The drone market is booming and with every drone bought is the creation of a new drone pilot. Although lots of drone pilots are using drones for fun, COPTRZ does recommend a PfCO course to any pilot planning on flying a drone not just for the commercial reasons. A PfCO is a Permission for Commercial Operations from the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA). The CAA Drone Training Course allows drone pilots to gain the full up-to-date package of skills, knowledge and experience needed to apply for a Permission for Commercial Operations (PfCO) from the CAA (otherwise known as a drone licence).
Here are our 10 Reasons Why You Should Take a PfCO Course:
1. You’ll know the rules
If you have a drone and are planning to fly it strictly as a hobby then as long as you are following the CAA regulations you do not need a drone licence. However, the rules and regulations aren’t always the clearest to understand, especially with the EU introducing a new framework and registration policy for drone operators later this year. If you are feeling a bit unclear about which rules you should follow then you should consider a PfCO course. Our Groundschool PfCO theory course touches on all the Air Law and responsibilities you need to know so you can operate your drone care-free.
2. You could make some money!
As the drone industry continues to expand at a rapid rate, it’s no surprise to see the number of commercial opportunities increase as well. This could be from drone enthusiasts, such as aerial photographers looking to make money from their flying skills, or for existing businesses, such as surveying and inspection teams looking to train their staff. If you’re taking aerial photographs for your own pleasure then that’s fine – but if you start selling those photos then you’d need a PfCO. If you’re thinking about flying your drone for work, money or a reward then you will need a PfCO certificate. It’s time to open up a new stream of income!
3. You’ll learn how to avoid crashing your drone
If you crashed and broke your low-cost beginner drone you might be pretty annoyed but you’re not going to be losing sleep over it. What about crashing a DJI Mavic 2 Pro or even a DJI Matrice 210!? Perhaps the drone isn’t yours or it belongs to your employer. On our PfCO course, you will learn best practice operating procedures and how to land your drone safely in all sorts of circumstances out of our control.
4. You could save money on a Drone & PfCO Bundle!
It might be early days and at this point, you haven’t even flown a drone but you have been thinking about buying one for some time. Our Business Packages mean you could save up to £500 by buying a drone and a Drone Training course at the same time. You don’t have to take your PfCO course straight away which leaves you plenty of time to get those precious flight practices in before your flight test. You can even complete your ground training (Days 1 & 2) first then save days 3-4 of your course until after you’ve had time to practice flying. Here are some of our business packages but get in touch with us as we are very flexible. Our UAV Strategist Jamie talks here about some of the Business Packages available.
5. It takes less than one week!
The COPTRZ CAA Drone Training Course only takes 4 days. The first two days of the course will cover your theory learning and theory assessment. Here your trainer will take you through the full 8 modules required by the CAA, before you complete a multiple-choice exam. Day 3 will take you through your Pre Flight Planning and Business Considerations followed by your final day which is the Flight Test. If 4 days is too much to commit and you would like to break up the 4 days into bitesize modules then you should check out our Pay As You Learn module courses.
6. Learn what you can and can’t do with your drone
There are 8 modules covered on the initial Ground School Training Course which takes place over two days.
- UAS Airspace Operating Principles
- Airmanship & Aviation Safety
- Air Law & Responsibilities
- Navigation Charts
- Human Factors
- Aircraft Knowledge
- Operating Procedures
The course endeavours to give you confidence in flying your drone and knowledge or best practice. Your course trainer will be on-hand throughout the course and will be able to answer any questions you have about your drone. For example, can I use my drone to drop the kids off at school?
7. You’ll be taken seriously as a drone pilot
With a PfCO certificate from a CAA approved supplier, you’ll be considered a professional drone pilot. Great kudos amongst friends but more importantly you’ll be taken seriously by potential employers and clients. That said, A PfCO certificate is the base level certification expected for drone pilots. If you want to stand out from the competition you should consider taking one of our OFQUAL courses designed to upskill you as a drone pilot (Watch COPTRZ’s Max introduce the OFQUAL 4). The data collection feature of certain drones makes them a versatile and crucial asset to the Inspection, Search & Rescue and Mapping industries. Our Pix4D course (UAV photogrammetry software) teaches pilots how to make 3D maps and point clouds from data captured during a drone flight (Watch COPTRZ’s George introduce the Pix4D Course).
8. You could pay for your course with just one job
The costs involved with training can seem expensive, or the time and work it takes may seem a bit of a grind, but it might only take one job to follow as a result to make it all worthwhile. And so getting your PfCO is just the first step on your path to success. Exactly in what direction that path leads, is entirely up to you… but we’re here to help!
9. You’ll get strategic help planning your business flights
First impressions are so important and as all great pilots know it’s the pre-work you put in before a flight that means the flight can go smoothly and without a hitch. Fail to prepare, prepare to fail. The third day of the course covers everything you need to do to plan for a live job. It will also offer you an insight into getting your commercial drone business off the ground. Your trainer will walk you through the process of completing pre-flight planning, safe setup and site surveying. They will also talk you through the flight assessment process.
10. You’ll be ready to hit the ground running!
As John Rowland, Head of Training, says “The COPTRZ PfCO course is an industry-leading, educational and practical pathway to becoming a professional drone pilot, you’ll be equipped with not only the knowledge but the confidence to hit the ground running and make a massive success of your goals within this booming industry”.