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Careers in Aviation

Explore opportunities in Air Traffic Services

Frequently Asked Questions

To be considered for a career in air traffic services, you must apply through Workday, NAV CANADA’s careers portal. You will be prompted to include basic information, such as your education and work history, as well as answer questions pertaining to the basic requirements of the role. You will also be asked about your stream preferences – we recommend you take the time to learn about the different career opportunities available in air traffic services before you apply. You can find out more about the different available roles on our website.

Once your application has been submitted, eligible applicants (those who meet the basic requirements) will be progressed to the first assessment stage. Assessments will be distributed based on the operational requirements at the time.

The length of the application and assessment process can vary. Depending on when you apply and your scores, the process may move quickly or you may wait a bit longer at a certain stage. Candidates are invited to the next stage of testing based on scores from previous assessments. Your application will only be active for a total of 36 months before you time out. After that point, your application will expire and you can reapply.

Training is delivered in classroom and simulator settings at regional facilities across Canada. The first phase of training is nationally standardized, but later training is tailored to the specific needs of the region. Training is very challenging and requires a large time commitment to be successful. There is a lot of information to retain and there are many skills to develop. To ensure learning, you will complete regular evaluations along the way.

To see the full list of locations where NAV CANADA operates, visit our Air Traffic Controller and Flight Service Specialist careers pages.

During basic training, you can expect to be working a 37.5 hour workweek. Full-time attendance is mandatory. Once you move in to On-Job training, air traffic control students will switch to shift work and a 34 hour workweek. Flight service specialist students will switch to a shift schedule, but will keep the 37.5 hour workweek.

The total length of training varies by role. Most flight service specialists require roughly one year to complete their training and air traffic controllers typically require one to two years to complete their training. 

You’ll start to receive a training salary as soon as you begin your training paid bi-weekly. The salary amount, depends on your career path within air traffic services.

  • Air traffic controllers: ~$49,000/year through training
  • Flight service specialists: ~$42,000/year through training. 

 Your salary increases once you’re fully qualified.

  • Area controllers: ~$116,000 to $170,000/year
  • Tower controllers: ~$97,327 to $193,660/year
  • Flight service specialists (FIC): ~$81,000 to $101,000/year
  • Flight service specialists (AAS): ~$68,000 to $104,000/year

NOTE: These rates reflect the 2024 union pay range under the current collective agreement. 

Canada’s air navigation system operates 24 hours a day, seven days a week, 365 days a year; work hours are shift-based. There are a variety of shift formulas, such as six days on three days off, with morning, evening and night shifts. This is not your typical 9-to-5 workplace, which means you may find the flexibility to do things a traditional schedule would not allow for. Hours of work will be governed by the Air Traffic Specialists Association of Canada (ATSAC) or Canadian Air Traffic Control Association (CATCA) collective agreements.

You can apply on the open Air Traffic Services job position in the NAV CANADA Workday career portal. Please note you'll need to create an account in order to apply. Go to the NAV CANADA Workday career portal. 

The basic eligibility requirements are as follows:

  • Be 18 years of age or older at the time of application;
  • Have a high school diploma, or equivalency;
  • Be a Canadian citizen or permanent resident;
  • Meet the language requirements (fluently bilingual in English and French for the Montreal Flight Information Region, including the National Capital Region; English for all other regions);
  • If required, be willing to relocate to the location of training and/or work; and
  • Be available to start training full time within 18 months of application.

We will follow up directly only with those who are selected to move forward in the recruitment process. If you have not been selected to move forward, you will be notified by a system notification sometime during or after the recruitment process is complete. You can also check the status of your application in Workday.