Instrument flight training enables you to fly an aircraft according to instrument flight rules. This means that you are allowed to fly even in bad weather (so-called Instrument Meteorological Conditions/IMC) and very low or partly no visibility to the outside. This is in contrast to flying under Visual Meteorological Conditions (VMC). In practice, flying according to instrument flight rules is performed almost exclusively using aircraft instruments and ground- and satellite-based navigation equipment. Almost all flights in commercial aviation (business aviation, airlines) are conducted according to instrument flight rules in order to be able to carry out the flight independently of the weather in any case. So if you want to fly professionally as a commercial or airline pilot, you will definitely need this instrument rating with corresponding practical experience in instrument flying. Early training is therefore sensible and advisable. But also as a private pilot, an instrument flight training is a high safety gain and gives you significantly more possibilities to perform a flight safely even in less than optimal weather conditions.

The new CB-IR

Since April 2014, there has been the possibility of acquiring the full instrument flight license in addition to the previous training process as part of a so-called competency-based training. The big advantage of this training is the significantly reduced scope of training, which leads to significantly lower training costs and, above all, has been simplified again significantly in the area of theory. At the same time, a new Enroute Instrument, valid throughout Europe Rating (EIR) introduced, which however only allows very limited flying by instruments.

An overview of the advantages of the Competency Based Instrument Rating compared to the previous IFR training:

  • Reduction in required minimum flight training, resulting in significantly lower training costs
  • Strong reduction of the required theory scope - here is only a fraction of the previous theory staff to learn, all redundancies to CPL and ATPL theory content have been removed
  • Extensive credit options in theory and scope of training for holders of European ratings (e.g. pilots with European Enroute Instrument Rating-EIR, ...)
  • For the first time, extensive credit options in theory and scope of training for non-European pilots with IFR experience (e.g. US pilots with FAA IFR Rating or at least IFR flight experience)
  • For the first time, experiencedUS pilots with a valid IFR rating can receive almost complete training credit
  • Possibility to carry out large parts of the training with any EASA flight instructor outside of a training organization (ATO).
  • Possibility to carry out large parts of the training with your own aircraft that is not certified in a training organization (ATO) - ideal for aircraft owners who want to carry out the training on their own aircraft owner

Since there is a whole range of options that are linked to different requirements, we would be happy to advise you if you have any further questions.

Scope of training


 Night landing in Dubrovnik (LDDU)

For the training, a distinction is made as to whether you complete your IFR training on single-engine aircraft (SEP) or multi-engine aircraft (MEP). So if you want to fly professionally as a commercial or airline pilot, a combination of single and multi-engine training is recommended for reasons of efficiency and cost, which we would be happy to plan with you.

The training includes theory and flight training.

Theory training

The theory training prepares you comprehensively for the computer-aided theoretical examination at the Austrian aviation authority Austrocontrol. In the course of the theoretical training, you will learn everything you need for the theoretical test and above all for later practical flying. For the Competency-Based Instrument Rating, the theory training was reduced from the original 150 hours to 80 hours and at the same time all redundancies with CPL and ATPL theory content were resolved, which enables a significantly more focused, efficient and, last but not least, more cost-effective training.

As a rule, training documents are in English, since the theory test at the Austrian aviation authority Austrocontrol must also be taken in English.

For theoretical training, we use a combination of face-to-face training in our modern and conveniently located seminar hotel (InterCity Seminarhotel, 1070 Vienna, Mariahilfer Strasse 122 or, if necessary, at other training locations) and computer-aided self-study accompanied by our teachers. Of course, there is also the possibility of individual theoretical training.

The curriculum includes:

  • Air Law
  • Arcraft General Knowledge
  • Flight Performance and Planning
  • Human Performance
  • Meteorology
  • Navigation
  • Communications

flight training

Winterwetter mit schlechter Sicht und Schneefall

 Winter weather with poor visibility and snowfall

The flight training can be started at the same time as the theoretical training. For single engine aircraft, the training is 40 hours in CB-IR (or formerly 50 hours for normal IFR training) with a majority of the hours being completed on a simulator. For multi-engine aircraft, the training increases by 5 hours. The training comprises the following training blocks:

  • pre-flight procedures for IFR flights, including the use of the flight manual and appropriate air traffic services documents in the preparation of an IFR flight plan
  • procedures and manoeuvres for IFR operation under normal, abnormal and emergency conditions covering
    • transition from visual to instrument flight on take off
    • standard instrument departures and arrivals
    • en route IFR procedures
    • holding procedures
    • instrument approaches to specified minima
    • missed approach procedures
    • landings from instrument approaches, including circling
    • in flight manoeuvres and particular flight characteristics

In the course of the training you will be familiarized step by step with all phases of flight preparation and implementation

Since many instrument flights are carried out at night, flights at night are usually also part of the training.


What you need for the start of the training:

  • a valid PPL or higher license
  • night vision rating
  • a general radio communication certificate/AFZ
  • Minimum flight experience - we will discuss details and above all the new crediting options for pilots with European and non-European instrument flight experience with you before the start of the training

duration of training

Beispiel-Radarbild mit IFR- und VFR-Verkehr

Sample radar image showing IFR and VFR traffic

The duration of the training depends heavily on your personal time budget and usually lasts between 4 weeks and 6 months. The more time you reserve for the theoretical and practical training, the faster you will progress in the training. If you wish, we can always offer you the shortest possible training period.