What type of courses do you offer?
There are two options to complete drone pilot certificate via a self-paced online theory course.
All courses include a one on one practical flight assessment with a RPAS flight examiner.
Recreational. This online course is suitable for the recreational drone pilot or for commercial activities conducted within the limitations of the Civil Aviation Part 101 Rule.
Privileges: Operations within 4km of an aerodrome in accordance with Part 101.
Qualification: Upon successful completion of the course you will have a RPAS Pilot Certificate to Part 101 standard.
Professional. This course incorporates the Recreational course content which is bundled together with additional material to form the Professional course. It extends your knowledge to the higher standard at Part 102 level. It is suitable to for pilots who are using a drone in a professional capacity or their clients require a high standard of qualification. This course is a requirement for pilots who are operating for a Part 102 unmanned air operator certificate holder (see more on this below)
Privileges: Operations within 4km of an aerodrome in accordance with Part 101 rules.
Allows the pilot to work for a Part 102 unmanned air operator certificate
Qualification: Upon successful completion of the course you will have a RPAS Pilot Certificate to Part 102 standard.
Does this course and certificate meet the requirements of the Civil Aviation Authority?
Yes, this course conducted for Drone Trust by our partner company, Flight Test NZ, a CAA certified Part 141 aviation training organisation. TR52489 .
When can I start the course?
As soon as you have registered and purchased the course on line it is available.
You will have a certain amount of time to complete the course before it expires.
How long does the course take?
This varies between individuals, we estimate 4 to 6 hours for a recreational theory course and then 7 to 10 hours for a professional theory course. Having some prior familiarity with the concepts will speed these figures up.
How long is the practical flight test?
Allow an hour for the practical test, which includes an onsite ‘written’ exam.
Approximately 20 minutes of flying is required, doing a series of exercises, using your own drone.
What type of drone is required for the flight test?
The CAA requires that you conduct the test using the drone that you plan to be flying under your approvals.
As CAA requires significant parts of the test to be conducted in atti mode (if your drone is fitted with this), your drone must be capable of operating in this mode.
Some drones (e.g. DJI Spark or early Mavics) cannot be manually selected into atti mode and are not suitable for the atti-mode components of the flight test. An alternative means of compliance will be required to complete these aspects of the flight test (i.e. using another drone).
Where is the practical test conducted?
We have examiners based in Auckland, Tauranga, Napier/ Hastings, Wellington and Christchurch.
What happens if I don’t want to register with the regulator?
Soon, most countries will require you to register with the regulator to be allowed to fly your drone (even recreationally). Without doing this, you will be breaking the law. If you are a minor (under 18 years of age), you still must comply. There are lots of similarities with learning to drive a car- you need to register your training/test and then you need to register your vehicle too.
How safe are the Drone Trust servers?
If I have a safety incident, will this be made public?
What happens if I already have aviation qualifications?
If you already have your aviation qualifications, please email or call us to discuss. In most cases if you have your qualifications, you will be exempt from some of the Professional RPAS Pilot course requirements, however we strongly recommend you complete the online theory as you must still pass the exam.
What is a UAOC?
An Unmanned Aircraft Operator Certificate is the approval from the regulator for your organisation to conduct commercial operations under Part 102. Our articles page has some more detailed information, including how Drone Trust can assist you by writing the documentation (click here).