The Unique heliguy™ Training Ecosystem
Advanced Online Learning
Flexible and on-demand online learning - any time, any place. Learn at your own pace, replay and rewatch content to reinforce learning, and access live support from our expert training team.
Work With The Best
Hone your skills with a drone training industry leader. Our experienced CAA-qualified instructors have taught 3,000+ candidates, including staff from Network Rail and UK emergency services.
Avoid Hidden Costs
Unlike some, we won't surprise you with extra exam fees or extra costly modules to get qualified - what you see is what you pay.
Ongoing Advice and Support
Your qualification is just the start. Receive lifetime support with dedicated aftercare, partner discounts, added-value learning courses, and professional advice to further your drone pilot credentials.
A2 CofC Drone Training
The remote pilot competency course for pilots of small drones.
A2 Certificate of Competency Drone Training
The A2 CofC is a drone training qualification to enable you to fly small drones 'close to people' in the Open Category.
The A2 CofC can be used by drone pilots who are flying commercially or recreationally.
The A2 CofC course involves a multiple choice theory exam and a period of practical flight training.
Take the A2 CofC course online with heliguy™, and learn from a team which has trained more than 3,000 candidates and led closed courses for Network Rail and the UK emergency services.
Who We've Trained
A2 CofC Drone Training Benefits
Learn why our training is the best rated in the industry.
- Flexible and on-demand online learning through the heliguy™ Learning Management System.
- Engaging course content and interactive support from our training team.
- Experienced instructors who have trained drone-pilot teams from the likes of Balfour Beatty, Sellafield Sites, Manchester City FC, and BBC Natural History Unit.
- Sit your theory test remotely, at a time that suits you, with unlimited free resits and dedicated support both before and after your exam.
- Partner discounts, bonus material, regulation updates, and additional industry courses through heliguy™ Learning Management System.
- Scale your drone programme through industry tailored closed courses, OSC consultancy and streamlined Operations Manual creation.
UK Drone Training Accreditations
We hold a wide range of commercial, industry and service based accreditations and awards.
A2 CofC Drone Training Process
Find out more about passing your A2 CofC exam with heliguy™
Learning Management System
The online, interactive drone training portal from heliguy™
- Complete the syllabus on-demand - any time, any place.
- Learn at your own pace and convenience and re-watch content to reinforce learning.
- Need help or advice? Contact our expert instructors via the live messenger.
- Fun and engaging learning, covering the syllabus through videos, quizzes, and task sheets. An example is presented in this video.
- Sit your exam remotely using a webcam. Flexible exam slots to book a time that suits you.
- The LMS is an industry hub: Regulation and policy updates, advanced learning modules, and discounts.
A FREE New Pilot Course is available on the Learning Management System providing an overview of UK drone regulations and a sample of our online tuition.
A2 CofC Commercial Drone Operations
Grow your drone business with heliguy™
The A2 CofC can be used for commercial drone operations.
But heliguy™ offers an ecosystem beyond the A2 CofC syllabus to enable you to grow your drone operations.
Industry-specific closed courses are a major part of the heliguy™ training ecosystem.
We have delivered tailored training to the likes of Network Rail, Phillips 66, and many of the UK's emergency services.
- Private drone training courses
- Multiple candidates at once
- A tailored yet standardised approach
- CPD courses and application-specific training, such as surveying and inspection
heliguy™ offers an integrated end-to-end solution of services, including:
- Hardware support
- Supply from a vast stock inventory
- Drone-defence solutions
- In-house repairs and crash support from DJI-trained technicians
- Rental equipment and service level agreements
- Large logistics network for rapid supply
OSC Consultation & Ops Manual Renewal
heliguy™ provides a foundation for you to grow your drone operations.
Expand your enterprise with an Operational Authorisation through the GVC Course.
Further extend your permissions with an Operating Safety Case (OSC) to enable more bespoke missions.
Still confused about training?
Alternative courses and more information on UK drone laws
GVC Course for pilots of larger drones
GVC (General Visual line of sight Certificate)
Learn more about the GVC drone training course
GVC is a remote pilot competency certificate which provides a single qualification that is suitable for VLOS (Visual Line of Sight) operations.
The GVC facilitates operations within the Specific Category; especially useful for legacy DJI aircraft over 2kg.
Combined A2 & GVC Course
Combined A2 & GVC Drone Training Course
Learn more about the Combined A2 & GVC course
The Combined A2 CofC and GVC drone training course gives you the chance to complete both modules in one package.
