Flying has always been a dream for many. It allows you to soar through the skies and experience a sense of freedom that is hard to describe. Australia has a rich aviation history, and with the advent of RPL, flying is now accessible to a wider audience. In this article, we will provide an overview of the Recreational Pilot License (RPL) in Australia.
Requirements for Obtaining an RPL
To hold an RPL, you must meet certain requirements outlined in CASR 61.475. You must be at least 16 years of age and have:
Passed the BAK Exam
Completed the Flight Training
Passed the Flight Test
Obtained 25h Flight Time*
*20 hours must be at least dual flight time (time with your instructor), and 5 as pilot in command (solo flight).
Privileges of an RPL
Once you obtain your RPL, you are authorised to fly under VFR (Visual Flight Rules) in private operations or flight training as either pilot in command or co-pilot. You can fly in an aircraft that is powered by a single engine that is not rocket or turbine-powered and is not more than 1500 kg at maximum certified take-off weight. The aircraft must also be single pilot certified and carrying a maximum of one passenger. The privileges of an RPL are outlined in CASR 61.460.
Limitations on RPL Privileges
There are certain limitations on the privileges of an RPL. To carry more than one passenger or to fly above 10,000 ft AMSL (Above Mean Sea Level), either you or a person accompanying you must hold a current class 1 or 2 medical certificate. These limitations are outlined in CASR 61.465 and 61.470.
Endorsements for RPL
Once you obtain your RPL, you can undertake further training to acquire four endorsements outlined in CASR 61.470, CASR 61.485-61.500. These endorsements include:
- The recreational navigation endorsement that allows you to fly beyond a 25 nm radius of the departure aerodrome, beyond the flight training area for that aerodrome, along a route between the aerodrome and the flight training area, and cross country.
- The controlled airspace endorsement that allows you to fly within controlled airspace.
- The controlled aerodrome endorsement that allows you to fly at controlled aerodromes.
- The flight radio endorsement that allows you to operate an aircraft radio.
Obtaining an RPL in Australia is a great way to pursue your passion for flying. It is an affordable and accessible way to start your aviation journey. The RPL allows you to fly in private operations or flight training as either pilot in command or co-pilot in an aircraft that meets certain criteria. There are certain limitations on the privileges of an RPL, but with the endorsements, you can further your flying skills and experience.