Frequently asked questions
We’re here to help.
Take a look at some FAQs below and if you can’t find what you’re looking for, we’d love to hear from you. Please get in touch and one of the team will get back to you.
Pilot Training Questions
I want to become a pilot, where do I begin?
We have written a blog on this question! You can find it here.
Or if you are already familiar with the pilot training pathways, check out our Students page for more information on gaining your pilot licences.
Which pilot training school should I attend?
Choosing where to enrol is a big decision. The quality of training matters, so visit every school or academy you’re considering and ask lots of questions (find 13 important ones here) including which ground school materials they use for the classroom phase of training.
There are Padpilot partner ATOs (approved training organisations) who deliver excellence in training all over the world. Find them here.
What is ground school?
Ground school is the academic or ‘theory’ phase of pilot training and is sometimes referred to as ‘ground training’ or ‘theoretical knowledge training’. Training organisations offer ground school in different ways (e.g full time, part time, distance learning, virtual) but the exams you must pass are the same regardless of how you complete your theory studies. Find more information for Student pilots here.
How long does ATPL ground school take?
This depends on which course you enrol on and how much time you have. If you study full time, you can complete your studies in 6-9 months. If part time, perhaps via distance learning, the timeframe can vary much more, depending on your other commitments. There is a time limit however, and once you sit your first exams, you must complete them all within 18 months. Please talk to an approved training provider for more advice.
Can I study ATPL theory myself via distance learning?
If you opt for modular (step by step) commercial pilot training, you have the option to complete ATPL ground school via distance learning. It’s an affordable, flexible way to study around work, family or other commitments, but requires self discipline and commitment. You’ll need to enrol on a distance learning ATPL theory course with an approved training organisation and you’ll be given a programme of self-study as well as compulsory teaching sessions (in person or virtually, depending on the ATO).
Padpilot books were originally designed for distance learners and explain everything very simply. Some Padpilot partner ATOs offer distance learning courses and you can download our free guide to studying at home.
I am interested in using Padpilot ground school materials for my ATO
Please see our ATO page for information on the resources we offer ATOs.
Padpilot Book Questions
How can I purchase Padpilot books?
Apple Individual Padpilot theory books are available from our Apple Bookstore or by enrolling with a Padpilot partner ATO (approved training organisation).
Android The Padpilot eReader app is free to download, but to access the books you’ll need a valid subscription from a participating Padpilot partner ATO or you can order a full set here.
Padpilot books via our eReader are are only available in full sets for ATPL (A) and PPL(A).
ATPL(H) sets will be available later this summer.
Pilot training providers – please contact us to find out more about licensing the Padpilot eReader.
Can I convert my Padpilot iBooks to the eReader?
As the eReader is not hosted on the same platform as Apple Books it’s not possible to convert iBooks to the eReader. If you have access to our iBooks, we recommend you continue your course with these. The content in the new eReader books is exactly the same as the iBook editions.
Which device do I need for Padpilot books?
Apple only. To download a Padpilot ebook from our Apple Bookstore an Apple device (iPad, MacBook, Mac, iPhone) that runs a minimum of iOS 12 and has at least 5GB of storage for the ATPL books is required.
Once you’ve downloaded your Padpilot books, use them across all your Apple devices. Which device is better? It’s personal preference but most people choose an iPad as it’s portable and big enough to read comfortably.
iMacs, Macbooks and iPads are all good for proper studying, and your iPhone can be useful for quick quizzes on the go. And if you like to have a 2 page view when studying, you’ll need a screen size of 10.2 inches or more.
All devices. You can now use any device to read Padpilot books with our new eReader app. In fact, you can use up to 3 different devices with one subscription. For example, Apple, Android and an online reader via the web. (We recommend using Chrome as your browser) However, you can only sign in to one device at a time.
To order a complete set of PPL(A) or ATPL(A) books for the eReader please use this order form.
Approximately 11GB of storage is needed for the full ATPL(A) set of books.
How do I study, highlight and make notes in my book?
All the interactive features of Padpilot books are explained on our Youtube channel.
Are Padpilot books available for Android devices?
You can now use any device to read Padpilot books with our new eReader app. In fact, you can use up to 3 different devices with one subscription. For example, Apple, Android and an online reader via the web. (We recommend using Chrome as your browser) However, you can only sign in to one device at a time.
To order a 3 year subscription to a complete set of PPL(A) or ATPL(A) books for the eReader please use this order form.
How do I get Padpilot books if my country doesn’t have an Apple bookstore?
There are 52 Apple Bookstores worldwide, but if your country isn’t included you can still buy Padpilot iBooks by setting yourself up with a UK Apple ID. If you need help with this, please contact our Support team.
