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How many hours do you have to fly to keep your licence valid?

How many hours do you have to fly to keep your licence valid? Blog

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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.

Carrying passengers

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.

A lot?

If you fly regularly, the minimum number of hours is not a problem. But it is important to keep track of it.

Flying yourself

You do not need a pilot's licence to fly a plane. You can just book a flying lesson together with an instructor.

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Then download our theory book "How an aeroplane flies" completely free of charge. This booklet describes in an accessible way the background of a first flying lesson. So that before or after your lesson you can read back what happened around you. You will read about, among other things:

  • How lift is created and thus how an aeroplane can fly
  • How to make a turn with an aeroplane
  • What the traffic rules on the ground and in the air are
  • And what all the buttons and gauges in the cockpit mean

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About Eveline van den Boom

The author of this article is Eveline van den Boom. In 2006, she received her first flying lesson as a birthday present; a beautiful flight over Rotterdam. That tasted like more!

In 2010, she got her PPL licence in Lelystad. In 2011, an aircraft was purchased: an Aero AT-3. This aircraft is still flying in the fleet with callsign PH-EVB.

She wrote the theory books "Theory of Flying" and "Theory helicopter flying". These can be ordered with your flying lesson and are also separately for sale on

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