Airport Security Jobs

Airport Security Jobs – All About Airport Security Officers

If you are interested in keeping the people of your country safe, you may consider the position of an airport security officer as a career. The airport sector provides several airport security jobs on a regular basis thus, providing you a chance to step into this rewarding career.  But, before diving into any career field, it is better to do some prior research to make sure that you will be a great fit for a specific role as well as for the entire industry.

In this article, we’ll discuss in detail the requirements to become an airport security officer. We’ll also talk about how you can find good airport security jobs for yourself.

Before starting, remember that an Airport Security Officer is also known as a Transportation Security Officer. That is why we’ll use both terms in this article interchangeably.

Basic Requirements to Become an Airport Security Officer

In order to be an Airport Security Officer or Transportation Security Officer, you have to fulfill the following requirements:

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Must have a high school diploma or GED.
  • Must be a resident or citizen of the U.S.
  • Pass a background check, including a credit and criminal record check.
  • Able to pass airport security clearance check.
  • Able to pass a drug and alcohol screening.
  • Must be fluent in English.
  • May require a Security Guard License (many employers will allow you to obtain this after being hired.)
  • Be willing to enter your employer’s training program once hired.

Formal Education Requirements

Most of the jobs will only require that you have a high school diploma. However, if you have experience in areas such as criminology or criminal justice, it can increase your chances of being hired.  Criminal justice or criminology experience can possibly help to advance your career.

Skills Needed to Be a Transportation Security Officer

If you want to be an excellent transportation security officer, you should develop the following skills:

  • Good personality and a positive attitude.
  • Energetic and skilled in languages.
  • Motivated and willing to serve customers.
  • Good physical and mental condition.
  • Full awareness and the ability to focus in stressful environments.
  • Ability to stand between one to four hours without a break.
  • Make effective decisions during routine and crisis situations.

Remember, the working environment at the airport is very social. You’ll encounter dozens of colleagues and hundreds, even thousands of passengers during one shift. That is why you have to be highly committed to your job in order to fulfill the responsibilities in an effective way.

Responsibilities of an Airport Security Officer

The general responsibilities of an airport security officer include:

  • Operate various screening equipment and technology to identify dangerous objects in baggage, cargo and on passengers.
  • Perform searches and screenings that also include physical interaction with passengers.
  • Conduct bag searches and lifting bags, bins, and property weighing up to 70 lbs.
  • Control terminal entry and exit points.
  • Give directions and respond to inquiries.
  • Maintain focus and awareness while working in a stressful environment.
  • Mitigate actual and potential security threats, by identifying, evaluating, and applying appropriate situational approaches.
  • Retain and implement knowledge of all applicable standard operating procedures.
  • Also, show responsible and dependable behavior.

Airport Security Job Training

If you meet the basic qualifications and all the above-listed experience requirements, you can go ahead and apply for jobs.

Once hired, you will be put into a training program with your employer, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) or one of its security contractors. You may also need to obtain a Security Guard license if you don’t already have one.

The Transportation Security Administration is an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security that has authority over the security of the traveling public in the United States. It was created as a response to the September 11 attacks.

In the United States, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) is the main employer of airport security guards. However, some airports contract with private employment agencies to fill security positions.

Transportation Security Officer Average Salary

There are certain factors that determine the salary you can earn while serving as an airport security officer. These factors include:

  • Experience
  • Certifications
  • The scope of your job duties
  • The region in which you work

The mean annual pay for TSA agents is $40,160 or $19.31 per hour, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2016.

Career Advancement in Airport Security Jobs

If you show excellent work ethics and competency, you can achieve advancement opportunities such as:

  • Promotion from Contractor to TSA.
  • Getting the team lead role.
  • Advancing to the manager role.
  • Getting access to specialized areas such as teaching security training courses.
  • An increase in salary.

Working Hours and Conditions

While working as a transportation security officer, you will have various shifts during the operational hours of the airport.  The operational hours include weekdays, weekends, early mornings, late nights, and holidays. There are full-time and part-time jobs available in the airport sector.