This is a more cost-effective option than completing both courses separately and provides flexibility to operate across the Open and Specific Categories.
Which course is right for me?
Which drone training do I need?
Learn more about which drone training is right for you.
UK drone laws blog
Read about UK drone laws and which qualifications are relevant to different drones and operations.
Talk to heliguy™ training team
Request a callback and cut out the confusion by talking to our expert team who will happily steer you in the right direction.
DJI drone training calculator
Select the DJI drone model or family you own and find out which training is relevant to your operation.
CAA Drone Registration
Register to fly with the CAA (UK Civil Aviation Authority).
Drone Pilot Registration
The majority of drone pilots will need to register with the CAA (UK Civil Aviation Authority) and get an operator ID and/or flyer ID.Operator ID
If you’re responsible for a drone or model aircraft, you are required to register as a drone operator to get an operator ID. This costs £9.Flyer ID
If your drone weighs over 250g, the drone pilot must register and get a flyer ID. There is a 40 question multiple choice exam. This is completely free.
An A2 CofC can be used with the following DJI drones:
- DJI Mini 3 Pro (if over 250g or for additional permissions)
- DJI Mini 2 (if over 250g or for additional permissions)
- DJI Mavic Mini (if over 250g or for additional permissions)
- DJI Mavic 3
- DJI Air 2S
- DJI Mavic Air 2
- DJI Mavic Air
- DJI Mavic 2 Pro
- DJI Mavic 2 Zoom
- DJI Mavic 2 Enterprise Series
- DJI Phantom 4 Series
- DJI Phantom 3 Series
- Valid for 5 years
- Valid for both commercial and hobbyist pilots
- Allows for operations in the A2 subcategory (flying close to people) and A1 Transitional aircraft (no intentional flight over uninvolved people)
- Remote learning through online platform (closed courses available)
- Live support from tutors via online messenger or telephone
- Online theory test, via webcam
- Complete 8 hours of self-guided practical flight training
Frequently Asked Questions
A2 CofC Drone Training FAQs
Answers to your most frequently asked questions about the A2 CofC drone training course.
The A2 CofC (Certificate of Competency) is a remote pilot competency certificate primarily intended to assure safe operations of drones close to uninvolved persons. It was introduced as part of the new drone regulations, which started in the UK and throughout Europe in December 2020. The A2 CofC is specifically for the Open Category.
The A2 CofC enables operators of small drones to fly close to people. It permits the following:
C2 Rated Aircraft: Under the new drone laws, a class system has been introduced. Drones will be given a class mark (C0-C4) based on certain criteria, such as weight, speed, and safety features. An A2 CofC will allow operators of a C2-rated aircraft (up to 4kg in weight) to operate in the A2 subcategory, meaning they can fly up to 30m horizontally from uninvolved people, or up to 5 metres in low-speed mode. However, no class-marked drones currently exist.
A2 Transitional Aircraft: Because no drones are class-marked, a Transitional Period has been introduced, running from now until December 31, 2022. During this time, an A2 CofC enables operators of drones without a class mark and weighing up to 2kg to fly in the A2 subcategory under Transitional provisions - which stipulates no flights closer than 50m horizontally from uninvolved people.
This applies to the following DJI aircraft: Mavic 3, Mavic 2 Series, Phantom 4 Series, and the Mavic Air 2.
A1 Transitional Aircraft: Holders of an A2 CofC can operate non-class-marked drones, with a take-off weight of between 250g and 500g, in the A1 subcategory, under A1 Transitional provisions, during the Transitional Period (until December 31, 2022). This stipulates that there must not be any intentional flight over uninvolved persons.
This applies to the following DJI aircraft: Mavic Air, Spark, and the Mini 2 and Mavic Mini if their take-off weight exceeds 250g.
If you haven’t got an A2 CofC, you could find yourself limited in terms of where you can fly your drone.
Up until the end of December 31, 2022, if you have a ‘legacy’ drone weighing between 500g and 2kg (such as Mavic 2 Pro/Zoom, Phantom Series) and you don’t have an A2 CofC, you will have to operate in the A3 subcategory (far from people), which stipulates that there can be no uninvolved people present within the area of flight, and no flight within 150m horizontally of residential, commercial, industrial or recreational areas.
Likewise, if you have a ‘legacy’ aircraft which has a take-off weight of between 250g and 500g – such as the DJI Spark and Mavic Air – and you don’t have an A2 CofC, you will be restricted to flying in the A3 subcategory.
