Copyright Flyer magazine
copyright Peter Harvey


Q Can a EASA Flight Instructor with the privilege to instruct for the LAPL(A) instruct for the NPPL?

A Yes, an EASA Flight Instructor without CPL theoretical knowledge who has the privilege to instruct for issue of a LAPL(A) with SEP privileges may conduct ground and flight training for students towards the issue of a NPPL with SSEA privileges. A letter for the CFI at an Approved Training Organisation or Registered Facility is available here.

Simple Single Engine Aircraft

Q How many hours of training are there in the NPPL(SSEA) course?
A The course consists of a minimum of 32 hours plus tests.

Q Where can I do the course?
A At any flying club which is a registered facility or Flight Training Organisation.

Q Who can instruct me for the NPPL(SSEA), and are there any special NPPL instructors?
A Any JAR-FCL flight instructor can conduct your training, and, no, there are no special NPPL instructors.

Q When I have completed my training and tests successfully, how much does the licence issue cost?
A £145

Q How long is the licence valid for?
A For life, subject to the revalidation requirements.

Q Do I need a JAR-FCL medical?
A No, you need a declaration of medical fitness signed by your GP (see this website for details), but a JAR-FCL medical certificate is equally valid.

Q Can I get credit for previous flying experience?
A Yes, see the document detailing the allowances for given for training (the crosscredit document) on this website.

Q What about complex aircraft?
A As long as the aircraft weight does not exceed 2000 kg, you can undertake differences training which qualifies you to fly more complex single engine types.

Q Can I be examined on a NPPL skills test by my own flight instructor?
A Yes, but good practice suggests that skills tests should be examined whenever possible by someone other than the instructor who has conducted the bulk of the training.

Q On the NPPL Application Form, who has to fill in Box 9 and why?
A This box must be completed by the CFI at the flying club or organisation where you undertook the training. This allows your details to be independently verified by an authority known to the CAA.

Q If I apply for more than one rating on the one application, do I have to pay more?
A No, the application fee is the same, regardless of the number of ratings applied for at the same time.

Q How long will it be after sending in the forms for me to receive my licence?
A Anywhere between 2 to 6 weeks.

Q Can I upgrade to a JAR-FCL PPL?
A Yes, up to 30 hours can be carried over as a credit towards a JAR-FCL PPL, as long as this flying training has been completed by a JAR qualified instructor and all JAR PPL exams have been passed. A further 15 hours minimum of training will be needed, of which 5 can be done in a simulator. Full details are provided in JARFCL 1.010(a).

Q Can I hold a JAR-FCL licence and a NPPL simultaneously?
A Yes.

Q I need medical advice; where can I get it from?
A Contact details of medical advisers can be found on the medical declaration form.

Q My GP will not sign my medical declaration form; can I approach one of the NPPL medical advisors for a signature?
A No, but if your GP has found the ‘Information for GPs’ and other information on the above CAA website to be insufficient, he or she may contact one of the NPPL medical advisers to discuss a particular case.

Q Do I have to send my NPPL medical declaration anywhere after I have had it renewed?
A Yes, to LAA Ltd, Turweston Aerodrome, Nr Brackley, Northants, NN13 5YD.

Q Can I fly using a NPPL medical declaration on my JAR-FCL licence?
A Yes-you do not need to send a copy of your medical to LAA Ltd.

Q I do not have easy access to the website, so where can I obtain an application form from for both the licence and the medical?
A Either from LAA, BGA or BMAA, depending on the rating sought (LAA, SLMG and Microlight respectively).

Q How many hours each year do I need in order to keep my NPPL current?
A All NPPLs remain valid for the lifetime of the holder.

They can only be used, however, if they contain a valid Class Rating (SLMG/SSEA/Microlight). Full details for keeping a Class Rating valid are in Schedule 7, Part C of CAP393: Air Navigation: The Order and Regulations

As from 30 June 2009, all Class Ratings on NPPLs have a 24 month validity period.  In this period, a total of at least 12 hours flight time, including 8 hours as PIC must be completed in order to revalidate by experience.

 1.        Holder of a licence with one class rating (SSEA or SLMG or Microlight):
Complete on the class of aeroplanes held:

(a)        within the period of validity of the rating have flown as pilot:

•           at least 12 hours flight time including 8 hours PIC.
•           at least 12 take-offs and landings.
•           at least 1 hour of flight training with an instructor.  If this flight time has not been completed, the rating will be endorsed ‘Single seat only’.

(b)        Within the 12 months preceding the expiry date of the rating, have flown as pilot:

•           at least 6 hours flight time.

2.         Holder of a licence with 2 or 3 ratings (SSEA/SLMG/Microlight):

(a)        Within the period of validity of the rating on any of the classes of aeroplanes held, have flown as pilot:

•           at least a total of 12 hours including 8 hours PIC
•           at least 12 take-offs and landings
•           at least 1 hour of flight training with an instructor.  If this flight time has not been completed all ratings will be endorsed ‘Single seat only’.

(b)        Within the 12 months preceding the expiry date of the ratings held have flown, as pilot on any of the class ratings held:

•           at least 6 hours flight time.

(c)        Within the period of validity of each class rating held, have flown as pilot:

at least 1 hour PIC on each class held;


undertaken at least 1 hour of flying training on each class held with an instructor entitled to give instruction on aeroplanes of those classes.

If (c) has not been fully completed, you will be required to renew the relevant Class Rating(s) by GST.

Q How can I revalidate a Class Rating that is no longer valid?
A Ratings that have not been revalidated before their expiry date cannot be revalidated after it. Instead, the rating can be renewed by a Skills Test with an examiner.

