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Career Guide -How to become a pilot in India

Published: Monday 7th December 2020

Pilots are the backbone of the aviation industry. These professionals are responsible for carrying the passengers and goods across the globe and also responsible for operating the internal system of the aircraft. But apart from these, a pilot is also responsible for checking the management of the cockpit, keeping a keen look on the air regulation, and checking the air traffic as and when required. They are some of the highly trained, experienced professionals which makes their job more distinctive to others. 

A Confident male pilot in uniform keeping arms crossed and smiling with airplane in the background

So, if you have ever aspired to build a career in which the sky would be the limit for your success and remuneration, then you can definitely strive to become a pilot and fulfill your dreams. To do so, you can go through our detailed guide on how to become a pilot in India.

Eligibility to become a pilot in India.

To answer the question, how to become a pilot in India? Interested candidates can check out the details given below and start planning accordingly. A basic criterion is to have a 12th pass certificate in science stream (Physics and Mathematics as compulsory subject) from a certified and recognized school.

For better insight read the details given below.

Subject Combination – Science Stream (With Physics and Mathematics as compulsory subject) in 10+2

Exam – IGRUA, ATPL, Institutions entrance exams, etc.


  • Candidates aspiring to become a pilot must have a passing certificate of 10+2 from a government recognised school.
  • Candidate must be from Science stream with Physics and Mathematics as main subjects.
  • Candidates must have at least 50% marks secured in 10+2.
  • Maximum age limit should be 17 years.


Indira Gandhi Rashtriya Uran Academi (IGURA), Flying Training Institute, Madhya Pradesh Flying Club, and Assam Flying Club, are considered as some of the top flying school in India. To become a pilot, you have to take the entrance exam offered by them exclusively after completing 12th standard. In addition, you must also pass the physical fitness criteria specified by the Directorate General of Civil Aviation (DGCA). This is actually the most difficult part to take admission in any pilot school. Only fully fit individuals can get admission in flying schools. There are around 110 Pilot Training schools in India. Out of these approximately 98% are private and rest are public/government owned. The fee of courses offered by flying schools ranges from Rs 25 lakh to Rs 35 lakh. To overcome the financial hurdle many banks offer loans up to 50% for joining these schools.

Training Courses:

  • Student Pilot License: The duration of this course is six months.
  • Private Pilot License: It is one year duration course.
  • Commercial Pilot License: The duration of this course is three years.

After the completion of any of these training courses, you can join any industry as a co-pilot only. If you are willing to fly as a captain, you will need an airline transport pilot license.

Employment opportunities for a pilot in India

A career as a pilot in India is highly rewarding. Becoming a pilot opens a window of opportunities. Initially, you are hired as trainees where you evaluate and test new protocols. But after the training you are employed by the commercial airlines and governments aviation departments, defence forces, private jet owners, business owners and celebrities etc.

Candidates aspire to become a pilot must know that there are different types of industries where different employment opportunities are available for them as a pilot. For better insight we have prepared a list of industries where the employment opportunities for pilots are easily available. The list includes the following:

  • Arline Industries
  • Indian Armed Forces
  • Indian Navy
  • Indian Air Force
  • Transportation and Logistics Companies
  • Drone Providers and Manufacturers

Top companies recruiting the pilot in India

The majority of pilot jobs in India are for commercial airlines, but you can be a part of a corporation or government organization, as well. Pilots can also be self-employed and offer private transport services to businesspeople and celebrities. Some of the top companies that recruit pilots In India are Air India, India Jet Airways, Alliance Air, Air cost and SpiceJet etc.

Note that even after becoming a commercial pilot, you are required to undergo regular medical checkups. If there is a problem with their health, this may be the reason for the cancellation of the pilot license.

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