If you wish to transport goods or passengers by road for professional purposes, you must provide proof of the so-called basic qualification for professional drivers in addition to your driver's license.
This applies to drivers of vehicles with a permissible total weight of more than 3.5 tons in road haulage and own-account transport or of vehicles with more than eight passenger seats in passenger transport, insofar as a C or D class driving license is required for driving the vehicle/vehicle combination.
If you have already acquired your driver's license before 10.9.2008 (bus) or 10.9.2009 (truck), you do not have to provide proof of basic qualification ("grandfather status").
Training as a professional driver is simultaneously recognized as a basic qualification for passenger and freight transport. Training to become a specialist driver is only recognized as a basic qualification for passenger transport, while training to become a road warden and a plant firefighter is only recognized for freight transport.
The "basic qualification" examination comprises a theoretical examination and a practical examination.
To take the exam, you do not have to attend a preparatory course.
A driver's license is also not required at the time of taking the exam.
If you have a certificate of professional competence in accordance with the professional regulations for road haulage and passenger transport (GBZugV and PBZugV), the theoretical parts of the exam are easier to pass. However, you must pass the practical examination in full.
The type of examination differs depending on the prerequisites:
- Regular examination "Basic qualification"
You must take the regular examination if you can neither present proof of a specialist examination in road haulage or passenger transport ("transport manager examination") for the type of transport in question, nor have you successfully passed an examination (accelerated) basic qualification for the other type of transport.
- Changeover test "basic qualification"
You can take the "changeover" test if you have already successfully passed the regular test for the type of transport that is not the subject of the changeover test. Thus, in the accelerated basic qualification "Changeover" training, only the special features of the type of transport are dealt with. For example, the future bus driver is taught how to behave with regard to passengers, since this was not part of his first initial qualification for freight transport.
This also applies to drivers who acquired the driver's license for the other type of transport before the respective cut-off date (grandfathering).
- Cross-entry test "Basic qualification"
You can take the "Cross-entry test" if you have valid proof of a specialist knowledge test for the type of transport for which the test is to be taken.
Since not all the knowledge that a driver must have is tested in the specialist knowledge examination, you must also acquire the basic qualification as the holder of a specialist knowledge certificate.