Frequently Asked Questions
With the new pricing structure that modern technology allows us, the complete ATPL can be studied for very little expense.
The entry to most courses (the IR & CBIR are stand-alone) costs £495, to include PDF study notes, and all the hangers-on which we incur on your behalf when setting up your training file, and telephone/email
support while you are studying. This is non-refundable. The fees do NOT cover exam fees, the Jeppesen Student Pilot Manual, and the flight computer required for the Navigation and Flight Planning exams (we recommend
the Jeppesen CR-3). We have arranged a special package price for the EASA Jeppesen manual and the CRP-5 with Pooleys Flight Equipment at £95 plus shipping. For any
other products you might require, quote the letters CAPT for a 5% discount.
Coil bound colour printed notes are available at £350, including shipping. Perfect bound versions are available from Amazon (see the courses page for links) at £250, plus shipping. Note: We use our own world-class notes,
not those from any other source, including Bristol Ground School, CATS, Jeppesen/Peters Software, L3, CTC, Pad Pilot, etc. In fact, other schools and organisations have used ours! If you would like to see some
sample pages, you can download the free pre-study notes (with the basic Maths & Physics needed for the courses) from here.
- Consolidation days are charged as and when you need them, at £150 per day. The eventual cost of a full ATP course to an ICAO PPL holder would therefore be £1695 as
65 hours are required in the classroom (8 days). A CPL course would be £945 as only 25 hours are required in the classroom (3 days).
- The cost of a full ATP course to an ICAO CPL holder would be £1245, as only 40 hours are required in the classroom (5 days, at ATO's discretion).
- The cost of a full ATP course to an ICAO ATPL holder who is able to self-certify (with over a certain minimum number of hours as PIC on multi-crew aircraft), can be very low! You could just buy the
colour printed notes mentioned above, but tablet-friendly colour PDFs are available for aeroplanes or helicopters at just $49.99 Classroom time is chargeable as above.
The training materials are PDF books (a sample can be downloaded from here). We do have interactive material as a supplement to the notes, essentially containing the
same material as you would be exposed to in consolidation classes, covering the subjects that people have the most trouble with and therefore need more time to be studied. Colour notes are printed individually, and
usually arrive within 5 working days.
The only material we keep on computer is your name and address in the accounts program (we have to know where to send the notes!) Otherwise, everything else is paper based, and held in your training file, kept under lock
and key in a secure place. We do not keep data. Signing on is taken as an indication of your agreement with this.
We send you a registration form to complete, which needs to be returned with a copy of your licence and a photo ID. Then there are weekly reading assignments, after which you are supposed to do the progress tests. You can't
take the exams before you have done the reading, the progress tests, the time in the classroom, the mock exams, also on the web site. To book exams you need to sign on with the CAA through their exam portal.
After the introduction of the new reduced CPL(H) theory course, the combination no longer equates to ATPL(H) theory. To gain the ATPL(H) with IR if you have a post-Amendment 3 JAA/EASA CPL(H), you must take 12 exams out
of the 14 required - you will be exempt POF(H) and VFR Comms. If you just want the ATPL(H), you are exempt air law as well.
However, in JAR Amendment 6 (10) "the holder of a CPL(H) gained under previous amendments of JAR-FCL 2 up to and including Amendment 3 is credited with the theoretical knowledge requirements for ATPL(H)." It is our opinion
that, if you have a CPL(H) issued under JAR FCL Amendment 3, that is the equivalent of the ATPL(H)(VFR) in terms of theoretical knowledge - paragraph 2.050(b)(10) refers. This credit was carried over into Part FCL.
In addition, Article 4(1) of Commission Regulation (EU) 1178/2011 refers to JAR compliant licences being deemed to be Part FCL licences. The legal definition of "JAR Compliant" licence is in Article 2, which refers
to licences, ratings, certificates, authorisations and other qualifications issued or recognised by a State, reflecting "JAR and procedures". We interpret this to include ATPL(H) TK credit.
Since the introduction of the ATPL(H)(VFR), the IR(H) and the ATPL(H) theory have their own validity period from the day the exams are successfully completed - 36 months for the CPL(H) and IR(H) and 7 years from the last
validity of an IR entered in the licence, or a helicopter type rating (for helicopters). The ATPL(H) requires 550 hours within 18 months (also the IR), but the ATPL(H)/IR requires 650 hours, although there is no time
limit to finish the course.
It depends on your career path. The ATPL(H) involves around 40% extra work, but you have to gain your IR within 36 months of passing the exams, which then last for as long as you have a type rating (on a helicopter licence).
If you take the ATPL(H)(VFR) first (not the CPL(H)), then the IR, you do not have the pressure and can add the IR at any time later. If you do the CPL(H) first, you will have to do 12 exams to get the
The other thing to consider is that the ATPL(H) requires multi-crew training and a type on your licence that requires two pilots. Realistically, this is unobtainable outside a company operating such helicopters. However,
having the ATPL(H) subjects under your belt looks way better on the resume.
