Before providing an Air Traffic Control (ATC) service, an individual must be appropriately qualified and licensed.
They must hold an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) Licence that includes a rating and rating endorsement, where applicable, appropriate to the task.
ATCO licences are issued by the CAA to holders of Student ATCO licences following successful completion of the appropriate approved unit endorsement course and assessment.
Requirements to be granted an ATCO Licence
Applicants for an Air Traffic Controller Licence must:
- hold a valid Student Air Traffic Controller Licence
- have successfully completed the Unit Endorsement Course
- have successfully completed Training in Abnormal and Emergency Situations (ABES) and Human Factors
- hold a current UK issued Class 3 medical certificate
How to apply for an air traffic controllers’ licence
- Applications are made to CAA ATS Licensing Assessment on form SRG1411A (Application for the Initial Issue of an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) Licence).
- You must complete the appropriate sections of the application form. Be sure to read the guidance notes attached to the form to ensure that it has been correctly completed.
- You must include appropriate fee. The cost of the grant of an ATCO licence is detailed in the Official Record Series ORS 5 - CAA Scheme of Charges (Personnel Licensing). Various methods of payment are detailed on the SRG 1411A application form.
What happens next?
- A CAA Licensing Assessment Officer will assess your application.
- After checking that the application is in order, the application will then be processed, and the licence produced and dispatched to the applicant’s unit address.
- As this is the first issue of the ATCO licence, the licence will be held by the unit until the successful completion of the initial unit endorsement has been carried out or supervised by a CAA Inspector ATS.
- CAA Licensing Assessment will contact you if there are any queries regarding your application.
- CAA ATS Licensing Assessment endeavours to process all applications within the shortest possible time however; Regulation UK (EU) 2015/340 allows for a maximum processing time of eight weeks. Information about the eight-week grace period can be found on this page.
- An ATCO Licence will be issued as soon as possible following receipt of the application providing the application is complete and correct.
- Regulation UK (EU) 2015/340 AMC1 ATCO.AR.D.001(a) Procedure for the issue, revalidation and renewal of licences, ratings, endorsements and authorisations states that the CAA may allow the privileges of a licence to be exercised for a period of eight weeks after successful completion of the applicable examination(s) and assessment(s), pending the issue of the licence, rating or endorsement.
- The CAA may allow this grace period to be used subject to approval by the units assigned ATM Inspector ATS (Operations).
- Units wishing to use the eight-week grace period must contact their ATM Inspector ATS (Operation) in advance.
- The eight-week grace period will commence from the date that the applicant has received an acknowledgement of their licence, rating or endorsement application from the CAA ATS Licensing Assessment section, subject to such approval being obtained.
Previous holders of UK ATCO licences, who have exchanged such for an EU licence will be able to apply to the UK CAA for the reissue of their UK ATCO licence.
As the UK is no longer able to recognise any Ratings, Rating Endorsements or Licence Endorsements obtained outside the UK, the reissued licence will only contain those Ratings, Rating Endorsements and Licence Endorsements that were current on their UK licence prior to the exchange.
Application for the reissue of a UK ATCO licence is made on form SRG 1411F.
The charge for the re-issue of a UK ATCO/Student ATCO Licences is shown in the CAA Scheme of Charges (Personnel Licensing).
- SRG1411A Application for the Initial Issue of an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) Licence
- SRG1411B Application for the inclusion, renewal or cancellation of Unit Endorsements in an ATCO Licence. This form should be used for the inclusion of Unit Endorsements for new Ratings, existing Ratings including Special Events and for the Renewal and Cancellation of Unit Endorsements in an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO).
- SRG1411D Notification of Completion of an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) Unit Endorsement Assessment. This form should be used to send Notification of Completion of an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) Unit Endorsement Assessment
- SRG1411E Notification of a change of the personal details on an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) Licence
- SRG 1411F Application for the reissue of a UK Regulation 2015/340 Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) licence that has been exchanged for an EU Member State licence
- SRG1415 Application for the issue, revalidation or renewal of an Air Traffic Controller (ATC) Assessor, On the Job Training Instructor or Synthetic Training Device Instructor licence endorsement
- SRG1416 Record of Revalidation of an ATCO Unit Endorsement
- Application for a replacement document for an Air Traffic Controller (ATCO) is by an online application form available from the CAAPortal.
- CAP1251: Air Traffic Controllers - Licensing
- CAA Scheme of Charges (Personnel Licensing)