COVID19 – restarting gliding information

Updated 10th May 2021

The response to the COVID19 pandemic has led to a Govt ‘roadmap’ to recovery. This webpage aims to collate and link to the relevant published detail as it becomes available.

As described in the Govt information below, please note that the Devolved Administrations have individual responsibility for public health guidance in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales. It is important to ensure that gliding clubs and those participating in gliding throughout the UK follow the relevant public health guidance.

Government COVID-19 information and associated guidance for gliding

BGA guidance follows relevant Government COVID19 guidance.


DfT guidance for recreational GA is available here

‘BGA Covid-safe gliding club operations guidance’ can be viewed here

N Ireland

NI Devolved Administration guidance is available here

DfT guidance for recreational GA is available here

BGA Covid-safe gliding club operations guidance can be viewed here


Scotland Devolved Administration guidance is available here

DfT guidance for recreational GA is available here

Sport Scotland Covid-safe guidance for gliding in Scotland can be viewed here under ‘gliding’


Welsh Devolved Administration guidance is available here.

DfT guidance for recreational GA is available here

BGA Covid-safe gliding club operations guidance can be viewed here

Introductory flying and trial lessons

Gliding including dual flying may take place under step 2 legislation. So introductory flights and trial lessons are possible with care.

From the 17th May, ‘the outdoor economy can reopen’ under English step 3 restrictions. So introductory flights and trial lessons are likely to be of more interest. Under step 3 legislation, clubs should continue to follow the required precautions.

Club catering

From the 17th May, under step 3 legislation indoor club catering may be used with precautions, eg, the person orders food/drink when seated and remains seated when consuming the food/drink, that tables are limited to groups of six, and tables are socially distanced.

International travel

From 17th May International leisure travel from England is no longer illegal, but strict border control measures will remain in place.

  • UK government confirms international travel can gradually resume from 17 May, as countries and territories are added to the ‘green list’
  • strict rules on testing and quarantine will remain in place to protect public health and our vaccination programme, while people should not travel to ‘amber’ and ‘red’ countries for leisure
  • international travel will be different as passengers are warned to expect additional checks and longer queues at the border

Details of red, amber and green countries is available here.

Covid rapid test kits

The Government supplies free test kits to individuals and businesses. Several clubs have indicated they will to ask newcomers to take a test ahead of arriving for an introductory flight.

Individual testing and test kit ordering information.

Business test kit ordering information.


The BGA strongly advises all instructors and pilots to consider their currency before flying by at least referring to these three important publications:

The BGA currency barometer

‘Getting yourself safely current’ – a short video by Mike Fox

‘COVID currency’ S&G article

Additional guidance is available here:

Return to instructing

Managing Flying Risk

The Skyway Code – a very useful reference document updated in March 2021

BGA alleviations


The following apply to BGA pilot certificates and BGA instructor ratings

BGA instructor requirements (including revalidation/renewal) can be viewed here

BGA medical requirements temporary changes can be viewed here


Alleviations for BGA airworthiness support can be viewed here.

An alleviation for BGA aircraft weighing periodicity can be viewed here.

CAA exemptions

ORS CAA exemptions are listed here.

Aircraft maintenance

Covid-19 restrictions have resulted in limited access to aircraft and indoor maintenance facilities. Essential maintenance – that is maintenance to prevent deterioration and failure – is permissible. Public health guidance must be followed when carrying out essential maintenance work.


If the information you require is unavailable, please contact the BGA office by email.