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Recreational Pilot Licence (RPL) and Private Pilot Licence (PPL)

Recreational pilot licence

A recreational pilot licence (RPL) the first pilot licence you can obtain with certain limitations which can be extended later with Private pilot licence. 

RA-Aus certificate holders can convert to an RPL with a little CASA paperwork and a class rating flight review for your aircraft type. 

Students can begin their training at any age provided, they can physically reach the aircraft controls, however, Students can only conduct solo flying after their 15th birthday. To be eligible to undertake the RPL flight test, Students must have reached their 16th birthday. 

To hold an RPL, you must be 16yearold and have:

  • A current medical certificate—this may be either Class 1 or 2
  • Minimum: 25 hours flight time comprising 20 hours dual and five hours solo
  • Sit and pass the CASA RPL theory exam
  • A recommendation for the RPL flight test is dependent on a student demonstrating competency at the standard required.

RPL holders are limited to: 

  • Flying no more than 25nm from the aerodrome where the flight began, the designated training area, or a direct route between the two
  • Day VFR private operations in a single engine aircraft with a maximum take-off weight (MTOW) of 1500kg. 

Private Pilot licence 

A private pilot licence (PPL) builds on the knowledge and experience gained during RPL training and is a licence that allows a holder to pilot an aircraft as pilot-in-command or co-pilot when the aircraft is being operated privately. 

To hold a private pilot licence (PPL) you must have reached 17 years old, and:

  • Minimum of 30 hours dual flight
  • At least 10 hours solo; of which 5 hours solo must be cross country
  • Sit and pass the CASA PPL theory exam
  • Recommendation for the PPL flight test is dependent on achieving the Competency required standard.

BFS provides non-integrated training, this gives Students flexible training options to fit in with their busy lives rather than having to engage in a full-time course. 

Did you know that you can complete all your training in a Cirrus AircraftContact us and speak to a Cirrus Instructor for more information. 


We recommend the CASA Private Pilot Guide to read HERE 

Frequently Asked Questions

The cost for a Recreational Pilot Licence (RPL) can vary between $10 – $12,900.00.

Why the variation? people learn in different ways, in our experience, the average Pilot can demonstrate competency, confidently, between 40 – 50 hours of training.

BFS adopts a pay-as-you train approach, rather than having to apply for a loan or pay a lump sum, you pay for your lessons as you complete them.

It should also be noted that your ground school is included in your RPL lessons.

The Cirrus conversion course can be completed usually over a period of 3 or 4 days, with 1 or 2 flights per day. It is recommended to have finished the Cirrus Transition course online prior to any flight training.
As with any flight training, safety is the most important aspect, we will train you until a safe standard, so you are then comfortable yourself to fly off with family and friends
The selection of whether to convert in the SR 20 or SR 22 will depend on a number of factors and can be discussed with us so that we can map out the best training path for you.
For example we have a Doctor who regularly had to attend clinics in regional NSW, he was an existing pilot but not on Cirrus, so what we did was construct a Cirrus converion course so that he could complete part of the syllabus at the same time as his travel requirements.

Unfortunately we dont offer credit of finance for the course and the cost for the hours flown will have to be paid on completion of the flight

Yes we do offer rental to our pilots on completion and we have on offer a range of SR 20 or SR 22, you are free to take this away on long journeys as long as minimum hours are met, please enquire for more info
We have on show in our hanger a range of SR 20 and SR 22 aircraft, so please visit to discuss purchase as well as map put your training course.

We are proud to have in our hanger a new 2020 model SF 50 Vision Jet. This aircraft is not available to rent or train on, but syndicates are on offer or you can discuss an outright purchase. Contact us for more info

Yes for certain circumstances such as full time courses, we do offer training away from our home base at Bankstown airport, please feel free to ask. *please note that additional expenses may apply such as accomodation and enroute travel costs*.


Here’s what our students had to say about our Flight Training:

I completed both my CPL and CIR through Bankstown Flying (BFS). In my experience, I found BFS to be less like a school and more like a close-knit flying club……Read more HERE

A.B - SR22 Cirrus Aircraft Pilot

After an almost 4 decade long love affair with aviation, I finally made the full commitment to become a pilot and it was the best thing……Read more HERE

M.N - SR22 Cirrus Aircraft Pilot

Came to BFS for a Cirrus SR22 conversion, heard great things about the school, Nigel was excellent……..Read more HERE

K.S - Airline Pilot

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  • (02) 9707 3822