Air Cargo Agent

Last Updated:
September 19, 2023

Job Description Overview

An Air Cargo Agent job description involves managing and coordinating air cargo shipments. This position requires strong communication skills, attention to detail, and knowledge of air freight regulations. As an Air Cargo Agent, you will be responsible for ensuring that cargo shipments are picked up and delivered on time, coordinating with airlines, and handling documentation. You will also provide customer service and work with shippers and consignees to resolve any issues that may arise during the shipment process.

Air Cargo Agents work in a fast-paced environment that requires them to be organized and flexible. They may work for individual freight forwarders or directly for airlines. The job may require working outside of regular business hours as air cargo shipments can occur at any time of the day or night. If you are interested in a challenging and rewarding career in the transportation industry, becoming an Air Cargo Agent may be the perfect fit for you.

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Job Duties and Responsibilities

  • Load and unload cargo from airplanes using equipment such as forklifts and pallet jacks.
  • Ensure that all cargo is properly secured and labeled before departure.
  • Verify and document the weight and dimensions of cargo, and determine the appropriate shipment method.
  • Communicate with other air cargo agents and airline personnel to ensure timely and efficient processing of cargo.
  • Process and track incoming and outgoing shipments, and update related records and databases.
  • Coordinate with customs officials, freight forwarders, and other parties to ensure proper documentation and compliance with regulations.
  • Respond to customer inquiries and concerns, and resolve any issues related to the shipment of cargo.
  • Inspect cargo for damage or other issues, and report any problems to superiors and appropriate parties.
  • Maintain a clean and safe work environment, and follow all safety procedures and protocols.
  • Stay informed about industry trends, regulations, and best practices, and continuously develop skills and knowledge through training and education.

Experience and Education Requirements

To work as an Air Cargo Agent in the Transportation industry, you typically need a high school diploma or GED as a minimum education requirement. However, some employers may prefer applicants with an associate or bachelor's degree in Logistics or a related field. Having experience in the transportation or logistics industry is also highly valued. This can include experience in warehouse operations, customer service, or transportation planning. On-the-job training is provided to new employees to familiarize them with security protocols, cargo handling, and industry regulations. Good communication and computer skills are also essential, as well as being detail-oriented and able to work well under pressure.

Salary Range

Air Cargo Agent salary range varies based on experience, location, and industry. In the United States, the average salary range for an Air Cargo Agent is between $28,000 to $48,000 per year. Entry-level positions typically start around $23,000 per year, while experienced agents can earn up to $59,000 per year. 

In other countries like Canada and Australia, the salary range for Air Cargo Agents is similar to that of the United States. In Canada, the average salary range is between CAD 33,000 to CAD 55,000 per year, while in Australia, it is between AUD 40,000 to AUD 75,000 per year.

It's worth noting that the salary range also varies depending on the company, with larger carriers and freight forwarders offering higher salaries. In general, Air Cargo Agents are paid an hourly wage, and overtime may be required during peak seasons.


  • Glassdoor: Air Cargo Agent Salary
  • Indeed: Air Cargo Agent Salaries
  • Payscale: Air Cargo Agent Hourly Pay

Career Outlook

The career outlook for Air Cargo Agents in the Transportation industry over the next five years appears to be growing. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the employment outlook for Cargo and Freight Agents is projected to grow by 6% from 2019 to 2029, which is faster than the average for all occupations. This increase in demand is due to the global increase in trade and e-commerce. Air Cargo agents are responsible for loading and unloading cargo, checking shipments, and ensuring that they reach their destination safely and on-time. The role is essential in providing customers with efficient and reliable transportation services. As the world becomes more interconnected through commerce, the demand for air cargo agents will continue to grow.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Q: What does an Air Cargo Agent do?

A: An Air Cargo Agent handles the logistics and organization of air freight shipments. They track shipments, arrange delivery, and communicate with clients and carriers to ensure everything runs smoothly.

Q: What skills does an Air Cargo Agent need?

A: An Air Cargo Agent should have strong communication, organization, and problem-solving skills. They should also be comfortable using computer programs and be detail-oriented.

Q: What kind of education and experience is required for this job?

A: While some employers prefer a Bachelor's degree in a related field, many will hire candidates with a high school diploma or equivalent. Experience in transportation, logistics, or customer service can be helpful.

Q: What is a typical workday like for an Air Cargo Agent?

A: A typical workday can involve tracking shipments, responding to client and carrier inquiries, coordinating with other departments, and managing paperwork. The job can sometimes involve working weekends and holidays.

Q: What are some possible career paths for an Air Cargo Agent?

A: Air Cargo Agents may advance to supervisory or managerial roles or transition into related fields, such as freight forwarding, logistics management, or transportation planning. Continuing education and professional development can be helpful for career advancement.

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