Q Does my ATPL (including expired) entitle me to grandfather rights for the NPPL?
A No, the NPPL is a separate stand-alone licence.

Q Can I assume grandfather rights for differences training, e.g. for a tail-dragger, obtained under my JAR-FCL licence?
A Yes, this will have been recorded in your personal flying logbook, and counts regardless.

Q Can I fly in the Channel Islands with a NPPL?
A NPPL (SSEA) holders may now fly to the Channel Islands, subject to minor additional requirements. You may also now fly to the Isle of Man with prior clearance from their Aviation Authority.

Q Do you think I will ever be able to use my NPPL in France?
A Following discussions, the DGAC have agreed, in principle, to accept NPPL (SSEA) holders in their airspace, provided that such pilots' licences have 'ICAO equivalence'.  This requires 2 additional requirements:

•          An 'ICAO-level' pilot medical certificate.
•          Confirmation that the NPPL (SSEA) holder has achieved 40 hours of total flying experience in a SSEA/SEP Class aeroplane, including 10 hours solo flight time which must include 5 hours solo cross-country pilot navigation flight time, including 1 solo cross-country flight of at least 150 nm during which full stop landings at 2 different aerodromes other than the points of departure and arrival were made.  'Solo' meaning that the applicant shall be the sole occupant of the aeroplane. This is by self declaration signed off by an examiner (forms to be available from NPLG Ltd)

As of 24 April 2010 this is not yet fully approved. It requires an exchange of letters of agreement (CAA/DGAC) which is being dealt with and the DGAC need to amend their National Regulations to allow the necessary rule change. Whilst we have no timescale for this we hope it will be soon.

Q Can I fly my 'N' registered aircraft on my NPPL?
A No. This is because the NPPL is a sub-ICAO licence, and the usual reciprocity with the USA and other ICAO contracting states does not apply. As the holder of a UK NPPL, you may only fly in UK airspace in a UK registered aircraft.

Self Launching Motor Glider

For revalidation and renewal of SLMG ratings see details in the SSEA section above

Q What is happening to the UK SLMG PPL?
A The NPPL SLMG Rating has replaced it.

Q Do I have to replace my old UK SLMG PPL with an NPPL SLMG Rating?
A No. A UK SLMG PPL remains valid providing the JAR medical and flying requirements are met.

Q What does the NPPL SLMG Rating allow mw to fly?
A ALL SLMG types, including both TMGs and true self launching sailplanes.

Q Where can I train for the NPPL SLMG?
A There are a number of BGA sites approved for training. Contact the BGA office 0116 2531051

Q How do I keep my NPPL SLMG valid?
A See syllabus

Q What allowances do I get for gliding?
A See cross crediting document.

Q My licence has lapsed. How do I get an NPPL?
A See cross crediting document.

Q What are the medical requirements?
A See medical menu.

Q How do I get the relevant forms?
A Download from this website, or from the BGA office 0116 253 1051

Q Can I fly a UK registered SLMG outside the UK with an NPPL SLMG rating?
A Yes, providing that your NPPL SLMG rating is ICAO compliant.  Ever since the NPPL SLMG was introduced, holders of the NPPL SLMG rating who wish to fly UK registered SLMG's outside the UK have been able to apply to have their licence endorsed as ICAO compliant providing they have an EASA or JAR Class 2 or JAR Class 1 medical certificate and can demonstrate the ICAO required 40 hours of experience. 

Please apply directly to CAA Personnel Licensing at CAA by writing a letter explaining that you would like your NPPL SLMG endorsed as ICAO compliant. You will need to supply a copy of your licence, evidence of 40 hours experience including the NPPL SLMG training course, a copy of your EASA or JAR Class 1 or 2 medical and payment (previously £38).



Q Has the microlight training minimum hours requirement changed from 25 hours to 32 hours in line with the other NPPL ratings?
A No, the minimum hours training requirement for the NPPL Microlight rating is still 25 hours and the training syllabus remains the same.

Q Can holders of the NPPL with Microlight rating fly abroad like holders of the pre - NPPL Microlight Licence?
A The NPPL is a day only UK VFR licence and confers no automatic rights to fly abroad. However the UK PPL (A) Microlight was a sub-ICAO (International Civil Aviation Organisation) Licence which also conferred no automatic rights to fly abroad. While the French have given a blanket exemption that allows UK microlight pilots to fly in France provided certain conditions are met, (see the BMAA Website at for details), all other countries require you to obtain permission in advance.

Q What do I need to do to fly microlights on my light aircraft licence?
A You may fly microlights without any further training or testing within the privileges of your CAA or JAA issued PPL (A) if you have a current SEP rating. You are advised to take conversion training with an instructor. You cannot use microlight flying hours towards the maintenance of the SEP rating. If your SEP rating lapses and you wish to continue to fly microlights you should apply for a NPPL with a microlight rating attached. The requirements are given in the cross credit document on this site.

The SSEA and SLMG Class Ratings do not entitle the holder to fly microlights. If you only hold a NPPL with a SSEA or SLMG Class Rating you must add a Microlight Class Rating if you want to fly microlights. Hours flown in any Class can be used towards maintaining other NPPL Class Ratings.

Q Do I have to be issued with a NPPL or can I still have the old style Microlight Licence?
A The NPPL with Microlight rating has replaced the old "stand alone" Microlight Licence, which is no longer issued. There are advantages to holding a NPPL, chiefly the ability to add a Simple Single Engine Aircraft and/or Self-Launching Motorglider rating by following the cross-crediting arrangements agreed by the NPPL Steering Group. These can be viewed on this website and downloaded to your PC for printing. Click on the tab "Licence Allowances".