How to become a Pilot in India 2021?

Choose pilot as career though challenging but you can enjoy thrilling experiences and exposure. Many of the students dreamt of pilot from early ages. To become a pilot, 17 years is the perfect age to start.

You can avail Student Pilot License at the age of 16 and Private Pilot License you can get at 17 years’ age. To get Commercial Pilot License you need to complete 18 years. Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) has the authority to issue license in India.

To get license from Indian Defense Forces the rules is different. A pilot (also known as aviator) is the person who uses their skills to flight aircraft.

You can become a pilot by two different routes.

  1. Commercial Pilot / Civil Aviation
  2. Indian Defense Forces
how-to-become-a-pilot
How to become a pilot in India?

1. Commercial Pilot / Civil Aviator

A commercial pilot holds commercial pilot license and allowed to fly aircraft for passengers. A commercial pilot has lots of responsibilities as they carry hundreds of passengers from one place to other safely and as fast as possible. Some highlights of the course are given below:

  • Course Level: Certificate course
  • Duration of the Course: 6 – 8 months
  • Frequency of Exam: Yearly
  • Eligibility: Complete 10+2 including Physics, Chemistry, and Math with an average of 55%
  • Admission Process: Admission Test and Medical Test
  • Average Course Fee: INR 3 – 12 lakhs
  • Average Starting Salary: INR 10 – 30 lakhs
  • Top Recruiting Companies: Air India, India Jet Airways, Alliance Air, Air Costa, Air India Charters Ltd, Spice Jet, Indigo, Air Asia etc.
  • Top Job Positions: Co-Pilot, Chief Pilot, Commuter Pilot, First Officer, Experimental Test Pilot etc.

Training Courses and their Duration

CoursesMinimum AgeDuration
Student Pilot License166 Months
Private Pilot License1712 Months
Commercial Pilot License183 Years

Eligibility Criteria

It may differ from college to college. There are some institutions which want candidates must be an Indian.

  • The students must complete 10+2 with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics
  •  You must have secured at least 55% in all subjects.
  • Minimum 17 years is required.

For commercial pilot license you have to complete BSc aviation which is to be recognized by Directorate General of Civil Aviation. An entrance test is conducted to get admission in their respective program.

But, don’t worry if you are not a student of science. You have to complete a course of science conducted by NIOS (National Institute of Open Sciences).

Also Read: How to Become a Chemical Engineer 2021?

3 Steps to Get Admission in Institution

Written Test

Knowledge about English, Physics, and Mathematics are checked through written examination. You should have physics and mathematics in your higher secondary subjects.

Pilot Aptitude Test

Your knowledge regarding the field of aviation will be checked. You should have knowledge about Air Regulation, Air Navigation, Aviation Meteorology, Aircraft and Engine Knowledge.

Personal interview and DGCA medical examination

Successful candidates of the above two tests are now called in for a personal interview. It may be taken by college authority or by the officials of the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) Council. mental and physical health of the students are checked and make sure that you are eligible to take admission medically.

Get Student Pilot License

After clearing an entrance exam which is an oral test, conducted by the institution or Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) representative, you will get Student Pilot License. Now, you will get flying training and you can take off flights which are given by approved flying clubs of India. You should have done 250 hours of flying at least. After this you are allowed to apply for Commercial Pilot License (CPL).

Some leading institution and their location are given below:

Name of the InstitutionLocation
Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Academy (IGRUA)Rae Bareilly
Rajiv Gandhi Academy of Aviation TechnologyKerala
Bombay Flying ClubMumbai
Ahmedabad Aviation & Aeronautics Ltd.Ahmedabad
Madhya Pradesh Flying Club (MPFC)Indore

2.  Become Pilot in Indian Air Force

Students who are willing to serve nation can choose to do this courses which will provide you defence license. The most interesting thing of this license is that it is totally free of cost and you will get an amount after successful completion. If, it is found that your performance is good enough then you may get some amount even your training period.

Whoever wants to apply for Indian Air Force License have great responsibility because in this case, you are not be a good pilot but also be a great soldier. You should have all the characteristics of a soldier such as presence of mind, agility, decision-making efficiency, sense of analyzing, flexible in different situations, stamina, and a firm mind.

You have wide range of scope by which you can a pilot after getting Indian Air Force License. You can get the license by applying directly to the National Defense Academy (NDA) or you can have it from Combined Defence Services Examination (CDSE).

Entrance Examinations

To become a pilot in Indian Air force, you have to clear some entrance examination through which you can get admission which is conducted by Govt. of India. Here, we discuss some of them.

  • AFCAT (SSC)
  • CDSE
  • NDA
  • NCC

Short Service Commission (SSC)

Short Service Commission or SSC, this is an entrance exam to become a pilot. Whoever get chance through this entrance examination can only serve for 14 years. Selected candidates of Air Force Common Admission Test (AFCAT) will be sent at the Air Force Academy, Dundigal for a training of 74 weeks.

Eligibility Criteria:

Educational Qualifications: Graduated from a recognized University (with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level) / BE / B Tech (Four Year Course) with a minimum 60% marks in aggregate.

Age: Minimum 19 to 23 years.

Gender: Both Males and Females can apply.

If you have valid Commercial Pilot License issued by DGCA (India), then you can apply to the age of 25.

