Active Duty Air Force Age Limit
Like the other branches of the military, the minimum and maximum age you can join the Air Force will depend on which career path you take. (ie officer or enlisted)
Here are the minimum and maximum age limits for the Air Force in 2021:
- Enlisted: The minimum age to join as an enlisted is 17, and the maximum age is 39.
- Officer: The minimum age to join as an officer is 18, and the maximum age is 39.
Exceptions are made for those with healthcare experience, attorneys, clergy, and prior military enlistment. A waiver will be required.
In this scenario, the minimum age is 18 and the maximum age is 48.
Air Force Reserve Age Limit
To join the Air Force reserve, the age requirements are as follows:
- Non-prior service: 17 – 39 years old
- Prior service: Your adjusted age must be less than 40. *
* How To Calculate Your Adjusted Age
For prior service Air Force reserve candidates, your adjusted age must be less than 40 years old.
You can calculate this by simply subtracting your years of service from your age.
So for example, if you served for 10 years in the active duty Air Force, and you’re 48 years old, your “Adjusted Age” would be 38.
This would make you qualified to serve in the Air Force reserves.
Related Article: Does The National Guard Pay For College?
Pilot Age Requirements / Limit
Just like with the height and weight requirements, there are different age limitations for pilots.
While the minimum age for pilots is 18, it’s very uncommon for a pilot to be that young.
The average age for Air Force pilots entering flight school is around 23 years old.
Before earning a slot at Undergraduate Pilot Training (aka UPT), the candidate must first meet with a selection board.
This board will determine whether or not you’re competitive enough for a slot in UPT, and must be conducted before you reach 29 years of age.
You must also be enrolled in UPT before the age of 33.
With that said, age waivers are available for potential pilots up to the age of 35.
I realize all of this might be a little confusing, so here’s a handy chart which sums it all up in general:
|Age (Min. - Max)||Weight (Min. - Max)||Height (Min. - Max)|
|Officer (non-pilot)||18 - 39 yrs. old||91 - 250 lbs.||58 - 80 inches|
|Enlisted (non-pilot)||17 - 39 yrs. old||91 - 250 lbs.||58 - 80 inches|
|Pilot / Navigator||18 - 28 1/2 yrs. old *||91 - 250 lbs.||58 - 80 inches|
* Age waivers up to 35 years old
- Air Force Ranks and Basic Pay for 2022 - March 20, 2022
- Air Force Age Limit For 2022 - March 20, 2022
- Air Force Jobs List:A List Of All 135 AFSC’s In The Air Force (2022) - March 20, 2022
28 Replies to “Air Force Age Limit For 2022”
I am 48 can I enter the Air Force? I am a registered nurse.
Sorry for the late reply. Yes, since you are a registered nurse the Air Force would consider granting you a waiver. However, 48 is the maximum age one would be able to join, so if you’re going to do it you need to get in touch with a recruiter ASAP to start the waiver process.
I am age 35 with a Master’s. Can I enter the Air Force to fly fighter jets? If yes, what step do I need to take next?
Unfortunately, that’s not possible Nate. As per Air Force requirements, you have to be enrolled in Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) by the age of 30.
I’m 32 with a bachelors and my commercial fixed wing pilot ratings with 1,100hrs. Would I have a shot with helicopters in the Air Force?
Like I told Nate, it’s unfortunately not possible. As per Air Force requirements, you have to be enrolled in Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT) by the age of 30.
Hello, I am 37 years old and thinking of joining the airforce once I am done with my Bachelor’s degree in computer systems in 3 months. Is there a limitation of how many kids I have or support?
As far as I’m aware, there’s no limits to how many children you have. With that said, the age cutoff for the Air Force for both enlisted and officers is 39, so you should get the ball rolling ASAP.
Hi I’m 22 and I am 6 foot tall and i weigh 130 pounds ie there a way to join the Airforce and get weight waiver?
It’s possible. I would speak to a recruiter, they would know for sure.
Hey Rob, I’m 40 and an Army FW pilot in the Reserves, ATP Corporate Jet Pilot on the civilian side. 17 years of active and reserve time, any chance I can switch branches to fly for the Air Force?
Is it possible? Yes. Is it likely? Probably not, at least not on the active duty side. Your best bet would probably be to apply to an AF Guard unit. Not sure where you live, but lookup Air Force Guard units near you and start making phone calls. They should be able to guide you in the right direction.
Hope this helps and good luck!
hello I’m 39 years old, can I enter air force I am Computer Technician..
Well, you’re right at the upper limit. So if you’re gonna join, you better hit the recruiters office like yesterday!
Do you have any information on how to obtain an age waiver for the Reserves? I am prior service (7 years) and currently 49. I have been offered a position with a unit, but need the waiver and don’t know where to start. Thanks.
Sorry for the late reply. I would fill out the form on this page. They should be able to guide you in the right direction.
Great article. I know you have answered this question before, but do you think I could get an age waiver to be a pilot in the Air Force at age 36 considering that I have 15 years/10,000+ of flight experience in helicopters and airplanes including contract flying in Afghanistan (Hueys), Medevac (H135, H125, B407), Fire fighting, and now fly for United Express (Trans States Airlines) in the E145 Jet. I have part 141 Chief Pilot experience, Part 135 check airman experience, and am just finishing my BS Aeronautics at Embry Riddle.
Helicopter ATP, CFI/CFII – 9000+ hrs
Fixed Wing ATP 1200+ hrs
I would love to be a military pilot or instructor in the reserves. If not, what job would you recommend in the reserves that is based in Colorado that best suits my experience? Thank you!
It’s definitely possible, and given your qualifications, you actually may have a better chance than most. I would talk with an Air Force reserve recruiter and see what they can do!
To become a pilot for the Air Force, would I have to get any type of eye surgery such as PRK or LASIK, if not then am I allowed glasses or would I need to get contacts? Also I’m 17 and what should my general steps I should take or follow to becoming a Pilot?
Sorry for the late reply. We plan on getting a full article about how to become a fighter pilot shortly. Just need to find an actual fighter pilot to write the article! Stay tuned!
I’m 26 am I able to enlist in the Air Force?
Yes, the maximum age to enlist is now 39 years old.
Do you think the airforce may reduce this age limit soon? I am working on my degree and will be done in a couple of years, I am 32 already and I wanted to join as an officer.
It’s certainly possible. If they ever do make any age changes, we’ll definitely update this page accordingly!
I found this on the Air Force website, https://www.airforce.com/careers/detail/pilot . It states the age cutoff is 33 for UPT.
Thanks for that Joseph, just updated the article.
Hello, I am 46 years of age. I am a 20 year plus Law Enforcement Officer still currently serving the community and country as a Police Officer. I have before enlisted into the Marine Corps 1995. I am interested in joining the Air Force Reserves and know that I will need a waiver. Can I still join the Air Force Reserves?
Apart from specialized areas such as medical professions (i.e. doctors / nurses), I believe the oldest you can apply to the Air Force Reserves with a waiver is 45 years old. Sorry if this isn’t the news you wanted to hear!