The Responsibilities of an Aircraft Dispatcher

The airline industry is expansive, with varying roles in countless different sectors. There are a number of jobs outside of pilot, stewards, and security that still come with a significant amount of responsibility. If you are interested in a career as an aircraft dispatcher, knowing a little bit more about the job’s requirements can give you an understanding of if it is the right fit for you. 

An aircraft dispatcher is one of the most vital operators contributing to safe flights, as there must be a dispatcher coordinating every flight. Here are some of the tasks one can expect to handle if they plan on pursuing this career:

Safety Evaluations

The primary task of an aircraft dispatcher is ensuring that a flight safely reaches its destination. Aircraft dispatchers assess every variable that can affect the safety of a flight, which could vary from plane to plane based on the route, aircraft, and other factors. An aircraft dispatcher’s responsibilities include, but are not limited, to the following:

  • The weather at the departure and arrival site
  • The weather along the flight route
  • The weather at an alternate airport in the event of an emergency landing
  • The mechanical performance of the plane

An airplane requires a dispatcher to sign off before it can take flight. If the aircraft dispatcher deems any area to be unsafe, they can cancel the flight altogether. 

Crew Review

As part of a dispatcher’s role in ensuring the safety of the flight, he or she will likely review the individuals aboard the flight, including attendants and pilots. Dispatchers are required to make sure that each member of the crew has the required qualifications. Additionally, a dispatcher may check to see if the crew has had enough rest between flights to ensure that crew members and pilots are alert and attentive.

Maximizing Efficiency

Another key part of this position’s responsibilities is to get the plane from its departure site to its arrival site as efficiently as possible. This means making sure that the flight route is as efficient as possible while maintaining safety and avoiding other aircraft routes. In order to accomplish this, dispatchers will take into account how much fuel will be consumed during the flight as well as how much additional fuel should be on the plane in case the pilot has to steer clear of weather or get to an alternate airport.

In-flight Monitoring

Flight dispatchers, like pilots, are responsible for evaluating and re-evaluating the weather, route, and other factors during the flight. In addition to a dispatcher’s responsibilities prior to takeoff, dispatchers will also make sure that the flight runs smoothly by keeping an eye on any approaching storms or other circumstances that could compromise the safety or efficiency of the plane.

The Benefits of Becoming an Aircraft Dispatcher

Working in the airline industry can be stressful, which is why the Federal Aviation Administration has implemented safety guidelines to prevent employees from becoming overworked. One of these guidelines mandates that dispatchers may only work 10 hours per shift. This creates the opportunity for schedule flexibility, such as working four 10-hour shifts and getting three days off.

Aircraft dispatchers also get the chance to work with a variety of people, such as airline management, maintenance crews, and the fuel department. A day on the job is sure to be filled with action and important decision-making.  Our flight dispatcher school in Florida is one of the oldest and most respected schools in the world, producing the best and brightest aircraft dispatchers. Learn more about how you can get your aircraft dispatcher license with us. 

Related Readings:

What Does an Aircraft Dispatcher Do?
How to Become an Aircraft Dispatcher – From Start to Finish

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