Do you need a CDL to drive a motorhome in PA?

In this article, we will discuss: Do you need a CDL to drive a motorhome in PA? We will explain what are the licence requirements for driving a motorhome in the US. 

Do you need a CDL to drive a motorhome in PA?

No, you do not need a CDL to drive a motorhome in PA. However, a Class B license is required for a single vehicle over 26,000 lb, and a Non-CDL is required for multiple vehicles with a combined weight of over 26,000 lb.

A Non-Commercial Driver’s Licence can be obtained from 15 years old and is needed for vehicles that weigh 8,000 lbs or less. Please see the table below for more information regarding the state requirements for driving a motorhome.

States requirements for driving a motorhome

CriteriaStates requirements
States that DO NOT require a CDL to drive an RVAlabama MontanaAlaska Nebraska Arizona New Hampshire Colorado New Jersey DelawareNorth DakotaFloridaGeorgia OklahomaIdahoOregon Illinois Rhode IslandIndiana South Dakota IowaTennesseeKentucky UtahLouisianaVermontMaineVirginiaMassachusetts Washington MinnesotaMissouri West Virginia Mississippi
States that require a Non-CDL to drive an RVCalifornia: Class B license required over 26,000 lb or over 40 feet; Class A license required for towing over 10,000 lbs

Maryland: Class B license required over 26,000 lb

Michigan: Recreational Double “R” Endorsement required to tow a fifth wheel plus a trailer (it’s unlikely that you’ll ever need this)

North Carolina: Class B license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class A license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lb

Nevada: Class B license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class A license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lb; “J” Endorsement required to tow a vehicle over 10,000 lb (if the combined weight is less than 26,000 lb)

New York: Recreational Vehicle or “R” endorsement required for vehicles over 26,000 lb

Pennsylvania: Class B license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lb

South Carolina: Class E license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class F license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lb

Texas: Class B license required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; Class A license required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lb

Wyoming: Class B license required for the vehicle over 26,000 lb and towing under 10,000 lb; Class A license required for the vehicle over 26,000 lb and towing over 10,000 lb
States that require a CDL to drive an RVArkansas: CDL required for the vehicle over 26,000 lbConnecticut: CDL (Class B) required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) is required for multiple vehicles with a combined weight of over 26,000 lbHawaii: CDL (Class B) required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbKansas: CDL (Class B) required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbNew Mexico: CDL (Class B) required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) is required for multiple vehicles with a combined weight of over 26,000 lbWashington, D.C.: CDL (Class B) required for the single-vehicle over 26,000 lb; CDL (Class A) required for multiple vehicles with combined weight over 26,000 lbWisconsin: CDL required over 45 feet

What licence do I need to drive a motorhome in the US?

Most states do not require a license to drive a non-regular RV as long as the vehicle weighs less than 26,000 pounds or the trailer weighs less than 10,000 pounds. However, you should keep in mind that vehicles with the capacity to transport more than 16 passengers or that weigh more than 26,000 pounds are usually subject to a special license.

What is a special license?

Generally speaking, there are two types of special permits: commercial and non-commercial. Some states require a special non-commercial permit in order to drive a recreational vehicle that exceeds a certain length or weight. Other states will require you to have a commercial driver’s license (CDL: Commercial Driver’s License), which is the type of license needed for large, heavy vehicles like buses or trailers.

Is a special license required to drive a motorhome in Canada?

If you are planning to take a tour of the north of the USA and enter Canada, you are probably worried about not having the proper license, which is understandable, especially since Canadian law varies by province, just like in the US. However, you don’t need to worry. 

Unless you live in Canada, all you need to do is make sure you meet your state’s licensing requirements. If you comply with the laws of the state in which you live regarding your driver’s license, you will not have to do anything additional to go to Canada with your motorhome.

Types of motorhomes or recreational vehicles (RV) and licences needed

Next, we will talk about the 3 types of recreational vehicles or motorhomes so that you can confirm whether or not you are going to require a special license.

Class A RVs

Some Class A motorhomes may require a special driver’s license. This is because they typically weigh between 13,000 and 30,000 pounds. In other words, some are above the 26,000 lbs threshold that we have mentioned.

With that said, you should know that most Class A RVs do not exceed 26,000 pounds and therefore do not require any special licensing requirements.

Note: Be sure to check the total loaded vehicle weight to make sure it does not exceed 26,000 pounds.

Class B RVs

With class B motorhomes, you won’t have any problems. These small RVs have the advantage of being very practical and easy to drive, even on narrow or unpaved roads. Class B motorhomes typically weigh between 6,000 and 8,000 pounds, therefore no special license is required to drive them in any state.

Class C RVs

Class C motorhomes are often a favourite for many people for a number of reasons, notably their ability to pack all the luxuries of Class A into a smaller (and typically more affordable) vehicle. Also, they are unlikely to have special licensing requirements as they typically weigh between 10,000 and 12,000 pounds.

Conclusions

If you are concerned about needing a special permit to drive a recreational vehicle (RV), the solution is usually pretty straightforward: don’t choose the very large motorhome. A class C vehicle, a class B motorhome, or a travel trailer probably won’t exceed the weight restrictions of your regular driver’s license. Smaller vehicles are also better for beginners to motorhome driving who don’t feel as safe driving large vehicles.

Please let us know if you have any questions or comments on the content. 

FAQ on ​​Do you need a CDL to drive a motorhome in PA?

How big of an RV can I drive without a CDL?

You can drive an RV of 6500 lbs or less without a CDL. However, this will vary across states, as in some places (Illinois, Arizona, Alaska, Nebraska, Mississippi for example) you don’t require a CDL for an RV no matter its size!

What license do I need to drive an RV in Texas?

To drive an RV in Texas you will need a Non-CDL special licence. This means that to drive an RV that weighs over 26,000 lbs you will need a Class B license, and to drive multiple vehicles (e.g. when towing) with a combined weight over 26,000 lb you will need a Class A licence. 

What driving Licence do I need to drive an RV in the USA?

In the USA, you will need either a CDL or Non-CDL type of licence depending on the state you registered your RV in, also on its weight, length and height.

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