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If You Fly IFR, You Need To Report These 11 Items

After you finished instrument training, you might've forgotten that there are certain things you must report to ATC while flying on an IFR flight plan.

According to FAR 91.183 and AIM 5-3-3, the following reports should be made to ATC or FSS facilities without a specific ATC request...

1) Any unforecast weather conditions encountered. (FAR 91.183)


2) When vacating any previously assigned altitude or flight level for a newly assigned altitude or flight level. (AIM 5-3-3)

Live from the Flight Deck

3) When an altitude change will be made if operating on a clearance specifying VFR-on-top. (AIM-5-3-3)

Adam Sacco

*4) The time and altitude or flight level upon reaching a holding fix or point to which cleared. (AIM-5-3-3)


*5) When leaving any assigned holding fix or point. (AIM-5-3-3)

Jim Raeder

6) Reporting Points (FAR 91.183)

The time and altitude of passing each designated reporting point, or the reporting points specified by ATC, except that while the aircraft is under radar control, only the passing of those reporting points specifically requested by ATC need be reported.


7) When unable to climb/descend at a rate of a least 500 feet per minute. (AIM-5-3-3)


8) When an approach has been missed. (AIM-5-3-3)

Make sure to request clearance for a specific action, like flying to an alternative airport, requesting another approach, etc.


9) Change in the average true airspeed (at cruising altitude) when it varies by 5 percent or 10 knots (whichever is greater) from that filed in the flight plan. (AIM-5-3-3)


10) Loss Of Navigation (AIM-5-3-3)

"Any loss, in controlled airspace, of VOR, TACAN, ADF, low frequency navigation receiver capability, GPS anomalies while using installed IFR-certified GPS/GNSS receivers, complete or partial loss of ILS receiver capability or impairment of air/ground communications capability. Reports should include aircraft identification, equipment affected, degree to which the capability to operate under IFR in the ATC system is impaired, and the nature and extent of assistance desired from ATC."


11) Any other information relating to the safety of flight. (FAR 91.183)


The reports with a * above may be omitted by pilots of aircraft involved in instrument training at military terminal area facilities when radar service is being provided.

Have you ever made reports because of the items listed above? Tell us in the comments below.

Swayne Martin

Swayne is an editor at Boldmethod, certified flight instructor, and an Embraer 145 First Officer for a regional airline. He graduated as an aviation major from the University of North Dakota in 2018, holds a PIC Type Rating for Cessna Citation Jets (CE-525), and is a former pilot for Mokulele Airlines. He's the author of articles, quizzes and lists on Boldmethod every week. You can reach Swayne at, and follow his flying adventures on his YouTube Channel.

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