I have almost no idea what to do

I’m 15 and am a massive couch potato, most likely morbidly obese, but who knows. I’ve been flying before when I was younger and loved every second of it and being a commercial airliner pilot is something that really interests me, but with what I’ve read on this website it looks like you need some sort of college degree, of which I am not on track to do because I thought you didn’t need it? Do you have to be “in shape” to get 1st, 2nd, and or 3rd FAA medical Certifications? Are you able to become a commercial pilot without going to college? Should I get my Private pilot license before going to ATP, if I’m eligible?


Please visit our FAQ section as we answer many common questions. To answer some of yours:

While you don’t need a degree to fly for a Regional airline, you will to fly for a Major. At 15 I really don’t know how you can say “you’re not on track”? You’re still in HS so get on track.

There is a BMI check for a First Class medical. If yours is too high you could be sent for sleep apnea testing which is not something you want to do. Again your 15. You’ve got a few years to improve your health.

The only time we recommend getting your PPL first is if you’re uncertain flying is for you. If not doing all your training consistently with the same program is preferable.



Please check out the FAQ page for the answer to your college question.

Yes, you will need to obtain a first class medical and BMI is a part of that. Beyond just obtaining a medical though, you will need to maintain one throughout your career. Being morbidly obese will catch up to you, most likely in relation to some sort of heart issue. I used to be large myself, I understand the struggle in losing weight, but it is possible. I would strongly encourage you to look into some weight loss options, not just for your career as a pilot, but for your life in general.