To obtain an aircraft maintenance engineer licence in New Zealand, you must pass 10 theory exams and have the neccessary practical aviation engineering experience.
If you’ve received exam passes in other New Zealand maintenance exams – such as those based on the RNZAF technical courses or on the certificate of engineering aeronautical courses – unfortunately you cannot cross-credit them to a New Zealand AMEL. If you have an overseas licence that we don't recognise, you’ll also need to pass the ten basic theory exams needed for a New Zealand AMEL.
You don’t have to attend any formal training courses to sit the basic licence examinations, but we recommend all engineers working towards an AMEL should consider formal training.
Practical experience as an engineer in an allied trade may count toward your AMEL requirements, as might engineering experience in New Zealand’s armed forces. An allied trade is a technical trade similar to aviation trades such as automotive engineering, general engineering, and electronic engineering.
Keep a detailed experience logbook to show the range and depth of your experience for when you apply for your AMEL.
Practical experience gained in an overseas ICAO State, in an allied trade overseas, in the New Zealand armed forces, or in those of an overseas country can count towards your basic AME licence in New Zealand. Engineers with armed forces experience, and those who have successfully completed a traineeship in an aviation technical trade need 48 months of practical aviation experience before applying for an AMEL.
If you have no formal engineering training, you’ll need 60 months of practical aviation engineering experience before applying for an AMEL.
For more information, see Part 66 rules and the advisory circular AC66-1 for guidance.
Recognition of the New Zealand AME licence varies from one ICAO state to another. If you’re planning to move overseas, ask the aviation authority of that state for its current recognition policy.
Note, however, the United States does not recognise New Zealand AMELs, and need a supporting letter from us. Such a letter can be useful for other authorities too.
Arrange the letter before you leave New Zealand, because we will need documented verification of your experience.