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Fri, May 31, 2024

Periodic Driver CPC Training: Requirements, Costs, and Online Options

Periodic Driver CPC Training: Requirements, Costs, and Online Options

Periodic Driver CPC Training is crucial for drivers and operators in the commercial vehicle industry. This guide aims to simplify the complexities of CPC training, covering its definition, purpose, and the shift towards online options. We'll explore training modules, online course availability, and costs to empower both seasoned drivers and newcomers in meeting compliance standards and enhancing their skills.

What is Periodic CPC Training?

Periodic Driver CPC (Certificate of Professional Competence) applies to professional drivers of commercial vehicles, including the following categories: C1, C1E, C, CE, D1, D1E, D, and DE. Not every driver requires Driver CPC, and there are exemptions, but if you are being paid to drive any of these vehicles, Driver CPC will likely apply.

Driver CPC became UK law in 2008 for PCVs (minibuses, coaches, and buses) and in 2009 for the haulage industry. Driver CPC was originally an EU directive, and many presumed that after Brexit, the UK government would remove Driver CPC from the statute books. However, the reality is that no government would abolish anything that promotes road safety. Despite its critics, it seems this qualification is here to stay.

Purpose of Periodic CPC Training

Driver CPC has three main objectives:

  1. Improve road safety.
  2. Expand and develop existing drivers' knowledge and skills.
  3. Ensure new drivers have the required knowledge and skills to carry out their jobs safely and legally.

Overview of the Importance of Periodic Driver CPC Training

Continuous Professional Development (CPD) is common in all industries, including construction, catering, and finance. The commercial transport industry is no different. In such a heavily regulated industry, it is right and proper that professional drivers are empowered to ensure compliance with legislation. The consequences of non-compliance can include the loss of a vocational license. The Driver CPC qualification mandates that all existing PCV and HGV drivers complete 35 hours of formal training every five years.

Explanation of Who Needs to Complete Periodic CPC Training and Why

Professional drivers of commercial vehicles are required to complete their Driver CPC training. The scope of Driver CPC covers:

  • Minibuses with more than 8 but no more than 16 passenger seats.
  • Buses or coaches with more than 16 seats.
  • Lorries over 3.5 tonnes, including 7.5 tonners, rigids, and articulated or drawbar vehicles.

A trailer may also be towed with both passenger-carrying and goods vehicles under these categories.

However, Driver CPC is not applicable to all minibus, coach, bus, or truck drivers. You may not need to complete the training and obtain the card if you fall under certain exemptions. These exemptions can change, so it is advisable to check the latest list on the UK Government website.

It is an offence for an employer to send a driver on revenue-earning duties without a valid Driver CPC. It is also an offence for the driver not to have a valid Driver CPC card while driving.

CPC Periodic Training Modules

Driver CPC periodic training, consisting of 35 hours every 5 years, is typically broken down into 5 days of 7 hours of formal training. Formal training means the course must be delivered by a DVSA-approved Driver CPC training company, such as EP Training Services. The 7-hour courses must be approved and meet the training syllabus, which is very wide-ranging. Courses are usually relevant to what the HGV driver is currently doing or what they intend to do in the future.

Popular courses include:

  • Drivers' Hours
  • Safety and Security of Loads
  • Customer Care
  • First Aid
  • HIAB (Hydrauliska Industri AB)

One important rule of Driver CPC is that students must not complete the same 7-hour course within a 5-year block, which is designed to reduce repetition and duplication of existing knowledge.

Interestingly, there is currently no examination required to gain a Driver CPC card via periodic training. The only requirement from DVSA is that you complete 7 hours at a time, or two sets of 3.5-hour courses completed within a 24-hour period. When completing your Driver CPC, it is recommended to choose high-quality courses that will enhance your career rather than opting for the cheapest online courses available. However, with the current financial constraints in the UK, it is understandable that drivers might opt for the most affordable option.

Overview of the five CPC periodic training modules

The periodic Driver CPC is designed to confirm and expand on existing knowledge, as well as improve road safety. This training is undoubtedly beneficial to drivers, who are often scrutinized and penalized by enforcement agencies such as the DVSA. By participating in these modules, drivers ensure they stay updated with current regulations, enhance their skills, and maintain high safety standards on the road.

Can I Do CPC Periodic Training Online?

Since the COVID-19 outbreak in March 2020, the DVSA has allowed approved training companies to deliver Driver CPC training online via the internet. This was a game changer, as previously it was only available in classrooms. During the pandemic, everyone was isolating at home, making online training a crucial adaptation. The online CPC was so successful that, after lockdown ended, the DVSA chose to continue with the online option alongside the traditional classroom option.

Online training has become the preferred choice compared to classroom tuition. The main reasons are its lower cost and the absence of travel requirements. Some argue that completing online training diminishes the value of the training. However, many who have completed training via the web recognize the benefits compared to classroom tuition.

Discussion on the availability of online CPC periodic training

With approximately 2,000 companies delivering periodic Driver CPC in the UK, there is a huge choice for consumers. You may wonder why there are so many companies that are DVSA approved to deliver Driver CPC training. The simple reason is that it is very easy to become an approved Driver CPC training centre, as the application and accreditation process is done by post. There are no pre-approval visits conducted by the DVSA, so as a result, numerous organizations are now delivering these courses

Cost of CPC Periodic Training

Breakdown of the typical costs associated with CPC periodic training

Driver CPC training can vary widely in cost. Online tuition is generally much cheaper than classroom tuition. Additionally, if you complete the entire 35-hour requirement in one go, training companies often offer a discount. Training fees for each 7-hour course range from £30 to £120, depending on the provider and format.

It is essential for both drivers and operators to stay up-to-date with their Driver CPC hours. The best way for drivers to track their hours is to set up an account on the .Gov website. This process is quick and provides access to view the number of courses and hours completed, the dates of training, the training providers, and the status of your uploads. This is a useful tool, as completing more than 35 hours in a 5-year period does not allow you to bank extra hours for future use.

Every time you complete a 7-hour course, the training company must record your attendance via the. Gov Recording and Evidence (R&E) system. Once your 35th hour is completed and recorded, your Driver CPC card will automatically be sent to the address the DVLA has on file. There is no application process for the card, and the fee is covered by your training company.


We hope this blog post has given you a clearer insight into Driver CPC, including its applicability, requirements, and the typical costs of training. Many reputable Driver CPC training companies offer both online and classroom tuition, ensuring that the training is beneficial. Who knows, it may even make you a better driver.

Like it or loathe it, Driver CPC is here to stay, so as an industry, we should embrace it and take full advantage of what it has to offer.

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