How to open category C of driving license

How is re-training from category B to C driving license?

To drive a vehicle with a mass exceeding 3.5 tons, you must have an open Category C. A few years ago you had to go through a standard training program to obtain it. It was common for all, and the owners of the driver’s license with an open category B were trained along with the beginners.

Not so long ago, legislation was amended to allow citizens to take a simplified course of retraining from category B to C (Annex 17 of the Ministry of Education and Science of 26.12.2013 № 1408). Accordingly, the cost of such training is also significantly lower. But how is retraining from the category of the license to C? And what are its distinguishing features?

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What does retraining from B to C mean?

The first programs for retraining drivers of different categories began to be developed back in 2013. Prior to that, there was no such opportunity. Therefore, programs for novice drivers and citizens with open categories were the same.

The retraining course from category B to C license is shorter than the initial training. Accordingly, the cost of such service in driving schools is significantly lower.

Requirements for obtaining category C

To receive a Category C license, a driver must pass a training course at a licensed driving school, pass an exam at the traffic police, and pass a medical examination. You will also need to pay the state duty. The age limit for category C is the same as for category B: you may drive trucks only after reaching 18 years of age (Federal Law #196, article 26).

Required Documents

The main document, confirming one’s ability to drive a truck is a medical certificate. To get it you have to present your passport, matted photos and military ID card (conscription certificate). If a citizen has a temporary registration, you will also need to take this document with you.

Directly for passing the exam in the traffic police also need to prepare a number of papers. First of all, you need to provide a passport and a medical certificate. It is also necessary to prepare a document, confirming training in a driving school (provided after passing the internal exam). Besides, you need to pay the state duty and bring the corresponding receipt. The amount of fee does not depend on the category and whether or not the driver has open categories. The amount is 2000 rubles (p.43, article 333.33 of the Tax Code).

How do I get my driving license category C, if I already have B?

First of all, a driver must undergo a medical examination. According to the new rules (Federal Law №437, art.1), you must be examined by different doctors in order to drive different types of vehicles. So for retraining from category B to C (trucks) the list will be as follows:

  1. Ophthalmologist.
  2. Psychiatrist.
  3. Narcologist.
  4. Otolaryngologist.
  5. Neurologist.

An electroencephalography will also be required. Based on the results of the examinations, the therapist decides whether a person can drive a car. If at least one doctor from the list is not passed, the citizen cannot get a certificate, which means that he will not be allowed to pass the exams after retraining.

The important stage is the search of a driving school. Not all of them train truck drivers, let alone retrain them from category B to C. If the driving school does render such services, it is necessary to pay attention to availability of its corresponding license. If it is absent, you will not be allowed to take an exam at State Traffic Safety Inspectorate.

Step-by-step instruction for retraining from driving license category B to C

The whole process of retraining from the category of the license B to C can be divided into several main stages:

  1. To open a new category, you will first need to find a suitable driving school. When choosing an educational institution, you should make sure that it has state accreditation.
  2. Next, you will need to collect documents and get a medical certificate. The cost of getting it for the category C is 2000 roubles on average.
  3. The following step will be the passage of the preparatory course in a driving school. The teachers keep a log of attendance, so skipping classes is not recommended. Otherwise, the applicant risks not being admitted to the final certification.
  4. When the driver was trained and passed the internal exam, he can be admitted to the exam in the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate. Here, the applicant will have to show knowledge of theory, as well as practical driving skills on the proving ground and in the conditions of the city.
  5. If the test is not passed, it may be necessary to retake the exam.

At the end the citizen will be able to come to the department of the State Traffic Police (it is necessary to address to the department which the driving school is attached to) and get a new driving license. It is possible to make an appointment for the visit through the State Service or directly in the office. There is no need for photos for driving license issuance: they will be taken on site.

Regulatory documents

The rules and procedure for retraining motorists from category B to C license are regulated by a whole list of legislative acts. The main one is Federal Law dated 10.12.1995 № 196 “On road safety”. Training also takes place in accordance with the Federal Law from 29.12.2012 № 273 “On Education in the Russian Federation” and the rules for the development of driver training programs (Decree from 1.11.2013 № 980).

