Pilot looking out of cockpit

Civilian to Guard/Reserve


Are you interested in becoming a military pilot but have concerns about:

  • The 10-12 year full-time commitment to the active duty?
  • The lack of guarantee for a pilot training slot?
  • The uncertainty of your aircraft assignment?
  • The uncertainty of where you’ll live?

Earning a pilot slot in the Guard or Reserve is a great option if you desire:

  • Security of a pilot training slot before ever starting officer training.
  • Control on which aircraft you’ll fly before you ever start pilot training.
  • Control of where you’ll live for the longevity of your military career.
  • Flexibility to be full-time or part-time.
  • Flexibility to pursue civilian opportunities (e.g. airlines, school, business, etc) while serving your country and flying the most advanced aircraft on this planet!

BogiDope Can Help!


We tailored the Civilian to Guard/Reserve content specifically for the men and women interested in attending Undergraduate Pilot Training (UPT).  Ask most current and former military pilots and you’re likely to hear that Guard/Reserve UPT slots are the best deal in military aviation!  Lack of information regarding hiring specifics, deadlines, and opportunities has made these slots a seemingly well-guarded secret that’s too good to be true.  Well, it’s not.  We know because we went through it ourselves!

The BogiDope team is dedicated to filling that information gap.  We offer a variety of features to help you achieve your dreams!  Learn about the entire process with our library of articles.  Make informed career decisions by first knowing what opportunities exist with our Interactive Map and Job Listing page.  With specific data on over 175 Guard/Reserve flying squadrons, we’re confident you’ll find something that interests you.  Finally, significantly increase your odds of landing that dream job by speaking with one of our pilots in a 1-on-1 consultation prior to any application or interview.

You’ve worked hard to make yourself competitive for a pilot slot.  Let BogiDope help your aviation dreams become a reality — on your terms!


Civilian to Guard/Reserve Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Air National Guard?

The ANG is a military organization primarily responsible for supporting various state missions (e.g. alert, disaster relief, etc) while also occasionally deploying overseas as a reserve component of the active duty Air Force.

The ANG flies almost all of the same aircraft available in the active duty (e.g. F-35, F-22, F-16, F-15, A-10, B-2, C-130, C-17, KC-135, KC-46, HH-60, and many more). Each state has at least one flying mission (e.g. the TN ANG flies the KC-135, the LA ANG flies the F-15, and the MN ANG flies both the F-16 and C-130–every state is unique). Aircrew will be either hired directly by a squadron to attend UFT or transition over from the active duty (any branch). They will attend the same exact training in the same classes as their active duty counterparts.

ANG aircrew are subject to the same commitment as the active duty Air Force (e.g. 10 years of service for pilots after completing Undergraduate Pilot Training), however you can fulfill that commitment as either a full-time or part-time member of that squadron.

What is the Air Force Reserve?

The Air Force Reserve (AFR) is a Major Command (MAJCOM) of the active duty Air Force, providing combat-ready forces to Fly, Fight and Win.

The AFR currently performs about 20 percent of the work of the Air Force, including traditional flying missions and other more specialized missions, such as Weather Reconnaissance (Hurricane Hunters), Modular Aerial Fire Fighting (MAFFs) and Personnel Recovery (Pararescuemen).

Applicants applying for a pilot slot in the AFR can be sponsored (hired by a squadron) or unsponsored.  Upon completion of pilot training, members incur the same service commitment as active duty, but have the option of serving in either a full-time or part-time status.

What is the active duty Air Force?

The Air Force is a full-time, federal organization primarily used to fight and support conflicts around the world. Approximately every three years, you will move to a different location and potentially fly a different aircraft based on the needs of the Air Force.

What is the main difference between flying in the Air Force vs the Air National Guard?


Based on the needs of the Air Force at the time, the active duty will determine what you fly and where you will live until your Active Duty Service Commitment is fulfilled (approximately 12-year commitment: two years to complete UPT and then a 10-year service commitment after earning your wings).

Unlike the AF, the ANG allows you to apply directly to specific squadrons that fly specific aircraft in specific locations (use the BogiDope Map function to determine which states fly which aircraft). If you are hired, you will attend training to fly that same type of aircraft so you can return to fly for the state that hired you. For example, if you are hired by the SC ANG, you would attend UPT for the purpose to fly the F-16 (because that’s what they fly in the SC ANG) and know that you will return to the Columbia, SC area following the completion of F-16 training.

Once your initial training is complete, an ANG aircrew member also has the opportunity to fulfill his/her service commitment in a full-time or part-time capacity.

What do I need to do in order to apply?

1. Frequently check the BogiDope Job Listings as well as any other sources to get the latest application deadlines and details
2. Take the AFOQT and TBAS
3. Create a great cover letter and resume (that’s where we can help)
4. Accumulate 3-5 Letters of Recommendation
5. Request copies of your college transcripts (if still in school, remember that GPA is often more important than degree type)
6. Complete your Private Pilot’s Certificate (not required but highly recommended)
7. If already in the military, copies of your last three OPRs/EPRs

What is the maximum age for attending UPT?

You must be exactly 33 years old or younger by the start of your first day of UPT. Age waivers to approve a candidate beyond the maximum age are not uncommon.