Minnesota vs. Utah vs. Multi-State Permit Classes

Here in the Twin Cities, I estimate that there are ~200 companies licensed to conduct the Minnesota Permit to Carry courses for the State of Minnesota. Taking a look at them, it can be difficult to understand which training vendor is right for you. Not only must you wade through a confusing set of claims, but you’ll also have a tough time comparing training vendors. For example, consider this claim by one training vendor:

[Instructor_Name] and the team of Instructors are Certified Instructors for the Minnesota Permit to Carry (Conceal Carry), Utah Permit to Carry, Wisconsin Permit to Carry, Iowa Permit to Carry and the NRA.  Their experience in training includes over 85 years as a Firearms Instructors/Rangemaster and Training Specialists.

What’s frustrating about this claim is that Wisconsin and Iowa don’t have a non-resident permit to carry instructor certification process. In essence, what they tell me is that as long as the instructor is a certified NRA instructor, they will honor the permit to carry class held outside their state for purposes of giving an individual a permit to carry license from their state. So, I suppose I could say I’m certified to teach the Wisconsin and Iowa Permit to Carry classes too – but I think that would be misleading.

More to the point, some of our competitors claim their permit to carry classes are “certified” in over 35 states. Again, the word “certified” is misleading. What they’re really saying is that like Iowa and Wisconsin, most states will honor permit classes conducted in other states for purposes of giving an individual a permit to carry license from their state as long as the instructor is a certified NRA Instructor.

The one state that doesn’t do this is Utah. They *require* that you fly to Salt Lake City and sit a Train-the-Trainer course before you can instruct a Utah-based Permit to Carry course.

Now, we often do not combine our Minnesota and Utah Permit to Carry courses for several reasons. First, to teach the book information the way we think it ought to be taught takes roughly 5 hours. We use the Minnesota Fundamentals book (245 pages) and their accompanying slides and videos to teach our Minnesota Permit to Carry courses. Then we take you to the range and ensure you can demonstrate that you know how to handle a firearm with live rounds safely.  Our shooting exercises take you through shooting 50 rounds, using a similar set of exercises to this list:

  • 5 yd. line: 5 rounds – two-handed weaver stance
  • 5 yd. line: 5 rounds – two-handed isosceles stance
  • 5 yd. line: 5 rounds – single left hand
  • 5 yd. line: 5 rounds – single right hand
  • 7 yd. line: 5 rounds – two-handed weaver stance
  • 7 yd. line: 5 rounds – two handed isosceles stance
  • 7 yd. line: 5 rounds – single left hand
  • 7 Yd. line: 5 rounds – single right hand
  • 7 yd. line: 5/5 rounds – any stance, reload exercise

We need to see you hit center mass on the target.  We’ll help you improve your accuracy if you’re not hitting it.  If you want a course focused on accuracy, we have other pistol courses for that purpose, but for this class, we look for two things:  safe handling of a firearm and ability to hit center mass at 15 and 21 feet.

Now, you can see that the Minnesota Permit to Carry course will take at least 5 hours because we’re going to end up with ~25 minutes on the range. The reason that we teach the Utah Conceal Carry course separately is because to teach it the way the State of Utah requires it to be taught, it takes ~3 hours of classroom instruction time. I’m not kidding. The State of Utah gives us (instructors) the slide deck they want us to use. It’s not rocket science. But it does take time because they want a course focused on Utah law since it is a Utah Conceal Carry course. I can’t say that I blame them for this.

I’ve posted on this before, but unfortunately, there are a lot of firearm training companies here in the Twin Cities and across the State of Minnesota that spend, perhaps 20-30 minutes on the Utah laws and then claim they have taught the Utah course. This is simply unethical for them to do this. So, instead of combining both Minnesota and Utah into a single course, we teach it on 2 different dates so that we comply with Utah expectations and we give the best Minnesota Permit to Carry class possible.

Our Pricing Model

For the Minnesota Permit to Carry course, we price our course in an ala carte’ fashion so that you purchase exactly what you need to purchase for the course. Our pricing is straight-forward and unambiguous:

  • Class registration fee: $50
  • Range time: Included
  • .22 pistol rental: $50 (includes 50 rounds of ammo)

You need to bring your own eyes, ears and ammunition. We price it all this way because not everyone wants to rent a firearm or obtain the fundamentals book.  This pricing is pretty competitive. Consider what our competition is charging for the same three items:

Our pricing is competitive. Our quality is undeniable. Our focus in on you. So, the next time you wish to take a permit to carry course, consider Maple Grove Firearms.

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