hourly pay for Radio Operators
do Radio Operators make a lot of money

Radio Operators

Other names for this job might include Aircraft Dispatcher, Airline Operations Agent, Airline Radio Operator, Avionics Supervisor, Centrex Radio Operator, Communications Specialist, Communications Technician, Continuous Wave Operator (CW Operator), Dispatcher, Electronic Intelligence Operations Specialist

  • $46780
  • 68%
    Job satisfaction
  • Medium
    Becoming one
  • Low
    Job growth
OwlGuru Rank


How Much Do Radio Operators Make In 2018

In this salary guide, you will find out how much do Radio Operators make.

After reading this, you will be able to make a decision if working as a Radio Operator will suit your financial goals (e.g: buying a home, BMW or just your target salary goal).

Average salary

Annual salary
$46780 per year
Hourly wage
$22.490 per hour

One of the most popular questions we get from our readers here at OwlGuru is how much do Radio Operators make per year and what is their hourly wage.

According to BLS, the average annual salary of Radio Operators is $46780. Their salary can also be as low as $19740 if you’re still a newbie with no experience to over $73930 if you have a ton of experience under your belt.

The typical hourly pay is $22.490 and can range from $9.490 to $35.540 which also depends if you’re a newbie or a professional.

Just like any other job, the salary of A Radio Operator will vary based on your education and experience level.

# = Over $100 per hour or $200,000 per year.
Salary rank

We wanted to make it easy for our readers to compare the salary of A Radio Operator to all the other careers out there. So we created Salary Rank.

This compares the salary of all careers and we give them a rank of A, B, C or D depending on how high or low is their average salary.

After comparing how much do Radio Operators make with other careers, they have a salary rank of C.

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Salary range

Highest (Top 10%)$35.540$73930
Senior (Top 25%)$28.770$59850
Middle (Mid 50%)$22.240$46250
Junior (Bottom 25%)$15.240$31690
No experience (Bottom 10%)$9.490$19740

Entry-level Radio Operators who starts out at $31690 can expect to make $46250 after 3-5 years of experience in the field.

The bottom 10% makes less than $9.490 per hour while the top 10% makes over $35.540 per hour.

While the median wage is $46250 per annum or $22.240 per hour.

Depending on who you work for, you might also get overtime pay.

# = Over $100 per hour or $200,000 per year.

Highest paying industries

Industry nameHourly wageAnnual salary
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals23.949710
Federal, State, and Local Government23.849500
Federal, State, and Local Government, excluding state and local schools and hospitals, and the US Postal Service23.849500
Local government, including schools and hospitals23.6949270
State Government, excluding schools and hospitals23.6649220
Federal, state, and local government, including government owned schools and hospitals, and the US Postal Service23.6349150
State government, including schools and hospitals23.5548980
All industries21.9945740
All industries, private ownership only19.2440010
Broadcasting (except Internet)15.4532140
Radio and Television Broadcasting14.7330630
Radio Broadcasting14.6830540

Not all industries pay the same for Radio Operators.

One of the easiest way to increase your salary is to change industries and find a higher paying one.

Highest paying states


Another simple way to boost your pay as A Radio Operator is to move to a higher paying state. However moving to a higher paying state like NY doesn’t mean you will make more overall. This is because the expenses at NY may be 2x higher than where you are currently living at right now.

According to the BLS, the highest paid / most successful Radio Operators are in the states of NY, MI, DC, MN and IN. The average salary in NY is $62510.

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Rank: B
Salary: $39410

They operate radio, telephone, or computer equipment at emergency response centers. Receive reports from the public of crimes, disturbances, fires, and medical or police emergencies. Relay information to law enforcement and emergency response personnel. May maintain contact with caller until responders arrive.
Rank: B
Salary: $51190

They ensure the safe takeoff and landing of commercial and military aircraft. Duties include coordination between air-traffic control and maintenance personnel; dispatching; using airfield landing and navigational aids; implementing airfield safety procedures; monitoring and maintaining flight records; and applying knowledge of weather information.
Rank: D
Salary: $41240

They monitor and control electronic computer and peripheral electronic data processing equipment to process business, scientific, engineering, and other data according to operating instructions. Monitor and respond to operating and error messages. May enter commands at a computer terminal and set controls on computer and peripheral devices.
Rank: B+
Salary: $118780

They control air traffic on and within vicinity of airport and movement of air traffic between altitude sectors and control centers according to established procedures and policies. Authorize, regulate, and control commercial airline flights according to government or company regulations to expedite and ensure flight safety.
Rank: C
Salary: $78170

They coordinate, regulate, or distribute electricity or steam.

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