Large goods vehicle driver

lorry driver LGV driver HGV driver heavy goods vehicle driver

Career outlook for

Figures and forecasts for roles at the same level, which require similar skills and qualifications.

Average UK salary

Currently employed in Scotland

Six year jobs forecast

The information is supplied by LMI For All

What's it like?

You would drive on long journeys around the UK and abroad to deliver goods and raw materials to customers.

You could move everything from food to fuel, transporting loads from depots, distribution centres and warehouses to shops, factories and businesses.

You would drive commercial vehicles over 7.5 tonnes including:

  • Rigid trucks
  • Articulated lorries
  • Tankers
  • Transporters
  • Trailer wagons

Apart from driving, you would:

  • Plan delivery schedules and routes with transport managers
  • Supervise or help with loading and unloading goods
  • Make sure loads are safely secured
  • Follow traffic reports and change your route if necessary
  • Complete the delivery paperwork and log books

You might also do basic routine maintenance such as checking the oil, tyres and brakes before and after journeys.

You’d spend a lot of time by yourself. You’d need to be a good driver and able to concentrate for long periods. You would need to follow the safety regulations for driving and handling the loads.

Working conditions

Hours

You would normally work an average of 42 hours a week. Overtime may be available, however, there are strict laws about the amount of hours you can spend driving between rest breaks

Travel

You would drive long distances so could spend a lot of time away from home, including overnight stays where necessary.

Environment

You would spend most of your time in your vehicle.

UK employment status

Full-time

Part-time

Self employed

Here are some of the skills that people in this job would be most likely to have:

  • Helping customers
  • Working on your own
  • Repairing and fixing
  • Being physically fit
  • Time management
  • Working with numbers
  • Paying attention to detail

Build your skills

Your skills can help you choose the career that’s right for you. You can build your skills through work, study or activities you do in your spare time.

To understand more, have a look at what are my skills?

Keep track of your skills in your account and find the jobs, opportunities and courses that suit you.

Click here to view / add your skills

Getting in

Entry requirements for courses can change. Always contact the college, university or training provider to check exactly what you’ll need.

Qualifications

There are no formal qualifications required to enter this role. Most employers value a good general education.

Useful subjects

  • English
  • Maths
  • Geography
  • Modern languages

You will also need

You will need a driving licence and a good driving record.

If you obtained your licence before 1 January 1997, you are allowed to drive vehicles up to 7.5 tonnes without the need for a separate licence.

If you got your licence after 1st January 1997, you can drive vehicles up to 3.5 tonnes with your car licence.

If you need to drive larger vehicles you will need to sit and pass the LGV licence test. There are two categories of the LGV licence test:

  • To drive vehicles between 3.5 and 7.5 tonnes, you will need further training to pass the LGV test and get a category C1 licence.
  • If you need to drive rigid vehicles over 7.5 tonnes you would need to pass category C.

To drive vehicles with trailers you will need to pass category C+E. If you need to drive an articulated lorry you will be required to have A+C+E licence. 

You will also need to complete a short course to get a Driver Certificate of Professional Competence (CPC).

A licence is valid for five years and depending on your age, you need to sign a medical declaration or provide a medical report to renew your licence.

You need to be a minimum of 18 years of age to start the training and have a full UK driving licence.

You will need to have good eyesight and pass a medical as part of the LGV test.

Helpful to have

Qualifications and experience that show helping customers and good time management.