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What is included in the retraining from B to C?

The curriculum of the retraining program from category B license is somewhat simplified compared to the usual. In the case of category C, it includes the study of the following subjects and disciplines:

  1. The design of commercial vehicles.
  2. Operation and maintenance of vehicles.
  3. The rules of the road to drive a truck.

In addition, the student must learn the organization of cargo transportation. You will also need to drive a certain number of hours behind the wheel of a training machine. Only availability of knowledge in all disciplines and fulfillment of all requirements will allow passing the exam.

Duration of retraining

Legislation establishes certain requirements for driver training (Order of the Ministry of Education and Science from 26.12.2013 №1408, Appendix 17). In particular, it regulates the number of hours that must be allocated for each of the disciplines included in the list of mandatory subjects.

For example, 24 hours are allocated for the study of trucks. At the same time for practical training must be spent at least 4 hours of them. The basics of management is taught for 12 hours. Of these, 4 hours are also allotted for practice. In order to be admitted to the exam, a driver who retrains from category B to C must drive the vehicle for at least 38 hours (if the training is for a vehicle with automatic transmission, this number can be reduced to 36 hours).

The time to study the professional cycle of the program is also strictly regulated. Therefore, the driver will have to spend 6 hours studying the organization of cargo transportation. Two hours out of them were allotted for practice. They will also have to take a qualifying examination (2 hours of practice and 2 hours of theory).

Thus, the driver’s retraining from category B to C takes 82 to 84 hours (depending on the type of transmission). You will have to spend 34 hours on theory, and the remaining time will be spent on practical exercises. How this time will be distributed and how the learning process will be held depends on a particular driving school. But the number of hours should remain unchanged.

Cost of retraining from B to C

The cost of training may significantly vary depending on the region and a particular driving school. However, it is obvious that the price of retraining from driving license category B to C in any case will be much lower than in driver training from scratch.

Thus, the average cost of a retraining course from category B to C ranges from 10 to 20 thousand rubles. This amount includes both theoretical and practical classes, as well as driving lessons. At the same time the price tag on the full training course for truck driving is equal to 30-40 thousand rubles. As you can see, the difference is significant.

As already mentioned, when choosing a driving school one should pay attention to the availability of state accreditation. But it is equally important to know what is included into the cost of the course. For this purpose, you should study the contract beforehand. Some dishonest companies specify here not all the services, necessary for driver training. As the result, the trainee has to pay additionally for the cost of fuel and driving lessons. And this can considerably increase the retraining costs.

Theoretical part

The main part of retraining from category B to C driver’s license is learning the theory of truck driving. The requirements for teaching such material are also established by law (Order #1408).

In contrast to the practice, 1 hour of training here is equal to 1 academic hour (ie, 45 minutes). The training is conducted in groups. There should be no more than 26 students in each group. Attendance record is kept by the teachers.

For drivers’ training, the driving school must be equipped with the corresponding rooms. In the first of them, applicants for a license will learn the legislation and the rules of operation of trucks. In the second one, the study of the technical device of transport and the rules of cargo transportation takes place.

In general, the educational process in different driving schools remains similar. Only small nuances differ.

Practical driving training

Only persons without medical contraindications are allowed to drive a training vehicle. That means you will need a medical certificate before you start the practical driving course. Otherwise you will not be able to complete your Category C retraining.

Driving lessons are separate from theory lessons. Students choose their own convenient time. The entire learning process is divided into two parts:

  1. Closed training ground.
  2. Driving in the city.

During the retraining from the category of driving license B to C, the student must learn a certain program. It is divided into separate exercises (how to do it – decides the driving school itself). When the driver gets the minimum skills to drive the truck, he can go to the city and start driving on the training route.

The control examination at the driving school

When the driver has fully completed the preparatory course, the driving school should check the quality of assimilation of the provided material. For this purpose there is a control examination. In comparison with the exam at the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate, it is somewhat simplified and shortened. However, it still allows you to fully check the knowledge of the student.

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The practical part of the check includes only driving a truck on the range. Go out into the city and move along the training route, unlike the final test, is not obligatory. However, if the driver cannot pass at least one test on the closed circuit, he will not be allowed to take the exam at the GIBDD. In this case he will have to retake the control exam in the driving school.

