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UK – EU Transition, and UK Civil Aviation Regulations

To access current UK civil aviation regulations, including AMC and GM, CAA regulatory documents, please use this link to UK Regulation. Please note, if you use information and guidance under the Headings below, the references to EU regulations or EU websites in our guidance will not be an accurate information or description of your obligations under UK law. These pages are undergoing reviews and updates.

If you are the holder of a current and valid licence, rating and medical, you can fly for pleasure/privately in UK airspace, in VFR conditions. The airspace of the States of Alderney, Guernsey, Jersey and the Isle of Man, whilst Crown Dependencies, are excluded from the area considered UK airspace. You will need to contact them directly if you wish to fly in their airspace.

Your licence/certificate must have been issued in accordance with ICAO Annex 1- this should be stated on the document.

The type of activities allowed are explained in the section on this page called 'What flying operations and activities can I do with my non-UK licence?'.

Getting permission from the CAA before flying

Permission is required and must be retained. Your ICAO licence/certificate needs to be validated for a limited duration. You will need to make a “declaration” following one of the processes below.

FAA airman holders flying an aicraft registered in a third country and operated by an operator established, residing or with a principal place of business in the UK holders need to refer to “Guidance for pilots wishing to fly more then 28 days per calendar”. This does not apply to CAT operations.

Guidance for visiting pilots

You need to follow the declaration process below before flying in UK airspace, regardless of the aircraft registration.

This can allow you to fly for up to 28 days per calendar year, from 1 January until 31 December., as stated in the Aircrew Regulation. Pilots should try and declare as early as possible in the calendar year should they want to use the full 28 days permitted.

You will need to:

  • be in current flying practice on the class or type of aircraft you wish to fly in UK airspace
  • be flying purely for pleasure, private flying, no remuneration, no Part-NCC aircraft (complex motor-powered aircraft), no instruction or examination permitted
  • meet the requirements of, complete and submit forms SRG2141 and SRG2142. There is a fee associated with SRG2142, more information can be found in the related information section at the bottom of this page

You must:

  • hold a valid Licence/Certificate (that is a licence that is not subject to suspension, limitation or other enforcement action by the issuing authority);
  • hold a valid, current rating relevant to the aircraft to be operated, and the privileges to be exercised, demonstrable by reference to appropriate log book and licence evidence;
  • hold at least a valid Class 2 Medical issued by the issuing authority;
  • hold an “English proficient” endorsement on their ICAO licence, to meet the minimum level 4 proficiency, or have their proficiency confirmed by a UK CAA Approved Language Proficiency Assessment Centre if no such endorsement applies or the candidate wishes to be credited with proficiency levels 5 or 6 (FormCAA5003 applies).
  • complete an acclimatisation flight, which is a check flight conducted with a qualified UK instructor. The aim of the flight is to demonstrate that you are safe to fly the aircraft in UK airspace.

You must keep the declaration you have made to the CAA. Once you have received email confirmation from the CAA, you can fly in UK airspace. Please note the expiry date of your declaration is stated on your confirmation email from the CAA.

Close Guidance for visiting pilots

Demonstration of knowledge for all visiting pilots

Pilots must show relevant knowledge in Air Law, ATC procedures, and Human Performance.

These subjects can be completed as written examinations, using the current PPL Theoretical Knowledge examinations, or as oral examinations with a UK examiner.

If assessment is by oral examination, examiners should consider covering the following areas:

Air Law

  1. Aircraft documents to be carried
  2. Altitude/height/transition altitude: definitions and appropriate altimeter settings
  3. Questions on UK chart interpretation: In particular MSA/airspace types/ATZ/Danger Area/prohibited/restricted airspace etc
  4. Holders Pilot licence privileges in UK
  5. Any Rules of Air questions - SERA changes
  6. UK Accident/incident/occurrence reporting requirements
  7. Illness/injury-reporting/stop flying requirements/return to flying
  8. PIC with passengers requirements: take off/landings etc
  9. Transponder codes: key codes
  10.  UK Air traffic Services and ATSOCAS: Service types and what they mean
  11.  Position reporting

ATC procedures

  1. Awareness that CAP 413 Radiotelephony manual exists
  2. Where to find appropriate UK radio frequencies: e.g. charts, AIP, flight guides and their limitations
  3. Emergency states and emergency phraseology: Mayday/Pan/Message relay
  4. Types of ATC service available and differences between A/G Radio, LARS, AFIS, full ATC etc
  5. 'Pass your message' requirements
  6. ATC RT calls and appropriate PIC flight management to transit different types of UK airspace structures. In particular: Class D, MATZ, Danger Area, ATZ etc
  7. Comms failure procedures
  8. SAFETYCOM: 135.475MHz

These can also be completed as written examinations, using the current PPL Operational Procedures Theoretical Knowledge examination or as oral examinations with an Examiner

Human performance

  1. Alcohol and flying: UK limits and how to manage
  2. Common illness, self-medication and flying: risks
  3. Stress and fatigue: risks and mitigations
  4. Spatial disorientation: how to identify and manage
  5. Avoiding and managing errors: cockpit management

Legal responsibility of Examiners

Examiners are reminded that they have a responsibility to ensure standards; this process is reliant on their integrity.
The above list is guidance and are not fully comprehensive.

Close Demonstration of knowledge for all visiting pilots

Guidance for pilots wishing to fly more than 28 days per calendar year

You will need to hold a UK Part-FCL PPL or a short-term private validation.

Outline of requirements

The full detailed requirements are in UK (EU) Reg 2020/723

  UK Part FCL Licence UK Validation Certificate
Total hours flight time 100 in the relevant category applied for 100
Theoretical Knowledge Assessment 2 PPL exams - written 2 PPL exams - verbally
Medical requirement Valid UK Part-MED medical certificate Class 2 min for PPL Valid ICAO Class 2 medical certificate
English Proficiency Assessment To be completed To be completed
Flight Test Skill test with examiner Skill test with examiner
Cost £202 (and £47 for verification) £336 (and £47 for verification)

Flowchart of requirements

Validate an ICAO licence for non commercial activities

Close Guidance for pilots wishing to fly more than 28 days per calendar year

Operations and activities allowed with a non-UK licence

You can only fly privately/for pleasure. This means that you cannot be remunerated or do aerial work (parachute dropping, crop spraying, banner towing, aerial display or flight training in the UK) for example. So if you are flying an aircraft owner (private operations) but are paid for this (commercial activity), you need a validation or Part-FCL licence to legally fly.

You can only fly G- registered aircraft in Visual Flight Rules conditions, regardless of the class of medical you hold.

If flying an aircraft registered in the country of your non-UK licence/certificate, you can fly IFR as long as you are in current flying practice with a valid IR.

To fly a G registered aircraft IFR, you will need a 12 months validation with an IR.

If you wish to fly any of the aircraft listed below, please contact fclweb@caa.co.uk.

  • microlight aeroplanes;
  • light gyroplanes;
  • amateur built aircraft;
  • ex-military aircraft;
  • foot-launched aircraft;
  • “vintage” aircraft, such as the Tiger Moth, Luscombe 8, Piper J3 Cub, or Rutan Varieze

Your licence/certificate will either need to be validated (short term) or be converted into a UK issued licence if you wish to:

  • exercise more than private privileges
    or
  • do a specific activity such as aerial photography
    or
  • fly complex powered aircraft which fall under Part-NCC
    or
  • ferry an aircraft under IFR
    or
  • any other specialist activity

Contact us at fclweb@caa.co.uk for more information

Close Operations and activities allowed with a non-UK licence

Related Information

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