Flight examination step by step

At the begining, please read during your drink of cup of coffee or tea how the flight exam looks like from the candidates's point of view :)

0. Do you need an obtain (skill test), revalidation (licence proficiency check - LPC) or renewal?

The important point on the initial contact with the flight examiner is whether you need to undertake the skill test, which is for initial issue of class ratingpilot licence or instrument rating. Or you need the proficiency check. The important thing on this is whether you need the proficiency check for revalidation of your aviation rating or renewal of your aviation rating, respectively the assesment of competence for renewal or revalidation of instructor certificate.

The proficiency check for renewal of the aviation rating shall be carried out in the period of validity of the aviation rating, respectively, instructor certificateRevalidation of validity for a further period can be done at the time of 90 days before the expiry date. Based on the requirements of the Regulation EC1178/2011 revalidation of the aviation class ratingtype rating or instrument rating within the validity of the ratings and certificates requires no additional flight training. However, we recommend you to take a short refresher flight training (recurrent training) before the flight examination itself. Especially for applicants who were not flying on the type of airplane or class of the airplane within the validity of the aviation rating.

Renewal or the aviation rating is carried out after the expiry of the rating, respectively instructor´s ertificate. Any of the aviation rating, or certificate of the instructor, which was not extended within the validity period must be renewed.

By the regulation EC 1178/2011 for renewal of the aviation rating respectively instructor certificate is required  to meet other necessary requirements composed by the flight school - approved training organization ATO. Based on the requirements of the regulation EC1178/2011 an additional flight training and theoretical instruction provided by flight school is required. The order and duration of the additional flight training depending on how long the aviation qualification is expired.

Only after the candidate have fulfilled the requirements as prescribed by the flight school - approved training organization ATO can take a flight test with flight examiner.

1. Before the flight examination

Before the flight examination it is necessary for the candidate to provide us with all necessary information about himself (in the way of his aviation creditentials). For example aviation experience (total flight time, PIC, etc), and about the proficiency check for renewal or revalidation of the rating requested for flight test, as stated in the regulation EC1178/2011 - FCL.1030 (a) (2).

If there are any administrative tasks neccessary, we will take care about them and will prepare them for your signature. Let us please inform you, if the information provided from your side will be incorrect or false, please note that such conduct may be considered as unlawful in Slovak republic.

Based on the review of the recieved information, we will contact you as soon as possible via telephone or via the e-mail.

2. Agreed date

After reviewing all documents and completing required administrative procedures (ie the foregin flight examiner briefing required by your issuing authority) we will both agree the date of the flight examination.

Primarily, we always try to adjust the date and exact time of the flight test according to your possibilities. The weather and the other operational conditions plays an important role when planning an flight test. We surely have to take them into account, in particular cases during the transitional period of autumn and spring.

The exact date is agreed in advacne. The final date and exact time of your flight test is confirmed when we have a real picture of the weather forecast. Usually the final confirmation is to be done by phone the day before the flight test or in the morning at the day of the flight test.

3. Content of the examination itself

On the day of the flight test, we will meet in our offices at the Bratislava airport (LZIB/BTS). We will introduce you the practical part of the flight test itself during the cup of espresso or tea in a briefing room. You will be provided with the conditions necessary for a successful pass of the flight test and with the particulars required by Part-FCL.

Contents of the flight testskill test or proficiency check:

  • oral examination on the ground
    • aircraft general knowledge and performance;
    • planning and operational procedures;
    • other relevant items or sections of the test or check.
  • pre-flight briefing should include
    • test or check sequence
    • power setting, speeds and approach minima, if applicable
    • safety considerations
  • in-flight exercises will include each relevant item or section of the test or check
  • post-flight debriefing should include:
    • assessment or evaluation of the applicant;
    • documentation of the flight test or proficiency check with the applicant’s flight instructor present, if possible.
    • a test or check is intended to simulate a practical flight. Thus, an flight examiner may set practical scenarios for an applicant while ensuring that the applicant is not confused and air safety is not compromised.
    • When manoeuvres are to be flown by sole reference to instruments, the examiner should ensure that a suitable method of screening is used to simulate IMC.
    • an flight examiner should maintain a flight log and assessment record during the test or check for reference during the post or flight debriefing.
    • An flight examiner should be flexible to the possibility of changes arising to pre-flight briefings due to ATC instructions, or other circumstances affecting the flight test or proficiency check
    • where changes arise to a planned flight test or proficiency check an flight examiner should be satisfied that the applicant understands and accepts the changes. Otherwise, the test or flight test or proficiency check should be terminated.

Together we will go thru the pre-flight briefing during which you will analyze:

  • current weather and its impact on the flight test (METAR, TAF, Game, weather maps)
  • current NOTAMs neccessary for the flight
  • various procedures and maneuvers during flight test
  • the possible impact of ATC and air traffic on the flight
  • operation of the aircraft in different phases of flight
  • expected procedures for the departure, arrival, holding and landing
  • limitations, speeds and conditions for successful completion of the examination flight

Conditions of the successful pass of the flight test

An flight examiner should make due allowance for unavoidable deviations due to turbulence, ATC instructions, etc. An flight examiner should terminate a flight test or proficiency check only when it is clear that the candidate has not been able to demonstrate the required level of knowledge, skill or proficiency and that a full re-test will be necessary or for safety reasons.

