High Salary Airport Jobs – Ground Staff & In The Air

In this post, I’m going to tell you about those high salary airport jobs that attract so many people, , whether they are on the ground or in the air.

From pilots to air traffic controllers, the aviation industry offers a range of career opportunities with salaries to match.  As a benchmark and for the larger demographic of the audience the salary figures I’ve quoted are in US dollars.

Why do salaries for the same job vary?

Before we begin, let’s remind ourselves why the salaries differ, from airport to airport, for the same job with exactly the same responsibilities.

The salary for a job role at different airports can be determined by several factors, even if the job role description is exactly the same:

  • Location: The cost of living and the local job market can play a significant role in determining salaries at different airports. For example, a job role in a major metropolitan city might command a higher salary than the same role in a rural area.
  • Company: The size and financial stability of the airport and the specific company within it can also play a role in determining salaries. Larger, well-established companies may offer higher salaries than smaller companies or those in financial distress.
  • Experience and qualifications: An individual’s level of experience and qualifications can also impact their salary. A candidate with more years of experience or advanced certifications may command a higher salary than a less experienced or less qualified candidate.
  • Collective bargaining agreements: If the airport or the specific company is unionised, salary levels can be determined by collective bargaining agreements.Industry demand: The demand for certain job roles in the aviation industry can impact salaries. For example, a job role in high demand might command a higher salary than the same role in a declining industry.

Median vs Average Salaries

OK, so that’s the reason for the variations, but what’s the difference between a median salary and an average salary?

The median salary is the middle value of a set of salaries, with half of the salaries being higher and half being lower.

The average salary, also known as the mean salary, is calculated by adding up all the salaries and dividing by the number of salaries.

For example, if a job role has five workers earning $50,000, $60,000, $70,000, $80,000, and $90,000 per year, the median salary would be $70,000 (because it’s in the middle of the range), and the average salary would also be $70,000.

But, if one worker was earning $200,000 per year, the median salary would still be $70,000 (because it’s still in the middle of the range), but the average salary would increase to $86,000, and that figure might not accurately reflect the typical salary for the job role

Now that we understand what a median salary is, let’s begin with the jobs on the ground.

High Salary Airport Jobs - Ground Staff & In The Air

Ground Based High Salary Airport Jobs

Here are a few airport jobs with high salaries that don’t involve flying:

  • Air Traffic Controller – Air traffic controllers are responsible for managing the flow of aircraft in and out of the airspace, ensuring safe and efficient operations.  The median salary for an air traffic controller is around $122,000 per year.
  • Aerospace Engineer – Aerospace engineers design, develop and test aircraft, missiles, and spacecraft. With a median salary of $116,500 per year, it’s a highly sought-after role in the aviation industry.
  • Manager of Airport Operations – Managers of airport operations oversee day-to-day airport operations, including security, maintenance, and customer service. The average salary for this role is around $100,000 per year.
  • Manager of Airline Operations – Managers of airline operations are responsible for overseeing the operational performance of airlines. With an average salary of $115,000 per year, this is a well-paying role for those with strong leadership skills and a passion for the aviation industry.
  • Airport Security Manager – Security managers ensure the safety and security of airport operations, passengers, and employees. With an average salary of $90,000 per year, this is a critical role that requires strong leadership, organisational, and communication skills.

That covers the highest paid salaries for ground staff. Now let’s look at the airport jobs that involve flying.

High Salary Aiport Jobs For High Flyers

  • Pilot – Being a pilot is a dream for many, and for good reason. With the demand for air travel on the rise, pilots are in high demand and can expect to earn a lucrative salary. The average salary for a commercial pilot is around $140,000 per year, with the potential for even higher earnings for senior pilots.
  • Flight Attendant – Being a flight attendant may not be the first job that comes to mind when thinking of high-paying airport jobs, but it can be a rewarding and well-paying career. With the average salary for a flight attendant hovering around $50,000 per year, it’s a job that offers both a good income and the chance to see the world, with many other benefits.
  • VIP Flight Attendant – A VIP flight attendant, on the other hand, works for a private jet company and is responsible for serving the needs of the passengers on private jets. They typically work in a more luxurious and personalised environment and have a smaller crew. 

The salary for a VIP flight attendant is generally higher compared to a regular flight attendant, with many earning salaries in the six-figure range. According to data from Glassdoor, the median salary for a VIP flight attendant in the United States is around $80,000 per year, but this can range from $60,000 to $150,000 or more.

These are just a few of the many high-paying jobs available at airports.  Whether you’re interested in flying or working on the ground, the aviation industry has something to offer.  So why not consider a career in the skies?

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