The aim of this study was to determine level of work stress in a group of air traffic controllers from the South African Air Force, and also a group of air traffic controllers from the civil sector. It is commonly known that air traffic control is considered a stressful job, and the researcher decided to examine the situation in South Africa. Stressors which may be applicable to the air traffic controller were discussed, to help the controller to identify his source of stress. The air traffic control job was also studied to identify its stressful elements. The research group consisted of 97 persons, 52 from the SAAF, and 45 from the civil sector. Most of them were in the age group of 19-25 years. Rice's Stress&Health questionnaire was used to determine the respondents' stress levels in three sub-categories. These sub-categories were interpersonal stress, physical stress, and job interest. The results show that civil sector controllers experience a higher level of work stress than their colleagues in the SAAF. This is because of the civil sector's higher workload. Results show that the factors influencing stress are complex and include amount of workload and personality type. Proposals were made with regard to stress management.