You have to mention your preference wings during filling up the application from both for NDA and CDSE.

Procedure of Entrance Exam:

It follows the following steps:

  • Written Exam: Verbal ability, numerical ability, reasoning, general awareness, and military aptitude are checked.
  • Interview

It has the following two stages:

StageTest
Stage IOfficer Intelligence Test, a Picture perception and discussion test
Stage IIPsychological tests which is conducted by a psychologist, group tasks and a personal interview.

The students who have successfully passed the stage 1, only they can apply for stage 2.

Pilot Aptitude Test

You can attempt this test only once in your life. If you failed to clear this test in your first attempt, you can never apply for pilot again. Written and machine tests are taken to improve your ability.

Medical Test

Height and eye vision are examined through this test. For male 162.5 cm according to their weight and for females 148 cm according to their weight is needed. In case of eye vision 6/6 in one eye and in the other eye 6/9 required. Note that 6/6 is only correctable for Hypermetropia.

CDSE Entry to the Air Force

CDSE stands for Combined Defence Services Examination is for those who wants to become pilot after graduation. Selected candidates are taken to Air Force Academy, Hyderabad for training where they also undergo Pre-Flying Training School.

Eligibility Criteria:

Educational Qualifications – Graduates (Three Year Course) in any stream from a recognized University (with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level).

Procedure of Entrance Examination:

This entrance examination follows the steps given below:

  • Written Examination – English, Math and General Knowledge are tested.
  • Interview – Interview contains two stages.
StageTest
Stage IIntelligence Rating Test, a Picture perception and discussion test.
Stage IIPsychological tests which is conducted by a psychologist, group tasks and a personal interview.
Pilot Aptitude Test

Any student can only one chance to attempt for this test in their whole life. Failure in this test means you will not get another chance to become a pilot. Your ability to read instruments, control of your actions and mental strength evaluate through written and machine tests.

Medical Test

Measurement of height and eye vision are checked up. Required height for males is 162.5 cm and for females 148 cm required. For eye vision required value is 6/6 in one eye and 6/9 in other. Only for Hypermetropia it is correctable to 6/6.

Admission Procedure for NDA

When you are willing to become a part the flying branch, then the first chance you will get at the National Defence Academy (NDA). After selection you will get training at the National Defence Academy, Khadakwasla for 3 years.

Successfully completing your training, you will be posted as a pilot at any Air Force Stations.

If you want to be a part of NDA, then you have to clear NDA entrance examination.

Procedure of Entrance Examination
  • Written Exam: English, Physics, Chemistry, Math, General Knowledge, History, Geography and Current Events are basically tested. Mostly math based questions are asked where applicable. It a written and pen and paper based exam.
  • SSB Interview: There are two stages for this section.
StageTest
Stage IIntelligence Rating Test, a Picture perception and discussion test.
Stage IIPsychological tests which is conducted by a psychologist, group tasks and a personal interview.
Pilot Aptitude Test

You will get only one chance to clear this aptitude test. If you failed to pass this test, you will never get any second chance to appear in flight branch. Written & machine tests are taken to check how much you are able to read instruments, control of your actions and mental strength.

Medical Test

Your eyesight, height and weight will be checked. The required height for a NDA candidate is 152cms with correlated weight. In case of eyesight, required value is 6/9 in one eye and in other eye it is 6/6, though for Hypermetropia it is correctable to 6/6.

NCC Entry to Air force

In your school life, if you are part of NCC society or you are a ‘C’ Certificate holder Air Wing Senior Division, then your way to join Air force will be easy with the help of the Directorate General National Cadet Corps or your respective NCC Air Squadrons. If you have done “A” or “B” grade in their “C” Certificate, then you are eligible to appear for SSB Interview directly.

Entrance Procedure for NCC

It has following procedure:

  • SSB Interview: It contains two stages, explained in the table.
StageTest
Stage IOfficer Intelligence Test, a Picture perception and discussion test.
Stage IIPsychological tests which is conducted by a psychologist, group tasks and a personal interview.
Pilot Aptitude Test

This test is for lifetime, if you failed to clear this test, you will never get any other chance to clear it. In this stage, written and machine tests are taken to check your ability to read instruments, control of your actions and mental strength.

Medical Test

Medical checkup of height and eye vision are done in this test. For males 162.5 cm is required with correlated weight. Eye vision will also be checked and the required value is 6/9 in one eye and in the other eye it should be 6/6. For aspirants with Hypermetropia, correctable to 6/6.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q1. I’m not a student of science, can I get any chance to become a pilot?

Ans: Yes,  though you are not a student of science, you have a chance to get admission in pilot institutions by doing a complete  course of science conducted by NIOS (National Institute of Open Sciences).

Q2. What is minimum age required to get Student Pilot License?

Ans: The minimum age required to get Student Pilot License is 16 years.

Q3. Can female be able to apply for Short Service Commission or SSC?

And: Yes,  males and females both can apply for this test.

Q4. How much weight and eye vision is required to qualify in medical test?

Ans: The required height is 162.5 cm with correlated weight. For eyesight 6/6 and 6/9 is required, for Hypermetropia, it is correctable 6/6.

Q5. How many years can I do service, if I become a pilot through Short Service Commission or SSC?

Ans: You can serve for only 14 years, if you become a pilot through Short Service Commission or SSC.

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