CAA publishes new guidance for private pilot licensing

Date: 25 October 2013

New information published today on the Civil Aviation Authority’s (CAA) website aims to help private pilots with some of the most common pilot licensing changes and questions. The information is part of a programme of work aimed at producing the CAA’s information, policy and requirements in a better, more useful, format.

The pages form part of a new private pilot licensing portal that will continue to be developed over the coming months. Located at it includes a new set of introductory information supplements covering:

• Guidance for anyone interested in training to be a private pilot
• Converting to an EASA licence
• Information on the difference between EASA and Annex II aircraft
• How to add ratings to a licence
• How to keep your licence current
• Language proficiency requirements

As well as the supplements the new pages also provide an easier way to check the requirements for various licences, ratings and applications and how to apply for them, either through a new online form or through a paper application.

The new guidance is the latest part of a programme to improve the CAA’s pilot licensing services based on a root and branch review of the licensing process. It is already delivering significant improvements including:
• Setting up a central hub to handle transactions, providing a stronger focus on customer service and deploying resources more effectively
• Putting in place a tracking system for each transaction that allows us to actively pursue any item that has not been processed in the expected timescale and also allowing us to respond more quickly to customer queries
• Undertaking a comprehensive review of queries and complaints in order to better target areas for improvements
• Regularly retraining our teams on key EU & UK Regulatory changes and implementing quality assurance checks on all our work
• Working with stakeholders to capture their views and proposals on how best to improve our systems
• Making as many of our forms and transactions online as soon as possible

Many of these improvements are already making a difference, with the turnaround time for new licensing transactions meeting and in many cases improving on our published code of practice target of 10 days.

Hub Director, Paul Chinn, said: “We fully recognise that the licensing requirements are very complicated and that in the past we have not been good at communicating them to our customers. The new supplements and application pages are the latest stage of the project to make our licensing work of the standard that our customers need.”

The full pilot licence requirements are available in CAA publication CAP804 which has also been updated.

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For further media information contact the CAA Press Office on: 00 44 (0)207 453 6030.

Notes to Editors:
The CAA is the UK's specialist aviation regulator. Its activities include: making sure that the aviation industry meets the highest technical and operational safety standards; preventing holidaymakers from being stranded abroad or losing money because of tour operator insolvency; planning and regulating all UK airspace; and regulating airports, air traffic services and airlines and providing advice on aviation policy from an economic standpoint.