Airport Security Jobs Overview

airport security jobs

Airport security involves various professionals who implement and/or supervise various security programs in airports.

Job Description

Guards in this industry ensure the safety of passengers, the plane, and the airport. There are various positions in this field, but as a whole they:

  • Patrol the airport
  • Answer passenger questions
  • Inspect passengers with metal detectors
  • Look for dangerous items in passenger baggage that passes through an x-ray machine
  • Assist during emergencies


As a result of the World Trade Center attacks of 9/11/01, competent employees in this position are more important than ever before. It takes a certain kind of person to work in airport security.

Skills an attributes needed include:

  • Physical fitness
  • Customer service skills
  • Flexibility
  • High attention to details
  • Ability to work within a team
  • Good memory
  • Good at giving and following directions
  • Awareness of the correct manual handling principles
  • Ability to work under pressure
  • Good communication skills


A high school diploma or GED is the minimum requirement. Some positions also require a bachelor’s degree in criminal justice or police science. Some organizations give newbies on-the-job training. But most employers want at least three years of experience in any of the positions. Everyone must learn about security regulations and laws and be certified to recognize potential security breaches and terrorist acts.

Work Environment

The security guard job at airports normally includes a lot of contact with the public while standing long hours. Some jobs, though, may include working alone, sitting the whole time. Guards who view the public through surveillance equipment fit into the last category.

Work Categories

The breakdown is as follows:

Retail – 23.9 percent
Customer service – 15.5 percent
Logistics/Distribution – 13.9 percent
Others – 13.3 percent
IT – Telecomm – 11.8 percent
Engineering – 11.2 percent
Consultancy – 5.2 percent
Leisure/Tourism/Beauty – 5.2 percent

Job Concentrations

You’ll have the best chance of being hired in the following cities and states:

California – Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco
Colorado – Denver
Georgia – Atlanta
Massachusetts – Boston
New York – New York
Texas – Dallas, Houston
Wisconsin – Milwaukee

Work Schedule

These guards work eight-hour shifts. The shifts rotate, and working the night shift is common.

Job Security

Airport security jobs are offered more and more. Permanent positions make up 91.1 percent of the jobs, part time positions make up 8.4 percent, and 0.4 percent of airport security jobs are temporary.


Like other types of security guard positions, airport security guards make between $10 and $18 per hour, depending on several factors. Bonuses range between $51 and $3,520. Profit sharing ranges between $3 and $24,658. Altogether, this position pays between $20,365 and $41,549.

Gender Breakdown

About 24.6 percent of airport security positions are filled by women, compared to just 11 percent of the security guard positions in other industries being filled by women.