Holders of a night qualification are permitted to fly at night in visual meteorological conditions under instrument flight rules. The night rating is the perfect partner to the PPL with or without an IMC especially as the nights draw in. Don’t be rushed by failing light and consider upgrading your license that next step with the addition of this rating.
Whilst the costs of gaining a night rating can depend on a number of factors you should budget around £999 which will cover the minimum 5 hours instruction and the minimum number of landings.
The only pre-requisites to begin training towards a night rating are to either hold a CAA, JAR or EASA-FCL PPL or if undertaking training towards the JAR-FCL PPL(A), have completed a minimum of 25 hours dual instruction and 10 hours supervised solo time, which shall include 5 hours solo cross country and successful completion of the qualifying cross country flight.
What does the training involve?
In order to be able to exercise the privileges of a PPL at night you must complete a minimum of 5 hours instruction at night. This will include a minimum of 3 hours dual training and a navigation flight of at least 1 hour. The solo requirement is 5 take offs and full stop landings.
The course will begin with a long brief, which will endeavour to explain what to expect. Everything looks very different at night and the visual cues to which you have become accustomed will have all but disappeared. The briefing is followed by a familiarisation flight of about one hour to allow you to get acclimatised to the new conditions, concluding with a few circuits. Additional flights will involve navigating and circuits until the student is deemed to be at a standard to permit supervised solo flight.
There are no revalidation requirements for this rating. Once it is attached to the licence it remains valid indefinitely. However, in order to carry passengers under night operating conditions it is necessary to be in compliance with the Ninety-day rule, which includes having conducted one of the required take offs and landings at night (unless an instrument rating is held).