Tuesday, October 22, 2019
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Commercial Pilot Licence- Helicopter (CPL-H)

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In order to be issued with a Commercial Pilot Licence in South Africa, the following minimum requirements need to be met:


  • An applicant for a CPL-H must be at least 18 years old
  • The applicant must hold a valid class I medical certificate
  • The applicant must have a valid General Radio Licence
  • The applicant must produce evidence that he/she has/has had within the previous 60 months one of the following: a valid South African PPLH; or, a valid pilot licence issued by a contracting state; or, a valid South African Air Force helicopter pilot qualification on aircraft; or, a valid Student Pilot Licence in the case of an applicant having done an approved integrated training course
  • The applicant must have successfully completed all the relevant training at a CAA approved flight training institution
  • Have passed all the theoretical knowledge examinations. The examinations are as follows: 1) Aviation Meteorology, 2) Flight Planning and Performance, 3) Radio Aids and Communication, 4) General Navigation, 5) Instruments and Electronics, 6) Helicopter Technical and General, 7) Human Performance and Limitations, 8) Air Law and Procedures
  • The applicant must have completed not less than: 200 hours flight time, which may include 20 hours of flight instruction in an approved helicopter simulation device (150 hours in the case of an integrated course)
  • The total flight time must include 100 hours as pilot in command (70 hours for integrated course)
  • 20 hours cross country flight time
  • A qualified South African Air Force pilot may apply for exemption to any or all of the above requirements
  • The applicant must undergo the skills test for the issue of a CPL not more than 36 months after having passed all the theoretical examinations


  • The holder of a valid CPL-H may act as pilot in command or co-pilot on any helicopter for which he/she holds the relevant valid rating
  • A CPL-H pilot may exercise all the privileges of a PPLH pilot
  • Act as pilot in command of any helicopter involved in operations that do not involve the carriage of passengers or freight for hire or reward
  • A CPL-H pilot may act as pilot in command of any helicopter engaged in commercial transport operations that has been certified for single pilot operation
  • A CPL-H pilot may act as co-pilot on any helicopter required to be operated with a co-pilot on commercial transport operations
  • A CPL-H holder may act as a safety pilot
  • A CPL-H is valid for a period of 10 years, provided that the annual fees are paid
  • The holder of a CPL-H has to undergo a revalidation check 12 months after the date of initial issue and thereafter every 24 months

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