• 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.

    Guidance for visiting pilots, including FAA certificate holders not residing in the UK

    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 (Form SRG1199 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.

  • 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.

    You need to follow the declaration process below before flying in UK airspace, regardless of the aircraft registration.
    The declaration will allow you to fly until 20 June 2021, unless it is revoked.

    Pilots who were previously issued with a declaration which has expired need to make a fresh application. There is no renewal process. 

    The process below applies to all applicants:

    • be in current flying practice on the rating you wish to fly in UK airspace
    • reside permanently in the United Kingdom
    • purely flying for pleasure, private flying, no remuneration, no Part-NCC aircraft (complex motor-powered aircraft), no instruction or examination
    • meet the requirements of, complete and submit forms SRG2140 and SRG2142. with associated required documentation.  There is a fee associated with SRG2142, more information can be found in the hyperlinks at the bottom of this page

    You need to:

    1. hold a valid Licence/Certificate (that is not subject to suspension, limitation or other enforcement action by the FAA); 
    2. 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; 
    3. hold at least a valid Class 3 Medical issued by an FAA authorised Medical Examiner or a Part-MED Class II medical 
    4. hold an “English proficient” endorsement on their FAA 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 (Form SRG1199 applies);
    5. demonstrate to a UK examiner that they have an acquired theoretical knowledge of Part-FCL 'Air law and ATC procedures' at a level appropriate to the privileges of the licence and ratings privileges they intend to exercise. 

    Important note:

    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.

    Refer to ORS4 1380 for more information at the bottom of this page.

    Pilots requiring a declaration of their FAA certificate to fly VFR purely for pleasure, must show relevant knowledge in the following subjects: 

    • Air law;
      and
    • ATC procedures. 

    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 

    The above list is for guidance and is not fully comprehensive. 

    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 pilotvalidations@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 European licence under the Part-FCL regulations 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 pilotvalidations@caa.co.uk for more information