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Worried about vision.

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Jan 24, 2002
Sorry to beat this topic to death, but I'm really worried about my vision. I've done a little searching on the net and found that UAL pilots must have 20/20 corrected with better than 20/100 uncorrected. Is this the same with most other airlines?? I really want to fly as a career but am I screwed at 20/15corrected and 20/~300un? How about corporate jobs, are they as strict on this? Again, sorry for dragging this out. I'm really considering a larger flight school and I want to know if I have a future as a pilot before paying out a stack of cash to a school. Thanks in advance for any help!!
As long as you can meet the requirements for the First Class physical there shouldn't be a problem. The minimum uncorrected vision standards that used to be part of the FARs were eliminated following passage of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). All of the rules pertaining to vision are in the FARs.
I agree. Even I passed every airline physical I have taken, and my uncorrected is pretty bad.

You want a 1st Class with no restrictions, and you are good to go.

Now, about moving to a larger, more expensive school...... Let's talk.

There has been a lot of discussion on large pilot factory/small school in busy terminal area. It all boils down to the quality of instruction you get, and that is determined by the CFI. Not by the size of the school or if you wear spiffy uniforms.

The print on your license is the same regardless of where you get the training.

Try to find out each individual airline's requirements.

In the bad old days you would have been eligible for your First but would have had to take a waiver (SODA) for your vision. I know. Mine is 20/20 corrected, 20/400 uncorrected in one eye and 20/70 or something uncorrected in the other eye. I've been out for eight years and just got my medical back in December.
:) :)
I was told I no longer needed the SODA but must have a vision correction restriction on my medical. In fact, the doctor volunteered to ask the FAA to remove the SODA from my record.

I'd see no problem for you regarding vision with the commuters, corporate, career instructing, FAA, or whatever else you choose.

Good luck with your training.
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Unless UAL changed their procedures, they do not require 20/100 uncorrected. I was informed by them in the spring of 2000 that UAL had dropped that requirement.

If you are really concerned about your uncorrected vision, try ortho-k. Since Feb 2000 I have gone from 20/400 to 20/50. There is no long term effect on the eye, so if you quit you can have your bad vision back in just a couple weeks.
Well, I know what it means, but I can't spell it out! Ortho-K is one of many Lazer correcting sugeries out there that you can get.

Let me tell you this. Un corrected is no big deal. The airlines cannot turn you down for this reason if hou hold a 1st class med. "REQUIRES CORRECTIVE LENSES" on a medical cirt. is in no way a bad thing. you have a first class. Work on things that matter like multi time, Experiance, Interview skills. This is what gets you the job.

If you are thinking about a Lazer surguary. I was told this by 5 Avit Doctors. "If you can correct to 20/20 with glasses or contacts, DO NOT DO THIS SURGERY. There is always a chance that somthing will go wrong and you will never be able to correct to 20/20. You are gambeling your career that it will work when you can live and fly without it. The day you loose your medical because you cannot correct to 20/20, come see me and we'll zap those eyes!"

Fly Safe
Do a search for "William Bates." Or "The Bates Method." These are eye exercices, and apparently, they work well.

I recently bought his book (the guy died many years ago I think). The book is called "Better Eyesight Without Glasses." I paid $16 Canadian, so that's like $10-$12 US. It's got all these eye exercises you can do. Lots of people have been successful with it (or so the book says). I do some of them, and notice differences right away, but then it fades. I guess you have to dedicate a lot of time to them, which I try to spend at least 15 minutes a day or more doing them. I can't always do them, which is probably why I'm not seeing dramatic improvements, but the "palming" exercise gives results after a few minutes. Search for the book or the exercises on the net: palming, sunning, swinging, shifting, central fixation, etc. The key to all of these is relaxation- relax your eyes, and you will see better. This is true, but results depend on people.

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