How to become a #flightdispatcher?

In fact, it depends a lot on where you’re aspiring to work, as formalities differ among countries (and airlines).
I am based in EDDF, and all I can describe 1st hand is how it works under German / EASA legislation – caution: this is most definitely NOT the same for other countries.
Generally, airline #flightplanning takes a license. Similar to a pilot’s, a “Flight Operations Officer” License is issued by the competent #aviation authority (for my German license, e.g, the LBA).

Acquiring this precious piece of paper takes quite some training plus exams.
Similar to #pilots, there’s 2 basic options: applying for an #airline backed course taking you from 0 to FOO — or take (and pay for) one of the courses offered at a few training organizations on the market, applying at an airline later as licensed “ready entry”.
Both options are limited and as far as I know, the latter one currently is the only one.

Initial training consists of loads of theoretical instruction, covering mostly the same as in #pilot training with focus shifted towards the planning subjects instead of stuff like airplane systems. Also, the theoretical exams are much like the ATPL ones (with a few contents cut out). All that can easily take around 10-12 months (NB – ATPL theory is credited, enabling you to skip the theory).

Once you’ve passed, you’ll move on to practical training. This takes you on an awesome journey through an actual OCC:  apply OM-A to OM-D, learn to use AIPs, ATC regs and flightplanning systems, play with minima, charts and weather aaaand… pass that practical exam after 3-4 months.

Once licensed, airline specific on the job training / route familiarization follows up to a “checkout”, i.e. able to work without supervision.
There also is mandatory recurrent training.

Oh and by the way – selection procedures regularly contain skill tests (e.g organizing, concentration, etc); proficiency in English, maths, physics; plus psychological assessment.

So, being an #avgeek sure helps 🤓✈️

(So, this article is written by Kirstin, currently working as a Flight Operation Officer)


  1. What is the starting salary of flight dispatcher and what are the working hours in this job?some people earn good money by doing overtime too.How much overtime a person can do in this job?

    1. Dear Efra, sorry for this very late reply – may be the question run in my Spam-Mailaccount …
      unfortunately, this cannot be answered so simply, because it depends on where and with which company you work, what kind of employment contract you have, what the collective agreement looks like (if there is one) – what the country rules are about how many hours can be worked at most …
      A starting salary should be around 2600.- Euro – which then increases with years and experience.

    1. Hi Maneesha,
      the license exam is in German, and most airlines in Germany also require the German language as a prerequisite.
      Kind regards

    1. As far as we know its about 15000 Euro, but it depends on the personal entry level.
      If there is such a course at the moment we can not answer. So for details, please get in touch with LAT, please.

    1. Dear Karthik,
      thanks for your question.
      For example, you can take a course followed by an exam at TUI Fly or Lufthansa Aviation Training. However, this is not a job guarantee – you would then have to apply to an airline of your choice or for a job yourself. At the moment, however, it looks as if there is an increasing demand for flight operation officers.

  2. Very well written and explained Kirstin and quite a bit of Informatio that you have put through. Great Stuff I must say and brings back memories the time I went thro all these as you have mentioned, during my Traing as a Dispatcher… Of course this was long years ago although the material seems to have not changed… Am also a Proud Holder of an FAA and LBA FOO Licenc..
    Keep up the Good Work and all the best…

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