Instrument Rating

If you have had your travel plans canceled or delayed due to our persistent coastal low clouds and fog during certain times of the year, perhaps you should consider adding an instrument rating to your pilot certificate. Pinnacle Aviation Academy offers training for your instrument rating in our new Cessna 172’s and our FAA certificated Frasca G1000  and Frasca 131 simulator. Our FAR Part 141 Instrument Rating Course requires a minimum of 35 hours of “under the hood” flight time to complete (Approximately 40 hours of total time).


  • You must be able to read, write and speak English
  • Be at least 17 years old (you can start training earlier).
  • Hold at least a Private Pilot License.
  • Pass a Third Class medical exam.
  • Pass a test on aeronautical knowledge.
  • Complete the required flight training for the course.
  • Pass a practical test.

The Instrument Rating Course is Made up of Three Stages:

Stage 1:Provides basic instrument attitude flying and an introduction to navigation.
Stage 2:Trains our students for holding patterns, DME arcs and instrument approaches.
Stage 3:Contains cross country flights and preparation for the practical test.

FAA 141 Minimum Instrument Course

30 hours Cessna 172R @ $200/hr. $6,000
10 hours Frasca Mentor G1000 SIM @ $75/hr. 750
30 hours Flt. Instruction @ $90/hr. 2,700
10 hours Stage Checks @ $100/hr. 1000
 5 hours Ground Instruction @ $90/hr. 450
Total Training Cost ** *$10,900

Average Instrument Pilot Training Time

45 hours Cessna 172R @ $ 200/hr. $ 9000
10 hours Frasca Mentor G1000 SIM @ $75/hr. 750
45 hours Flt. Instruction @ $90/hr. 4,050
10 hours Stage Checks @ $100/hr. 1000
20 hours Ground Instruction @ $90/hr. 1,800
Total Training Cost ** *$16,600

Pinnacle Aviation Academy has provided quality Instrument training for hundreds of pilots who have completed their course with flight times that are slightly over the FAA minimums. We recommend the Cessna Computer Based Training Course, which is an interactive program that provides the Ground School training as well as previews each flight lesson. The flight lesson previews allow you to see what you will be learning in the air – before you go fly! The Cessna Course contains everything you need to get started on your instrument training.

Cessna Instrument Course Includes:

Cessna Instrument Pilot Courses Include:

  • Enrollment Key — Online course, FREE lifetime updates
  • Premium Cessna Pilot Center Flight Bag
  • Cessna Pilot Logbook
  • E6B Flight Computer and Plotter
  • Garmin Pilot VFR Premium — 1-year subscription (a $129.98 value!)
  • Online Access to:
    • Extensive digital library — FAA Handbooks, FAR/AIM, Cessna Pilot Information Manuals (PIMs) and much more
    • Comprehensive flight training syllabus
    • Graduation Certificate

Benefits of the Cessna Training Program

  • SAVES YOU TIME! You don’t have to travel back and forth to a ground school class 2-3 times per week.
  • CONVENIENCE – You can study when and where you choose! Home, Office or at the flight school.
  • REVIEW – you can review the lessons just before your check ride to “freshen up” – also in 2 years when you need a Flight Review, just log into the course and review!

Value of the Cessna Training Program:

  • The course includes over 30 hours’ worth of Instructional video lessons – If a Flight Instructor covered all the material in the course it would amount to over $2,200.00 of ground lessons billed!
  • The Computer Based Instruction lessons are taught by professionals. They include full motion graphics that could never be reproduced in the class room ground training environment.
  • With the Cessna training program minimal additional ground is needed thus lowering the total cost of flight training!
  • The course never expires, so you’ll have access to all of the in-depth knowledge sessions and flight previews and can review important topics well after you have completed your training.

The average part-time student completes the Instrument Rating in 6 months and 57 hours. The average full-time student completes the Instrument Rating in 6 weeks and 47 hours. Please contact one of our friendly instructors for more information!

* The actual training cost depends on the rate of learning of each student.

** In each of the above examples, the cost of study materials, charts and examiner’s fee are in addition to the flight training expense.