Can I be a Pilot if my eyesight is really bad?

Hi, I’d love to be an Airline pilot and I’m thinking of joining a flight school. However, my eyesight is really bad, my left and right eye are both -5.4 diopter(yeah I know its really bad). It has been a dream of mine to be a pilot, is it possible for me to become a pilot or reduce the severity of my eyesight?


If your eyesight can be corrected to 20/20 via glasses or surgery then your eyes will not prevent you from obtaining a medical certificate. To be an airline pilot you will need a First Class Medical Cert. You can search for Aviation Medical Examiners neatest you on the FAA’s website.


To add on to Tory’s comment, the eyesight has to be corrected to 20/20 in each eye, not just in both (which was initially the case with my prescription). Ask your optometrist to ensure that you can see the 20/20 line when one of the eyes is covered.

And to add on even further make sure that you get that correction to both NEAR AND FAR sight. They do indeed test both. And if you don’t know yet, check your color vision. Color blindness is disqualifying.


Plenty of pilots have bad eye sight (I do), but it needs to be correctable to 20/20 with glasses. I suggest contacting a FAA medical examiner for a more specific answer.