Flying a plane ‘in command’ in Australia or any part of the world requires a Private Pilot License (PPL). The feeling of owning or operating a private plane for business or recreational purposes to any part of the world is cherished by many, which is why there is a provision of obtaining private pilot licenses for such hobbyists. There are options for flying passengers to and from specific destinations, but there are various protocols before that part can be achieved. A number of institutes help not only budding candidates with the necessary private license work, but also provide numerous courses on how to become a pilot in Australia. This means that aviation enthusiasts can quickly become acquainted with the air-borne life after acquiring the proper training required from the ultimate pros.
Requirements of PPL-
- The PPL course consists of two main stages-
Recreational Private License (RPL) – This license has been designed to act as the proverbial training wheels to your metaphorical bicycle. The minimum age to hold an RPL is 16 years old and above. It is mandatory to complete this test because successful completion allows the candidate to ‘fly’ the aeroplane as per required standards. However, it also indicates that the candidate cannot maneuver over long distances. The license acts as a baby step towards the ultimate goal of obtaining a PPL and allows the candidate to fly passengers over the training circuit appointed for flying purposes as the pilot-in-command.
Navigation Training – It is the penultimate stage of obtaining the PPL. This training process is introduced after the candidate has become an expert in navigation and can navigate the aeroplane efficiently and accurately. Navigation training teaches the candidate the basics of pilot training, map reading, cross-country flight techniques, and the correct utilisation of radio navigation aids. Once the candidate succeeds in this training element, he/she is ready to appear for the Private Pilot License test. Any candidate who is attending the PPL examination must be of 17 years of age and above. Additionally, this candidate must successfully pass a Class-2 medical examination.
- Aeronautical Experience Requirements – These requirements have been mentioned in detail in Civil Aviation Safety Regulation (CASR) Part 61. They include-
40 hours total flight time with the inclusion of 5 hours of general flight as the pilot-in-command (PIC), 5 hours of cross-country flight as the PIC, and 2 hours of instrument flight.
To exceed the private pilot standard specified in part 61 of the Manual of Standards (MOS), many candidates take up flight training. The most significant test advantage of this flight training is that it also combines the Australian National Competency Standards for Private Pilots as well.
The multiple competency standards and the pressure of receiving a license that allows one to use all types of airspaces have prevented many students without prior flying experience from achieving these standards in 40 hours. A realistic target that has been proposed comprises of 55-60 hours of training to ensure sufficient preparation for the PPL flight test.
The skill level and the frequency of pilot lessons are the prime determinants of the number of hours required by the student.