The chairman of the daa is looking for more flexibility when it comes to the government-imposed pay cap that might prove restrictive as the semi-state body searches for a new chief executive.
The cap means no CEO of a semi-state body can be paid an annual salary of more than €250,000.
Outgoing chief executive Kevin Toland was announced last week as the new CEO of baked goods giant Aryzta. While he received that basic salary in 2016, he also received pension and other taxable benefits totalling €149,000.
Padraig O'Riordain, chairman of the body which controls Dublin and Cork airports, said: "Clearly, the cap on pay is way below market.
"I do think we need to get pay for chief executives up to a level that is in some way reasonable. It's something that really does have to change."
The calls came as the daa reported that revenues rose 17% last year to a record €793m. Profits after tax also climbed 75% to a record €108m.
Dublin Airport handled 27.9 million passengers last year.