Examination at the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate

When the driver has fully mastered the retraining program and successfully passed all internal tests, he gets the opportunity to take the exam in the traffic police (the order of its conduct is regulated by paragraph 83-123 of the Ministry of Internal Affairs Order from 20.10.2015 № 995 and the Government Decree from 24.10.2014 №1097). The test is not much different from the similar test for the category B.

First, the applicant must pass the theory. It includes 40 tickets, each of which has 20 questions. Answering these, the driver must show that he has mastered the training program and knows the traffic rules, the basics of traffic safety, first-aid techniques, and rules of vehicle operation. The driver is given a failing grade (Order №995 p97-98) if he answers 3 mistakes, 2 mistakes in one block or 1 mistake in the additional questions (according to the Order №995, for each wrong answer in the main part 5 additional questions are given).

After successful passing of tickets, the driver gets to the driving range. Here he must do a number of exercises. These include parallel parking, “boxing”, snaking, driving uphill and turning (there is no difference in the program for trucks and cars).

If you passed the autodrome without mistakes, the driver receives an examination list. With this sheet he goes to pass “city”. Unlike a proving ground, an instructor and SMVI inspector will be also present there. During the test the driver is to show his driving skills by driving through controlled and uncontrolled crossroads, crosswalk and bus stop. You will also need to make a U-turn, changing lane and overtaking. For each error you will get a certain number of points (gross mistakes – 5 points, medium mistakes – 3, minor mistakes – 1). The exam is considered passed, if a score of less than 5 points (Order № 995 p 129-130).

To pass the theory and practice will be possible only in a week. But if the theory is given an unlimited number of attempts, the “city” can be performed only 3 times in a row. If a driver couldn’t pass it, he would have to wait 30 days for the next exam. If the tests are not passed in 6 months, the applicant is sent for retraining.

The course of the examination and its results must be documented in the form of a protocol.

If the driver successfully passes all the exams, he or she will be able to replace his or her driver’s license. This can be done on the day of the exam or the next day (the results of the theoretical exam are valid for 6 months). The holder of the license will need to visit a department of the State Traffic Police (issuance is done at the place of application) and have his picture taken. In a few minutes a new document will be issued where the category C and subcategory C1 will be present in addition to already open ones. From this moment the driver can quite legally drive trucks.

Required Documents

To get a new driver’s license after retraining from category B to C, the driver must pay the state duty and bring the receipt. The amount of the fee does not depend on the category and whether or not the driver has open categories. The amount is 2000 rubles (p43, article 333.33 of the Tax Code). You also need to prepare your passport. You don’t have to bring your photos – the traffic police will take them on the spot.

Step by step instruction on acquiring a driver license

The whole process of procuring a new license after retraining from category B to C, can be divided into several main stages:

  1. First of all, it is required to send an application to the traffic police for a new document. This can be done both in the department and via the portal of Gosuslugi.
  2. At the appointed time it is required to come to the traffic police (it is necessary to apply to the department, to which the driving school is assigned). It is enough to have the ID card and the document confirming the payment of duty.
  3. The traffic policemen will take a picture and print out the new ID card, where category C and subcategory C1 will be present besides the already open ones. The whole procedure takes no more than 30 minutes.

As a result, the driver will be added to the database, and will get a driving license with new open categories.

Nuances of .

In general, the retraining program from B to C is not much different from the usual examinations for the category C. It has a lot in common with the training for driving passenger cars. However there are nuances and peculiarities.

