How to get a lorry driver job in the UK? – Requirements to process the temporary visa in the UK
Today, looking for a lorry driver job in the UK is a great opportunity, as the country is in urgent demand for these workers. We inform you what requirements foreigners from Europe must meet to apply for the temporary work visa, what categories of licences are needed and which platforms you could use to look for these jobs…
Driving work in the UK knows as LGV (large good vehicle) or HGV (heavy goods vehicle), acronyms that name the carriers that moves and deliver goods between suppliers and customers.
Who can get a visa to work as a lorry driver in the UK?
To obtain temporary UK lorry driver visas, you need:
- Being over 18 years.
- European driving licences, including from EU countries, the EEA (Liechtenstein, Norway, and Iceland) and Switzerland.
- Heavy vehicle licences, recognized for use in the UK: Category C or C + E licences.
- Professional driving qualification, known as CPC (Driver Certificate of Professional Competence).
- Training courses (driving skills, basic mechanics, loading and securing loads, etc.).
Additionally, have a driving licence that includes LGV for trucks or PCV for buses. On the other hand, it should be noted that every 5 years, to stay qualified, you must complete 35 hours of CPC driver training and renew your truck driving license.
You can also receive further training and obtain an ADR (Advisory Dangerous Goods by Road) certificate to drive dangerous goods, such as toxic chemicals in tanker trucks.
Where to do CPC training courses in the UK?
CPC is a training required to drive trucks, buses, and coaches in professional mode, which requires taking different theoretical and practical courses.
Where can UK companies look for temporary lorry drivers?
Employers / recruiters looking to hire temporary lorry drivers can contact one of the following licensed operators:
Where to look for lorry driver job in the UK?
We suggest you search for the term “lorry driver” in the following job platforms:
It is also possible to find LGV job offers on the website of the Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport.
And we recommend to access this British government search service:
How much can a lorry driver earn in England?
The starting salary for an HGV driver in England ranges from £19,000 to £45,000 per year, depending on the company he works for, the distance travelled and other factors. For reference, heavy vehicle drivers typically earn between £30,000 and £40,000 annually.
According to official information from the British government, a lorry driver in England can earn from 19,000 to 36,000 pounds per year, depending on the driving experience of each driver, working 38 to 52 hours per week.
Conforming to the HGVT.co.uk platform, the salary of an HGV driver can vary from 28,000 to 45,000 pounds per year, depending on the type of vehicle being driven, the type of cargo being transported and the company for which they work.
As reports The Scotsman, due to high demand from heavy-duty vehicle drivers, various temporary trucker jobs are paid by the hour, with rates starting at 10 pounds per hour for magazine carriers. But this value increases depending on the size of the vehicle and the type of goods to be transported, with the transfer of dangerous or valuable materials being the best paid job in the sector.
How many hours do you work behind the wheel?
Legally, there is a driving limit of 9 hours per day, although twice a week it is possible to drive for 10 hours per day, for a maximum weekly driving time of 56 hours or 90 hours in 15 days. Every 4.5 hours, a 45-minute break should be taken.
It is essential to keep a meticulous record of the hours worked and the time of rest, in order to adapt to the times demanded by the companies / employers.
Steps to becoming a lorry driver in the UK
To become a heavy vehicle driver in the UK, you must be over 18 years of age and have a valid UK driving licence. In case you have a driving licence issued outside the UK, you can request that it be transferred to a UK licence.
Then, it will be necessary to obtain a specific driving licence for heavy vehicles, such as a category C or C + E licence, as well as perform various theoretical and practical tests, obtain a CPC certificate and a medical exam, among other documents and requirements.
Obtaining a driving licence implies passing:
- A medical examination.
- A theoretical exam.
- Hands-on training with an experienced, DVSA-certified instructor.
- Driver CPC test to drive professionally, if you don’t already have it as part of your licence.
- 35-hour refresher course every 5 years to keep in driving condition.
Why do the British need so many truckers?
Currently, there is a worrying lack of lorry drivers in England, a problem that explains the current high demand for those of European origin.
For this reason, on October 7, 2021, the United Kingdom Government announced the availability of temporary visas for 4,700 heavy vehicle food drivers, known in English as HGV food drivers -as well as for 5,500 poultry workers.
The deadline to process the temporary lorry driver visa is before December 1, 2021. Each visa expires on February 28, 2022.
The sector’s labour shortage has impacted the supply of fuel to service stations, in addition to affecting food production.
According to the RHS (Road Haulage Association), Britain’s Road Transport Association, the country faces a shortage of 100,000 drivers, as a result of:
- The exit of workers from the industry
- Post-Brexit immigration rules – UK exit from the European Union.
- Effects of paralysis of the pandemic in the processes of training and tests of drivers for almost 1 year.
Types of licence to work as a lorry driver in the UK
The different categories of licences vary based on the weight of the vehicle and how much additional weight they can tow.
- C1 + E – Vehicles between 3,500 kg and 7,500 kg, with a trailer weighing more than 750 kg.
- C1 – Vehicles between 3,500 kg and 7,500 kg, with or without a trailer weighing up to 750 kg.
- C – Vehicles of 3500 kg and a trailer of up to 750 kg.
- C + E – Vehicles weighing more than 3500 kg, but with a trailer that can weigh more than 750 kg.