Career As A Ramp Service Personnel

Airport Ramp Agents are sometimes known as fleet service agents, clerks or baggage handlers. Agents load and unload suitcases, luggage and cargo from aircraft and transportation hubs. YH5BAEAAAAALAAAAAABAAEAAAIBRAA7
The airline industry is labor intensive and needs people working in many different areas and performing a wide variety of tasks. Airports and Airlines need employees to load, unload and service commercial airliners. Though airport and airline ramp agents go by many different names, all share jobs that are not only all-weather in nature but also physically arduous.

Ramp agents found at airports may work directly for various commercial airlines or for airline vendors and contractors. Ramp agents themselves rarely work directly for airports, though all are screened and vetted by them and then given ramp area security badges. Ramp agents are also known as baggage handlers and loaders or as aircraft load agents. A common airline slang term for a ramp agent is “ramper”  to denote the ramp agent’s particular on-the-ground work environment.

Ramp Agent Duties

Airline flight crews need ramp agents to safely guide their planes into gates and then push them back out again. Ramp agents are also responsible for all ground servicing of a commercial airliner, including loading and unloading of baggage and cargo. Ramp agents typically operate a variety of machinery and equipment, including baggage loader belts, diesel pushback tractors and small baggage cart tugs. In cold weather, Ramp Agents operate aircraft deicing trucks, working aloft to spray deicer fluids on assigned airliners.
Commercial airlines run on tight schedules and their ramp agents must be able to work quickly and efficiently to keep planes flying on time. Airlines fly in all weather conditions and ramp agents are required to work during freezing cold and extremely warm temperatures. Ramp agents are also expected to be able to load and unload passenger baggage weighing 70 pounds or more. Smaller commercial airliners have limited baggage holds and ramp agents frequently load and unload baggage in cramped, uncomfortable spaces.

Ramp Agent Pay

A ramp agent’s starting pay is normally entry level, ranging from minimum wage to approximately $9 hourly. Ramp agents working directly for airlines, though, earn retirement and health benefits plus pay increases over time as they become more experienced. Turnover among Airport and Airline

Ramp Agents can be high, though, partly because they work in inclement weather and around extremely loud jet engines.

A high school diploma or a degree is the standard educational requirement for this position. Some companies may favor candidates who have previous experience in baggage handling or customer service. However, most Airport Ramp Agent positions don’t require any post secondary education or training. Entry-level agents typically receive some on-the-job training.

Candidates may also have to pass background and drug tests and have the ability to lift heavy objects. Previous baggage handling experience may be preferred by some employers, but on-the-job training may also be offered.

Aside from educational requirements, employers prefer candidates who have valid driver’s license.

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