Drone Pilot Training


Aviation Safety Management Systems is a Part 141 Certificated Aviation Training Organisation. We have specific approval to conduct flight crew training and assess operational competency for unmanned aircraft operations.



Undertaking a flight competency assessment.
Photo credit: Vantage Point Photography



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Frequently Asked Questions

See the table below for a summary of courses offered. We have a drone training course to meet your needs.

UAS Remote Pilot Certificate(enquire now)
The UAS Remote Pilot Certificate is for those who only want to fly under Part 101 and want to understand their responsibilities and flying within 4km of an aerodrome.

The UAS Remote Pilot Certificate is a two-day course comprised of the UAS 101 Ground Course and Flight Test. The UAS 101 Ground Course covers:
  • Understanding airspace
  • Operations within 4km of an aerodrome
  • General Part 101 Rules including Night and Visual Line of Sight
  • AIP Supplments and NOTAMs
  • Accident Reporting
  • Technical aspects of UAVs
  • Hazard and Risk Minimisation

This qualification was previously known as the UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 101).
Advanced UAS Remote Pilot Certificate(enquire now)
The Advanced UAS Remote Pilot Certificate is essential for anyone who wants to fly as a pilot for a Part 102 organisation. This course includes all of the content of the UAS Remote Pilot Certificate, plus an additional day in the classroom covering advanced material for Part 102 operations. Learn about the broader legal framework for UAS operations including trespass and privacy, systems failures, accident and incident reporting under Part 102, and the Part 102 certification process, documentation, and expectations.

An additional endorsement is available for the Cook Islands, with additional requirements of the Cook Islands CAA to be met after the award of the certificate.

This qualification was previously known as the UAS Pilot Certificate (Part 102 Operations).
UAS Aviation Law(enquire now)
This course is for a person who intends to be the person with primary responsibility for UAS operations for a Part 102 organisation, but is not going to be one of the pilots. It is comprised of both parts of the ground course for the Advanced UAS Remote Pilot Certificate.
UAV Agricultural Ratings(enquire now)
This advanced course is for a person who intends to use a UAV for the aerial application of agrichemicals. Separate ratings (and training) are available for UAV Aerial Spraying and UAV Aerial Topdressing.

Pre-requisites are:
  • an approved pilot qualification (such as the Advanced UAS Remote Pilot Certificate);
  • a current (within 12 months) flight test on the make and model of machine intended for spraying; and
  • a chemical rating.

To proceed to the practical application of agrichemicals within the course, CAA will also require the candidate to hold or be operating under a Part 102 certificate that includes the privilege of aerial agrichemical application.
UAV Night Rating(enquire now)
This rating is for a person who intends to fly unshielded at night under a Part 102 certificate.

Pre-requisite: an approved pilot qualification (such as the Advanced UAS Remote Pilot Certificate).
UAS Operational Competency Assessment(enquire now)
For a UAV pilot who holds an approved pilot qualification and requires a 12 monthly operational competency assessment (OCA) for Part 102 operations.

The OCA is designed to test the pilot's knowledge of the applicable rules, application of the operator's approved procedures, and flying competence. As such, the OCA has three components:
  • a pre-OCA open book test;
  • assessment of the pilot's preparation for the OCA (treat it as a normal commercial job); and
  • the Flight Test.
Additional areas of assessment may be included in the flight test if required by the operator's exposition. This will occur when you have an approved departure from Part 101 which requires adherence to a particular operational procedure.
Flight Training(enquire now)
For anyone who wants hands-on flight instruction on flying their UAV.
We can provide customised training if a pilot requires training to achieve the standard required for a UAS Pilot Certificate or Operational Competency Assessment.


Flight Test
The flight test, conducted for the award of a Pilot Certificate or as part of the annual OCA for Part 102 operators, is designed to assess the ability of the pilot to address the following topics:
  • flight planning including weather;
  • hazard assessment;
  • airspace knowledge and procedures if operating within 4km of an aerodrome;
  • battery management;
  • knowledge of UAS systems;
  • failsafe functions (if any);
  • pre-flight checks;
  • take-off and landing;
  • 360 degree yaw-turn maintaining position;
  • four quarters of orientation;
  • ascending and descending circuits;
  • figure-of-8 flight path;
  • vertical 180 degree ascending and descending corkscrew; and
  • emergency situations.
A guide to the flight test can be downloaded here.