Flight Dispatcher is a person responsible for planning and monitoring the progress of an aircraft journey. In airline operations, both the pilot in command and the dispatcher are legally responsible for the safety of a flight.
Flight Dispatcher - Airline Careers A dispatcher has the authority to delay, divert or cancel a flight at any time, and a flight cannot be released without the signature of both the pilot in command and the dispatcher.
A dispatcher typically must be licensed by the aviation authority of a country. In order to obtain the license, the candidate must demonstrate extensive knowledge in meteorology and aviation, to a level that is comparable to that of an airline transport pilot license Flight Dispatcher
Flight dispatchers work indoors at the airport in the airline operations office. They use computers, calculators, weather charts and information, and loading re-ports. A 40-hour week with shift work is normal.
Dispatcher jobs required frequently work under pressure, especially when flying weather is bad. They must make many rapid decisions concerning safety, flight regulations, and the economy of operations. These employees are surrounded by people, teletype machines, telephones, and intercom systems in a noisy, busy atmosphere. Those who work for a small airline, carry on the duties of a meteorologist and schedule coordinator.
According to Richard Wateska of Airline Flight Dispatcher Training Center: Entry level flight dispatchers earn between $24,000 - $30,000 with $110,000+top end annual salary. Benefits of being employed with the airlines are great and include: Cockpit Jumpseat Authority (ride jumpseat on your airline, and most other airlines globally). Free or reduced rate travel privilege(world-wide travel for you, and your family and friends). Health Insurance, Life Insurance, 50-60% discounts at most large hotel chains globally(Hilton, Hyatt, Sheraton, Marriott, Intercontinental,etc), 401K retirement plans, Discounts at most major rental car agencies, 50-80% discount on most ship cruise lines. Hundreds of other standard airline industry travel discounts. Salaries and benefits can vary.
Flight dispatchers can move into this position from jobs as dispatch clerks, junior flight dispatchers, radio operators, meteorologists, or station managers. Large airlines employ senior dispatchers who specialize in coordinating the finances of every flight. Promotion is from within. Experience as an airline dispatcher may be used in qualifying for a job as an air traffic controller with the Federal Aviation Administration or as an airport director.
Though a college degree with a major in air transportation or meteorology is useful preparation for work as a flight dispatcher, experience is equally important. Job applicants must have good vision, hearing, enunciation, and an FAA dispatcher's license. They must know thoroughly the Federal Aviation Regulations on airline operations and be competent in airline communications and meteorology.