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Air Traffic Controllers and Airfield Operations Specialist Salary Information

The salary statistics of air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists are shown in Table 1. The average hourly salary of air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists in the United States is shown in Table 2. In the next few tables we compare the average salaries of air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists within different industry sectors and in the 50 states of the United States. The air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists annual salary statistics are from the national compensation survey conducted by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2016 and published in April 2017 [1].

Table 1. Air Traffic Controllers and Airfield Operations Specialist Salary in the United States

Percentile BracketAverage Annual Salary
10th Percentile Wage
$36,910
25th Percentile Wage
$61,460
50th Percentile Wage
$96,870
75th Percentile Wage
$139,540
90th Percentile Wage
$166,730

Table 1 shows the average annual salary for air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists. The average annual salary for the 90th percentile (the top 10 percent of the highest paid) air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists is $166,730. The median annual salary (50th percentile) is $96,870. The average annual salary for the bottom 10 percent is $36,910. Take note that in the United States, the annual salary of the 90th percentile (the top 10 percent of the highest paid) is almost 351% higher than that of the bottom 10 percent.

Salary Trend (2012 to 2016)

The following table and chart show the trend of the median salary of air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists from 2012 to 2016.

YearMedian SalaryYearly Growth4-Year Growth
201696,870-3.17%-5.80%
201599,940-1.52%-
2014101,460-0.41%-
2013101,880-0.60%-
2012102,490--

Table 2. Air Traffic Controllers and Airfield Operations Specialist Salary by Industry Sector

The average salaries of air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists in 6 major industry sectors are shown in Table 2. We note that the salaries vary considerably within different industry sectors. The highest paying industry sector for air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists occupations is the federal, state, and local government sector with an annual salary $116,280. The lowest paying sector is the educational services sector (annual salary $32,220).

Industry Sector Median Annual Salary
Federal, State, and Local Government
$116,280
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services
$96,930
Manufacturing
$64,080
Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services
$63,900
Transportation and Warehousing
$59,700
Educational Services
$32,220


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Highest paying industries for air traffic controllers and airfield operations specialists.