OR, now you can purchase a 3 year subscription to a complete set of PPL(A) or ATPL(A) theory books to use on any device with our new eReader app. They contain the same content and are the same price as our iBooks.
To order a complete set of PPL(A) or ATPL(A) books for the eReader app, please use this order form.
Can I get a printed version of Padpilot books?
Within an edition, all updates are free for the life of that edition. Padpilot’s first edition ATPL(A) books have been available for many years and are still being updated for free. If you purchase the second edition, ATPL(A) books, you’ll get free updates for the life of those editions.
In the eReader, when we publish a book amendment an ‘update’ symbol will appear on the book on your bookshelf. Click the icon and the updated book will download. Any notes, highlights etc will be transferred automatically.
Are updates to Padpilot books free?
I am having problems downloading the Padpilot books
Download issues can sometimes be resolved by syncing your iPad with your PC or Apple Mac. If this does not resolve the issue, make sure that your iPad has sufficient available Hard Drive space.
- Set your iPad ‘sleep’ settings to ‘Never’ while it is downloading (Settings – General – Auto-Lock – set to ‘Never’).
- On your iPad, in the Apple Books library, click ‘Select’ top right, and find the title you’re unable to update. Point to it (so there’s a tick bottom right) and then choose ‘Delete’ (top left). This removes the title from your iPad.
- Give your iPad a reboot (power it down and then back on again).
- Go to the Purchased tab (bottom right) in the Books app and find the book title again then re-download it.
- If that does not work, delete the book(s) from your device and re-download the book on to your laptop and then manually sync it with your iPad.
I have an error message saying ‘Authentication Error’?
If you get an ‘authentication error’ message, please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
I’ve found an error or incorrect information in a Padpilot book
We welcome feedback and will quickly rectify any mistakes found. If you see a potential error, please tap on the link in the book Addendum to call up a reporting form or contact our Editor.
What is PadpilotACE?
I’ve forgotten my PadpilotACE password
- Go to Padpilot ACE Log-in and click FORGOTTEN PASSWORD.
- On the ‘Recover your account’ page, in the USERNAME box, type your Username or email address and click RECOVER. An email will be sent to you with a verification code.
- Open the password recovery email, and click the password recovery link.
- In the NEW PASSWORD and CONFIRM PASSWORD boxes, type a new password and click RECOVER.
- You should now be logged into your account and with your new password. If you need further help, please contact email@example.com.
Do you offer a Basic Instrument Rating course?
No, we have not created theory notes for the new BIR course. In the past, EASA required the same theory content for both the Competency Based Instrument Rating and En-route Instrument Rating course, but they recently decided to make the syllabus of the BIR course different from that of the CBIR course.
The BIR subjects are:
- Air Law
- Flight Planning
- Human Performance
We do not recommend purchasing the 2020 CBIR books for BIR study. Much of the ATPL syllabus material that was removed from the CBIR course is still applicable to the BIR syllabus. So we recommend consulting the EASA document below for the BIR Learning Objectives and using the 2nd Edition ATPL books for the course content. Most of the BIR LOs are covered in the Basic Instruments book.
For more information on the BIR Learning Objectives, please consult EASA’s reference document.
How do I log reading time on Padpilot books?
Apple Books. To log reading time you need to have a Padpilot book downloaded to your Apple device AND have a Padpilot registration on the iMRS (online system). If you do not have access to the iMRS, please contact your training provider.
- To start logging reading time, click on the CLOCK icon at the beginning of the book chapter.
- Enter your personal login details of the iMRS and click on LOGIN
- After clicking LOGIN, click START and the system will start registering the reading time. Close the window by clicking on the X (top left) and start your reading.
- When you stop reading, click on CLOCK of the chapter page again and click STOP.
- If you would like to check your reading time, login on the iMRS with your personal login details at padpilot.co.uk/login and click TRACK READING.
The clock stops after 90 minutes to prevent issues of forgetting to stop the clock, and because we recommend shorter periods of reading. The reading log is as accurate as the start/stop of the clock, so please follow the procedure for correct values. Reading time accumulates per book, not per chapter. For further help, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Padpilot eReader. The e-Reader automatically records your reading time. You don’t need to do anything.
Why are my books showing a price next to them?
As long as you add the same Apple ID to your device, you can download ALL historic Apple purchases to the device (and to any subsequent devices you may purchase in the future).
Assuming you’ve added the same Apple ID to your device, simply open the Apple Books app on your device and look in your library. There you should find all books showing (with a cloud symbol) and you can now download them.
If the books are not showing in your library then you will need to either:
- Check your hidden purchases (click on READING NOW, then the silhouette icon, then scroll down to HIDDEN PURCHASES)
- Search for the book title using the magnifying glass symbol.