Helicopter Pilot Flight Training & Licenses - Wanaka Helicopters

Flight Training


Wanaka Helicopters is a a family-owned flight training school and commercial helicopter operator, offering scenic, commercial, charter, agriculture, and training flights year-round in one of the world’s most breathtaking locations.

We are NZ’s premier and most experienced helicopter flight school, operating in Wānaka since 1992. Wanaka Helicopters offers private (PPL), commercial (CPL) and tertiary training including the Diploma in Aviation which has produced more Ministry of Education approved helicopter pilots than any other.

Founder and Chief Flying Instructor, Simon Spencer-Bower is NZ’s most experienced helicopter flight instructor, recently celebrating 24,000 flight hours. He is the recipient of numerous awards including the Queen’s Service Medal for services to aviation and the Helicopter Association International, Certified Instructor of the Year 2015 award.

Wanaka Helicopters Flight Training School Wanaka
Wanaka Heli Cabri Waterfalls Aerial
Wanaka Heli Cabri Over Snow


The New Zealand Diploma in Aviation programme is designed to equip students with the skills required to set them above most CPL licence holders for early employment with a commercial operator. It lays the groundwork for a future path toward flight instruction, ATPL, Air Traffic Control or becoming an Air Operator themselves. We also offer NZ’s top Advanced Helicopter Mountain Flying Training course and highly sought-after specialist training in helicopter safety, sling, new type ratings, and pilot recurrency.

Our team operates in and around our mountains daily in our fleet of Robinson R22, Guimbal Cabri G2, Robinson R44, MD500E and Airbus AS350 “Squirrel” helicopters, all of which are used for training, scenic and commercial work. Other aircraft types are available for specific training requirements.

Explore all of our training options

Whether you are looking to start your dream career in aviation, want to complete your PPL or CPL privately or undertake advanced training our training team can help. Explore all of our training options below.

Here at Wanaka Helicopters we're a passionate team who are privileged to do what we do in one of the most beautiful places in the world.

Surrounded by the spectacular Southern Alps, Mountain Flying is in our blood.