Instrument Rating Requirements

Instrument Rating Requirements

Posted Tuesday, July 28, 2009 by Mike Camelin

It is very important to know prior to embarking on an instrument flight training course exactly what is required of you, both in terms of the pre-requisite flight requirements as well as what will be expected of you during the training itself.

Here is a brief outline of both the pre-requisite as well as the flight training requirements:
1. Hold at least an FAA private pilot certificate.
2. Be able to read, write, and speak in the English language.
3. Hold a current FAA airman medical certificate.
4. Receive and log ground training from an authorized instructor or complete a home-study course. Subjects to include the following:
a. Federal Aviation Regulations
b. IFR-related items in the Airman’s Information Manual (AIM)
c. ATC system and procedures
d. IFR navigation
e. Use of IFR charts
f. Aviation weather & weather services
g. Operating under Instrument Flight Rules
h. Recognition of critical weather
i Aeronautical Decision Making (ADM)
j. Crew Resource Management (CRM)
5. Pass the FAA instrument rating knowledge test with a score of 70% or better.
6. Accumulate flight experience (14 CFR part 61.65):
a. 50 hr. of cross-country flight time as pilot in command, of which at least 10 hr. must be in airplanes:
(1) The 50 hr. includes solo cross-country time as a student pilot, which is logged as pilot-in-command time.
(2) Each cross-country must have a landing at an airport that was at least a straight-line distance of more than 50 NM from the original departure point.
b. A total of 40 hr. of actual or simulated instrument time in the areas of operation listed in 7. below, including:
(1) 15 hr. of instrument flight training from a CFII (a Certified Flight Instructor with an added rating authorizing her to give instrument instruction).
Of course, you are going to need a view limiting device for the instrument flight training….
Foggles/View Limiting Device – IFR Training Foggles can be worn alone or with regular eyeglasses.
(2) Cross-country flight procedures that include at least one cross-country flight in an airplane that is performed under IFR and consists of:
(a) A distance of at least 250 NM along airways or ATC-directed routing
(b) An instrument approach at each airport
(c) Three different kinds of approaches with the use of navigation systems
(d) If the instrument flight training was provided by a CFII, a maximum of 20hr. may be accomplished in an FAA approved flight simulator or flight training device.
7. Demonstrate flight proficiency (14 CFR part 61.65). You must receive and log training, as well as obtain a logbook endorsement from your CFII on the following areas of operation:
a. Preflight preparation
b. Preflight procedures
c. Air traffic control clearances and procedures
d. Flight by reference to instruments
e. Navigation systems
f. Instrument approach procedures
g. Emergency operations
h. Post flight procedures
8. Successfully complete the instrument rating practical test.


  1. He uses them interchangeably. But you are ceorrct that the Mach ONE in Las Vegas (the company who did this flight) is Mach ONE. Mach I (I believe) is the one in California that filed bankruptcy (also Riggs). Mach 1 is Jason Price who is wonderful and I’ve covered the difference between them before but now would be a good time to do it again before he again gets a black eye due to a Riggs event.

  2. yesterday i saw a low flyby of A-10 s over my house XD (i live near an AFB) i have seen plenty F-15 and f-16 s but the first time sneeig an A-10 almost took my breath away :0


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