An flight examiner will use one of the following terms for assessment:

  • pass - provided that the applicant demonstrates the required level of knowledge, skill or proficiency and, where applicable, remains within the flight test tolerances for the licence or rating
  • fail - provided that any of the following apply:
    • the flight test tolerances have been exceeded after the examiner has made due allowance for turbulence or ATC instructions;
    • the aim of the test or check is not completed;
    • the aim of exercise is completed but at the expense of safe flight, violation of a rule or regulation, poor airmanship or rough handling;
    • an acceptable level of knowledge is not demonstrated;
    • an acceptable level of flight management is not demonstrated;
    • the intervention of the examiner or safety pilot is required in the interest of safety.
  • partial pass - in accordance with the criteria shown in the relevant skill test appendix of Part-FCL.

An candidate for an flight test for skill test or for a proficiency check for renewal or revalidation shall demonstrate the demonstrate skills related to flight to the flight examiner by the following general rules:

Handling of the airplane during the flight test

Requirements during the flight examination operate the airplane within its operating limitations means to perform maneuvers required by Regulation 1178/2011 and the examiner so that they are safe and in accordance with the aircraft flight manual.

  • perform all maneuvers with smoothness and accuracy
  • use good judgment and the ability to operate the airplane
  • apply aeronautical and nautical knowledge
  • maintain control of the airplane in such a way that it is always guaranteed the desired outcome of a procedure or maneuver
  • understand and apply the interaction of the crew
  • communicate effectively with the other crew members
  • keep track and monitor flight
  • airmanship, communicate and navigate the aircraft along the desired path
  • safely handle simulated emergency procedures as described in the flight manual

Limits of the flight test

The standard assessment of the applicant's ability to adapt Regulation 1178/2011 values, which are intended to be flight testing evaluated. Limits to pass the examination may not edit Examiner tolerances for example due to turbulence, aircraft performance, and the like.

Maintenance of the altitude of the airplane

  • general maintenance of the altitude during the examination flight ± 100 feet
  • limit for initiation of the go-around +50 feet / -0 feet (IFR skill test and IFR proficiency check)
  • the minimum descent height or minimum descent altitude +50 feet / -0 feet (IFR skill test and IFR proficiency check)

Maintenance of the direction of the airplane

  • using of the radio-navigation aids ± 5° 
  • precision approach (ILS) deviation to mid-scale of CDI at direction (localizer) and glide (glide path) (only for IFR flight test)

Maintenance of the course of the airplane

  • with all engine operating ± 5° (multi-engine airplane)
  • with simulated engine failure (single engine operations) ± 10° (multi-engine airplane)

Maintenance of the airspeed

  • with all engines operating ± 5 knots
    with simulated engine failure (single engine operations) + 10 knots / -5 knots (multi-engine airplane)

Conducting a flight test - examination flight

Before undertaking a flight test or proficiency check an flight examiner will verify that the aircraft or Flight Syntethic Training Device - FSTD intended to be used is suitable and appropriately equipped for the flight test or proficiency check.
flight test or proficiency check flight will be conducted in accordance with the Airplane Flight Manual - AFM and, if applicable, the Aeroplane Operating Manual - AOM.
flight test or proficiency check flight will be conducted within the limitations contained in the operations manual of an flight schol - approved training organization - ATO.

Should an applicant choose not to continue a flight test or proficiency check for reasons considered inadequate by an flight examiner, the applicant will be assessed as having failed those items or sections not attempted. If the flight test or proficiency check is terminated for reasons considered adequate by the flight examiner, only these items or sections not completed will be tested during a subsequent test or check.

An flight examiner may terminate a flight test or proficiency check at any stage, if it is considered that the applicant’s competency requires a complete re-test or re-check.

At the discretion of the flight examiner, the applicant may be repeated once any maneuver or procedure. If the flight examiner determines that the flight applicant's ability to require a re-test, the flight examiner may check the air at any stage stop and stay.

The applicant is required to operate an aircraft from the seat which is usually occupied by pilot in command (PIC). Howewer, the flight test is being performed with presece of other crew member on board, which is the flight examiner. Responsibility for the flight remains on the flight examiner as the examiner is the pilot in command of the flight.

The applicant shall describe to flight examiner how to perform inspections, checks and neccessary tasks, including the identification of radio navigation aids, if any.

Checks and procedures carried out by the applicant shall be according the aircraft flight manual for the specific aircraft on which the test is performed. During pre-flight preparation, the applicant must determine power settings and speeds for different phases of flight (ie. rotation, climb, approach and landing).

The applicant shall calculate performance data for take-off, approach and landing in accordance with the operations manual (OM) or aircraft flight manual (AFM) for the aircraft used for the flight test.

The flight examiner does not participate on the management of the aircraft except where intervention is necessary in the interests of safety or to avoid an unacceptable delay to the rest of the traffic.

4. After the flight examination

After the exam flight, only an flight examiner will come to you with the outcome of the flight examination itself. You and flight examiner together will analyze the flight during the de-briefing. The flight examiner will advice you the insights that he have observed during the examination. He will note the highlights and in case he feel you need to improve the knowledge or skills, he will reccomend you that though.

In case you have PASSED the examination for initial obtain - skill test, revalidation (licence proficiency chck) or renewal proficiency check the flight examiner will endorse your licence with the new expiry date of the rating or certificate. He will perform all of the neccessary paperwork and communication with the civil aviation authority.

In case you have FAILED the examination, the flight examiner will provide you with the all of the necessary details. He will recommend you the refresher flight training and follow-up that is required to renew the your rating or certificate.

The examiner will provide you with a signed report and will perform all the necessary administrative steps in order to notify  the Authority that issued your pilot license about the completion of the examination and its result.

In other words, flight examiner will deliver all the necessary documents, either by regular mail, electronically, or e-mail to the place where they should be delivered. From your point of view, as an applicant for the flight test, testing is completed.