How to become an Air force Pilot in India

How To Become An Air Force Pilot in India | Salary, Eligibility Criteria

Becoming a part of the Indian Army and serve our country is a dream of nearly every young Indian. The Army is divided into three parts Indian Navy, the Indian Air Force, and the Indian Army.

Many people want to serve the country as a soldier of the Indian Navy, while many have a dream to serve the country as a soldier of the Indian Army.

But there are also a lot of people who want to become a pilot of IAF or Indian Air Force. If you also have a dream to serve the nation as a pilot of the Indian Air Force, then this the perfect article for you.

Cause we will discuss a lot on how to become an air force pilot in India. Apart from this, we will also discuss the eligibility criteria of IAF ( Indian Air Force ), Salary of an Air force Pilot, Skills that you’ll need as an Indian Air Force Pilot.

But before I there the fact about the Indian Air Force that I feel you should know. The British Empire established the Indian Air Force on 8 October 1932 as a supporting air force for the British Empire.

The prefix “Royal” was attached to IAF for the honor of IAS or Indian Aviation Service.

After the year 1947, when India gained its independence from the UK or the United Kingdom, the Indian Air Force keep the prefix Royal.

But when the Indian Government transition to a Republic, they removed the prefix Royal, which was given to the Indian Air Force as an honor.

What is an IAF or Indian Air Force?

The IAF or Indian Air Force is one of the main parts of the Indian Armed Forces.

The main job of the Indian Air Force is to make sure that the airway of India is secure from the enemies. In some words, you can also say that it’s an air arm of the Indian Armed Force.

As per a report, in the year 2017, there more than 139k personnel are in the Indian Air Force.

From the year 1950 till today, the IAF has been involved in five main wars, 4 against Pak and 1 against China.

Apart from this, there are also some major operations like Operation Meghdoot, Operation Poomalai, Operation Vijay, and Operation Cactus done by the IAF.

Also Read:- How To Become an IAS officer in India

Indian Air Force Eligibility Criteria

Becoming an Indian Air Force Pilot is not a piece of cake. You have to pass certain eligibility criteria to become an Air force pilot in India. All the requirements or eligibility criteria are mentioned below, have a look:- 

  1. The height must be between 5 feet 4 inches to 6 feet 5 inches.
  2. When you sit on the seat, then your height must be between 34 and 40 inches or 2 feet 9 inches to 3 feet 3 inches.
  3. Your hearing power must be strong, and you shouldn’t be color blind.
  4. You should not be suffering from asthma disease.
  5. Passing 10+2 or 12th class is compulsory. 
  6. The age should be between 20-26 years.
  7. The eyesight of both eyes must be 20/20 to 20/40

How to become an Air Force Pilot in India

How to become an Indian Air Force Pilot ask and searched by many young Indians who want to join IAF. But due to a lack of right knowledge, their dream doesn’t seem to come true. Because many people don’t know which exam should they apply for if they are graduates or 12th pass.

So as I said, there are two ways that you can use t become an Air Force Pilot in India. The first way is to apply for the entrance exam after completing the 12th class, and the second way is to appear in the entrance exam right after graduation. Below I have mentioned both ways in-depth, have a look!

1. Apply after 10+2 or 12th class

If you have just cleared the 12th class examination, you have to give an entrance exam known as NDA or Nation Defence Academy to be the part of IAF.

1.1 NDA

Union Public Service Commission Conducts the NDA examination. Once a candidate clears the test, he or she has to go through 3 years of training at Nation Defence Academy, located in Pune, Maharashtra. Once you complete the 3 years of NDA training, the candidate will be selected as ‘Permanent Commission Officers’, or you can be posted as a pilot at any Indian Air Force Station.

1.2 After Completing the graduation

Once someone completes their bachelor’s degree, then the NDA exam’s door is closed for them. But if you completed your bachelor’s degree between the age of 16 to 19, then you can apply for NDA. There are also entrance exams for the graduates such as AFCAT, CDSE, NCC Special Entry.


Males and females can give-AFCAT or Air Force Common Admission Test. Indian Air Force conducts the test twice every year for SSC or Short Service Commission. The time for this job is 10 to 14 years. You will be hired for the Ground duty branches and technical branches.

1.4 CDSE

The CDSE or Combined Defence Services Exam conducts by UPSC, but only for males. Once a candidate completes the examination, they can take admission to the Indian Naval Academy, Indian Military Academy, or Air Force Academy. After that, you have to complete the undergo training via AFA. Once the candidate completes the training, the candidate will be selected as ‘Permanent Commission Officers’ or posted as a pilot at any Indian Air Force Station.

1.5 NCC Special Entry

This is also for male candidates. The female candidate can’t apply for NCC Special Entry. If a candidate has Air Wing Senior Division’ C’ Certificate, then he is eligible for NCC Special Entry. The DG NCC or Directorate General National Cadet Corps or respective NCC Air Squadrons will make the selections of candidates. Once a candidate is selected, he will be given a post of ‘Permanent Commission Officers.’

Also Read:- How to Become a Commercial Pilot in India

Skills for IAF

There are some very important skills that every IAFP or Indian Air Force pilot must-have. Below I have mentioned almost all the skills that you will need as an IAFP, have a look:- 

  1. You must be an active listener and a critical thinker.
  2. You must know how to manage your time and how to be coordinate with the team.
  3. You should be a tricky problem solver and must know quality control analysis.
  4. You must be a quick learner.
  5. You must monitor the complex equipment operations.
  6.  Reasoning and mathematics will help you a lot during your services.
  7. You must know how to make the right decision at the right time.

Also Read:- A Full Guide on How to Become a Lawyer in India

Salary of an Indian Air Force Pilot

Talking about the salary of an Indian Air Force Pilot, then it is set as PPB or Pay the Pay Band. The salary of an IAFP is RS 15,600/month, but he withdraws around Rs 66,110/month. There are many allowances the add up to the salary of an Indian Air Force Pilot. All the allowance are mentioned below:-

  1. Military services pay Rs 6000/month.
  2. The grade pay Rs 5400/month.
  3. The dearness allowance is Rs 21,600/month.
  4. The Maintenance of the kit allowance is 500/month.
  5. The transport allowances are Rs 3200/month+ DA for the major cities and Rs 1600/month + DA for other cities.
  6. The Flying allowance is Rs 11,250/month to FBO or Flying Branch Officers.