ATPL & CPL Conversions of ICAO licence to EASA


Multi-Pilot Aircraft Type Rated Pilots

Applicants for Part-FCL licences (herewith stated as EASA Licence), can only convert their ICAO Licence to at least an equivalent licence, rating or certificate as to the one the currently have and wishing to convert – see Article 8 of (EU) No: 1178/2011.

CPL Conversions (Aircraft & Helicopter)

Pilots with an ICAO Commercial Pilot Licence CPL(A) or (H) can convert to an EASA ATPL.

Non-Type Rated Pilots

If you hold an ICAO ATPL but don’t have a valid multi-pilot type rating, or do not wish to take the ATPL skills test on type, you must complete an approved course of ground training and get your application forms signed by your training provider before you sit the full set of ATPL exams. The length of the course can be reduced at the discretion of the head of training. You will also need to complete two flight tests, a CPL skills test and an instrument rating. The CPL skills test is a handling check, there is no formal training requirement before the test but you should anticipate 5 to 10 hours to get used to the profile and the aircraft. By definition if you hold an ATPL, you will also hold an ICAO instrument rating; this also needs to be converted to the EASA equivalent. The conversion requires at least 15 hours training before taking the test, of which 10 can be completed in a simulator.

Fixed-Wing Aircraft Licences

Applicants for an EASA ATPL(A) will need 1500 hours flight time, including:
  • 500 hours on multi-pilot aircraft.
  • 250 hours pilot in command (or 500 hours pilot on command under supervision; or 70 hours pilot in command and 180 hours pilot in command under supervision).
  • 200 hours cross country.
  • 75 hours instrument time.
  • 100 hours night flying.
If you don’t have this level of experience you can still do the conversion but you will be issued an EASA CPL(A). When you meet the experience requirements you can upgrade it to an ATPL(A).

Ground school Requirements

If you hold a non-JAA CPL(A) you need to do an approved ground school course and then pass all fourteen ground exams (there is no credit given). The ATPL's cover 14 subjects, we structure them into a 3 modules, however the subjects may be split between the modules as you require. In any case our course structure is herebelow:

Module One:

  • Instrumentation
  • General Navigation
  • Meteorology
  • Human Performance

Module Two:

  • Radio Navigation
  • Aircraft General Knowledge
  • Air Law
  • Flight planning

Module Three:

  • VFR Communication
  • IFR Communication
  • Mass and Balance
  • Operational Procedures
  • Principles of Flight
  • Performance

FCL.025 Theoretical knowledge examinations for the issue of licences – (EC) No: 1178/2011

Pass standards:

  1. At least 75 % of the marks allocated to that paper. There is no penalty marking.

  2. Pass all the required examination papers within a period of 18 months counted from the end of the calendar month when the applicant first attempted an examination.

  3. If an applicant has failed to pass one of the examination papers within 4 attempts, or has failed to pass all papers within either 6 sittings or the period mentioned in paragraph (2), he/she shall re-take the complete set of examination papers.

Validity period:

  1. The successful completion of the theoretical knowledge examinations will be valid:
    1. For the issue of a commercial pilot licence or instrument rating (IR), for a period of 36 months

Scheduling your written exams

You can book your written exams with any of the EASA National Aviation Authorities (eg all 28 EU Member States plus Iceland, Liechtenstein, Norway and Switzerland).

For how to book and what fees to pay, follow the link to “EASA by Country”:


Need an EASA “Class 1” medical.

For how to book and what fees to pay, follow the link below to “EASA by Country”:

Flying Requirements

  • CPL Skills Test:

    There are two tests you will need to complete, The CPL Skills Test and the Instrument Rating (IR). The CPL skills test is a handling check flown on a complex aircraft, defined as an aircraft with retractable gear and a variable pitch prop. If you are converting a CPL(A), there is no formal training requirement before you attempt the CPL Skills Test, but you will probably need 10 to15 hours to get used to the profile and the aircraft. If you already hold an ICAO IR(A), you must complete at least 15 hours before the IR test, up to 10 of which can be flown in the simulator.

    It’s unusual for a conversion to be achieved in the minimum time. If you have never held an Instrument Rating, you must complete 45 hours of training before the test, up to 30 hours of which can be done in a simulator. When comparing prices for CPL training or an IR course, look deeper than the hourly rate; some schools charge only airborne time, some add a fixed element to account for taxiing time, some charge on engine running time and instrument approach fees may or may not be included.

    After completing the instrument rating, your final task is a Multi-Crew Cooperation (MCC) course. Most airlines expect you to complete MCC training before they will consider you for a job. An MCC course is not required if you have spent more than 500 hours operating multi pilot aircraft.

  • ATPL Skills Test Combine with an IR and Type Rating Licence Skills Test:
    All of the aforementioned tests could be conducted on a single test.


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