It goes without saying that the aviation industry is unbelievably massive. Even though millions of people travel around the globe each day by plane, most are not familiar with the staff managing the planes and costs of operating the global aviation network. Ever since the 20th century, aviation has become a key part of modern society and economy, and millions of employees around the world work in the industry every day.
From flight attendants, air traffic control to security software engineering, aviation maintenance experts, airline mechanics, and Federal Aviation Administration professions, there are countless jobs in the industry. In this article, we’ll explore some of the crucial as well as lesser-known professions in the aviation world! So fasten your seatbelt and get ready for an illuminating journey!
6. Flight Attendant
In the past, flight attendants actually had a much easier job since the competition wasn’t so steep compared to today. The position has always been a favorite of young people who love to travel. Additionally, it doesn’t have a high educational commitment, and high school is enough. Flight attendants need to complete some rigorous training and have great customer service skills. They need to stick to the requirements of their airline and learn all that’s required for their position. Training usually lasts up to 6 weeks, and the trainees need to obtain an FAA certificate. While the low educational requirements are ideal for young people looking to travel, salaries can vary greatly. Plenty of high school students become flight attendants during gap years before they enter bachelor degree programs.
Some reports state that the average flight attendant salary is around $37,300 per year. Nevertheless, it varies according to each commercial airline, and some employees can make up to $66,000 per year and more.
Still, those earnings are rather high since flight attendants don’t work all week. Typically, attendants have one or two flights per week and can spend about half a week traveling.
5. Aircraft and Avionics Technician
This profession deals with handling scheduled maintenance of planes. Aircraft and Avionics mechanics are in charge of diagnosing various issues while keeping a close eye on flight data. If there is a problem with the aircraft, they will replace or repair the necessary components. Additionally, avionics technicians need to do their work carefully since many things can go wrong if they happen to miss even one issue. The profession requires a thorough education from a technician school focused on airplane maintenance.
In terms of demand, the position is relatively sought-after. Boeing has recently claimed that over 600,000 new employees will be needed over the next two decades. Unfortunately, the profession comes with a rather low average yearly salary of $55,000, with some salaries even being as low as $35,000. Some FAA certified aircraft mechanics can earn up to $70,000. Compared to the knowledge and work required as well as other professions in the industry, these figures are incredibly low.
4. Safety Inspector
The safety inspector profession is absolutely essential in aviation. However, you may not know that the majority of employees comes from other fields like repairs, navigation, pilots, and others. Additionally, safety experts have their own branches, such as operations. Some may inspect pilots, training programs, or operational programs, while others will focus on the actual aircraft and their airworthiness. Others will evaluate repair facilities, aviation safety, equipment, and oversee avionics technicians as well as their recruitment.
While average salaries go up to $60,000, federal aviation inspectors’ earnings are rather high at $127,000 per year.
3. Air Traffic Controller
Traffic controllers are among the highest-paid employees in the industry, with an average annual salary of around $122,000. Employees in this profession coordinate air traffic.
They communicate with airline pilots and brief them on takeoff and landing instructions. They report to the pilots on weather changes and flight statistics that they can see from the ground. Plus, they are in charge of letting pilots know when it’s time to enter the runway and avoid planes overlapping. Even though it may seem simple, their job is quite difficult since they need to have a thorough understanding of all the elements that are in their control. They need to respond to emergencies quickly and without panic.
Employees in this profession are almost always required to finish the Collegiate Training Initiative for air traffic controllers, which usually lasts between 2 to 4 years. After that, they must complete a standardized 8-hour exam with high scores in order to get employed. Since the salaries are large, this profession comes with large competition.
2. Aeronautical Engineer
The profession of aerospace or aeronautical engineers comes with an infinite future.
Advancements are being made each day in the design and development of new planes and other aircraft. But, aerospace engineering is a highly demanding position that requires a college degree and great expertise. It requires a thorough knowledge of mechanics, propulsion, manufacturing, materials science, avionics, manufacturing, mathematics research, and more.
According to some reports, around 70,000 American aerospace engineers earn around $112,000 per year. Recently, the demand for engineers with a detailed knowledge of computer engineering software has increased. Some of the larger figures are $160,000 per year, and the lowest is close to $70,000.
Interestingly, pilots have been in high demand since the start of the 2010s. The shortage of pilots has been a highly talked-about subject for several years.
The new required Airline Transport Pilot license from 2009 was one of the reasons why fewer people ventured into pilot careers. The certificate created a rise in education costs as well as a higher knowledge requirement. Plus, large numbers of commercial pilots are nearing retirement. With all this combined, it’s fair to say that there are many opportunities for aspiring pilots today. With enough dedication and persistence to complete all the required programs and flight schools, a high-earning pilot will get over $135,000 per year. Depending on the airline, some of the lower figures are around $74,000.