Instrument Rating Requirements
PRIVATE OR COMMERCIAL
PIC CROSS COUNTRY HOURS
ACTUAL OR SIMULATED INSTRUMENT HOURS
INSTRUMENT CROSS COUNTRY FLIGHT
HOURS WITH AN AUTHORIZED INSTRUCTOR
READ, SPEAK, WRITE, & UNDERSTAND
What Will I Learn?
Instrument Flying Meteorology
Aircraft Instrument Systems
Instrument Flying Regulations
Aeronautical Decision Making
IFR Flight Planning
Controlling the Aircraft Solely by Reference to Instruments
Use of Instrument Charts
As part of your ground training, your instructor will teach you about aircraft instrument systems, instrument flying regulations, aeronautical decision making and help you understand and prepare IFR flight plans. This training will provide the information required to safely operate an aircraft under Instrument Flight Rules and prepare you for the FAA Knowledge and Oral Exams required to earn this rating.
With your instructor, you will utilize VFA’s Advanced Flight Training Devices to learn how to operate the aircraft solely by reference to the flight instruments without any outside visual reference. The simulator provides a safe and positive environment to build basic instrument flying skills, without the distractions of the real aircraft.
With your instructor, you will fly VFA’s advanced training fleet to perfect your instrument flying skills. Training can be conducted in aircraft with varying levels of avionics from full digital cockpits and advanced autopilots to basic analog instrument aircraft which will prepare you to be able to fly a wide variety of aircraft instrumentation.
Your instructor will give you multiple endorsements throughout your training, allowing you to take your FAA Knowledge Exam, Solo Flights and Checkride with a Designated Pilot Examiner (DPE).
FAA Knowledge Exam
The FAA Knowledge Exam is a multiple-choice test with 60 questions that is required for an Instrument Rating. This exam will test your knowledge; anything from aircraft systems to meteorology and flight planning. Once you and your instructor have determined you’re ready for the test, it can be completed at VFA’s onsite FAA Certified Testing Center. Applicants must study for and pass the examination.
Oral & Practical Exam
After meeting all of the FAA Instrument Rating requirements, and your instructor has determined you are ready, you will take the Oral Exam and Practical Test with a Designated Pilot Examiner. The Oral Exam and Practical Test will focus on decision making, aeronautical knowledge, and instrument flying skills. Upon successful completion, you will be issued an Instrument Rating.
How old do I have to be to get my Instrument Rating?
You need to be at least 17 years old, and hold a Current Private or Commercial Pilot Certificate.
What are the benefits of having an Instrument Rating?
With an Instrument Rating you are able to fly in IFR (Instrument Flight Rules) conditions. It will increase your safety knowing how to fly using instruments/non visual aids. It will also prepare you to handle any change in the weather you may encounter on a flight.
How long will it take to earn my Instrument Rating?
It may take 6-8 months to earn an Instrument Rating, however there are many variables that affect how quickly one earns their Instrument Rating. For example, bad weather on a day you are scheduled to fly. Generally, if a student studies the material and flies frequently, he or she will complete training in the shortest amount of time.
What will my Instrument Rating training involve?
Training for the Instrument Rating will involve a lot of flying by reference to instruments. Some of this can be accomplished in one of our flight training devices. In the aircraft, you will be doing a lot of flying “under the hood”, meaning using a view limiting device, which confines your field of view to only the flight instruments. Some of your training also may be in “actual” IFR conditions.
Once I get my Instrument Rating, how do I keep it current?
You can keep your Instrument Rating current in one of two ways. (1) You can perform at least six instrument approaches; perform holding procedures; and intercepting and tracking courses through the use of navigation systems every six months. (2) Alternatively, You can take an Instrument Proficiency Check with an authorized instructor.
Monday - Friday | 8AM - 5PM
Saturday | 9AM - 4PM
Sunday | 9AM - 3PM
* Hours are subject change.
355 Valley Road
South Burlington, VT 05403