Do helicopters fly the same instrument approaches as fixed-wing aircraft? If so, which approach category and minimums do they use?


1 Answer 1


Helicopters can fly the same standard IAPS. The visibility minimum is the greater of

a) one half the Category A visibility minima, 

b) 1/4 statute mile visibility, or 

c) 1200 RVR

We use Category A's MDA/DH. See the AIM 10-1-2 for more information.

Also there are Copter IAPs (example here), and the viz/altitude minimums are stated on those plates.

  • $\begingroup$ Thanks, do you have a source for the minimums that you quoted? And is that the FAA regulation or another one? I'm not doubting your answer, I just haven't noticed many helicopter-specific procedures in the 'obvious' places, although admittedly I haven't searched systematically. $\endgroup$
    – Pondlife
    Nov 10, 2014 at 17:15
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ It's on FAR AIM 10-1-2.. Here's an example for a copter approach: $\endgroup$ Nov 10, 2014 at 21:23

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