There’s a few different certificates or licences out there with a myriad of endorsements (or addons you make like to think of them as, as they allow you to more with your existing qualifications). Here’s a quick overview:
- Recreational Pilot Certificate (RPC) – This is a good certification if you just want to have fun in a 2 seat aircraft, with one passenger, hire an aeroplane for a weekend and not break the bank. However, there are limits – weight limits, you need to pack light. Don’t be fooled though, the world of recreational aircraft has developed significantly in recent times and isn’t showing any signs of slowing. The majority of these aircraft are capable of circumnavigating Australia.
- Recreational Pilot Licence (RPL) – Very similar to the Recreational Pilot Certificate but generally allows you to operate an aircraft with up to 4 seats. Good if you want to take more than 1 passenger flying at once or maybe you like to carry a bit more gear on your adventures.
- Private Pilot Licence (PPL) – Very similar to the Recreational Pilot Licence but will allow you to fly private aircraft with more than 4 seats, but most importantly allow you to add on an instrument rating. This is a useful addition if you want to combine your hobby and getting to work.
- Commercial Pilot Licence (CPL) – Want to get paid for flying? Well this is where your journey begins – best of luck. P.s. increase your opportunities or impress your potential employee with unique skills like a tailwheel endorsement.