What opportunities have age limits?
April 5, 2019 6:18 AM   Subscribe

What are some experiences or opportunities that have an age limit cutoff?

I'm trying to gather information about what opportunities are out there with a ticking clock, so to speak. You have to be 35 or younger to join the Army, but at most 34 to join the Navy and 28 to join the Marines.

You can get a youth discount on Eurail passes if you're 27 years old or younger.

I'm having trouble coming up with other experiences or benefits where there is a maximum age limit.

What other things can you be "too old" for?
posted by amicamentis to Society & Culture (49 answers total) 6 users marked this as a favorite
Teen programs at libraries.
posted by starlybri at 6:20 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

You can't be older than 28 to be on American Idol.
posted by greta simone at 6:21 AM on April 5, 2019 [4 favorites]

Many JRFs (Junior Research Fellowships - basically prestigious research-only postdoc positions) at Oxford and Cambridge have age limits, or at least they used to if they don't any longer...
posted by ClaireBear at 6:30 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

When I was interested in becoming a Catholic nun in the 1970s, I noticed that a lot of orders wouldn't accept women older than 40. Googling just now, it looks like this might have been relaxed a bit, but what I found said that women can be accepted in their 40s and into their 50s. So there are probably still age limits in place, but they would vary according to the order. To check a specific order, I just looked at the Dominican Sisters of San Jose, and their website says they generally accept women between 18 and 40.
posted by FencingGal at 6:31 AM on April 5, 2019 [3 favorites]

The Fields Medal is awarded to mathematicians under the age of 40.

Birthright Israel is available to Jewish people between ages 18 and 32.
posted by likedoomsday at 6:31 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

A good number of corporate boards of directors have a mandatory retirement age of 75.
posted by xingcat at 6:32 AM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Working Holiday visa programs usually have an age limit of 30.
posted by odd ghost at 6:35 AM on April 5, 2019 [7 favorites]

Canada has a ton of language training and exchange programs that are for youth -- under 18 or under 25 or whatever.

Also, a lot of operas, ballets, orchestras and theater companies have young adult pricing for their tickets that goes up to 25 or 30 years of age and allows you to buy really cheap tickets to their events. Like, $10 for a ticket that would cost $100 for a regular price ticket. They are trying to attract younger audiences and hope that people will get in the habit and keep going after they have to pay full price. Didn't work on me, but it was fun while it lasted.
posted by jacquilynne at 6:42 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

in the U.S., most federal law enforcement positions have a max age of 37 for initial hiring. Exceptions apply, but they also generally have a mandatory retirement age of 57, so they want to make sure they get 20 years out of you before you hit pension.
posted by skewed at 6:47 AM on April 5, 2019 [3 favorites]

Working Holiday visas have an age limit, depending on the agreement.
posted by TORunner at 6:52 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

Some ski resorts have discounts on lift tickets for adults 24 and under. (And 20 years after that, your knees start giving out.)
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 6:53 AM on April 5, 2019

Similar to the Fields Medal for math mentioned above, the John Bates Clark Medal is awarded to the top American economist under the age of 40.

The Wikipedia page on Mandatory Retirement has a section with some jobs with age limits in the United States, including pilots, air traffic controllers, federal law enforcement, and some judges.
posted by Mr.Know-it-some at 6:55 AM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Americorps tops off at 24 for regular members (with no upper limit for team leaders).
posted by codacorolla at 7:22 AM on April 5, 2019

With rare exception, people older than 18 can not become Eagle Scouts.
posted by box at 7:25 AM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Commercial airline pilots have a mandatory retirement age of 65.
posted by saladin at 7:33 AM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

Second language learning can be done after puberty, but it's much more limited and you will likely have an accent.

You can't see a pediatrician after age 21. Rare exceptions for those with unusual conditions for whom an adult specialist cannot be found.

Most clinical research trials specify an upper age limit, usually something like 75, 80, 89.

You cannot contribute to a traditional IRA after age 70.5

In the US, you can be covered by your parents' health insurance until age 26.
posted by basalganglia at 7:34 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

The cutoff to compete for Miss America is 26.
posted by JanetLand at 7:37 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

If you want to be a professional boxer, you'd better get going by at least your mid 30's to pay your dues in the amateurs. While there might not be an age limit in professional boxing, there is a limit in the amateurs and that has now been set at 40 by the International Boxing Association (AIBA).
posted by Gray Duck at 7:39 AM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

There's an age limit for enlisting in the military, 28-39, depending on the branch.
posted by TheAdamist at 7:57 AM on April 5, 2019

Many US medical schools don't like to admit "older" students as my sister found out when she applied to med school at 40, even though she had an MS in biology and 15 yrs of experience as a researcher. When she graduated from med school- Duke, not too shabby- she faced the same ageism with residencies. This was back in the 1990s, I hope things have changed since then.
posted by mareli at 8:03 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

Americorps tops off at 24 for regular members (with no upper limit for team leaders).

This isn't quite correct - this only applies to Americorps NCCC, which is indeed 18-24 for regular service members but is only one branch of Americorps. There's also City Year (aka "red jacket" for the swarms of high school/gap year teens you'll see in red Americorps branded coats while they're serving), which is 18-25. But Americorps State/National and Americorps VISTA exist, which not only don't really have this kind of age limit (unless there's some specifics in local programs) but actually allow you to pass on your education award from finishing a term of service onto kids, grandkids, etc. if you're at least 55 years old. There's also the parallel Senior Corps that doesn't let you join until you're 55 or older.

