The Instrument Rating


This is a Formal Rating that appears on your Pilots Licence. Training must be performed by an instructor who is authorised to train for the rating, at an Approved Training Organisation (ATO). On successful completion of training and associated Flying Skills Test and written exams, you will need to apply to the CAA for the Rating to be added to your licence, with supporting documentation. The rating is valid for 12 months from the date of test. Revalidation or Renewal is by passing the Flying Skills Test.

The Full Instrument Rating allows you to fly IFR in any airspace (in a suitably equipped aircraft), world-wide, and to perform instrument approaches to the published single pilot IFR minimums (which can be as low as 800m visibility and 200ft agl). This rating is now achievable by more than one route.

To gain a full instrument rating without previous instrument experience is possible, but requires a lot of hard work! If this is your aim, we are more than happy to introduce you to some organisations that can help you achieve this.

A more sensible approach is to follow a route towards the Competency Based Instrument Rating (CB-IR). The privileges are the same as the normal IR, but you can take a more logical stepping-stone approach involving the IMC-IR(R) Rating, and further experience in IFR flight. Only a minimum amount of training for the CB-IR Rating need take place at an ATO; the remainder can take place with any instructor authorised to teach IR (as we are). You will still need to study for the necessary exams (yes more than one we're afraid), and we can assist you with this if required.

In the pipe-line via EASA, there may well be other types of Instrument Ratings (about to be announced) - such as the Basic Instrument Rating. Discussions and negotiations are in the early stages, but this may be a rating that gives UK IMC-IR(R) privileges in non-UK airspace.

If you're goal is an Instrument Rating, we suggest you contact us to discuss your best options, and to see how we can help.

We pride ourselves on creating training packages that suit your needs in conjunction with an appropriate ATO to complete your IR goal.

See below for further information.



Remember that you are being instructed by an instructor with an enviable reputation for delivering results to you. Our personal objective is to make sure you land with a smile on your face. If you don’t – we haven’t done our job properly.

There are three options for our instructional charges; £50 per hour, £150 per half-day, or £250 per full day.

If you want us to come to you, just add our travelling and accommodation (at cost).

The aircraft costs are extra; you can use your own aircraft, hire from a training organisation local to you, or hire from a training organisation local to us.


Where can I do this course?

We are more than happy to come to you wherever you are! However, we normally operate in Essex, with relatively easy access to the airfields in the area. We teach (and examine) regularly (either as part of a club or freelance) at Earls Colne, Andrewsfield, North Weald, Duxford, Crowfield and Cambridge. There are numerous smaller airfields available such as Elmsett, Clacton, Rougham and Great Oakley within easy reach. Southend and Stapleford are also possible.


Which Aircraft can I use?

You can use your own or syndicate aircraft, which in some ways, is better since you'll become really familiar with it as part of the course!

If you belong to a flying club already, most organisations are happy for us to instruct in their aircraft if that's an option you'd like to pursue.

If you need to hire an aircraft locally to us, we have access to a variety of aircraft types and training organisations. Please feel free to contact us for more detailed information.