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Commercial pilot CPL(H) MODULAR

The CPL(H) license serves as a stepping stone to a flying career.


Minimum age 18 years at the time of the examination
Medical Class 1 / Aeromedical examination by a medical examiner of the FOCA
Flying experience 155 total flight time, of which 50 h PIC and 10 h cross country at the start


Valid PPL(H) license at the beginning


Theoretical Training

In theoretical training, a distinction is made between the CPL(H) and the ATPL(H)VFR/IR. Both variants lead to the completion of a commercial pilot license.

CPL(H) Commercial Pilot License (Helicopter)

The commercial pilot license with CPL(H) theory entitles the holder to carry out commercial flights in Switzerland.

This theory level is sufficient to fly professionally in Switzerland without ambitions to switch to larger helicopters or to include instrument flying.

ATPL(H)/VFR | Air Transport Pilot License (Helicopter) / visual flight

After passing the ATPL/VFR(H) theory and completing the practical CPL(H) examination, the candidate receives a so-called "frozen ATPL". The ATPL/VFR(H) license will only be issued if the following criteria are fulfilled within seven years: 1000 hours of flying experience including 350 hours on multi-crew helicopters and 100 hours of night flight experience. If these criteria are not met within the specified period, the license entry is called "CPL(H) with ATPL(H)VFR theory".

ATPL(H)/IR | Air Transport Pilot License (Helicopter) / Instrument flight

In principle, the same provisions apply as for the ATPL(H)/VFR theory. For the ATPL(H)/IR variant, practical IR training is also required. This reduces the required theory hours by 200 hours. The IR theory remains valid for three years after passing the theory test. The practical IR training must be completed within this period. Otherwise the IR theory expires and the license status changes to an ATPL(H)/VFR.

It is advisable to obtain the highest theory level ATPL(H). Completion of the ATPL theory is now listed by many helicopter companies as a recruitment requirement or at least as an advantageous competence - as is the case with the Swiss air rescue service REGA. Compared to the CPL(H) theory, the ATPL(H) theory only requires a relatively small amount of additional work.


General subjects

  • 010 | Air Law
  • 031 | Mass & Balance
  • 033 | Flight Planning
  • 040 | Human Performance & Limitations
  • 050 | Meteorology
  • 061 | General Navigation
  • 062 | Radio Navigation
  • 090 | Communication

Helicopter specific subjects

  • 021 | Aircraft General Knowledge
  • 022 | Instrumentation
  • 034 | Performance
  • 070 | Operational Procedures
  • 082 | Principles of Flight

Theory exams

Each theory subject is completed by a separate theory examination. These are conducted by the Federal Office of Civil Aviation FOCA in accordance with EASA regulations. Several theory examinations can be written on the same day (one session). Each subject can be repeated a maximum of three times. For the CPL(H) and ATPL(H) levels, a maximum of six examination sessions can be attended in order to pass all subjects.

We recommend spreading all subjects over four sessions. This leaves two sessions for any repetitions of subjects that have not been passed. At least 75% of the maximum number of points per subject must be achieved during the FOCA examination in order to pass. The maximum period for completing all theoretical subjects is 18 months from the date of the first examination session. Practical training must be completed within 36 months of the last theoretical subject passed.

In order for us to be able to register you for a FOCA examination, you must first take internal preliminary examinations in each subject, which you must pass with 80% of the maximum number of points.

Examination language
The examination language at CPL/H) and ATPL(H) level is English

Classroom instruction

Depending on the corresponding theory training, 35 to 75 hours on site or virtually via Teams are required.

Creditable theory

  • for CPL(A) or ATPL(A) holders: Subjects 010 / 031 / 033 / 040 / 050 / 060 / 090

Flight training

The practical training includes at least 35 hours Rotor Turning Time (RTT) in the helicopter, of which is approximately:

10 h Visual: standard procedures

Field landings, navigation

8 h Visual: Emergency procedures Autorotations, engine failure, hover emergencies, emergency procedures
2 h Visual: Checkride Drill  
10 h Instrument flight Instrument flight base
5 h Night flight  
35 h Total 30 h CPL program / 5 h night flight

The flight training also includes technical courses and radiotelephony training.

Ground course per helicopter type

The ground course is an obligatory part of retraining for a new helicopter type. The basis for this course is the manufacturer's manual (Pilot Operating Handbook). The following topics are covered in the classroom over a period of approx. 12-54 hours, depending on the complexity of the system:

  • General Information
  • Limitations
  • Emergency Procedures
  • Normal Procedures
  • Performance
  • Weight & Balance
  • System Description

Another important part of the ground course is the pre-flight check on the helicopter, which every pilot must complete before the flight.

Awareness course

In accordance with SFAR 73 (Special Federal Aviation Regulation No. 73 of the Federal Aviation Administration FAA), the awareness course provides training in the peculiarities of a two-blade rotor system. This course is highly recommended for pilots flying a helicopter with a two-blade rotor system. The awareness course is mandatory for Robinson R22 pilots and must be completed before the first solo flight. The following topics are covered in the classroom lessons

  • Energy Management
  • Mast Bumping
  • Low Rotor RPM / Blade Stall
  • Low G hazards
  • Rotor RPM decay

The awareness course is part of the ground course and subsequently applicable to any helicopter with a two-blade rotor system.

Creditable practice

  • with PPL(A): max. 20 h PIC
  • with CPL/ATPL(A): max. 50 h PIC
  • with motor glider/glider license: max. 10 h PIC

Privileges & Validity

Privileges after completion of the CPL(H)

A commercial pilot CPL(H) may fly with passengers within the scope of his license. They may make external landings in accordance with the Swiss External Landing Ordinance (AuLaV).

A professional pilot may also carry out commercial flights under the supervision of a certified helicopter company. Within the scope of this activity, all conditions must be fulfilled beforehand.

Validity of the license

The license never expires, only the type ratings, license proficiency checks and the medical. Each type rating acquired is entered in the license and must be maintained and/or renewed accordingly:

  • at least 2 h RTT per helicopter type within the last 12 months before the expiry date or according to the conditions in the helicopter rental contract from Mountainflyers
  • Annual proficiency check according to the type rating entry in the license with a FOCA examiner
  • valid medical class 2 for type rating (class 1 to exercise the privileges of a CPL(H) license)

VR motion simulator

We are the first flight school in the world to offer a combined package for CPL(H) commercial pilot training with the Robinson R22 and Airbus H125, in which a considerable proportion of the flying hours are flown on the simulator.

Learn more


You can find an overview of the costs for the entire training course in our training brochure.

Depending on the intensity, previous experience and the type of helicopter selected, prices are calculated individually. We will be happy to provide you with a non-binding consultation and prepare a customized offer for you.

Download our training brochure here

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