Private Pilots Licence (EASA PPL)
There are many different types of flying - from fixed wing, helicopters, balloons, gliders to microlights and much more. The Private Pilots Licence (EASA PPL) allows you to act as the pilot in command of an aircraft for private use. The PPL syllabus includes both practical flight training and theoretical study. The EASA (European Aviation Safety Agency) Licence is valid throughout the UK and Europe and is usually acceptable worldwide subject to individual national requirements.
You must be a minimum of 17 years old to obtain your licence (you may start training from the age of 14 and solo at 16) and you must hold a Class 2 medical certificate prior to flying solo. You can obtain this certificate by attending a brief medical examination with an Aero Medical Examiner (AME).
If you haven’t flown before, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) requires you to spend a minimum of 45 hours in the air before you can take your final Skills Test, 25 hours must be dual (with an instructor) and 10 hours solo with you acting as pilot-in-command. 5 of your solo flight hours must be cross-country flights, i.e. away from your base training airfield.
You will also be required to take multiple choice exams in 9 subjects:
- Air Law (to be passed before your first solo)
- Operational Procedures
- Flight Performance & Planning
- Aircraft General Knowledge
- Principles of Flight
- Human Performance
- Radio Telephony
You will be training for a European Private Pilot Licence with ‘a single engine piston (SEP) class rating’. This entitles you to fly aircraft within that class up to a maximum take-off weight of 5700kg, in any European country, for private and recreational purposes only.
More information can be found here – https://www.caa.co.uk/General-aviation/Learning-to-fly/So-you-want-to-learn-to-fly-/
Commercial Pilots Licence
As a student, you must first complete a PPL course of 45 hours minimum to qualify for a Private Pilot Licence. You then have to hour-build, under supervision, to fly another 105 hours. During this time you can complete all of the CPL or ATPL ground exams. Once having logged 150 hours total flying time, of which 100 hours must be flown as Pilot-In-Command (with at least 20 hours of cross-country navigation flights), and having completed the ATPL exams, and having been issued with a CAA Class 1 Medical, you then qualify to start the Commercial Pilot Licence course of 25 hours minimum. Before taking the final Skill Test for the initial issue of a CPL, you must have accumulated a total of 200 hours logged flight time including 5 hours of night flying.
After this you can complete the Multi Engine Piston (MEP) Class Rating and Multi-Engine Instrument Rating (MEIR) courses, followed by Multi Crew Cooperation (MCC) and Jet Orientation Training courses (JOC).
Either way, you must complete the MEP Class Rating and MEIR, followed by the MCC and/or JOC courses to qualify for a "frozen Airline Transport Pilot Licence" (fATPL).You would then be qualified to apply to the airlines seeking a position as a First Officer (or Second Officer) Pilot.
More information can be found on the following websites - the training packages and costs vary depending on the route and location of your training organisation.
General information - http://www.pilotcareernews.com/how-to-be-a-pilot/
Oxford Aviation Academy - http://www.caeoaa.com/
CTC Aviation - http://www.ctcaviation.com/
Tayside Aviation - http://www.taysideaviation.co.uk/
Stapleford Flight Centre - http://www.flysfc.com/
Aeros Gloucester - http://www.aeros.co.uk/locations/gloucester/