You need a Category C driving licence to drive a lorry, and a Category CE driving licence to drive a vehicle combination. The minimum age requirement for these licences is usually 21. If you need to drive a lorry at work, you may be eligible for a Category C or CE licence at 18. In this case, you will have to obtain professional competence.
The minimum age requirement for driving vehicles in Categories C1 and C1E (smaller lorries and vehicle combinations) is 18. To obtain a C1E driving licence, you must also have completed the practice and advanced phases of the Category B driving instruction course.
Licences for Category C and its subcategories are valid for five years. If you are aged 68 or over, your licence will be issued for two years at a time.
You may take driving instruction either at a driving school, during vocational training or under the guidance of an instructor with a driving instruction permit.
If you want to learn to drive a lorry, you will first have to complete the practice and advanced phases of the Category B driving instruction course.
If you learn to drive a lorry at a vocational institution, you will not yet need a Category B licence. However, you will need to be at least 16 before you start taking driving instruction, and at least 17 before you can take any instruction on the road.
You may only take driving instruction for Category CE vehicles (vehicle combinations) when you have been issued with a Category C driving licence.
You must take a driving examination after completing your course of instruction. You must have a valid driving licence permit to take a driving examination. You can book a time for your examination at an Ajovarma office. You will have to prove your identity when you arrive to take your tests.
The driving examination for Category C1 and C vehicles consists of a theory test and a practical driving test on the road. The driving examination for Category C1E and CE vehicles also contains an additional handling test, which must be completed before your driving test.
When you pass your driving examination, you will be given a certificate entitling you to drive in mainland Finland for six months. Your driving licence will be posted to your home address within about three weeks after you have passed your driving test.
Your lorry driving licence will expire at the latest when you turn 70. Any subsequent licences will be issued for a maximum of two years at a time. Any renewed licences will also be issued for a maximum of two years at a time, if you have turned or will turn 68 before your current licence expires. A driving licence can also be issued for a shorter period of time on the basis of a doctor's certificate.
All lorry drivers working in commercial transport must have professional competence.
If you are studying for a professional qualification that leads to professional competence, you will not need to take any separate basic training.