Commercial pilot licence (balloon) exams - CLWB and COPB

A commercial pilot licence for balloon (CPLB) lets you to pilot hot air balloons for work.

To get your licence, you must pass a 2-part examination.

Before you do the CPL balloon exams

Before you take the exams, it helps if you have either:

  • an Australian Balloon Federation (ABF) Private Pilot Certificate (PPC)
  • an overseas Balloon flight crew licence.

To prepare for the exams, study the:

Section 3.7 of the syllabus of training also recommends what you should study.

Commercial pilot licence flight rules and air law (balloon) exam – CLWB

The exams include multiple-choice questions and questions where you type a whole number in a box.

You have 2 hours to complete the exam.

To pass, you will need to get at least 75% of the marks.

These exams cost $168.61 each ($103.61 invigilator fee and $65 CASA fee).

Preparing for your exam

The CPLB syllabus of training (PDF 657.6 kB) details the training and education you need to pilot balloons. It will also test on the laws in Part 5 of the Civil Aviation Regulations 1988.

Permitted material

You may use either the Airservices or Jeppesen list of permitted materials. You need to supply these materials.

You cannot use a combination of materials from both the Airservices list and the Jeppesen list.

Airservices list

CAR 1988

Part 67 of CASR

CAO 20-101.54

CAAP 92-3(1) and 157-1(0)

AC 131-01 v2.0 Airworthiness

AIP Book

ERSA

Jeppesen list

CAR 1988

Part 67 of CASR

CAO 20-101.54

AC 131-01 v2.0 Airworthiness

Jeppesen Airway Manual

Your invigilator will give you some things before the exam, which you must hand back at the end. These include:

  • pen
  • pencil
  • ruler
  • eraser
  • scribble pad
  • workbook for CPL Balloon.

Pass rates

You can see how candidates in 2020 performed in their CLWB exam.

Year 0 - 54% 55 - 59% 60 - 64% 65 - 69% 70 - 74% 75 - 79% 80+% Pass rate
2020 0 0 0 12.50 12.50 12.50 62.50 75.00%
2021 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 100.00 100.00%

Check the results of candidates from previous years.

For the CLWB, you should pay close attention to:

Commercial pilot licence operations (balloon) exam – COPB

The exams include multiple-choice questions and questions where you type a whole number in a box.

You have 2.5 hours to complete the exam.

To pass, you will need to get at least 75% of the marks.

These exams cost $180.18 each ($115.13 invigilator fee and $65 CASA fee).

Preparing for your exam

The CPLB syllabus of training (PDF 657.6 kB) details the training and education you need to pilot balloons. It will also test on the laws in Part 5 of the Civil Aviation Regulations 1988.

Permitted material

You may use either the Airservices or Jeppesen list of permitted materials. You need to supply these materials.

You cannot use a combination of materials from both the Airservices list and the Jeppesen list.

Airservices list

CAAP and 92-3(1) and 157-1(0)

AC 131-01 v2.0 Airworthiness

AIP Book

ERSA

ERC LOW 1/2

AUS PCA

Canberra/Albury VTC

Cowra (NSW) 1:100,000 Topographical Survey Chart

Navigation equipment

A basic calculator

Jeppesen list

CAAP and 92-3(1) and 157-1(0)

AC 131-01 v2.0 Airworthiness

AC 131-02 v1.0 Operations

Jeppesen Airway Manual

AUS PCA

Canberra/Albury VTC

Cowra (NSW) 1:100,000 Topographical Survey Chart

Navigation equipment

A basic calculator

Your invigilator will give you some things before the exam, which you must hand back at the end. These include:

  • pen
  • pencil
  • ruler
  • eraser
  • scribble pad
  • workbook for CPL Balloon.

The workbook for CPL Balloon will include:

  • Sample of standard CAR 259 permit;
  • Load Chart for 160,000 cu ft Balloon;
  • TAFs;
  • ARFOR;
  • MSL Analysis; and
  • MSL Prognosis.

Pass rates

You can see how candidates in 2020 performed in their COPB exam.

Year 0 - 54% 55 - 59% 60 - 64% 65 - 69% 70 - 74% 75 - 79% 80+% Pass rate
2020 0 0 0 11.11 0 0 88.89 88.89%
2021 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00 0.00%

Check the results of candidates from previous years.

COPB covers these topics in the syllabus:

  • balloons general knowledge
  • radio telephony
  • navigation
  • operations, performance and flight planning
  • meteorology
  • human performance and limitations.

Booking the CPL (Balloon) exams

Plan when you do the exams carefully and book them only when you understand each exam subject.

You must pass both subjects within one window to get your CPLB. A window is 2 years, unless you have an exemption.

Last updated:
16 May 2022
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