© 2019 by Northern Rivers Aero Club

TRAINING

Learning to fly is a challenging but exceptionally rewarding experience. In order to get the best results – and ultimately create safe, well-rounded pilots – we have designed our syllabus into a number of blocks.

We recommend all students start with their Recreational Aviation Australia (RA-Aus) Pilot Certificate. This is a proven, cost effective pathway that ensures you get the absolute best value out of your training.

Once you’ve completed the Certificate, you can choose to add endorsements such as passenger carry and cross-country, or move into the CASA licensing schemes and continue your training onto the Private Pilots License (PPL) and beyond.

 

RA-AUS Pilot Certificate

We recommend the Recreational Aviation Australia (RA-Aus) Pilot Certificate as the first step on your aviation journey. With a PC, you can fly any two seat, recreational-registered aircraft during daylight hours within 25 nautical miles of the departure aerodrome.

 

There are a couple of substantial benefits in using this method:

  • The cost of training is substantially cheaper than a traditional General Aviation (GA) pathway.

  • A large number of endorsements (such as passenger carry, controlled airspace/controlled aerodrome and cross country) are available to add to your experience.

 

Since September 2014, the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) has introduced new licensing regulations (“Part 61”) that give straightforward pathways – such as through a Recreational Pilot Licence – if your goal is to go through to a Private or Commercial Pilot Licence. The best part? All of the hours you’ve built on the cheaper RA-Aus aircraft count.

 

CASA Flight Crew Licencing 

A CASA Flight Crew Licence is required to fly “VH- registered” General Aviation (and commercial) aircraft in Australia.

We aren’t shy in encouraging students new to aviation to progress through their initial training using Recreational aircraft – the substantial price saving being the main advantage. However, if you wish to have a career in aviation or fly in a less restricted environment (for example, with appropriate ratings: at night, in cloud under the IFR and so-on) you will need to move onto a FCL.

 

We have several clearly defined pathways to make this transition as easy as possible. The best part? All of your hours on NRAC Recreational aircraft will count towards your hours requirements.

 

Recreational Pilot Licence

The Recreational Pilot Licence is the first licence in CASA’s Flight Crew Licensing scheme and is designed by nature to be directly compatible with the Recreational Aviation Australia (RA-Aus) Pilot Certificate. We typically use the RPL to move students who wish to progress in their training (onto PPL, or CPL) as a “stepping stone” into General Aviation (GA) aircraft.

 

The overall difference between the RPL and Pilot Certificate is negligible, other than the fact that you can add additional endorsements such as Aerobatics to the RPL. You still need to complete navigation training to fly cross country and controlled airspace/controlled aerodrome endorsements to use those services; most students typically just progress straight through to the Private Pilot Licence.

Requirements

  • Complete the training (both theoretical and practical) to the required standard and pass the RPL knowledge test.

  • Be at least 16 years old (the training can start before this age) to sit the flight test

  • Hold the appropriate medical certificate – generally a CASA Class 2 medical certificate or above

  • Be able to read, speak and understand the English language

  • Have at least 25 hours flying time, including a minimum of 20 hours dual and 5 hours as pilot in command.

 

Private Pilot Licence

The Private Pilot Licence is the most unrestricted General Aviation licence available in Australia and removes many of the restrictions to the RPL such as aircraft max take-off weight limits. In addition to navigation/cross-country training, you are also exposed to controlled airspace and controlled aerodromes.

 

We recommend students complete the Recreational Aviation Australia (RA-Aus) Pilot Certificate first and then convert this to CASA’s Flight Crew Licensing scheme in the form of a Recreational Pilots Licence.

Requirements

  • Complete the training (both theoretical and practical) to the required standard. This includes passing the Private Pilot Licence theory examination set by CASA.

  • Be at least 17 when you sit the flight test

  • Hold at least a CASA Class 2 Medical Certificate that is current

  • Have accumulated at least 35 hours total time (of which 20 need to be in an aeroplane – your RA-Aus flight time counts). In addition to this, have a total of 10 hours as pilot in command of which at-least 5 hours is cross-country.

  • Speak, read and understand the English language

 

Commercial Pilot Licence

The Commercial Pilot Licence allows you to be employed as a pilot and is really the start of your career in aviation. From here, many pilots choose to complete additional training such as adding a multi-engine endorsement, command instrument rating or an instructors rating to their licence.

We recommend that you get in contact with us to discuss your specific requirements if you’re chasing a career in aviation.

Requirements

  • Complete the training (both theoretical and practical) to the required standard.

  • Be at least 18 when you sit the flight test

  • Hold a CASA Class 1 Medical Certificate

  • Meet the aeronautical experience requirements

  • Hold exam credits for the seven CPL subjects (these need to be completed within two years)

  • Speak, read and understand the English language