  • Nowadays there are not so many driving schools for training truck drivers (not every company can afford to buy and maintain such transport). The organizations which are engaged in retraining are even less. Therefore it is necessary to pay attention to the search of educational institution. You should thoroughly study the contract and check the license. Only this way you can insure yourself against extra expenses and guarantee the receipt of ID. The training program for drivers of cars is considerably reduced, and the cost of training is several times lower.
  • You should not apply to a driving school if you have serious health problems. The requirements for truck drivers are more stringent, and the medical examination includes several additional doctors. Therefore, having a driver’s license does not guarantee you will pass the medical exam. You should also be prepared to have to pay for the certificate (it will cost about 2,000 rubles).
  • One of the main conditions for obtaining a license is the successful passing of exams. In general, they do not differ much from similar tests for the category B. The only difference is that here the driver is sitting behind the wheel of a multi-ton truck. As a rule, the experienced drivers are able to pass exams in the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate (GIBDD) from the first time. If for some reasons they could not do it, it is always possible to pass the retake. The main thing is not to procrastinate. Otherwise, the citizen can be directed for a retraining course.
  • In order to receive a new driver’s license, it is required to pay the state duty. Currently, its size is 2000 rubles. But one can save money here as well. By applying electronically at the portal of State Services and making noncash payment, a citizen gets a 30% discount. Thus, the fee will be reduced to 1400 rubles.
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These were the main nuances of retraining drivers. In fact, opening a Category C is not that difficult. Most people who already have a VU, cope with it the first time. All you need is to take the learning process seriously and take care of preparing the necessary documents in advance.

What is needed to open a new category on your license if you have any of the categories

Open categories of driving license

Opening a new category in the existing license allows the driver to legally drive new types of vehicles. To add a new category, the driver will have to study again in a driving school, and then pass the exams in the traffic police. However, in different cases, the composition of the exam itself may differ, since it depends on what category (subcategory) is opened in the license and what it already is.

If you do not have a driving license yet, read how to get a driving license for the first time.

Types of driving categories

There are 7 main categories approved by the provisions of Article 25 of the Federal Law “About the Road Traffic Safety”. The categories are further subdivided into subcategories.

Driving category Transport Licensing age (at what age)
A Motorcycles 18
A1 Motorcycles with an engine up to 125 cm3 and a maximum power of 11 kW 16
B Passenger cars 18
B1 Tricycles, quad bikes 18
C Trucks 18
D Buses 21
C1 Trucks weighing up to 7,500 kg 18
D1 Buses up to 16 seats 21
BE, CE, DE, C1E, D1E Relevant categories with a trailer At least one year of owning a license for the appropriate categories
M Mopeds, light ATVs 16
Tb Trolleybuses 21
Tm Trolleybuses 21

Having a driver’s license of one category does not entitle you to operate vehicles belonging to another category.

Age limits for opening a category of driving license

How to open a new category on your license

The law “About road safety” states that in order to add a new driving category to the current driving license, the applicant must necessarily pass a qualifying examination in the traffic police. However, depending on the category of driving, the composition of the exam, as well as the number and types of exercises, the successful performance of which is counted in the practical part of the test on the test track, vary. The examination rules and specific types of exercises, the successful performance of which counts for the practical test, are listed in the Methodology of Licensing Examinations, and we will tell you about them below.

Categories A, M, A1, B1

In order to open the driving categories related to driving motor vehicles (two, three and four-wheelers) in the valid license, you must pass an exam consisting of two parts:

  • The theoretical part on the tickets;
  • practical driving on the test track.

The driving test consists of three exercises:

  • stopping for boarding (disembarking) passengers;
  • parking and leaving a parking space;
  • maneuvering in conditions of limited space (“snaking”, performing maneuvers at speed, braking, stopping, etc.).

There is no urban driving test to open a new category in this case.

Motorcycles are the easiest to drive, so having a valid license is a guarantee that you know the traffic regulations and are ready for city driving.

Category B

Driving Category B

The opening of category B with a license of another category will require the driver to pass a full examination consisting of three parts:

  • Theoretical on the tickets;
  • practical in the form of driving on the racetrack;
  • Practical as driving in the city.

Driving on the driving range includes checking the student’s skills through the following exercises:

  • “hill” (“trestle”) – the student’s skills in stopping and starting on the hill are tested;
  • “parking” – tests the student’s parking skills (parallel parking, stopping to board/drop off passengers on the overpass);
  • “Garage entry” – the ability to maneuver and park in reverse;
  • “speed maneuvering” – test of maneuvering skills, “snaking”, “U-turn”, “90 ° turn” (two exercises at the choice of the examiner);
  • overcoming a regulated intersection.
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Two minutes are allocated for each exercise. After successfully completing the exercises on the driving range, students demonstrate their urban driving skills.

