Pilots today can get their instrument approach charts through several means: Buy them from Jeppesen or the FAA, or download and print them for free from AOPA's Airport Directory Online. Both are legal. The key is to make sure that you are always prepared for an unexpected emergency. When flying in instrument meteorological conditions, that means carrying approach charts for alternate airports and airports along your route of flight. Section 5-1-1 (e) of the Aeronautical Information Manual urges pilots to use the latest issue of approach charts. Having paper copies on hand as a backup to electronic charts is also a good idea - just in case of an electrical failure. For those practicing approaches on a VFR day, only the desired approaches would be necessary. How you get them is just a matter of preference.
March 6, 2006