EASA Conversion Update

In their latest news release, the CAA has reminded all pilots of the upcoming restrictions that will be placed on holders of a UK CAA ‘National’ pilots licence. Please note this is different to an NPPL (National Private Pilot’s Licence) so this may apply to you. Take a moment to think about which licence you have as you may need to take action by April 2014 in order to remain valid.

How to identify your licence type.

Your licence will most likely fall into one of the below categories:

1. EASA Part-FCL Licence

This is the newest type of licence issued. It fits onto one page and is issued in a small blue book. Generally speaking, if you have this type of licence no further action is required as you are likely to be fully up-to-date.

2. JAR-PPL Licence 

This will be the most likely licence for those who first gained their licence after 2000, following the introduction of the Joint Aviation Regulations. It is characterised by a 5 year validity period. If you have this type of licence, you only need to covert over to a new EASA licence when either your existing one expires or an amedment such as adding a new rating is made.

3. UK CAA ‘National’ Licence

These licences are those which were issued before the introduction of JAR-PPL licences around 2000. They are characterised by having a lifetime validity. It it these licences which are the subject of this article.

4. National Private Pilot’s Licence 

A UK-only licence that is normally issued alongside a medical declaration rather than a Class 1 / 2 medical. If you hold an NPPL, you will be required to convert this to the European equivalent which is an LAPL (Light Aircraft Pilot’s Licence) by April 2015 in order to continue flying EASA aircraft (includes C152 and PA28). More information will follow on this process in due course.

What’s Happening? 

If you are the holder of a UK CAA ‘National’ Licence, then your licence will no longer be valid for flying EASA aircraft from 8 April 2015 onwards. C152s and PA28s are included in the definition of EASA aircarft. In order to continue flying such aircraft beyond 8 April 2015, you will need to have converted over to an EASA Part-FCL licence. 

Even before this date however there are further restrictions to be aware of that begin on 8 April 2014. Between the period from 8 April 2014 to 8 April 2015, holders of UK CAA ‘National’ Licences will be restricted to flying EASA aircraft in accordance with the privileges of a European Light Aircraft Pilot Licence (LAPL). This means you will be restricted to: 

– Private VFR operations

– Flying a single engine aircraft of 2,000kgs MTOM or less

– A maximum of 3 passengers

– Flying without instrument or instructor / examiner privileges. 

What to do next?

The easiest way to ensure compliance with the new changes is to convert your UK CAA ‘National’ Licence to an EASA Part-FCL licence by 8 April 2014. Further guidance on this process is available via the CAAs website.  Also read about our application service below to help guide you through the process.

Certification of ID & Licence

As part of the conversion process, you will be required to submit to the CAA a certified copy of your ID and revalidations page. For members, we are happy to certify such documents free of charge so please ask a member of staff for more information. For non-members, there is a small charge of £15 for this service.

Application Service 

Does all the above just seem too confusing? In light of these new requirements, we have launched an application service that will help take the weight off your shoulders! If you come to us with your licence, we can prepare all relevant paperwork, ensure all neccessary conversion requirements are complied with and sumbit the application to the CAA on your behalf.

The cost for this service is £25. If you would like to take advantage of this offering, please email info@flysynergy.com or call 01276 858 075 to get the process started.