Categories C, D and subcategories

Learning to drive a bus

In order to take the test for driving trucks and passenger vehicles to open a new category on a valid license, you also need to take a three-part exam:

  • theoretical part on the knowledge of the traffic rules;
  • driving on the test track;
  • Driving in the city.

The driving track exercises for categories C and D are the same as those for passenger cars. The examination also includes a demonstration of the student’s skills in speed maneuvering, parking, reversing, etc. After passing, the examinee is allowed to take the test in the city. If the driver successfully passes all three exams, he or she will be able to open a new category in the license.

Driving with a trailer (BE, CE, DE, C1E, D1E)

Trailer Driving

Passing the driving test for the category of driving associated with driving a vehicle with a trailer also consists of three parts:

  • a theoretical test on the road traffic regulations;
  • driving on the racetrack;
  • Driving in the city.

The test on the driving range consists of the consecutive performance of four exercises:

  • coupling and uncoupling the trailer with the tractor vehicle (when coupling is allowed the help of others);
  • maneuvering in a confined space, stopping to unload/load cargo (embark/disembark passengers) ;
  • backing into the garage box;
  • parallel parking, reverse parking on a “slide”.

Successful completion of the exercises on the driving range is the basis for admission to the urban driving test.

A valid driver’s license of the appropriate category, valid for at least one year, is a prerequisite for taking the test for driving a motor vehicle with a trailer.

Categories Tm and Tb

Driving trolleybuses and streetcars stands apart. You have to be 21 years old to take the tests and get a license for the corresponding categories. The conditions for preparing for and taking the exams differ as well. The traffic police accept only the theoretical part, the practice on the driving range and in the city is passed by the student in the training organization. Students of such schools have the title of cadets and even get a scholarship.

As a rule, they are sent to the training organization by the operating companies, so it’s almost impossible to get into such a school from the outside. During the training, drivers not only learn to drive passenger transport, but also learn its primary repair, learn safety techniques when working with electric motors, etc.

When opening a new category is not necessary

Point 7, Article 25 of the Federal Law № 196-FZ approved the provision relating to the possibility of automatically opening some driving categories. Having a valid license automatically opens “junior” subcategories in the following cases:

  • A – to drive vehicles of subcategories A1 and B1 (with a motorcycle seat or handlebars);
  • B – to drive vehicles of category B1 (not with motorcycle fit or not with motorcycle handlebars);
  • C – subcategory C1;
  • D – categories D1;
  • CE and DE – C1E and D1E, respectively.

In all other cases, passing the exam in the traffic police is a prerequisite for opening a new driving category.

How to upgrade qualification from automatic transmission to manual transmission

Trainees who were trained and passed the exam on cars with automatic gearbox receive a certificate allowing driving only cars with automatic gearboxes. This is marked on the license. Such drivers cannot legally drive cars with manual gearboxes.

In order to receive the right to drive a car with a manual gearbox, you will also have to pass the exam. But such drivers are exempt from theoretical part and city driving exams – you just need to successfully pass the exercises on the driving range. The availability of a valid license confirms that the driver has skills of driving in the city and knows the rules of the road. Therefore, the only thing he must prove during the exam is the skills of driving a car with a manual gearbox, which are demonstrated on the driving range.

Can you prepare on your own

In 2013, the Law “On Road Safety” was amended. Since this year, independent preparation for the exam for driving categories A, B and their subcategories was abolished. The same applies to obtaining other driving categories. Without granting a certificate of graduation from a driving school it is impossible not only to issue a ready license, but also to get admission to examinations of the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate.

Independent training, preparation and retraining for passing examinations are not allowed.

To receive the license without visiting lectures in a driving school, it is possible to pass online training for the license.

Documents for the new category

The list of documents required when applying for a new driver’s license. It includes:

  • personal passport;
  • a valid driver’s license;
  • Certificate of driving school completion and passing of examinations;
  • A receipt for payment of state duty;
  • A written application (to be filled in on the spot);
  • A medical certificate (if necessary).

Medical driving license

It is also necessary to provide a photo to open a new category in the license. If the applicant applies to the State Traffic Police (GIBDD), the photo is taken by a staff photographer.

