Flight Dispatchers

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What do Flight Dispatchers do?

Flight dispatchers play a critical role in airport operations. They ensure that pilots and passengers are able to fly safely. Without flight dispatchers, the flight crew would not be able to manage the flight effectively and safely.

Flight dispatchers normally work at the operations center of the airline. Their main job is to make airline operations run smoothly, and are responsible for monitoring safety guidelines and weather patterns.  The role is also known as the ground pilot, the job of a flight dispatcher is one of intense decision making and high stress as they must monitor and take into a variety of factors, including winds and thunderstorms, turbulence forecasts, airspace restrictions, and airport conditions.

What are The Key Responsibilities of the Role?

They include:

  • Preparing preflight administration, flight plans and flight briefings
  • Maintaining the aircraft schedule to ensure they meet airport and airspace regulations
  • Remaining in constant communication with pilot to ensure that the flight adhering to its flight route
  • Acting as the middle man between the pilot and ground services
  • Signing dispatch release forms to provide authorisation for aircraft flight
  • Checking the visibility at both the departure airport and the destination airport to identify potential hazards
  • Preparing flight plans containing information about the conditions, maximum allowable takeoff plan, weather conditions, and other information vital to the safe completion of a flight
  • Reviewing the aircraft weight, cargo load and fuel loads
  • Providing pilots with alternative flight plants in case of an emergency
  • Communicating with the flight captain to solve any issues that may arise on flight

What Skills & Qualifications do I need to become a Flight Dispatcher?

Flight dispatcher applicants generally need to have acquired a few GCSE’s at grades (A*-C), especially in English and maths. Qualifications such as a GCSE in leisure and tourism, an A level in travel and tourism, or a Diploma in aviation operations may further aid your application. Degrees in travel, airline or aviation management are also useful for qualifying for this role.

Some of the most important skills you will need to succeed in this job include active listening skills to effectively communicate with pilots who might be mid-flight. Effective communication, as you will spend a great deal of your time communicating with others to assure that flights go smoothly. Good judgement and excellent problem-solving skills. Also, the ability to remain calm under pressure will be critical.


What can I expect to earn as a Flight Dispatcher?

Average starting salaries for flight dispatchers start at £14,000 and with experience you can earn £20,000. Those who achieve managerial positions can expect to earn anywhere between £25,000 and £50,000.


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