The licence itself does not expire, but you have to make hours to continue to fly in the class of aircraft in which you flew. Additional conditions apply for taking passengers. This is also often the case when renting an aircraft.
Validity of class privileges
Class or type privileges are linked to each pilot's licence. This means that you may fly a certain category of aircraft (e.g. single-engine) or in a certain type (e.g. Boeing 737).
Most pilots fly in the so-called SEP class, single engine aircraft. In this class, your class rating is valid for 2 years. In the last year you have to make at least 12 hours and a training flight with an instructor. You cannot fail this training flight.
If you do not make the minimum number of hours, you must do a "prof check" with an examiner. For this you can fail. Often you will have to make a number of training flights to refresh your knowledge.
For taking passengers there are some extra conditions. You must have made at least 3 take-offs and landings in the 90 days before the flight you want to make. If you are an LAPL pilot, you are not allowed to take passengers on board during the first 10 hours.
Renting an aircraft
The lessors of aeroplanes sometimes have additional requirements. Such as a minimum of 1 x flight per 2 months on the aircraft or type or a minimum number of flight hours. They often get a discount from the insurer if they impose such conditions when renting the aircraft.
If you fly regularly, the minimum number of hours is not a problem. But it is important to keep track of it.
You do not need a pilot's licence to fly a plane. You can just book a flying lesson together with an instructor.More information