INFO Last updated on 30 JUN 2022                                                                    PDF Version - Printable



Except when operating as a special VFR flight, VFR flights shall be conducted so that the aircraft is flown in condition of visibility and distance from clouds equal to or greater than those specified in Table 1


    Table 1* ( see para 1 above)    

Altitude band


Flight visibility

Distance from cloud

At and above 10000ft (3050m) AMSL

A *  C D E G


1500m horizontally

1000ft (300m) vertically

Below 10000ft (3050m) AMSL and above 3000ft (900m) AMSL or above 1000ft (300m) above terrain whichever is the higher

A * C D E G


1500m horizontally

1000ft (300m) vertically

At and below 3000ft (900m) AMSL, or 1000ft (300m) above terrain whichever is the higher.

A *  C D E


1500m horizontally

1000ft (300m)  vertically.



Clear of cloud and with the surface in sight.

When the height of the transition altitude is lower than 10000ft (3050m) AMSL, FL100 should be used in lieu of 10000ft.

(a) Flight visibilities reduced to not less than  1500m may be permitted for flight operating:  

1).   at speeds that, in prevailing visibility, will give adequate opportunity to observe  other traffic or any obstacles in time to avoid collision; or     

2).   in circumstances in which the probability of encounters with other traffic would normally be low,

                e.g. in areas of low value traffic and for aerial work at low levels.

   (b) Helicopters may be permitted to operate in less than 1500m-flight visibility, if manoeuvered at a speed that will give adequate opportunity to observe other traffic or any obstacles in time to avoid collision.

**    The VMC minima in Class A airspace are included for guidance to pilots and do not imply acceptance of VFR flights in Class A airspace.


Except when a clearance is obtained from an air traffic control unit, VFR flights shall not take off or land at an aerodrome within a control zone, or enter the aerodrome traffic zone or traffic pattern:

a) When the ceiling is less than 1500ft (450 m): or

b) When the ground visibility is less than 5km




Except when necessary for take-off or landing or except by permission from the DGCA, a VFR flight shall not be flown;

        a). Over the congested areas of cities, towns or settlements or over an open-air assembly of persons at a height less than 1000ft (300m) above the highest obstacles within a radius of 600m from the aircraft;

        b). Elsewhere that as specified in above para 3(a), at a height less than 500ft (150m) above the ground or in order to ensure, in the event of an emergency arising, a landing to be made without undue  hazards to persons  or property on the surface.


The period between 20 minutes after sunset and 20 minutes before sunrise, or such other period between sunset and sunrise as may be prescribed by the DGCA is defined as “Night” and the times outside this period is defined as “Day” for all VFR considerations in Colombo FIR.


                Night VFR Flights are approved within the territory of Sri Lanka as per the following conditions;

a)       All night VFR Flights shall not be operated:

                          i.          when the cloud ceiling is below 1500ft; and  

                          ii.         flight visibility is less than 5km and distance from cloud is not less than 1500m horizontally. 

b)    Except when necessary for take-off or landing, or except when specifically authorized by the Director General of Civil Aviation, a Night VFR flight shall be flown at a minimum flight altitude of;

                            i.        600 m (2 000 ft) above the highest obstacle located within 8 km of the estimated position of the aircraft, over high terrain or in mountainous areas; and 

                             ii.      Elsewhere 300 m (1000 ft) above the highest obstacle located within 8 km of the estimated position of the aircraft.


      Unless authorized by the DGCA, VFRflight shall not be operated

    a) above  FL200

    b) at transonic and supersonic speeds.


Except where otherwise indicated in air traffic control clearance or specified by the DGCA, VFR flights in level cruising flight when operated above 3000ft (900m) from the ground or water, shall be conducted at a cruising level appropriate to the track as specified in the tables of cruising levels (see ENR 1.7)


VFR flights shall comply with the provisions of chapter 3, para 3.6 of ICAO Annex 2;

 a) When operated within the class C and D airspace;  

b) When forming part of aerodrome traffic at controlled aerodrome; or

 c)  When operated as special VFR flight.


All VFR flights shall contact ATC on appropriate frequency 10 minutes before entry to CTAs, CTRs or ATS routes.


All VFR flights operating in airspace outside CTAs, CTRs and ATS routes within TMA shall keep a listening watch on Freq 124.9 MHz.  


An aircraft operated in accordance with; the visual flight rules which wishes to change to compliance with the instrument flight rules shall;

            a).  If a flight plan was submitted, communicate the necessary changes to be effected to its current flight plan, or

b)      When so required by chapter 3 para 3.3 of Annex 2, submit a flight plan to the appropriate air traffic services unit and obtain a clearance prior to proceeding IFR when in controlled airspace

                                                                             (END of Sub Section ENR 1.2)                               >>>> Back to Top