After 1st July 2020, the only two courses that you will be able to do are a GVC drone course and an A2 CofC drone course.
Until 1st July 2020 you may still see on the market PfCO drone courses, however, unless these are a hybrid PfCO/GVC drone course then you may find that the certificate you are issued with (an NQE Recommendation Certificate) automatically expires after 1st July 2020.
If you do a GVC drone course or a PfCO/GVC Hybrid drone course then you will be issued with an RAE Recommendation Certificate which will be valid for 5 years.
As UAVHUB, we are the UK's first RAE and we now deliver the PfCO/GVC Hybrid course (until the end of March 2020), after which we will only deliver the GVC Drone Course. All of our students will now get issued an RAE Recommendation Certificate which will allow them to get a PfCO (pre-July 2020) and an Operational Authorisation (after July 2020).
What is the GVC Drone Course?
The GVC drone course is the new course that is replacing the PfCO (Permission for Commercial Operation). Our GVC Drone Course is a 1 day course (suplemented with 8+ hours of E-Learning)
Before attending the 1-day ground school and examination, you will need to complete the E-Learning material. As part of the E-Learning, you will learn about:
- Air Law & Responsibilities
- UAS Airspace Operating Principles
- Airmanship and Aviation Safety
- Human Performance Limitations
- UAS General Knowledge
- Operator Responsibilities
- Operating Procedures
- UK Low Flying System & Collision Effects*
- Night Flying*
*These modules are UNIQUE to our ICARUS GVC drone course and go above and beyond the minimum required syllabus.
You will also have to complete an Operations Manual and conduct a flight test at one of our flight training facilities.
Gaining the GVC will enable you to get permissions to fly all aircraft between 0 - 25 KG Maximum Take-off Mass within congested areas (provided you can maintain a minimum separation distance from uninvolved people).
As part of the GVC Drone Course qualification, you will be able to take additional bolt-on modules which will enable you to get additional permissions from the CAA such as Extended Visual Line of Sight.
What if I'm currently doing a PfCO Drone Course?
If you are currently doing a PfCO drone course (and the company you are training with is NOT an RAE) you will need to make sure that you complete the whole of the course and submit your application for a PfCO BEFORE 1st July 2020.
Once you have received your PfCO you will need to make sure that you keep renewing the PfCO, as, if you let it lapse, the CAA will NOT let you renew unless you have converted over to doing a GVC course.
If you'd like to convert over to a GVC then we have a PfCO to GVC conversion course available for you.
What if I'm currently doing a PfCO/GVC Hybrid Drone Course with UAVHUB?
If you are currently on one of our PfCO courses, you will be issued with an RAE Recommendation Certificate so if you apply for permissions after 1st July 2020, you will be issued an Operational Authorisation.
If you let your permissions lapse after the 1st July 2020 you can then still apply without having to do another course.
Please note: An RAE Recommendation Certificate is only valid for up to 5 years. Although NQE Recommendation Certificates currently don't have an expiry date, the CAA will (at a non-determined point of time) stop accepting renewals of a 'legacy' PfCO.
What is the A2 CofC Drone Course?
The A2 CofC Drone Course is for drone pilots who fly smaller aircraft in less 'riskier' environments. There's currently a 2 year transitional period for 'legacy' drones on the market which is worth bearing in mind when looking at the A2 C of C drone course.
You can find out more about the A2 CofC by clicking here.
I'm still not sure which course I should go for...
We'll be able to walk you through which course is best for you based on your aircraft and your own requirements.