Instrument Rating

Few people seek out the bad weather to go out and fly but that’s exactly how we prepare you at Rainier Flight Service.  There is no substitute for training in actual IMC conditions so we try to expose you to as much variety as possible so that you are a safe, proficient pilot.

Instrument flying is about becoming a good systems manager.  Since 90% of instrument flying is utilizing systems and resources effectively we provide a wide variety of free training tools such as GPS simulators, tutorials and aids so that you can learn to use these resources in a stress-free environment.  Once you feel comfortable with navigating GPS menus and using the autopilot to reduce workload, we transfer those skills to the airplane and solidify your understanding of the IFR system.

Our custom syllabus trains you for the real world. Instead of approach after approach at the same airport, each lesson includes a mission for the student to plan and execute. This ensures risk management and aeronautical decision making is evaluated every lesson in addition to the procedural requirements of instrument flying.

At your option, our syllabus ensures in proficiency in both round-dial and glass cockpit aircraft. This unique training course prepares you for real-world IMC flying in anything from older, basic aircraft to the latest in cockpit technology.

Some things such as system malfunctions cannot be realistically duplicated in the airplane. To ensure you are well prepared to recognize and handle emergency situations we use FAA-approved simulators throughout the training process for an efficient, cost effective program.

Instrument Rating Cost Sheet

This sheet itemizes the costs associated with obtaining an Instrument Rating.  However, costs vary greatly due to individual needs, past experience and learning styles.  We provide many additional resources for FREE because our goal is to make training as affordable and efficient as possible.

Ground School - $259
The Jeppesen Online Instrument Rating Course contains ground school and maneuvers lessons using a combination of audio, video and graphics to clearly explain each topic.  Each lesson contains links to test questions, human factors information and interesting case studies to further your learning and serve as the perfect tool to prepare for the FAA knowledge exam.  Lessons can be accessed from any computer with internet and reviewed as many times as you like.  This course fully integrates with our custom flight training syllabus.

Charts and Supplies - $100

Charts, tools and/or tablet application subscription.

FAA Knowledge Exam - $150
Multiple-choice exam administered on computer at testing center.

Aircraft Rental - $4480
FAA minimum required 40 hours instrument experience. Aviator Club Rates. *

  • Redbird Simulator 20 hrs @ $75/hr - $1500
  • Cessna 172 G1000 20 hrs @ $149/hr - $2980

Flight Instruction - $3000
Dual instruction including flight training, preflight and postflight briefings. (50 hours @ $60/hr)

FAA Practical Exam - $500
Oral and flight evaluation with FAA Designated Examiner


Total Training Cost ~ $8500

*Aircraft and instructor hours based on FAA minimum requirements.  Actual hours and cost varies by student due to differences in previous experience.  We highly recommend using a figure at or above this number for budgeting purposes.

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