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4 Answers

VFR Over the TOP

Asked by: 1810 views , , ,
FAA Regulations, Instrument Rating

Hi friends,
I ask about VFR over the TOP to get information like, what is mean? and what the difference between Over the top to VFR on TOP. Who can explain to me? 



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4 Answers

  1. Best Answer

    jeff on Feb 21, 2016

    VFR on Top is part of an IFR clearance and described in the AIM 4-4-8 pretty thouroughly. There is no VFR over the top unless you are referring to the situation where a VFR pilot gets above a cloud layer into visual conditions. You wont find an official description of it, as its not generally recommended. If one chooses to climb over a cloud layer while VFR, you must be extremely confident that one can get back down under visual conditions. Unfortunately, there have been too many accident reports where a VFR only pilot has gotten above a layer ans cant get back down VFR because all the “holes” that where were there closed up. Interestingly, when an aircraft on an IFR flight plan, requests VFR on top, they must adhere to both IFR rules and VFR rules while operating in visual conditions above the deck. Hope that helps.


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  2. Skyfox on Feb 21, 2016

    Basically, VFR on top means the aircraft is still operating on an IFR flight plan and under instrument flight rules, while at the same time being in VFR conditions and subject to VFR rules (VFR flight alititudes, etc.).

    A clearance “to VFR on top” is an ATC clearance for the aircraft to take off on an IFR flight plan and climb through a layer of clouds or other obscuration to reach VFR conditions above it, and then cancel the IFR flight plan and proceed entirely VFR above the clouds.

    VFR over-the-top is the condition the aircraft would then be in after reaching that “to VFR on top” point and canceling IFR to proceed VFR above the clouds. It’s like VFR on top but without the IFR part.

    For reference, there’s a Wikipedia article about VFR over-the-top.

    And here’s an AOPA article about it:

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  3. Farhi.N on Feb 21, 2016

    Hi Jeff,
    Thank you very much! Appreciate itץ


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  4. Farhi.N on Feb 21, 2016

    Thank you Skyfox.

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