Your job will be a combination of standing, sitting or walking for an extended period of time. You will have to pay close attention to your surroundings and there will be strict protocols to follow. Besides that, you will also have to manage stressful situations like dealing with challenging individuals who are behaving inappropriately or are accessing unauthorized area.

Example of an Opened Job Position for an Airport Security Officer

Actual Job Opening at Prime Flight Aviation

Location: Hillside, NJ 07205

Job Title: Security Supervisor – Flight Benefits Available

Essential Functions

Supervise and observe the aircraft cleaning processes at the Newark Airport.  In addition, perform aircraft searches and observations in order to provide and maintain appropriate documentation of the activities of workers.  You are observing workers involved in the cleaning of the aircraft.  You will also be responsible for the following duties:

  • Supervise, lead cabin crew and direct leads at the airport.
  • Complete all applicable paperwork.
  • Complete, maintain reports as well as names of individuals performing searches.
  • Demonstrate regular, and predictable attendance at the job location.
  • Exceed Prime Flight customer service and safety standards.
  • Carry out other duties as assigned.
  • Also, meet attendance and extended hours standard for this position.


To perform the job successfully, an individual should demonstrate the following competencies:

  • Problem Solving
  • Customer Service
  • Interpersonal Skills
  • Oral Communication


To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential function satisfactorily. The requirements listed in this Job Description are representative of the knowledge, skill, and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

General Qualifications:

  • 18 years of age
  • Reliable transportation
  • Eligible to work in the United States



Language Ability:

Ability to read and interpret documents such as safety rules, operations, as well as maintenance instructions, and procedure manuals. Also, the ability to communicate effectively in English.

Reasoning Ability:

Ability to apply common sense understanding to carry out instructions furnished in written, oral, or diagram form. Also, efficient and immediate problem-solving capabilities.

Computer Skills:

No skills needed.

Certificates and Licenses:

Valid State Driver’s License

Supervisory Responsibilities:

Carries out supervisory responsibilities in accordance with Prime Flight policies and applicable laws. Responsibilities include:

  • Participation in training of aircraft cleaners
  • Planning, assigning and directing work
  • Appraising performance
  • Rewarding and participating in disciplining employees
  • Addressing complaints and resolving problems.

Work Environment:

The work environment characteristics described here are representative of those an employee encounters while performing essential functions of this job. Therefore, reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Furthermore, the noise level in the work environment is usually moderate but may become high at various times. Thus, the employee must be willing to wear/utilize company-supplied personal protective equipment (hearing protection) to mitigate their noise exposure.

Some work is in an outside environment, with exposure to hot and cold temperatures as well as inclement weather.

At times this work involves exposure to human waste or vomit while cleaning as well as exposure to cleaning chemicals. The employee must be able to complete cleaning duties using company-provided protective gloves and/or eye protection or face shields.

Physical Demands:

The physical demands described here are representative of those that must be met by an employee to successfully perform the essential functions of this job. In addition, reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions:

  • Walk as well as climb up and down a minimum of 500 stairs daily.
  • Walk, stretch, and bend.
  • Lift and carry up to 50 pounds.
  • Be able to work in tight spaces.
  • Reach above head, full extension (72 inches) with arms.
  • Use hands to finger, handle, or feel.
  • Be able to hear and respond to the spoken voice and to audible alarms generated by the terminal environment.
  • Also, specific vision abilities are required for this job, such as:
    • Close vision (clear vision at 20 inches or less)
    • Distance vision (clear vision at 20 feet or more)
    • Color vision (ability to identify and distinguish colors)
    • Peripheral vision (ability to observe an area that can be seen up and down or to the left and right while eyes are fixed on a given point)
    • Depth perception (three-dimensional vision)
    • Besides that, (ability to judge distances and spatial relationships)
    • Ability to adjust focus (ability to adjust the eye to bring an object into sharp focus)

Experienced Security Guard Training Help Center, About Us, Security Guard Logo, Logo, Experienced Security Guard Training Help Center LogoSo, this was all about becoming an airport security officer and applying for the airport security jobs. In case you need further information about this topic,  please contact Experienced Security Guard Training Help Center. You may also check the FAQs section to find answers to other questions. In addition, you may also read other articles on our website covering similar topics.

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