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Myths About What Disqualifies You From Learning To Be A Commercial Pilot

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If your dream is to be a pilot, but you have some situation that makes it so people are constantly telling you that you can't, you might be surprised by how much flexibility there really is in programs. Here are some common ways people believe that they are disqualified from becoming a pilot that aren't actually true.

Lack of 20/20 Vision

The only thing required to be a pilot is having functional 20/20 vision. This can be after a correction, such as with eyeglasses. You don't have to have 20/20 or better vision naturally. This is unnecessary since you'll be able to see fine with glasses. It is true that this is only for commercial pilots, however. In the military, your vision often has to be much better naturally.


According to the FAA guidelines, all you need when it comes to color vision is enough to perceive the necessary colors. This can vary based on the airline, but ability to perceive the full range of colors available to others isn't necessary. You should definitely check with an official at the FAA along with your medical records to determine whether you pass the bar.

Criminal Record

It is true that you can't become an FAA pilot if you have a felony on your record. However, if you have something like a misdemeanor or a DUI, you may be OK. This is especially the case if you received the infractions on your record many years ago. Airlines do require constant drug testing while you're there, but if you've put the past behind you, it's not impossible.

You could still become a pilot. One misdemeanor isn't going to sink you for certain. You should at least give it a shot and see what the schools and airlines say.

Mental Disorders

The only mental disorders that disqualify you from the FAA test is psychosis, bipolar disorder, or any of the personality disorders such as Antisocial Disorder. This means that if you've been diagnosed with anything else from depression to anxiety to OCD, you can definitely still qualify to be a commercial pilot.

It's important to not just take other people's word for it when they give you their assessment about whether you should be a pilot. If this is your dream, you should at least look into it yourself to find out. You may be surprised about your qualification. You could be in aviation colleges before you know it.