Follow your dreams and become a pilot in the RAF

As a Royal Air Force Pilot you will fly fast-jets, transport aircraft or helicopters.

Click the link below for complete information, and how to apply.


Be aged 17.5 – 25 years old (Must attest before 26th birthday)

Have GCSEs at Grade C/4 or SNE at Grade 5 or SCE Standard Grades at Grade 2/SNE 5 in English and Maths and at least three other subjects.

Have at least 2 A2 Levels/3 Highers at Grade C or above (excluding General Studies or Critical Thinking) which must total a minimum of 64 UCAS points.

Be a citizen of the United Kingdom or holder of dual UK/ other nationality.

Commit to minimum 12 years service.

Meet the health and fitness criteria.

Pass a General Fitness Test.

How can a EASA fixed wing pilot, get the equivalent for helicopters?

We received a question from a fixed wing pilot that holds a EASA ATPL.

He asked, how he can get the equivalent license for helicopters.

The question was a respond to a earlier post we had a few days ago here on

And that post was mostly aimed for FAA fixed wing pilots., that wants to learnt to fly helicopters.

Back to the question, and more important the answer.

There are two way for the EASA fixed wing pilot, that want to get the same for rotor wings.

The first option is to do your training with a EASA helicopter flight school, you will get credited for your knowledge, and the flight hours requirement to get a EASA CPL (H) is reduced, since you already hold EASA ATPL (A), the same if you have EASA CPL (A).

If you hold a CPL(A) you'll get credit for 50 hours, making the minimum requirement 105 hours in a helicopter.

In the EASA world this is know as "Fixed wing conversion"

So in short terms, to get a EASA CPL (H) if you hold the same or higher in fixed wing, you do the ordinary helicopter training course, except you get a reduction in the flight hours.

The second option for a EASA PPL, CPL, ATPL fixed wing pilot to get the equivalent for helicopter is the FAA route.

Here we need to break it down to two scenarios.

1. You are a EASA fixed wing pilot, and also a holder of the same from FAA.
Then you can do a so called helicopter add-on training course.

This is what we described in the original post, click here to read it.

2. You are a EASA PPL, CPL, ATPL fixed wing pilot, and not a holder of the same from FAA.

Then you have to do the helicopter add-on training course, plus you also need to do the required written exams, and the FAA medical.

After you have completed one of the two scenarios above, then you are a FAA CPL (H) pilot.

So now the next step is to do a conversion to the EASA.

How to do a conversion from FAA CPL (H) to EASA CPL (H)

Pilots with an FAA Commercial Pilot Licence Helicopter CPL(H) can convert to an EASA ATPL.

To convert your ICAO/FAA CPL(H) to an EASA ATPL(H) you will need 1000 hours flight time, including:

350 hours on multi pilot helicopters;
250 hours pilot in command (or 250 hours pilot in command under supervision; or 100 hours pilot in command and 150 hours pilot in command under supervision);
200 hours cross country;
30 hours instrument time; and
100 hours night flying

If you don’t have this amount of hours, you can still do the conversion but you will be issued with a EASA CPL(H). 
When you meet the experience requirements, you can upgrade it to an ATPL(H),without taking any more ground exams or flight tests.

And when it comes to the the theory part of the conversion, there is no credit given, it is required you do the complete ground school training course and pass all the 14 exams.

The flight part of the conversion from FAA CPL (H) to EASA CPL/ATPL (H)

You will need to pass two flight tests, the skill test and, if you want an ATPL(H)IR, the Instrument Rating (IR).

The skill test is a control and handling check.

If you are converting a CPL(H), there is no set training requirement but you will probably need around 5- 10 hours to get prepared for the profile and the aircraft.

If you already hold an ICAO/FAA IR(H) and want to convert it then you must complete at least 15 hours before the test, up to ten of which can be done in a simulator.

If you need assistance or advice related to this topic, or anything else related to flight training contact us at

Learning to Fly Helicopters. Helicopter training material.

The second book we at recommends for helicopter pilot student's, and other who has a interest to learn more about helicopters is the following book.

Learning to Fly Helicopters

A comprehensive guide to helicopter flying and flight training for aspiring private or professional helicopter pilots--updated for the first time in 20 years!
Extensively revised to cover the latest industry advances, Learning to Fly Helicopters, Second Edition, provides details on the technical and practical aspects of rotarywing flight, guiding you from preflight preparation through postflight procedures and everything in between.

