Nationality & Residency
To meet RAF nationality requirements, you need to be one of the following:
- British citizen
- British national
- British/Dual national
- Commonwealth citizen
- Irish Republic national
To meet RAF residency requirements, you should have been a UK Resident for a minimum of five years immediately preceding application, and have spent no more than 28 days per year outside the UK within those five years.
UK residents of less than five years, or those who have spent more than 28 days per year outside the UK will require more eligibility checks. If this is you, call us for further advice.
You must be a citizen of the United Kingdom or holder of dual UK/ other nationality.
Whether or not you were born in the United Kingdom, you should have resided there for the 5 years immediately preceding your application.
Age requirements vary depending on which role you choose. The youngest age for applying is 15 years and nine months for an Airman. The oldest is 55 years for a Medical Officer.
If you’re under 18 years of age, you’ll need consent from a parent or guardian before you apply. If you’re under the minimum age to join, follow our Altitude Facebook Page to get a feel for life in the RAF.
- 17 ½ - 36 (Civilian candidates must enter IOT before their 37th birthday. Upper age limit does not apply for the Commissioned Warrant Officer scheme)
Whatever your academic background, there are a range of great opportunities in the RAF. Some require minimal qualifications, others require specialist skills and/or a degree.
Check the educational requirements for your role, if unsure consult the RAF equivalent qualifications in case they are applicable.
You will need a minimum of 5 GCSEs (or acceptable equivalents) at a minimum of Grade C (Grade 4 to 5 with effect from Aug 17) or 5 Scottish Certificate of Education (SCE) Standard Grades at a minimum of Grade 2 or 5 Scottish National Equivalent (SNE) grades at a minimum of Grade 5, including English Language and Mathematics.
In addition, you need at least 2 A2 Levels/3 Highers at Grade C or above (excluding General Studies or Critical Thinking) which must total a minimum of 64 UCAS points.
Alternatively, if you hold a UK degree at Grade 2:2 or higher (or acceptable alternative), you only need English Language and Mathematics GCSEs at a minimum of Grade C (Grade 4 to 5 with effect from Aug 17), SCE at a minimum of Grade 2 or SNE at Grade 5.
All applicants must be fit in order to complete initial and specialist training, and perform their roles effectively. To assess fitness, every candidate undergoes two or three separate fitness tests as part of the application process: Selection Fitness Test, Pre-joining Fitness Test or Pre-recruit Training Course. The fitness requirements for these tests vary according to role, age and gender.
You can see the protocols for Press Ups & Sit Ups here:
You can download an MP3 file of the Multi-Stage Fitness Test below, listen to the introduction file first:
RAF MSFT: Intro
RAF MSFT: Bleep Test
You can see a video demonstration of the PRTC Fitness Test here:
The Potential Regiment Officers Course (PROC) includes press-ups and sit-ups as well as a multi-stage aerobics fitness test over three days. See the table below for detailed requirements.
|AGE||Multi-Stage Fitness Test||Press-ups||Sit-ups|
|100% Pass||100% Pass||100% Pass|
The PROC also consists of the following:
- RAF Fitness Test: Including a Multi-stage Fitness Test (MSFT), Press ups and Sit ups. Age and gender specific as per the chart above.
- 1.5 Mile/2.4Km run. (11:11 mintes or under)
- Single Lift: Of 24 Kgs onto a 1.6m platform.
- Point of Entry: Over a 1.2m obstacle.
- Swim Test: 100m swim and 2 minutes treading water.
- Battle Scenario:
- Advance 100m in 10m bounds to the prone position.
- Withdrawal 100m in 10m bounds to the kneeling position.
- Casualty drag 15m (89kg mannequin).
- Stretcher carry: 17kg jerry can over 50m.
- Stretcher carry: 27 kg jerry can over 50m.
- Assault Course: There are 17 obstacles including a 6 ft and a 9 ft wall, a rope bridge, a rope swing and a rope cargo net (amongst others) which are all to be scaled at significant height.
To get ready for the fitness tests for the RAF Regt you can follow this fitness programme here.
There are health requirements that must be met by all applicants:
1) Body Mass Index requirements:
|Age||Male and female minimum||Male and female maximum||Male maximum with additional assessment||Female maximum with additional assessment|
16 to <18
Calculate your BMI now, click here.
2) Eyesight requirements vary for different roles. A requirement to wear glasses or contact lenses may be allowed for aircrew.
Get in touch if you have any questions about the health criteria, or would like to find out if any additional health requirements apply to your role of interest.
All applicants are required to:
- Declare any previous spent and unspent convictions
- Check eligibility under the Rehabilitation of Offenders Act 1974 through this summary of its provisions
- Undergo a basic background check to obtain Security Check level clearance
Some roles also require applicants to declare spent convictions, and obtain additional clearance.