Tandem Pilot training
Tandem Pilot course
If you’ve ever thought about becoming a tandem pilot, here’s the low down…
We are a UK registered school (BHPA) so teach to their requirements so let’s look at what you’ll need.
Firstly, you’ll need to be a BHPA member and at least Pilot rated. If you aren’t a BHPA member, you can still take part in our course but we couldn’t issue a qualification, however we could award a certificate of successful completion.
You must be at least 18 years old, and have more than 200 hours of paragliding hill flying and you should be current. This means that ground handling, winch flying or paramotor hours don’t count towards this 250 hour total. In reality, you’ll find the course a lot easier if you’ve got well in excess of the 200 hour minimum.
You’ll need to be outstanding at ground handling so you should be completely able to deal with windy inflations, low wind forward inflations and you should be able to cobra inflate a glider. If you need help with ground handling, please talk to us and we’ll come up with a plan.
From 1 July 2021 you’ll also need to have completed a SIV course and hold a current 1st aid certificate in addition to all the other requirements. Before then these extra requirements don’t apply but we’d very much recommend that you’ve completed at least 1 SIV course and everyone should have 1st aid training and be current. If you don’t have a current 1st aid certificate we can run a 1st aid course prior to the tandem course.
Once you have reserved your place on our course, you will need to complete an application for examination with the BHPA and they will charge you £100 for the examination.
We run our courses at Dune du Pyla in SW France with just 4 students, supply a wide range of equipment, have lots of qualified tandem pilots to act as passengers and have an examiner join us towards the end of the course for your examination. The course is twelve days long and you’ll be very busy. Twelve days isn’t a long time to cover all the content and there is a huge amount to cover. We have extended the length of our courses to meet the increasingly high standards that the BHPA require and even if you are a great pilot, you will need the twelve days to get you through. The examination is in three parts; a written exam, an interview session with the examiner and the flying tests. Generally, the examination takes place over 2 or 3 days.
Once you complete your course and pass your examination you’ll be able to fly family and friends which is so much fun. It really adds another dimension, being able to share something that you love.
If you want to charge for flights, you must do these through a school which is a significantly longer process so if you’re hoping for a commercial ticket, I’m afraid it is much more complicated and this isn’t it.
We run 2 courses per year, one in early summer and one at the end of the summer and they do tend to book up really early so if you are interested, please give us a call and we’ll talk you through it. Our next course is from 5 June – 16 June 2021 and details can be found here
Flight Culture Team