Qualifications

Southwest Airlines Pilot Requirements:

  • Certificates/Ratings: U.S. FAA Airline Transport Pilot Certificate. Unrestricted U.S. ATP     
  • Age: Must be at least 23 years of age.
  • Flight Experience: 2,500 hours total or 1,500 hours Turbine total.  Additionally, a minimum of 1,000 hours in Turbine aircraft as the Pilot in Command* is preferred. Southwest considers only Pilot time in fixed-wing aircraft. This specifically excludes simulator, WSO, RIO, FE, NAV, EWO, etc. "Other Time" will not be considered.
  • Currency: Experience should include actively flying two of the last five years.
  • FCC Radiotelephone Operator Permit.
  • Medical: Must possess a current FAA Class 1 Medical Certificate. Must pass FAA mandated Drug Test.
  • Authorization to work in the United States: Must have established authorization to work in the United States.
  • Must possess a valid United States Driver's License and a valid passport or a Refugee Travel Document.
  • Education: graduation from accredited, four-year College preferred.
  • Letters of Recommendation: At least three letters from any individuals who can attest to the pilot's flying skills, by having observed him/her over a sustained period of time.


*PIC for this purpose is defined as Captain/Aircraft Commander of record, not simply the sole manipulator of the controls. For military personnel, Southwest Airlines will allow flight time logged as "Pilot in Command" (PIC) only if you are the Captain/Aircraft Commander, Evaluator, or Instructor Pilot. Primary time will only be considered PIC on a specific aircraft after an individual upgrades to Aircraft Commander n the appropriate aircraft. Time logged as "Other Time" will not be considered. 

Military Conversion: Military Pilots may convert flight time by adding .3 hours per sortie.

Applicants who have a B737 Type Rating must  not have limitations other than "B-737 CIRC.APCH.-VMC ONLY" documented on their certificate.

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Southwest Airlines Flight Instructor Requirements:

  • A USA DOT/FAA Airline Transport Pilot Certificate? The certificate must display the following: 1) Airplane Multi-Engine Land Category and Class Ratings. 2) English Proficient limitation. Plastic certificate: Plastic not required if the certificate is a valid temporary certificate. Age: Must be at least 23 years of age.
  • Previous experience as a Flight Instructor/Check Airman/Evaluator Pilot is preferred
  • Previous experience as a classroom Instructor or Simulator Instructor is preferred
  • Previous flying experience in B-737 or aircraft above 12,500 pounds is preferred
  • Medical: Must pass FAA mandated Drug Test.
  • Authorization to work in the United States: Must have established authorization to work in the United States.
  • Driver's License: Must possess a valid United States Driver's License.
  • Education: Graduation from accredited, four-year College preferred.