Air Cargo Supervisor

Ensure luggage and cargo is stowed safely and efficiently inside planes.

Quick Stats

Salary Range
$29,000 – $83,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Air Cargo Supervisors do?

An Air Cargo Supervisor, also known as a Loadmaster or Ramp Boss, is responsible for the safety of cargo on an aircraft. They direct the movement of the cargo, as well as the people doing the moving, namely the loaders and un-loaders, and the crew working on the flight. Air Cargo Supervisors oversee the loading and unloading of cargo, its securing, and its orientation, which is very important in making sure the aircraft remains balanced and stable at all times. Additionally, Air Cargo Supervisors determine how much cargo can be safely transported, and where it should remain during the flight.

In a military environment, which is where this occupation originated, you’re also responsible for the cargo drops (if any) as well as securing the personnel who go with those drops (again, if any). Also, if you’re doing this job in the military, you remain on the flight with the cargo, but if you’re working on a civilian aircraft, you remain at the airport. Once all of your calculations have been made and your load is secured, you sign off on the load plan.

The job itself can be stressful since you work in every kind of weather condition. You also have to have a wide set of skills, working with people, cargo, passengers, and computers and charts. You’re adept at everything from maximizing the cargo space available to you, to knowing the procedures in case of emergency.

The work is satisfying though, and your progress is immediately apparent when you’re moving large batches of cargo daily. At the end of the day, your pre-flight and post-flight aircraft checks, calculations, and able supervision of the crew you have working for you will result in a successful shipment and a very big job well done.

Should I be an Air Cargo Supervisor?

You should have a certificate degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Aircraft Loadmaster, Airfreight Loading Supervisor, Cargo Lead, Cargo Service Agent, Ground Crew Supervisor See More

    How to become an Air Cargo Supervisor

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