Private IFR rating exam - PIFR

Find out what you need when sitting your private IFR rating exam including permitted materials and pass rates.

You have 2 hours to complete the exam and to pass, you will need to get at least 70% of the marks.

These exams cost $182.38 each ($117.38 invigilator fee and $65 CASA fee).

You can take the exam with an approved flying school or through Aspeq. If you sit the exam at a flying school, the invigilator fee might vary.

Pre-qualifications and syllabus

You need to have one of the following to sit the exam:

The exam will test your knowledge on the syllabus in Part 61 Manual of Standards (MOS) schedule 3.

Permitted materials

You may use either the Airservices or Jeppesen list of permitted materials.

You cannot use a combination of materials from both the Airservices list and the Jeppesen list.

Airservices list

CAR 1988

Part 61 of CASR

Part 91 of CASR and Part 91 MOS

AIP Book




Navigation equipment

A basic calculator

Jeppesen list

CAR 1988

Part 61 of CASR

Part 91 of CASR and Part 91 MOS

Jeppesen Airway Manual


Navigation equipment

A basic calculator

Your invigilator will give you some things before the exam, which you must hand back at the end. These include:

Pass rates

You can see how candidates performed in their PIFR exam.

Year 0 - 54% 55 - 59% 60 - 64% 65 - 69% 70 - 74% 75 - 79% 80+% Pass rate
2020 5.41 2.70 5.41 18.92 21.62 16.22 29.73 67.57%
2021 5.66 3.77 11.32 13.21 20.75 9.43 35.85 66.04%
2022 13.33 0.00 13.33 3.33 23.33 10.00 36.67 70.00%
2023 14.29 2.86 14.29 11.43 17.14 17.14 22.86 57.14%

Check the results of candidates from previous years

Fuel policy in PIFR exams

Our Flight Crew Licence exams reference policies related to fuel usage and reserves.

The fuel reserves shall be carried in accordance with CASR Part 91 MOS, Chapter 19, table 19.02 (2), Item 3. This applies to aeroplanes with MTOW less than 5,700 kg (piston engine or turboprop) under IFR.

We recommend you avoid rounding off at intermediate stages of your workings when calculating fuel requirements in your exam.

Common errors

The following areas have been weak areas for candidates:

  • privileges and limitations of PIFR
  • aircraft equipment requirements
  • IFR navigation procedures
  • determination of LSALT
  • operations in Class G airspace
  • use of NDB and/or VOR equipment.

Flight procedure authorisations

This exam will include the material required to get the Flight Procedure Authorisations (FPA) for en-route navigation using NDB, VOR, GNSS and flight at night.

If you need another FPA, for example for STAR procedures, you should pass either the IREX exam or complete additional training through an approved flying school.

Last updated:
6 Feb 2024
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