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Career as Air Force Officer

Last Updated On 10 Oct, 2018

Career as a Air Force Officer

About Air Force Officer

Indian Air Force is one of the major air arms across the country and its main job is to guard the country against external aggression in the air. Fighter planes and aircraft are the major constituents of the Air Force as their job is to defence the sky. Therefore the entire services of the Airforce are concerned with the flying of the aircraft and the pilot is the main air force officer.

It is a very diverse and exciting career. Apart from flying one has to manage hundreds of personnel on base camp, formulate high-level strategies and tactics. During the calamities and emergencies, they step further and carry food and crucial supplies. If all the above-mentioned duties, gives you adrenaline rush then a career as an Air Force Officer is the right choice for you.

Eligibility to become Air Force Officer

Career Path:1

The first way is to join National Defence Academy, Pune which mainly trains cadets in three services. To get through NDA a competitive examination is held twice a year i.e. in February and September. Only unmarried male candidates till 19 years of age can apply for the same. They should be class 12th pass or equivalent examination with physics and maths as mandatory subjects.

National Defence Academy, Pune, trains cadets for the 3 services. A competitive examination is held twice in a year, in February & September, for a 3-year training course commencing in January and July. Only unmarried male candidates age between 16 1/2 and 191/2  years are eligible.XI with Physics & Maths.

Career Path: 2

Both male and female candidates can apply for the same between 20-24 years of age. They are required to pass NCC Air Wing Senior div C Certificate. Candidates must have a bachelor's degree in any field with a minimum of 60% marks from a recognised university.

Career Path:3

Short Service Commission is for the candidates who wish to become the technical officers in the Air Force. Candidates must have a bachelor’s degree in any field and must have cleared the AFCAT examination. Both male and female candidates between 20-24 years of age can apply.


Types of Job Roles Air Force Officer

Indian Air Force provides eligible candidates with various Air Force Officer job profiles. They are broadly classified into three main categories Flying Branch, Technical Branch and Ground Duty Branch. Some of the popular air force officer job profiles are listed below:

Pilots:  They are mainly assigned with flying duties in Indian Air Force. Their duties can vary from flying fighter plans to providing supplies during calamities and others.

Fighter Pilots: Fighter Pilots are well trained and equipped in air flights to shoot down enemy aircraft and attack ground targets in enemy territory. Their main job role is to safeguard and defence one’s own territory from the enemy. They are equipped with electronic devices, radars and cameras for pinpoint bombing and target acquisition. It is recognised as one of the prestigious jobs in the Air Force as they are entrusted with such major responsibilities.

Navigators: Navigators are the Air Force offers that direct Pilots to the site by using navigational equipment, radars and other optical devices and release the bombs. Their basic job is to assist and direct the Pilots in navigation.

Transport Pilots: They are entrusted with a job of carrying men, material and explosives items like a bomb, weapons to the required places. Apart from this they also carry defence personnel, vehicles, ammunition from a place of war to another.

Air Traffic Control Officer: Their job role is to provide control and advisory services to pilots to ensure their safety and safeguard them from poor weather conditions.

Logistic Officer: The logistics officer in the Air Force is responsible for providing logistics support such as aircraft spares, mechanical transport, fuel and others.

Education Branch Officer: The education branch officer in the Air Force design training programmes which incorporate the latest technological developments. They also design courses for the officers.

Metrology Branch Officer: They perform scientific work such as weather forecasting using latest technologies and tools and conducting related research work.

Employment Opportunities for Air Force Officers:

Once the candidates have completed their professional training in Air Force, there are many employment opportunities. Air Force offers great career opportunities in its different branch itself and most of the Air Force Officers have very high chances of promotion.

Top Recruiting Companies for Air Force Officers

Some of the companies that hire Air Force Officers are as follows:

Pawan Hans Helicopters Ltd.

Ministry of Civil Aviation


Planning to choose Air Force Officer as your career?

Pay Scale/Salary of Air Force Officer

Air Force Officer start earning even before they are commissioned. During the last year of their professional training, Air Force Officers get a monthly salary of Rs.21,000. Apart from their basic pay, an Air Force Officer enjoys many allowances such as flying allowance, technical allowance, military service pay and others. The salary of Air Force Officers in the flying branch/technical branch and ground duty branch are as follows:

Air Force BranchSalary in INR (per annum)
Flying BranchRs.9,00,000
Technical BranchRs.8,00,000
Ground Branch Rs.7,56,000


Books & Study Material to Become Air Force Officer

Check out the list of best books and study material which help you crack the NDA/ Short Service Commission examination to become an Air Force Officer.

  • Class 11th & 12 NCERT Books
  • NDA Practice Papers
  • Let’s Crack AFCAT
  • New AFCAT Guide with 10 Past Papers by Disha Experts

Apart from these books, one can refer to general knowledge books and study material that will enhance one’s reasoning and aptitude.


Pros of becoming a Air Force Officer

  • Air Force officers usually join at a very young age and from the initial years they are taught the importance of discipline and good life.
  • It is not like a regular 9 to 6 desk job which becomes monotonous after a period of time.
  • Your cubicle is located at a  minimum of 30,000 feet above the ground which is not enjoyed by many.

Cons of becoming a Air Force Officer

  • The nature of the job is such that you get relocated a lot which leads to an extremely disturbed life as your personal life is adversely affected.
  • It is a job that involves a lot of risk and threat to life as you are entrusted with guarding the nation.
  • The life of an Air Force Officer is very hard as they have to follow strict schedules.

Confused on what to choose as your career?