Anyway, there's Forbes 30 under 30 list - the cutoff is basically 29. Single male Mormon missionaries must be no older than 25.
posted by Freeze Peach at 8:20 AM on April 5, 2019 [3 favorites]

In a lot of countries banks will not lend money for mortgages if the homebuyer is over a certain age.

For example, in France you can't apply for a 30-year mortgage once you cross 50.
posted by JoeZydeco at 8:44 AM on April 5, 2019

Probably not exactly what you're looking for, but...when my mom was in her late 70's she took a cruise and wanted to go snorkeling. She had to look pretty hard to find a snorkeling excursion that would take people over 75, and finally found one with a cutoff at 80.

She did manage to find a place that would let her go parasailing until 80 as well.
posted by thejanna at 9:22 AM on April 5, 2019 [4 favorites]

Ignore my last comment - you're looking for maximum, not minimum. My mistake.
posted by Roger Pittman at 9:23 AM on April 5, 2019

Donating bone marrow, organs in general age is less of an issue but bone marrow you have to be under 60 I have no idea why.
posted by wwax at 9:52 AM on April 5, 2019

All egg donor and surrogate pregnancy programs have age limits, usually allowing for participation from ages 21-30, but I don't think there are specific laws involved.

Job Corps is open to people ages 16-24.

Maximum age for free education in the US is 17-26, with most states being 19-21. (TX is 26; Alabama is 17; those are the far outliers.)
posted by ErisLordFreedom at 10:06 AM on April 5, 2019

Some hostels have age limits.
posted by Candleman at 10:17 AM on April 5, 2019

Donating bone marrow, organs in general age is less of an issue but bone marrow you have to be under 60 I have no idea why.
There are more restrictions placed on living donors in general because they want to safeguard the donor's health. For bone marrow, you take drugs before the harvest to up your white blood cell count and that is hard on the donor if they are not in perfect health.
posted by soelo at 10:29 AM on April 5, 2019 [2 favorites]

The US military also has upper age limits for Officer candidacy.
posted by jessamyn at 10:43 AM on April 5, 2019

RE bone marrow, my husband needed a bone marrow transplant and his sister was a perfect match, she was 76 I think. But she did it and it was fine. They drop you off the donor list now at 62 though.
posted by chocolatetiara at 11:13 AM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

To apply for a Rhodes Scholarship, you must be between 18-24 years old.
posted by hydra77 at 12:12 PM on April 5, 2019

You cannot be older than 76 or 79 to travel on an French or German freighter cruise. Also, the Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program does not have a set age limit but it's really only for "youths".
posted by olopua at 12:17 PM on April 5, 2019

It varies from country to country that you can't adopt a newborn after a certain age (may be 50 in US).
posted by cda at 12:26 PM on April 5, 2019

US filter: To qualify for a position as an FBI Special Agent: Candidates must be at least 23 years old, but younger than 37 at the time of appointment.
posted by cda at 12:29 PM on April 5, 2019

The age cut-off for the French Foreign Legion is 39 years and 6 months.
posted by mhum at 12:34 PM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

I think there's a cutoff in the 30s some where if you want to be an air traffic controller? this is a slightly depressing but interesting question..
posted by elgee at 1:20 PM on April 5, 2019

Some tattoo artists won't tattoo old people (source: my 80+ year old friend who enquired).
posted by The corpse in the library at 2:02 PM on April 5, 2019 [1 favorite]

The Yale Younger Poets award cuts off at age 40, or used to. Can't find anything about it on the website.
posted by tuesdayschild at 2:13 PM on April 5, 2019

I think the children of airline pilots fly free up to a certain age. Something like 18 -24 depending on if they are full time students or not.
posted by BoscosMom at 8:06 PM on April 5, 2019

The Australian skilled immigration points system includes a sliding scale of points based on age. Above the age of 44, there are 0 points, making it impossible to migrate to Australia under this particular scheme.
posted by plep at 3:49 AM on April 6, 2019

The UK's young person's railcard offers 1/3 off rail travel in the UK for 16-25 year olds.
posted by plep at 3:50 AM on April 6, 2019 [1 favorite]

There's lots of arts awards that are restricted to younger people. Like, the Talente prize in 'applied arts and technology', for under-35s.
posted by yesbut at 3:50 AM on April 6, 2019

You need to be aged between 6 and 15 to apply for a Blue Peter badge.
posted by plep at 3:55 AM on April 6, 2019

There are slight variations among professions and among states, and occasional exceptions made, but in general one cannot become a German civil servant (Beamter/Beamtin) after the age of 35.
posted by jeudi at 6:11 AM on April 6, 2019

To be a US Foreign Service Officer you must be between 20 and 59 at time of application. I know someone who applied at 58 and was accepted.
posted by Nosey Mrs. Rat at 10:26 PM on April 6, 2019

If you want to be a medical guinea pig, most trials have an age limit, for most you need to be under 50.
posted by Sophont at 11:20 PM on April 6, 2019

The cutoff for becoming an au pair is 30 in a lot of countries, if not younger.
posted by helloimjennsco at 9:03 AM on April 8, 2019

It's not a "technical" absolute cutoff, but scuba diving becomes a LOT more dangerous once you hit your mid-fifties/sixties, especially for men, since it's very difficult to survive an underwater heart attack. There are lots (LOTS!) of divers older than that, who are just fine, but if you want to learn to dive "someday", it will be safer when you're younger.
posted by bluesky78987 at 1:16 PM on April 8, 2019

I saw an ad for becoming an FBI agent that I was a great fit for, but the cutoff was 37 unless you are a veteran. Alas, I am a 40 year old civilian.
posted by Fuego at 9:44 AM on April 9, 2019

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