Whether you are visiting Ireland on holiday or you have recently moved to Ireland to live and work...
We hope you will join us out on the hill, in the air and in the pub, and let us help you to enjoy this wonderful sport here in Ireland.
Please take the time to read the advice given below, which will help you make the most of your flying, and keep you safe.
All pilots are required to provide verifyable evidence of their qualifications (a national licence, rating or IPPI card.) Student pilots are required to provide contact details for the school at which they have or still are training with. Pilots without any verifyable pilot qualification or rating are required to undertake an assessment before they may free fly in Ireland. Please contact the IHPA Training & Flight Safety Officer for details.
Advice to Pilots Visiting Ireland on Holiday
Membership: You do not need to pay the fee for full IHPA membership if you only want to fly in Ireland while you are here on holiday, but we would ask you to please take the time to visit the Membership and Insurance page, to sign up as a visiting pilot and to sign the indemnity waiver. You will need a current membership card for your own national association and a valid IPPI card showing that you have a valid pilot rating equivalent to Para Pro / Safe Pro 3 or above. Your own national association will be able to provide you with an IPPI card on request.
Insurance: You must also have a current insurance policy specifically covering hang gliding and/or paragliding. Check with your insurer that your current policy will cover you during your trip to Ireland. If it does not, then you should make the necessary arrangements with your insurer before you travel or contact Sports Cover Direct who offer both the SportsGuard annual cover and short-term VentureGuard Travel Insurance policies, both of which are acceptible here in Ireland. If your country is a member of the European Union then you would be well advised to also apply for a free European Health Insurance Card. The EHIC card recently replaced the old E111 form required by European travellers. You can apply for an EHIC card on-line or from your National Wellfare Office or National Health Authority. A valid EHIC card entitles you to free medical treatment while you are in Ireland and will save you from 'out of pocket' expenses.
IHPA Mailing List: You should join the IHPA Forum (and mailing list) to make contact with local pilots around the country before you travel. They will be happy to help you find the most suitable flying sites for the weather conditions at the time, and will be able to give you more detailed sites information (take-offs, landing zones and hazards) than the sites guide, which is available to IHPA members only. Most of our sites are sensitive and we are only permitted to fly them under certain conditions negotiated by the IHPA with the landowners. Please do not abuse the privilages we have worked hard to win for our members! You might also want to join the Ulster Hang Gliding and Paragliding Club's mailing list and make contact with these very active, enthusiastic and welcoming group of pilots in Northern Ireland if you think your travels might take you up there.
Airspace in Ireland: Please take the time to read through the Flight Safety page on this website and particularly familiarise yourself with the locations and extent of Irish Civil Airspace. If you fly with local pilots they will be able to tell you where you may and may not fly. Luckily, here in Ireland, we have relatively open skies and very little restricted airspace. However, some of our flying sites are very close to or inside Controlled Traffic Areas (CTAs) and require specific knowledge or explicit permission from Air Traffic Control to fly them. Again, local pilots will be your best source of information... but please, read the Flight Safety page!
Advice to Pilots Visiting Ireland to Live and Work
If you are a foreign pilot who has moved to Ireland to live and work here (for more than 6 months) then you will need to join the IHPA and also take out insurance cover such as the SportsGuard policy described above - see the Membership & Insurance page of this website. Please sign up to the IHPA (and UHPC) mailing lists and introduce yourself - you will be made more than welcome, and we look forward to flying with you!