This is not recommended, as we have taken considerable trouble to arrange your studies in a way that avoids repetition and provides the best progression. For example, you need a working knowledge of Meteorology in order
to study Flight Planning effectively, and Navigation draws heavily on the other subjects, which is why they are in the last modules. By then you should have had plenty of practice at playing with the flight computer,
and exam technique, since they both require you to be quite slick (2 minutes per question in Flight Planning!) Having said all that, as our Lords and Masters have seen fit to move Inertial Navigation from its logical
place in Radio Navigation to Instruments, we recommend that Instruments be studied in the Module 1 program as normal, but actually taken with the Module 3 exams, as some knowledge of General Navigation is also required
for best results. The same applies to Operational Procedures.
Otherwise, Human Performance & Limitations is first because it contains important safety implications that should be taken on board before you start flying or studying (it's also the one subject that most people already
have at least some knowledge of, so it makes for an easier start). Airframes & Systems draws on concepts and terms introduced in Principles Of Flight, which follows HP & L. Instrumentation and Communications
both have questions on radio propagation, which is another reason to take Instruments slightly later, after Radio Navigation.
Due to the crossover between subjects, we recommend not taking any exams until all the studying is complete, but Module 1 can be taken early with little effect.
Contact with us can be made by phone, skype or email, usually with an immediate answer.
Progress tests should be submitted weekly for best results - they are accessed directly from the relevant page on this website.
Consolidation courses are held online (see the calendar page for timings).
Depending on the Authority, exams can be taken at several centres.
CAA application forms (and other documents) can be downloaded from here.
Please note that, although you are entitled to 4 attempts at each exam, if any attempts result in a mark below 60%, we will not sign you off for any more without further training in the classroom, which is chargeable.
No - we don't believe they are of much benefit for the type of individul that has the required motivation for distance learning.
You DO have to do all the progress tests and mock exams BEFORE you take the real exams, and you DO have to turn up for the consolidation periods in the classroom. For the ATPL(H), this is 65 hours,
so don't expect to do it over a weekend. Please remember that we cannot sign you off for any exams until this has been done.
Yes, all the exams must be completed within 18 months from the end of the month in which the first exam is taken and, for the IR and ATPL(H), all your studies must also be completed within 18 months.
Note: This is not our limit - it comes from EASA!
Normally, you can use the paypal button against the relevant course, but a cheque or banker's draft is OK, and we can take bank transfers (ask us for details). We can also take credit card payments through paypal, on the
relevant page, but this sometimes does not work due to their somewhat strange security arrangements. We can also take credit/debit cards directly.
All the helicopter ones are! Naturally, our aeroplane courses are aeroplane specific!
Ground school is an opportunity to brush up on areas that are not best studied over a distance, or which need extra emphasis, or which may have changed at the last minute. For example, PPL(H) holders typically will not
have had exposure to autopilots, navaids or EFIS. In addition, it is also an opportunity to get used to the types of question being asked, and exam technique.
We have found that many students rely on the consolidation week to fill in gaps rather than just ask during their studies - if you don't know your stuff by the time you get to the classroom, you won't know it inside a few short days! Ground school is for brushing up - it is not an opportunity to go through the whole syllabus in the space of a week! Otherwise we would be doing it already! We are entitled to assume a minimum amount of knowledge, as you will have
a PPL! Remember that mock exams have to be fitted into the time available as well, which means that the work must have been done before you come! If you feel the need for extra tuition, this can be laid on, at extra
cost (we can do pre-course brushups as well).
The minimum time is 10% of the official study time, which is 25 (250) hours for the CPL(H) and 65 (650) hours for the ATPL(H).
Please note that consolidation classes are NOT optional!
We use our own notes, not those from any other source, including Bristol Ground School, CATS, Oxford Aviation Academy, CTC ProPilot, etc. In fact, other schools and organisations, such as Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University,
Northern Lights College, CATS Germany, Transport Canada and the Royal Air Force have used ours! They are also in the EASA and Transport Canada reference libraries. If you would like
to look at some sample pages, you can download them from here.
Principles Of Flight
Mass & Balance
Commission Regulation (EU) 1178/2011 as amended, Annex I, Appendix 1 (Crediting of theoretical knowledge), paragraph 3.1 requires that a licence in another category should actually be held. An applicant who has completed all the ATPL examinations for
another aircraft category, whilst those examinations are still within their validity period, is covered by FCL.035 (b)(4), which refers in turn to FCL.025(c), so a CPL(H)IR holder with valid ATPL theory credits can
now bridge to ATPL(A) and vice versa. The ATO must be approved specifically to deliver the bridge course and the course must comply with requirements for approved training such as at least 10% of course time being in
In theory, yes, but it is wise to check if you want to take the exams in your own country. They will probably want to see our certificate of approval, which you can download from here.
We have already gone through the process with the Irish, Swiss, German, Norwegian, Polish, Slovenian and Finnish authorities. Note that you cannot take the UK-based exams in another country, even under supervision.
Any time you like! When returning the registration form, please also include a copy of your ICAO PPL(H) and a photo ID, so we know that it is really you when you turn up for consolidation classes!