Member Login 

 Email Address 


Forgot Password

Flyer Signup

Practice Approaches

Source:, Featuring John Krug

Subscriber question:

"When I shoot practice instrument approaches with my instructor, sometimes we get missed approach instructions and sometimes we do not. Can you explain why?" - Nicholas G.

practice approach


"Practice instrument approaches are considered to be instrument approaches made by either a VFR aircraft not on an IFR flight plan, or an aircraft on an IFR flight plan. The answer to your question depends upon several factors.

If you are on an IFR flight plan, approach clearance automatically authorizes you to fly the missed approach. Of course, we have to add the standard caveat Unless otherwise instructed by ATC.

IFR aircraft are also provided standard separation throughout the approach and missed approach procedure.

VFR aircraft practicing instrument approaches are not automatically authorized to execute the missed approach procedure. This authorization must be specifically requested by the pilot and approved by the controller. Separation will not be provided unless the missed approach has been approved by ATC.

VFR aircraft practicing instrument approaches may be provided half-standard separation. That is 500 feet vertical separation and the appropriate lateral separation from IFR aircraft.

Pilots not on IFR flight plans desiring practice instrument approaches should always state 'practice' when making requests to ATC. Controllers will instruct VFR aircraft requesting an instrument approach to maintain VFR. This is to preclude misunderstandings between the pilot and controller as to the status of the aircraft. If pilots wish to proceed in accordance with instrument flight rules, they must specifically request and obtain, an IFR clearance."

I Fly America
PO Box 882196
Port St. Lucie, FL 34988

Office hours M-F 8:30am - 5:00pm
Our Privacy Policy
© I Fly America 2024