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Old 03-11-2019, 09:55 AM   #1
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Class B non-commercial equivalent for UK license holders

Hi,
I am a UK license holder planning to travel in a US skoolie, which we own and is currently being converted in the US. GVWR was 29,000lbs when we purchased it as a bus (i.e with seats etc).
I understand that you don't need a special CDL license to drive a skoolie, and that UK licences are valid for up to a year in the US, but I am a bit confused about the few states in which US citizens need to upgrade to a "Class B non commercial license" if they wish to drive a personal RV over 26,000lbs. Presumably that means I would need to have an equivalent endorsement on my UK license for those states - which, I think means I would have to go the whole hog and get a category C LGV license as I am only eligble to drive 18188lbs as it currently stands. It's a pricey and time-consuming procedure getting a LGV license in the UK as it's geared towards people who want to be commercial drives, so I want to make sure I absolutely have to have it.
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Old 03-11-2019, 12:36 PM   #2
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You likely will need nothing other than your UK license. All state have reciprocity with each other , your license from any state is good in all of them. Not sure how that would apply to international drivers. Drive like an adult and don't get pulled over. When was the last time anyone saw an RV pulled over by LEO?
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Old 03-11-2019, 02:22 PM   #3
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In California you need a Class B license to drive any vehicle over 26,000 lbs GVWR, unless that vehicle is registered as a "House Car" (California-speak for an RV) not over 40 feet long. You actually still need a non-Commercial Class B to drive a House Car over 40 feet, but when was anyone ever pulled over for that? In practice, unless you drive like a complete hoon or have an obviously decrepit bus, no CHP or city police is likely to stop you, and if they do just claim Diplomatic Immunity! If you were stopped and showed your UK licence it would probably be the most exciting thing that officer had done all week.

Many years ago when I was riding my bicycle across America I was riding on a short section of Interstate in Washington state, knowing full well that bicycles were not allowed to do that in WA. To have kept off the Interstate would have required 50 or more miles extra riding that I just didn't feel like doing, so I thought it was worth the risk. Needless to say, a WA state trooper going the opposite way saw me, did a U-turn over the center median and caught up with me, lights flashing and siren blaring. I put on my best English accent and pretended I was lost and completely knackered (it was bloody hot that day), the officer was gobsmacked on seeing my British passport, escorted me with lights flashing to the next exit where I had planned to go anyway, and then wished me well in my travels! So, even if you do get pulled over, you won't necessarily end up on Death Row (or worse).

Where do you plan on traveling here?

Good luck, John
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Old 03-11-2019, 04:10 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by Iceni John View Post
In California you need a Class B license to drive any vehicle over 26,000 lbs GVWR, unless that vehicle is registered as a "House Car" (California-speak for an RV) not over 40 feet long. You actually still need a non-Commercial Class B to drive a House Car over 40 feet, but when was anyone ever pulled over for that? In practice, unless you drive like a complete hoon or have an obviously decrepit bus, no CHP or city police is likely to stop you, and if they do just claim Diplomatic Immunity! If you were stopped and showed your UK licence it would probably be the most exciting thing that officer had done all week.

Many years ago when I was riding my bicycle across America I was riding on a short section of Interstate in Washington state, knowing full well that bicycles were not allowed to do that in WA. To have kept off the Interstate would have required 50 or more miles extra riding that I just didn't feel like doing, so I thought it was worth the risk. Needless to say, a WA state trooper going the opposite way saw me, did a U-turn over the center median and caught up with me, lights flashing and siren blaring. I put on my best English accent and pretended I was lost and completely knackered (it was bloody hot that day), the officer was gobsmacked on seeing my British passport, escorted me with lights flashing to the next exit where I had planned to go anyway, and then wished me well in my travels! So, even if you do get pulled over, you won't necessarily end up on Death Row (or worse).

Where do you plan on traveling here?

Good luck, John
Nevermind
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Old 03-11-2019, 05:15 PM   #5
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Kansas requires a non-commercial class B for vehicles 26001 lbs. and over regardless of whether titled as an RV. I believe Texas is the same. There are approx. 8 states total that require it. I posted this somewhere else on this forum.
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Old 03-11-2019, 05:20 PM   #6
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Kansas requires a non-commercial class B for vehicles 26001 lbs. and over regardless of whether titled as an RV. I believe Texas is the same. There are approx. 8 states total that require it. I posted this somewhere else on this forum.
For just resident drivers?
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Old 03-11-2019, 05:37 PM   #7
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What state will the bus be registered/licensed in ? If the state it is registered in does not require a class B license then you are good anywhere, as that will be it's "home" state, and because you are the owner you would be expected to follow that states rules, and other states will honor that.
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Old 03-11-2019, 05:42 PM   #8
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What state will the bus be registered/licensed in ? If the state it is registered in does not require a class B license then you are good anywhere, as that will be it's "home" state, and because you are the owner you would be expected to follow that states rules, and other states will honor that.
Exactly!

Pick the state where the bus will be registered and check the regs for that state. Other states will accommodate through "reciprocity".

If you registered in WA as an RV you would not have to have any special license.

Good luck.
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Old 03-11-2019, 05:44 PM   #9
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And if you register it in Vermont you can do it all through the mail before you ever get here. You don't even need an address or to visit the state.
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Old 03-11-2019, 05:50 PM   #10
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Well ..... You will need an address to get mail..,....
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