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Pilot Rating – Blue Chip Flight School

After the completion of your Private Pilot Licence, the next step in your pilot training is to obtain a Night Rating.

What is a Night Rating?

The Night Rating allows the pilot to fly safely at night in good visual weather conditions and have the benefit of being less restricted when planning and executing a particular flight.

For aviation purposes, night is defined as 15 minutes after sunset and 15 minutes before sunrise.

Night Rating requirements

  • Valid Private Pilot Licence
  • 5 Takeoffs and landings by night
  • 10 hours of instrument instruction of which not more than 5 hours are allowed to be accumulated on a flight simulator
  • Night cross-country of at least 150nm and including two full stop landings at different aerodromes and a controlled airport
  • You need to hold a valid PPL, which means to do a Night Rating you must be at least 17 years old.

Obtaining your Night Rating can be very beneficial to increase both your flying skill and your versatility as a pilot. A basic Night Rating flight test will be conducted by at least a Grade II Flight Instructor or higher. Contact Blue Chip today to find out how we can help you achieve your Night Rating.

Instrument Rating

The Rating equips pilots with skills to fly solely by reference to instruments in clouds and conditions where a visual external horizon is absent. An excellent example is flying in fog or haze at night.

Pilots are taught procedures to safely descend through obscured atmospheric conditions by complying with instrument let-down and/or cloud-break procedures overhead surveyed ground navigational beacons.

Flights can also be undertaken under instrument rules with the aid of radar vectoring and tracking procedures. Pilots are also taught to recognize and deal with otherwise accident precipitating weather conditions in advance and to plan accordingly. The standard is considerably higher than for the PPL or NR.

The Instrument Rating is a vital component for both more advanced private and commercial flying opportunities. Accuracy standards and levels of the procedure are higher. Candidates are taught to deal with in-flight emergencies under instrument conditions.

Commercial Pilots may find it difficult to land more lucrative employment opportunities without an Instrument Rating. Airlines adhere to instrument flying rules without exception.

Instrument Rating requirements


Candidates must have a valid Commercial Pilot’s Licence with 200 hours or Private Pilot Licence with Night Rating with at least 250 hours total flying time with 100 hours as pilot-in-command.

The practical flying preparation consists of:

  • Minimum 40 hours instrument flying
  • 20 hours in a simulator
  • 20 hours in an aircraft
  • Practical flying skills test with a CAA approved designated examiner

Theory: (The pass mark 75%):

  • Human performance
  • Meteorology
  • Radio aids
  • Instruments
  • Navigation general & plotting
  • Air law and procedures
  • Flight planning

For more information, click here.




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