Written in a conversational style, the book demystifies the art and science of helicopter flying. Real-world advice from the author and other pilots is included throughout.

This copiously illustrated, up-to-date edition features new information on glass cockpits, turbine engines, IFR flying, the latest FAA test standards for a private helicopter pilot certificate, emergency and safety procedures, how to choose a flight school, career opportunities, and more.

Become a private or professional helicopter pilot with help from this trusted resource!

Learning to Fly Helicopters, Second Edition, covers:

Five myths about helicopters
Basic aerodynamics
Flight controls
Your first flight
Basic flight maneuvers
Learning to hover
Advanced maneuvers--with new material on hoisting, sling loads, and offshore operations
Hazards of low-level flying
Flight training tips--civil and military
Aircraft systems--with new information on glass cockpits and turbine engines
Private pilot practical test standards for helicopter pilots
The Ten Commandments for helicopter pilots
Weight and balance, passenger briefings, and hand signals
Employment opportunities
Human factors and safety
A flight to remember--lessons learned from the author's most stressful flight
Born-again copilots--when experienced captains fly the left seat
Resources for helicopter pilots
Data on and photos of common civil helicopters
There but for the grace of God--real hangar stories as told by real pilots
Post flight

Helicopter Maneuvers Manual. helicopter topic.

We continue on the helicopter theme, and today we will take a look on a couple of good book's.
If you have some experience already in helicopters, or if you are totally new in the world of rotors, it is good to have some level of knowledge, before you start your formal helicopter training course.

The first book we will take a look at, is the following.

Helicopter Maneuvers Manual: A step-by-step illustrated guide to performing all helicopter flight operations

Providing a detailed look at helicopter maneuvers, the information in this guide helps to solidify concepts gained from flight training in a student pilot's mind by incorporating the Practical Test Standards into every maneuver description.

The graphical and textual explanations work in conjunction with an instructor's lessons, allowing students to prepare before sessions and to review afterwards as well.

There are many guides to flight maneuvers and how to fly them in airplanes but none specifically made for helicopters, and not in the complete and fully color-illustrated way as presented in "Helicopter Maneuvers Manual."

This handbook will be of immense help to flight instructors teaching helicopter maneuvers, following the FAA's practical test standards for certification of helicopter pilots.

This book not only helps in training but can also be used for reference throughout the helicopter pilot's flight career. It provides readers with a crystal-clear picture of what level of performance is expected of them every step and includes insights into the common errors associated with each move.

The Turbine Pilot's Flight Manual

The Turbine Pilot's Flight Manual

The Turbine Pilot's Flight Manual

Designed for the pilot of piston-engine aircraft who is preparing for turbine ground school, the transitioning military pilot studying for that first corporate or airline interview, or even the old pro brushing up on turbine aircraft operations, this manual covers all the basics, clearly explaining the differences between turbine aircraft and their piston-engine counterparts.

It addresses high-speed aerodynamics, coordinating multipilot crews, wake turbulence, and navigating in high-altitude weather. The book is like an operations manual for these complex aircraft, detailing pilot operations that include preflight, normal, emergency, IFR, and fueling procedures.

Readers will be introduced to flight dispatch; state-of-the-art cockpit instrumentation, including the flight management system (FMS) and the head-up guidance system (HGS or HUD); and the operating principles of hazard avoidance systems, including weather radar, lightning detectors, and the ground proximity warning system (GPWS).

About Gregory N. Brown
Greg Brown's love for flying is obvious to anyone who knows his "Flying Carpet" column in AOPA Flight Training magazine, or who has read his books, You Can Fly!, Flying Carpet: The Soul of an Airplane, The Savvy Flight Instructor, The Turbine Pilot's Flight Manual, and Job Hunting for Pilots.

A CFI since 1979, Greg was 2000 Industry/FAA National Flight Instructor of the Year, and winner of the 1999 NATA Excellence in Pilot Training Award. He has flown professionally in both scheduled and corporate aviation, and holds an ATP pilot certificate with Boeing 737 type rating, and Flight Instructor certificate with all fixed-wing aircraft ratings. In addition, Greg was the first "Master CFI" designated by the National Association of Flight Instructors.