Category Civil Aviation

Air Force after XII?

I am a bit confused about what to choose as a career after Std XII. Presently, I am studying in Std XII with Physics, Chemistry, Maths and Computers as my subjects. The main reason for my confusion is that I don’t want to opt for B.Tech., and want to go into fields related to the air force or navy. I just wanted your advice as to what should I go with as my career after 12th. – Liza.

Dear Liza, If you want to fly high in the sky or dream of being an Air Warrior of the IAF, then you need to clear AFCAT (Air Force Common Admission Test). It is held twice a year. After clearing AFCAT, you can opt for flying/technical/ground duty. Post-graduates can go for the meteorology branch that does not require AFCAT. Candidates should be graduates in their respective fields with Physics and Maths in 10+2.

The Indian Navy recruits girls for the following branches of the Navy as Short Service Commissioned Officers: ATC, Observer, Law, Logistics, Education, Naval Architecture. Both the navy and the air force recruit candidates with graduation.


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I have a great passion for flying and I want to become an airline pilot.

I am student of Std XI with PCM. I have a great passion for flying and I want to become an airline pilot. But I’m very tense about my weak eyesight. I wear glasses. What should I do to become a pilot? What are its requirements and which flying schools are the best?

This is one of the biggest misconceptions amongst people. The Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA) says that you can apply if your eyesight is correctable to 20/20 for distance vision through eyeglasses while 20/40for near vision. One only has to carry an extra set of glasses while flying. There are no other restrictions for people with poor eyesight for becoming pilots.

You need to clear a physical fitness test (tough one), apart from an entrance test exam of the flying schools in India. Even after becoming commercial pilots, they need regular medical check-ups as any health problems can cause cancellation of the license of the pilot.

There are many flying schools all over India, but Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Akademi (IGRUA), Rae Bareli (UP) is the only institute for aviation training run by the government. Entry into IGRUA is through an online written test, interview and pilot aptitude test. The training fee at IGRUA is Rs 32.5 lakh, exclusive of hostel and other fees. Many banks can give loans up to 50%.


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Soaring Ambition

What qualifications should I possess in order to become an airline pilot? What is the career scope of a pilot?

The job of an airline pilot offers a glamorous lifestyle with great salaries and the opportunities to travel. But becoming a pilot is also a very expensive proposition. You have to get a commercial pilot’s license (CPL) from the Directorate General of Civil Aviation. Only those who have done science with PCM at the +2 are eligible to apply.

You have to register 250 flying hours with a flying club like Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Udan Academy, Rae Bareli; Pinjore Aviation Club, Ambala; and School of Aviation Science and Technology, Safdarjang Airport, New Delhi, and clear a set of exams, before you are given the license. You can get the CPL from abroad too and get it converted to the Indian pilot license. While getting into Air India or Indian Airlines may not be that easy, a number of private and foreign airlines do offer attractive salaries to their pilots-starting from Rs 45,000 for  trainee pilot to Rs 165,000 for confirmed pilots. Initially, you have to work as a co-pilot and it’s only with experience that you are given the command of a flight.

However, the course is very expensive, around Rs five lakh. To check your suitability for the job, ask yourself whether you are capable of quick thinking, can you keep calm during a crisis, whether you have quick reflexes, are you comfortable working with machines, how physically fit are you. It’s an erratic life-you have to report at unearthly hours, be away from home for days on end. so in all likelihood, you will watch Diwali festivities from your cockpit, rather than from the courtyard of your home.


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