Recreational Pilot Licence


The Recreational Pilot Licence is the first step in your flying journey and allows you to carry passengers within 25 nautical miles (approximately 50 km) from your take-off airport. Whether it be as a pastime to take your friends and family flying or to embark on a career in the aviation as a commercial pilot this first step is the same.

Phase 1: First Solo Flight

This training phase covers general aircraft handling and basic responses to emergencies while operating within the circuit area. It typically requires around 12-15 hours of training before your instructor sends you for your first solo flight – an unforgettable experience for any pilot. Before flying solo, you’ll need to complete a short theory exam. During the solo flight, you’ll perform a single circuit under the watchful guidance of your instructor on the ground.

Phase 2: First Area Solo Flight

Once you’ve completed your first solo flight, the training shifts towards honing your abilities within the circuit while also presenting more advanced emergency scenarios that could arise while away from the aerodrome. Before undertaking your first area solo flight, you’ll need to complete a short theory exam.

Phase 3: Recreational Pilot Licence

This training phase concentrates on more advanced aspects of flight and emergencies away from your departure aerodrome. The theoretical part will involve studying aerodynamics, aircraft fuselage components, control surfaces, engines, flight regulations, basic meteorology, and the process of conducting fuel and weight assessments. Before undertaking your RPL flight test, you will need to have completed the CASA RPL theory exam.

Phase 4: RPL Flight Radio & Controlled Aerodrome Endorsements

This final phase of your RPL training involves completing a short theory exam and a lesson with a senior flight instructor demonstrating controlled aerodrome arrivals and departures, controlled aerodrome circuits, and general handling revision in the training area.

What you need to get an RPL?

The requirements for undertaking your Recreational Pilots Licence Flight Test include the following:

  • Be at least 16 years old (students can begin flying lessons at 14)
  • Hold a Class 1, Class 2, Basic Class 2, or RAMPC medical certificate
  • Complete at least 25 hours of flight training

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Acknowledgement of Country

The Royal Aero Club of New South Wales acknowledges the original custodians of Camden Airport. Recognising peoples of the Gundungurra, Tharawal, and Dharug Nations have accessed the land beneath us and skies above us for thousands of years. We pay respect to their elders and communities past, present, and emerging.

ARN: 1223948

Granted under the Civil Aviation Safety Regulations (CASR) 1998

Approval Number: CASA.141 FTO.0433

© Copyright 2024 Royal Aero Club of New South Wales Incorporated | ABN: 72 481 171 323

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