Single & Multi Engine Instrument Rating (IR)

You need an instrument rating attached to your licence if you want to fly under instrument flight rules. Anyone who holds a valid PPL or CPL is able to obtain instrument training, providing they also hold a Class One Medical.

It’s common that those holding a CPL, or those with a view to fly commercially, complete an IR. However, a Private Pilot can also add an Instrument Rating to enable them to fly their private aircraft in airways, for example.

The holder of a JAR-IR is permitted to:

  • Fly in all weather conditions.
  • Fly in Airways in accordance with either the CPL or PPL licence.
Flight schools often tailor Instrument Rating courses to suit your requirements. For example, you may request to do more of the course using the aircraft you will be completing your Skills Test in.

► Single Engine Instrument Rating (IR) Requirements

For the Single Engine IR you need to have:

  • An EASA PPL(A) — CPL holders see below.
  • 50hrs cross-country flight time as PIC (min 10hrs in aeroplanes).
  • Passed the IR/ATPL theory exams.

► Multi Engine Instrument Rating (IR) Requirements

For the Multi Engine IR you need to have:

  • A valid EASA licence with a current and valid MEP rating.
  • A valid medical appropriate to the licence held.
  • Passed the EASA CMBIR(A) / IR(A) or ATPL(A) theoretical knowledge examinations

► Single Engine Instrument Rating (IR) Course Structure

The minimum duration of the course is “instrument time under instruction”, as specified in Civil Aviation Publication (CAP) 804 Section 4 Part L Page 33.

It is likely that your course will incur an additional expense for approximately 3 hours for taxi time during the aircraft phase of training.

A typical SEIR course involves:

  • 50 hours dual training  (prices start at around £150 /hr)
  • Ground briefings
  • Skills Test (currently £785)
  • CAA IR issue (currently £121)
  • Limited Panel Assessment with an IRE
50 hours is the minimum SEIR training requirement laid down by the Competent Authority. Upon completing the course you'll obtain a Course Completion Certificate. A full-time course takes between 8-12 weeks dependent on weather conditions.

► Multi Engine Instrument Rating (IR) Course Structure

The minimum duration of the course is “instrument time under instruction” as specified in Civil Aviation Publication (CAP) 804 Section 4 Part L Page 33.

Like the SEIR, It is likely that your course will incur an additional expense for approximately 3 hours for taxi time during the aircraft phase of training.

Before you can take the ME IR(A) Skills test you’ll need:

  • Minimum 45 hours total IFR experience
  • Minimum 25 hours dual IFR experience (with an instructor)
  • Maximum 10 hours IFR in an approved FNPT I
  • Maximum 25 hours IFR in an approved FNPT II
  • Minimum 15 hours dual IFR experience in Multi-engine piston aircraft
  • Minimum 10 hours MEP IFR dual training at an ATO approved to provide the CBMIR(A)
  • Pass the EASA ATPL(A) theoretical knowledge examinations
  • Limited Panel Assessment with an IRE in FNPT2 Simulator (£100 fee + solo sim hire)
The hour requirements shown above are minimum experience and training requirements as laid down by the Competent Authority. Packages are usually based on these requirements.

► Other Information

Course Duration

The course duration is approximately 10 weeks (full-time). This can vary, though.

Costing

The basic cost for a SEIR is around £10,000+, and typically £11,000+ for the MEIR. Other expenses should also be accounted for, such as:

  • Landing fees
  • School Membership fees
  • Solo aircraft hire for the test (currently £215/hr)
  • You should allow around £500 for approach and away landing fees.
  • IR(A) Test fee (currently £775)
  • Booking fees

Licencing

  • If you have passed only the CBMIR(A) theoretical knowledge examinations you will be granted an IR(A) on your licence with a restriction. You will not be certified to exercise your IR(A) privileges on single-pilot high-performance aircraft.
  • If you have passed the IR(A) or ATPL(A) theoretical knowledge examinations you will be granted an IR(A) on your licence with no restrictions and will, therefore, hold a full single-pilot multi/single-engine instrument rating
  • Flight schools will often provide an Instrument Rating (IR) Re-validation & Renewals option. Ask them for what options are available.

If at a later date you want to upgrade your SEIR to a MEIR your flight school can assist you with this process.