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LPSO Ponte de Sor

Flew there yesterday to deliver a DA40NG

Everything very straighforward. They are AFIS only, but do have an ILS * and long runway. I think they also have Radar, as the ground station was very well aware of everyone’s whereabouts (there were 2 of US on the ILS and he was giving our distances to other aircraft).

They are the base of training schools (+ goverment services such as fire fighting). Otherwise a bit far from everything (~2h drive to lisbon). Everyone is very friendly, but it being portugal, that’s expected!

* They DO have an ILS approach (+ Lights), but that’s not available on the AIP. You need to look at the portuguese VFR (yes) Manual, which is available on the AIS website: local copy

That VFR mannual states: “ILS procedure only authorized in VMC”, so probably only there for training?
If not this answers the long debate: can I do ILS on a vanilla PPL while on VMC*?

*with a vanilla PPL in IMC, you get lot of privileges and can do anything to get back alive…

ESSEX, United Kingdom

I suppose, with a VMC-only restriction, you could just buy an ILS on Ebay and install it

I saw one on there for about 10k, a few years ago.

You just need friends in low places to get the frequency allocated…

Shoreham EGKA, United Kingdom

Nicely spotted. I actually missed missed it. I had assumed it was because it was a relatively recent ILS that’s there for use of the school, but should just have been more suspicious. That’s what a relatively rushed (trip organised hours before) and not doing everything yourself (someone else was planning the trip as we were a flight of 2) will do to you!


I did all my PPL based on LPSO. Great conditions for flying, tower is manned by a very competent AFIS, but the ILS I never used it officially (I did everytime I landed there after). Most of the time one will find moderate traffic in the pattern, GAir is the biggest flying school in Portugal. Night arrivals, not every day and usually till 2300 LT.

True that there is nothing to see around LPSO, unless one likes nautical sports, that can be done on the artificial lake around. Lisbon is too far away and you can find near facilities like LPCS or the cheaper LPSC or even LPSR 70 km away from Lisbon but with almost hourly 60 minutes distance trains to the center of the city.

LPSR, Portugal
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