To legally fly a Microlight in South Africa, one must be in possession of a valid MPL (Microlight Pilots License) and Radio operators license.
To obtain a license, the would be pilot, if his nerves last after a few test flights, must enrol at a flight school which has been granted the necessary licenses by the CAA (Civil Aviation Authority), and receive training from a MISASA (Microlight Section of the Aero Club of South Africa) approved flight instructor.
The training typically requires a total of about 25 hours flying (about 10 hours thereof dual, and the rest solo), and all the relevant ground courses (weather, engines & airframes, airlaw, navigation, theory of flight, radio procedure).
At the beginning of the training, the student must have a medical examination, and apply to the DCA for a student license. After the training, he/she must have a series of flight tests by an instructor other than the one who did the training, and pass written exams on the ground courses, as well as obtain a radio operators license from Telkom SA.
If all tests and exams are passed, the student can apply to CAA for a Microlight Pilots License (valid for the type on which he/she has trained)
This is valid as long as the medical certificate is valid for (5 years from date of examination ). Every five years the pilot must have a further medical examination. If the student/pilot is over 40 years old, the medical must be renewed every three years.
If he passes this, and can prove (by means of log book, or form signed by an instructor) that he has flown 10 hours in the previous year, the license will be renewed by CAA to the date of expiry of the new medical examination.
Medical examinations must be made by a CAA approved doctor (In Jo’burg call Dr Hugh Benjamin 011-884 2529 for a one-stop medical), and include complex sight and hearing tests, as well as a strenuous ECG (which is nearly the death of me every year, watching my heart rate increase into the red line on some high tech machine and wondering what a heart attack would feel like!)
The medical test is then sent with the licence application to CAA and a licence will be issued.