Surround yourself with people who are only going to lift you higher.
Pilots are a rare kind of human. They leave the ordinary surface of the word, to purify their soul in the sky, and they come down to earth, only after receiving the communion of the infinite.
~ Jose Maria Velasco Ibarra


The Recreational Pilot Permit allows you to:

  • fly all single-engine aircraft that are classified as non-high performance,
  • during daylight hours,
  • under Visual Flight Rules,
  • with a maximum of 4 seats and up to one passenger.

A Recreational Permit may be upgraded to a Private Licence which will allow you to train for additional ratings.


Training Overview

The Recreational Pilot Permit program is divided into two separate related paths, ground school, and air instruction. Ground school will provide you with the required background knowledge and understandings to successfully pass the written examination, while the air instruction and solo practice will provide you with the skills required to succeed at the flight test.

A minimum age of sixteen (16) years old is required for a Recreational Pilot Permit. However, flight training can be started as early as fourteen (14) years of age, as that is the minimum age required to obtain a student pilot permit.

All pilots are required to have a Medical Certificate. There are four categories of medical certificates and the process of obtaining a certificate will differ depending on the category and your age.

The minimum category required for the Recreational Pilot Permit is a Category 1, 3, or 4. However, students seeking careers as Commercial Pilots should obtain a Category 1 Medical Certificate.

The Medical examination must be performed by a Civil Aviation Medical Examiner. The fee for the examination will vary with the individual examiner but is usually between $90.00 and $150.00. This fee is not normally covered under any medical plans.

More information about specific medical requirements based on the category you’re  applying for can be found here:

Ground school is not a requirement for the Permit. However, it’s recommended that you take ground school classes to help ensure that you have at least the minimum knowledge to pass the written exam. The ground school must be conducted in a classroom setting and includes the following topics:

  • Theory of Flight
  • Licensing Requirements
  • Aerodynamics Airframes and Engines
  • Systems and Flight Instruments
  • Canadian Aviation Regulations
  • Meteorology
  • Human Factors
  • Pilot Decision Making
  • Flight Operations
  • Navigation Radio and Electronic Theory.have

RPP Training Milestones

Students will be required to demonstrate sufficient knowledge of the required subjects by obtaining a mark of no less than 60% on the written examination, Pilot Permit Recreational- Aerorplane or Private Pilot License – Aeroplane. The written examination is divided into four mandatory areas:

  • Air Law: regulations, rules and orders, air traffic services, practices and procedures, and licensing requirements
  • Navigation: navigation, radio aids, and electronic theory
  • Meteorology: active weather and weather information
  • General Knowledge: airframes, engines and systems, theory of flight, flight instruments, flight operations, and human factors.

Applicants for the PPL written examination must have completed at least 10 hours of flight time.

The written examination is a bilingual computer-based exam which is administered by Transport Canada. The questions are in a multiple-choice format.

Air instruction is separated into dual instruction and solo practice. During dual instruction, students will be introduced to new exercises and practice previous exercises. Once a level of skill and competence has been reached students will fly solo in the aircraft to practice the air exercises.

You must complete a minimum of 25 hours flight training of which shall include a minimum of:


The remainder of the time requirements will be made of dual and solo training and practice.

Transport Canada requires that a minimum of 25 hours of flight training be completed while on course; however courses are usually designed on a more realistic expectation of training requirements.

Following the completion of your flight training, you will be required to complete a flight test. The flight test is conducted by a flight test examiner in an aircraft. During the flight test, you will be tested on your understanding of aircraft performance, aircraft systems, emergency procedures, and navigational skills. Additionally, your performance of the required air exercises will be tested to the standard outlined in the Flight Test Guide Recreational Pilot Permit –  AeroplaneBeing familiar with this guide before your flight test will allow you to know exactly what to expect and to approach and handle it with more confidence. 

Study and Reference Guide

The latest Study and Reference Guide for the Recreational Pilot Permit can be found on the Transport Canada publications website:


Flight Test Guide

The latest Flight Test Guide for the Recreational Pilot Permit can be found on the Transport Canada publications website:

Books and manuals

  • From the Ground Up (StudyBook)
  • Flight Training Manual  (Flight Exercises)
  • Pilot Operating Handbook (P.O.H., Aircraft Manual)
  • Basic  Human Factors Manual Handbook

Optional but nice to have:


Pilot Charts

  • Vancouver VFR Navigation Chart
  • Vancouver VFR Terminal Chart
  • En route Low Altitude—LO1 and LO2


Pilot Flight Computers

  • CX-2 Electronic Flight Computer, or
  • E6-B Computer


Pilot Logbooks

  • Basic or Professional size logbook


Other Supplies


All these books and supplies can be purchased from