Is Mesa Airline accepting F-1 Visa?

Good morning guys, I’m an Italian 36yo with a good position in Italy (special military-police Corp) i studied in an aeronautical school where I archived my PPL. My girlfriend is from Michigan and we love each other but living at 6 hours and 7000km is hard. I’m looking around for a solution and I saw a banner in the Mesa Airlines site that announce they now accept E3 and F-1 Visas. I know that E3 is for Australian , but I’m elegible for F-1. Anyone know further information?
And, obviously, any other suggestions are well accepted :grin:

F-1 is a student visa. I am not sure what banner you saw but you cannot work for a US airline on a visa. Have you tried contacting Mesa for clarification?


My understanding is that to fly as a pilot for a US based airline, one needs to either be a US citizen or permanent US legal resident. I have not heard of visa exceptions being made and was unable to find the link you mentioned. I would be very surprised if this has changed. I recommend checking with Mesa directly.


Thanks for the quick replays guys, I have already send an email to Mesa and I’m waiting. (The email was corrected by my girlfriend for the English :stuck_out_tongue_winking_eye:)
There is a specific page for e3/f1


Please let us know what you find out. As far as I’m aware you need to either be a citizen or have permanent resident status. The link you posted does say “Legally authorized to work in the U.S. and Ability to Obtain a Social Security Number” so I’m curious?


I think this perfectly fit with E3 visa but for f-1 ? As far as I know you cannot work with F-1, just get payed being and instructor for the same school. I wrote a couple of day ago and I’m still waiting.

I am not an immigration attorney, but I am a naturalized citizen that had an F-1 visa for 6 years while in school here. It is a student visa. It requires the applicant to be enrolled in school full time or else you’re going to be out of status (I.e. in the country illegally). You’re allowed seasonal/part-time employment if you apply for a work permit but not in lieu of a full-time course load. In other words…either Mesa misrepresented the nature of their program (doubtful—that’s what they have attorneys for), or you misunderstood the ad. I have read the page and admittedly I’m very tired but I didn’t see any references to an F-1 visa in actual text. The overall pop-up ads are indeed misleading.

I completely agree with your examination and I really appreciated your answer. But I can’t believe that an important company as Mesa as can misunderstanding the law concern the F-1 visa :thinking:


I would be shocked if Mesa got this right as I have never heard of this in the US. Furthermore, the unions would be completely up in arms if this were happening and I haven’t heard a word out of them on this.

I will be curious to know what you hear back from Mesa.


I have no received any answer yet. If anyone would try and inform us about the answer it will be great

Hello mr santini. I don’t have too much knowledge about it but you might look a little bit more of getting CPT or OPT (those might help you to work in usa for a certain time) and also of trading to get the H2B visa which also help you to work in USA. However I don’t know if with those papers you will be able to work at mesa (maybe check other regionals)

This is the answer:
I wrote “Good morning I’m very interested and I would like receive further information about recruitment of F-1 visa”

Mesa “Mirko,
Do you currently hold an F-1 Visa?”

Me “I would like to know more information because I’m going to apply for F-1 very soon”

Mesa “Information how to apply for an F-1 Visa? Mesa Airlines does not supply that info.”

Me “No, sorry. I know how to apply for f-1. I would like to know about your research of E-3 and F-1 visas”

Mesa “Follow the link for information on the E3 process. If you hold an F-1 Visa you would apply just like a US passport or permanent resident would.

Me “Thank you for your reply. I have already read that page, but i didn’t know the possibility for a F-1 to apply for this kind of position. If I understand correctly, when I’ll finish with my training and I’ll archive my licenses will I able to apply for this position in Mesa? I knew that f-1 is released by the flying school for who will work as instructor in the same school, and the person isn’t allow to find a job outside that school”

Mesa “Yes. Let’s start with you meeting the requirements for a first officer position.”

My English is far away from perfect but am I understand correctly? They said “If you hold an F-1 Visa you would apply just like a US passport or permanent resident would” ??? Are they crazy or just kidding me?


Again I’m no expert but as we’ve been saying the Regionals are literally DESPERATE for pilots and are trying anything and everything to lock potential pilots in before they go elsewhere. To me it’s similar to them offering interviews to people with just their Private licenses. There’s nothing they can do with them now but if they roll out the red carpet and make them feel all warm and fuzzy maybe they can grab a pilot first when (if) the time comes. My thoughts on this are they’re saying call us and we’ll get you in our network now while you’re still training and have your F-1 Visa. Again there’s nothing they can do with you BUT should get your citizenship or permanent resident status the fine folks at Mesa were there welcoming and greeting you in the very beginning before you start weighing your options and realize you can go anywhere you want.



This subject is over my head as well. I read the information provided through the link you shared. Whoever created that recruiting page did not make it easy to understand for those that aren’t familiar with the process.

If I understand it correctly, I don’t think they are allowing pilots with E-3/F1 Visas to fly for them. Bottom line, US pilots must be US Citizens or Permanent Residents. However, it appears as though Mesa is trying to get first pick of those with E-3/F1 Visas that are in the process of obtaining Permanent Residency.

Again, not an expert. Your best bet is to continue communicating with Mesa directly.


Thank you gays for shared your opinion I appreciated