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Remote pilot licence
A remote pilot licence (RePL) allows you to fly remotely piloted aircraft (RPA) in circumstances that need specialist training.
You'll need to apply for a RePL if you want to fly:
- a drone larger than 2 kg for commercial operations - any time you earn money for flying
- outside the drone safety rules (standard operating conditions)
- for a remotely piloted aircraft operator's certificate (ReOC) holder.
If you want to fly for commercial purposes, you must also either hold a ReOC or work for a ReOC holder. If you get paid for flying your drone - you are flying commercially.
You don't need a licence if you're only flying for fun.
RePLs do not expire.
How to apply
Step 1: apply for an aviation reference number (ARN)
An ARN is your unique ID number that we'll use to identify you each time you communicate with us.
Find out more about the ID requirements and apply for an ARN.
Step 2: complete the required training
Before you can get your licence, you'll need to complete the required training through a certified training provider. Training requirements depend on your level of aviation experience.
For those with no aviation experience
You'll need to find a certified training provider and complete the required theory and practical training.
If at any time you need to fly in controlled airspace or beyond visual line of sight, you'll also need an aeronautical radio operators licence (AROC). An AROC is required anytime you need to transmit on an aeronautical radio frequency.
For those with aviation experience
You don't need to complete theory RePL training if you:
- have passed the theory component of any Part 61 flight crew licence (eg PPL, CPL, ATPL or RPL)
- have an equivalent military qualification or air traffic control licence.
Note: international qualifications may be recognised following a review and comparison of the foreign and Australian syllabi.
If you meet the above criteria, you have two options for obtaining your RePL:
- Complete an operational training course with a CASA approved training organisation who will then apply to CASA on your behalf, and log five hours of flying your drone under standard operating conditions
- Request a CASA flight test to determine competency, log five hours of flying your drone under standard operating conditions, and apply to CASA using Application for Remote Pilot Licence (RePL) form 101-01 (pdf 201.66 KB). You'll need to submit your supporting documentation, including your certified RPA flying hours log book form 1483 (docx 58.77 KB), with your application.
Have a question? Need help? Try asking our virtual assistant, which can be found in the bottom right hand corner of your screen.
You can also contact us through our online enquiry form.
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