service. 
  • Pass the vision screening and written test. 
  • Pay the necessary fees:
    • $5 for the written test 
    • $23 for the instruction permit 
    • $53 for a REAL ID compliance permit 
  • Have your picture taken.
  • Receive your interim card. Your instruction permit will arrive in the mail within 20 days. 

Get a Provisional Driver’s License (required for 16- to 17-year-olds).

  • Gain 100 hours of supervised driving experience. If you completed driver’s ed, you only need 50 hours of supervised driving experience. 
  • Hold your instruction permit for at least 6 months. 
  • Pass the driving test. 
  • Go to a DMV office (if you took the driving test with a third-party provider)
  • Pay the necessary fees:
    • $9 for the driving test (the fee might be different at a third-party testing facility) 
    • $60 for a standard license
    • $90 for a Real ID compliance license 
  • Have your picture taken.
  • Receive a receipt and wait for your provisional license in the mail.

Get a Class C Non-CDL License (for 18+-year-olds).

  • Be at least 18 years old. 
  • If you hold a provisional license, all the restrictions will be lifted once you turn 18.
  • Switch your provisional license to a Class C non-CDL when it’s time to renew. 

If you’re just getting started and already 18+ years old, you can check the steps to follow in our “How to Get A Driver’s License in Oregon” article. You’ll also get additional information here. 

How to Get a Class A, B, and C CDL in Oregon 

It doesn’t matter what CDL class you get, the process is the same. 

Get a CDL Permit.

  • Make a CDL knowledge test appointment through the DMV2U. Walk-in is also allowed. 
  • Pay the CDL knowledge test fee of $10. 
  • Pass the CDL knowledge test(s). 
  • Pass the vision screening.
  • Pay the CDL permit fee of $23.
  • Receive your CDL permit. 

Get a CDL. 

  • Hold your CDL permit for at least 14 days. 
  • Bring the following on your scheduled date:
    • Your valid CDL permit
    • Your current Class C non-commercial license
    • The commercial vehicle under your class 
    • Any document/payments that the testing facility requires (make sure to ask when you schedule an appointment)
  • Pass the CDL skills test.
  • Go to a DMV office and do the following:
    • Submit all the required documents (mentioned above)
    • Pay the DMV fees of $70 for the skills test and $40 for a Certificate of Test Completion. 
    • Pay the $75 CDL fee 
  • Give up your CDL permit and receive your official CDL.

If you need more information, such as CDL eligibility requirements and endorsements, check out our complete guide on “How to Get A CDL in Oregon”.

How to Get a Class M Endorsement in Oregon 

Yes, a Class M endorsement can operate motorcycles. 

But, a Class M endorsement is only required if you’re operating a bike that goes over 30 mph on level ground and is over 50 cc. 

Otherwise, you won’t need this. 

To be eligible for this endorsement, you must:

  • Be at least 16 years old
  • Have a valid Oregon driver’s license (commercial or non-commercial)

Now let’s see the steps. 

Get a motorcycle instruction permit. 

  • Bring the following documents:
    • Proof of legal presence/identity in the US (e.g. US passport, permanent residence card, birth certificate, immigration documents…)
    • Proof of Oregon residency (e.g. utility bills, document from an educational institution, item delivery by post…)
    • Valid Oregon driver’s license
  • Pay the $5 fee for the motorcycle knowledge test. 
  • Pass the motorcycle knowledge test. 
  • Pass a vision test. 
  • Pay the $23 permit fee.
  • Receive your motorcycle permit. 
  • Be accompanied and supervised by (within view of) a motorcycle endorsement holder who is at least 21 years old.
  • Ride during daylight hours only.
  • Don’t have any passengers on the motorcycle.

Get an M Endorsement.

  • (OPTIONAL) Pass the rider education course facilitated by Team Oregon. You can choose between:
    • Basic Rider Training – waives both the motorcycle knowledge and skills test.
    • Intermediate Rider Training – only waives the motorcycle skills test. 
  • Go to a DMV office. 
  • Bring the following documents:
    • Proof of identity, full name, legal presence, and Oregon residency
    • Valid Oregon driver’s license
    • Team Oregon completion card (if applicable) 
    • Motorcycle permit 
  • Take the motorcycle skills test (unless you can waive it)
  • Pass a vision test. 
  • Get your picture taken. 
  • Pay the $87 endorsement fee.
  • Receive your M endorsement. 


So that ends your complete guide to the Oregon driver’s license classes — and how to get each one. 

That was a lot, wasn’t it?

But at least now you know EXACTLY what class you need. 

And from there, you can work on the steps to obtaining it. 

Best of luck!

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