You can obtain an A2 CofC by completing a one-day Ground School course with heliguy™, via our Learning Management System. This enables you to complete the modules remotely in your own time and at your own convenience. heliguy™ instructors will be available though to assist if you need help or advice along the way, via our live messenger feed.
Once you have covered the syllabus, you can sit your exam remotely.
Unlike the GVC, there are no requirements to undergo a Practical Flight Test or complete an Operations Manual for the A2 CofC.
However, there is a requirement to complete self-guided practical flight training.
The self-practical flight training must be completed before the ground school course, and it is important that you have registered with the CAA and obtained a Flyer ID before conducting the practical flight training.
Before conducting the self-practical flight training, you must successfully complete the CAA’s Drone and Model Aircraft Registration and Education Service free online competency test, and be in possession of the Flyer ID number associated with that test.
The exam – sat in formal conditions – comprises a minimum of 30 multiple-choice questions, specifically covering meteorology; UAS flight performance; and technical and operational mitigations for ground risk.
The exam is a closed-book format (except when questions require reference to charts, or other sources of specific aeronautical information) and the minimum pass mark is 75%.
The examination will last for 75 minutes. Any candidate with a recognised disability or additional needs (e.g. dyslexia or dyspraxia) will be given an additional 15 minutes.
The exam is sat remotely and there is a wide scope to book your slot.
Your qualification lasts for five years, after which you’ll have to renew it.
Yes. You can use an A2 CofC to fly commercially or recreationally, so long as the flight is conducted within the boundaries of the subcategory you are flying in.
If your planned mission or missions exceed the limits of the Open Category, then you should take a GVC course to enable you to apply for an Operational Authorisation (similar to the old PfCO) to fly in the Specific Category.
In some cases, you might have a drone which can be flown in the A2 Subcategory - such as a Mavic 2 Enterprise Advanced or Phantom 4 RTK, as they are under 2kg - but you require greater flexibility for your missions, so the GVC is the more prudent route.
heliguy™ advises that if you are investing in enterprise platforms, or have aspirations of scaling your operations within the enterprise sector, then obtaining a GVC will provide greater scope.
heliguy™ offers free resits. If you have not completed your practical flight training within a year of passing your exam, you will be required to re-sit the exam.
No. Whether you have experience or not - our drone training school helps take you from novice to an A2 CofC-qualified drone pilot, regardless of any existing drone experience.
Our curriculum is well-paced to ensure that those more recently entering the industry can get up to speed, while experienced pilots will still be getting value at every stage.
No, because the A2 CofC does not require a practical flight assessment.
However, candidates must have EC785/2004 compliant insurance to operate in a commercial capacity.
Under the new drone laws, three categories will define where drones can be flown.
These categories are:
Open: Operations that present a low (or no) risk to third parties.
Specific: Operations that present a greater risk than that of the Open category, or where one or more elements of the operation fall outside the boundaries of the Open Category. Holding an Operational Authorisation allows you to fly in this category.
Certified: Operations that present an equivalent risk to that of manned aviation. This category is for high-complexity missions.
The Open Category is broken down into three subcategories:
A1: Fly over people.
A2 : Fly close to people.
A3 : Fly far from people.
Each of these subcategories has more specified criteria of where/how your drone can be operated.
As part of the new regulations, a new class system for drones has been introduced. Each make of drone will have its own class rating – from C0 to C4 – which will be based on certain criteria, such as weight, maximum speed and other features based around safety and geo-awareness.
Specific classes of drone can be flown in specific subcategories of the Open category.
Currently, no drones meet the current class requirements, so no C0-C4 aircraft exists.
Because no drones currently meet the class requirements, a Transitional Period is currently running, up until the end of December 2022, to give manufacturers the chance to bring out C0-C4 drones.
This means that you can continue to fly your current DJI drones - to become known as legacy aircraft - in accordance with the new rules.
In the past - heliguy™ was happy to assist candidates who had started their training elsewhere.
However, due to the improvement in the structure of the A2 CofC and GVC courses when compared to the PfCO, there is no longer the chance to switch midway through your training.
If you're in the position where you have completed some part of your training, please give the training team a call on 0191 296 1024 to discuss what options you may have.
As of the time of writing, there is no hobbyist drone license in the UK.
Whether or not you'll need some form of qualification depends on the circumstances of your flight.
Use the button below to learn more about the "categories" of flight.