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How much does it cost to open a new category in the license

Despite the fact that the driver already has a valid license, when you open a new category, he is an ordinary student. He will have to pay for the whole course of training in a driving school, the cost depends on the training organization itself and the region of residence, and does not depend on the duration of training and category of license. Usually the cost of training is 20-30 thousand rubles.

Also you will have to pay the state duty for getting driving license (2 thousand rubles). If you get the driving license for passenger and cargo transport, and the driver has a license with the passenger category, he will have to get a medical conclusion with the doctors’ permission. The conclusion will cost 2-3 thousand rubles (1675 rubles – in municipal clinics).

Driving license

Change of driving license

When a driver’s license is replaced due to expiration of its term of validity (10 years), all current categories are automatically renewed, but only if the driver’s state of health corresponds to medical requirements.

How to transfer the category in a new driving license

The introduction of the new type of driving license has somewhat changed the procedure for transferring the categories from the old license to the new one. The main difficulty is the presence of a separate category E in the old type of license, which allows driving any vehicles with trailers. Now this category is abolished, and students are trained to drive certain types of vehicles with trailers (BE, CE, etc.). Sometimes the traffic police refuse the automatic opening of all driving categories if the driver had a category E. Such practice is illegal, so repeatedly refuted in the courts.

If the driver in the old type of license had a category E, the new license must automatically be stamped BE, CE, DE, C1E, D1E.

The rest of the rules for opening and transferring from the old licence to the new one are as follows.

Categories in old license Categories in the new license
A A, A1, B1 (with motorcycle seat and handlebars), M
B B, B1, M (except vehicles with motorcycle seats and handlebars)
B, C B, B1 (of the above type), C, C1, M
B, C, D B, B1 (type above), C, C1, D, D1, M
B, C, D, E All except A, Tb, Tm
A, B, C, D, E All except trolleybuses and streetcars

The M category is automatically entered if any other category is on the licence.


If your licence expires, you must obtain a medical certificate. If license categories not related to truck or passenger vehicle driving are being renewed, you need to get the permission of the following doctors:

  • therapist;
  • An ophthalmologist;
  • Psychiatrist and narcologist.

If you have an additional category C, D, Tm, Tb and their subcategories on your license, you must also

  • get the permission of a neurologist and otolaryngologist;
  • undergo electroencephalography of the brain.

Thus, if a driver has B and C open at the same time, he has to pass all the doctors, which will cost much more.

In addition to the medical report to replace the license will need to provide to the traffic police:

  • personal passport;
  • your old license;
  • A receipt for payment of the state duty.

How to close an unnecessary category

According to the Rules of passing examinations for driving licenses, the closing of unnecessary driving categories is not provided. All the marks about open categories are automatically transferred to the new license. Therefore, the driver cannot save money and refuse to pass additional examinations if he or she had previously opened categories related to the driving of passenger, cargo and cargo-passenger vehicles.

The exclusion of driving categories is allowed only on medical grounds – if the driver is unable to successfully pass a medical examination to drive a truck or passenger vehicle, these categories will be closed in his license, and the categories of other types of vehicles will remain valid in his license.

If after a while the health of the driver will allow you to drive vehicles of categories C, D and their subcategories, they will be reopened in his license without passing additional examinations. In order to do that, the driver will have to pass the medical examination once again and submit the results to the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate.

Reasons for refusal to transfer

Refusal to transfer to a new license may be for the following reasons:

  • An incomplete list of documents is provided;
  • submitted documents do not meet the requirements of the law (for example, the medical report lacks the permission of some doctors);
  • The information given by the driver contradicts to the information from the internal database of the State Traffic Safety Inspectorate.

The other reasons are not considered to be the grounds for refusal to open the categories at replacement of the license. An unmotivated refusal may be appealed against administratively, by filing a complaint to a superior officer or appealing to court.

The opening of new categories in the existing license requires the driver to get new training in a driving school and pass all types of exams – theoretical part, driving on the driving track and driving in urban conditions. The exception is the opening of a category for managing motorcycle transport. Also you will have to pay the state duty in the amount of 2 thousand rubles for getting a new driving license.

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