Starting from £5800 at Bristol Flying

This Light Aircraft Pilots Licence is similar to the UK’s National Private Pilots Licence with one major difference and that is it is valid to fly in Europe.

There are other advantages as well. You can go to your GP to get the medical. All you have to do is ask us for the forms for your GP to fill in, and we can also give you the guidelines for the Doctor to use to examine you. You can also go to your normal CAA approved medical examiner who can give you a medical based on lower criteria than then normal PPL. This is an advantage if you are unable to get a normal medical, or have had problems. This way you can often keep flying even when you have lost your CAA medical privileges.

Becoming a Pilot is Exciting

For more information send your enquiry using our Join Us Form or call 01275 400126.

Apart from the differences with the medical, there is a lot less training required as well. The requirements are as follows and I have put the PPL requirements in the table as well for comparison.

Flying Experience LAPL PPL
Supervised Solo flight time 6 10
Solo Cross-Country flight time 3 5
Solo Cross-Country 1 Landing 80NM
Solo Cross-Country 2 Landings 150NM
Dual Instruction 15 25
TOTAL 30 45

All the training is the same for both licences, however the extra training for the PPL is made up of an hour of Instrument Flying and training to use Radio Navigation aids. If the student does very well, it is possible to include the 5 hours of training to obtain a night rating as part of the initial issue of the PPL. It is not possible to add ratings such as the night rating or IMC rating to the LAPL.

Once all the training is complete, and the 7 theoretical exams, which are the same for both licences have been taken and passed, then the final step is to do the skills test with an examiner, and on passing that the application can be made for the licence.

If at some future date you want to upgrade to a full PPL, provided you have done the minimum hours, and had the training in instrument flying and radio aids, then a new qualifying cross country has to be flown, and the PPL skills test taken.

Below are the requirements for the skills test

It is the same as the one for the PPL, but there is no requirement to show your ability to fly on instruments, or show that you can use any radio aids installed in the test aircraft.

Use of checklist, airmanship, control of aeroplane or TMG by external visual references, anti-icing procedures, etc. apply in all sections

  • Pre-flight documentation, NOTAM and weather briefing
  • Mass, balance and performance calculation
  • Aeroplane or TMG inspection and servicing
  • Engine starting and after starting procedures
  • Taxiing and aerodrome procedures, pre-take-off procedures
  • Take-off and after take-off checks
  • Aerodrome departure procedures
  • ATC liaison – compliance
  • ATC liaison – compliance
  • Straight and Level flight, with speed changes
  • Climbing:
    • Best rate of climb
    • Climbing turns
    • Levelling off
  • Medium (30° bank) turns, lookout procedure and collision avoidance
  • Steep (45° bank) turns (including recognition and recovery from a spiral dive)
  • Flight at critically low airspeed with and without flaps
  • Stalling:
    • Clean stall and recover with power
    • Approach to stall descending turn with bank angle 20°, approach configuration
    • Approach to stall in landing configuration
  • Descending:
    • With and without power
    • Descending turns (steep gliding turns)
    • Levelling off
  • Flight plan, dead reckoning and map reading
  • Maintenance of altitude, heading and speed
  • Orientation, airspace structure, timing and revision of ETAs, and log keeping
  • Diversion to alternate aerodrome (planning and implementation)
  • Flight management (checks, fuel systems and carburettor icing etc.)
  • ATC liaison – compliance
  • Aerodrome arrival procedures
  • Collision Avoidance (Lookout Procedures)
  • Precision landing (short field landing), crosswind, if suitable conditions available
  • Flapless landing
  • Approach to landing with idle power
  • Touch and go
  • Go around from low height
  • ATC liaison – compliance
  • Actions after flight

This section may be combined with sections 1 through 4

  • Simulated engine failure after take-off
  • Simulated forced landing*
  • Simulated precautionary landing*
  • Simulated emergencies
  • Oral questions

*these items may be combined at the discretion of the FE.

Note: If the test completed in two parts then Section1 and Items a, c and h of Section 4 (aerodrome arrival, landing, actions after flight) shall be assessed on both flight.

So if you are thinking of doing the full PPL, or wanting to go distance flying, then it is probably not worth doing the LAPL. But if you just want to fly with your friends in the local area, or possibly with more experience venture overseas, then this is an ideal way to get into the air with a new pilots licence.

What our examiner suggests is that if you do this licence, just in case you decide in the future to upgrade, then it would be a very good idea to do the full Qualifying Cross Country. That way then you do not have to do that again. Just the Instrument flying, and Radio Aids training.

One other point. At present this licence although on the application forms is still going through the approval process for us to be able to teach it. However as it is almost identical to the NPPL and all the initial training up to solo and just beyond is identical, by the time anyone intending to do this course completes it, all approvals will have been completed.