Requirements for Professional Truck Drivers

Requirements for truck drivers in GermanyIf you are a third-country national you can be employed as a truck driver without formal training in Germany if the Federal Employment Agency approves your employment.

For the employment of professional drivers from third countries, the approval process of the Federal Employment Agency has been simplified as of November 2023. The following will now no longer be checked:

  • whether the required EU or EEA driving license of class C1, C1E, C, CE, D1, D1E, D or DE,
  • whether the EU or EEA (accelerated) basic qualification as a driver of certain motor vehicles for goods and passenger transport are available,
  • the priority check has been eliminated,
  • language skills are no longer a required.

If the above requirements are not met, you can acquire them by successfully participating in qualification measures in Germany. A driver's license from a third country must be converted into a German driver's license within six months. Parallel to the qualification measures and the conversion of the driver's license, you can be employed in a company. The employment will be approved by the Federal Employment Agency if the following requirements are met:

  • German language skills at level B1,
  • Proof of an existing driver's license from a third country as a truck driver in the country of origin,
  • An employment contract which, in addition to employment in the company, provides an obligation to participate in measures to obtain the German basic qualification and the required German driver's license,
  • the working conditions of this employment contract must be designed in such a way, that the German driving license and the German (accelerated) basic qualification can be obtained within 15 months,
  • employment contract as a truck driver following the conversion of the driving license and the acquisition of the basic qualification.

Persons over 45 Years

If you are 45 years or older, you also have to receive a salary of at least € 4015 in western Germany resp. € 3905 for eastern Germany. If your salary will be lower than that threshold, you will have to show an adequate pension plan or other provisions for retirement. This coverage can be either the state pension plan from home, private savings, or closing a German pension plan or a mixture of all. The government wants to make sure that you will not be dependent on welfare upon retiring.

N.B. This is only relevant for the very first permit!