Train dispatcher vs. ATC

Battani22

Trusted Contributor
Apr 6, 2009
613
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Minnesota
It's probably a little easier, not a whole lot though. You usually need to start as a crew dispatcher and work your way up. Not saying you can't go right to train dispatching, but it takes some patience as well.
 

buckeye10

Trusted Member
Nov 27, 2008
390
8
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I am a former FAA controller and just got hired by CSX for train dispatching but haven't started yet so I can't tell you which is tougher. As far as competition, it seems there are fewer positions open for dispatching which makes it pretty competitive. I will keep you posted when I start and be able to give you a better comparison.
 

ATCpilot12

Rookie
Jun 9, 2010
55
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Andromeda Galaxy
I would say its easier to get a train dispatch job. I know a few ATC guys who have gone that way. You can start as a train dispatcher. BNSF and Norfolk southern seem to have openings every few months. IDK for sure but I would think train dispatching is harder, planes can turn to avoid traffic trains cant....
 

buckeye10

Trusted Member
Nov 27, 2008
390
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Thought I would bring this back to life for those of you wondering. I have one week of initial training left before heading to the center for ojt and the two are like comparing apples to oranges. Totally different. Dispatching seems to me to be more trainable where atc you either get it or you don't. The classroom portion seems to be much tougher with dispatching than it was in okc. It is a good gig that pays well but a bunch of BS to go along with it. I would much rather still be in atc so here's to hoping for another ots hiring since the faa won't take developmental reinstatements anymore:cheers:
 

crazymccrea

Newcomer
Nov 23, 2011
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0
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Three years ago I was an air traffic controller trainee when I started having seizures. They retired me, but I am currently looking for something better. I bored!!! I had surgery and it made my seizures completely disappear! Now, I am wondering if they will possibly hire me!! Any info if they will give me a job?
 

MattP1

Rookie
Aug 17, 2009
49
0
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I was a dispatcher at BNSF for 2 years, now I'm at ZFW. So far, dispatching is easier. But, quality of life as a controller is WAY better. They are similar in the aspect of when you tell people what you do, they usually have no clue what it is. They think a dispatcher calls crews and they think ATC are the guys on the tarmac with the orange cones.
 

Dubbs

Newcomer
Apr 25, 2013
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Massachusetts
I was wondering if TD's are required to pass a yearly physical? I am a controller for the DOD and have been kicking around the idea of being a dispatcher, but I have sleep apnea and I get a special issuance 2nd class medical certificate every year from the flight doc. Just wondering if I could expect to do that if I decide to go try train dispatching?
 

HerLK

Newcomer
Mar 23, 2010
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I have been a td for 2 years and only had to get a physical when i first got hired.
 

SierraZulu

Trusted Member
Aug 2, 2008
369
5
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BNSF was paying $72k when I worked for them briefly a year ago. Think it's gone up now, but...Since being in the FAA, I have to say that ATC is 1000000x better than train dispatching in every possible way.
 

ajmezz

Epic Member
Apr 8, 2010
1,811
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We have urinal cakes at work that smell like fruit loops when you pee on them. Are they similar/better/worse?! haha.
 

Chiqweetz

Junior Member
Dec 5, 2008
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Texas
Every possible way. Working conditions, pay, benefits, work LOCATIONS, the number of chicks that work with you, urinal cake selection, etc. What do you want to know specifically?
I know I'm super late to this thread, but was wondering what you meant about working with chicks? Are there not many females in train dispatch? Which location/company did you work for?