Airplane Dispatchers

Airplane dispatchers plan and direct commercial air flights according to government and airline company regulations. They read radio reports from airplane pilots during flights and study weather reports to determine any necessary change in flight direction or altitude. They send instructions by radio to the pilots in the case of heavy storms, fog, mechanical difficulties, or other emergencies. Airline dispatchers are sometimes called flight superintendents. The Airline Dispatchers Federation has approximately 1,500 members.

Next Section: History

Quick Facts
Alternate Title(s) Flight Superintendents
Duties Plan and direct commercial air flights according to government and airline company regulations
Salary Range Below $25,000 to $100,000
Work Environment Primarily Indoors
Best Geographical Location(s) Chicago, Dallas, New York and other airline hubs
Minimum Education Level
  • Some Postsecondary Training
  • Associate's Degree
School Subjects
  • Geography
  • Mathematics
  • Speech
Experience 15 to 20 years of experience
Personality Traits
  • Conventional
  • Helpful
  • Technical
  • Interpersonal
  • Math
  • Organizational
Certification or Licensing Required
Special Requirements Must be 23 years old; vision must be correctable to 20/20
Employment Prospects Fair
Advancement Prospects Fair
Outlook Decline
Career Ladder
  • Chief Flight Dispatcher or Flight Dispatch Manager
  • Airplane Dispatcher
  • Assistant Dispatcher
  • Dispatch Clerk

Related Industries

Become a Vault Basic Member

Complete your Vault Profile and get seen by top employers



Health Service Administrator

  • $0
  • 25
  • 50
  • 75
  • 100
  • 100+
Yearly Salary Range (US$ Thousands)