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On 7/4/2021 at 6:40 PM, brabus said:

No digs on SWA, but keep in mind you’ll fly the 73 for the rest of your life, on multi-leg days, to the same towns. There’s no real option for change of scenery, change up the flying, etc. But, I know several friends who are happy there. Don’t know enough to compare contracts. AA seniority is rapidly moving, which is awesome. But  AA could be bankrupt in 5 years, or SWA could not even exist in 15 years…who knows. Anyone who says they have a solid grasp on the Airline long view is full of shit. 

I'm no SWA sunshine pumper, but this is all a bit of hyperbole.

1. 73 for the rest of your life?  "Like anyone can even know that."  We have no idea what's going on tomorrow in this company, so it's a pretty bold statement that we'll be flying the 73 for the next 30 years (assuming you're ~35 years old now).  I'd put a round of Boilermakers on us having a different airplane in the fleet in the next 30 years. 

2. Multi-leg days?  Sure.  I don't know many guys/gals that do 1 leg a day, no matter the airline.  And if you do, it's probably a long leg.  I'd guess the duty days are about the same.  Give me three 1.5 hour legs over one 7 hour leg, but that's just me.  I've had plenty of trips with only one leg in a day. 

3.  Same towns?  Doesn't every airline fly to the same towns?  We have ~120 destinations and no one has added more in the past year than we have.  If you think SWA isn't going to grow even more in the future than I don't know what to tell you.

When looking at seniority, it really means jack shit if you can't hold the base you want to hold.  Looking at retirements only tells part of the story.  Can you upgrade faster at AA vs. SW?  More than likely.  But I'm assuming you'll be stuck in NY or MIA or whatever the junior CA bases are at AA.    Just like you'll be stuck at OAK or LAX if you upgrade at SW.

SWA isn't a bad place to work.  Yes, it's all narrow body flying and that's not for everyone, but as a Herk guy who has a 3.0 ass, it's just like flying in the desert.  Except no one is shooting at you and the loadmasters look better (sometimes).  Only having one aircraft in the fleet is good and bad.  As previously stated, if you want to fly something else, you can't (for now).  At the same time, if I want to trade away a trip, I have roughly 4500 other FOs as trade partners.  I can pick up extra flying as a reserve holder and even trade my reserve for a trip if someone is willing (supposedly most airlines don't have this option).  99% of the CAs I've flown with have been really great dudes that generally don't give a shit about how you fly as long as you get us there safely. 

On the other hand, the ra-ra OnE LuV shit is wearing off.  We're all "one team, one heart" until they threaten furloughs 2 weeks before Christmas, knowing they had no intentions of actually following through with them.  One thing that came out of it is our pilot group and Union are stronger than ever (this coming from the mouths of the old guys).  The company thinks pilots will choose to come here versus others because we treat our pilots better and "we've never furloughed!" but that's all now bullshit.  We get paid less per hour and we generally work harder. 

I'd advise anyone to do homework and pick an airline that fits your lifestyle.  Also look at seniority at your desired base, not just company wide. 

 

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Great input, didn’t mean to come off as shitting on SWA. I think the biggest thing you hit on is what kind of flying/opportunities/basing does one want. One man’s con is another’s pro. I never considered cargo, zero desire…to many that’s the holy grail. To each their own. 

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1 hour ago, HossHarris said:

Delta just changed their hiring process. Read up on it at “delta air lines pilot recruiting” on Facebook. 

Any chance you could put a screenshot here for those of us that are without FB accounts?

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, StrikeOut312 said:

Any chance you could put a screenshot here for those of us that are without FB accounts?

It is a video, so that's probably not going to tell you what you want to know.

Short version:

- Interview process is now a video screening interview, followed by a single-day in-person interview in Atlanta.

- No more Job Knowledge Test

- During the single-day interview, there will be a panel interview, the MMPI assessment, and the psychiatrist session.

Edited by Hacker
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4 hours ago, StrikeOut312 said:

Any chance you could put a screenshot here for those of us that are without FB accounts?

If you’re interested in an airline job in general, and a delta job specifically, I’d get on the book face. Lots of information swirls around there amongst the chaff. 

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Also looking for info on commuting.  My #1 and 2 airline choices I would have to commute a state away.  My number 3 has a hub in where I will be living.  Anybody commuted long term with any advice ?

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1 leg commutes generally aren’t too bad. 
 

if you can sit long call reserve at home, even better. 
 

delta has positive space for commuting at the moment (you have a ticket and a seat). Runs thru sep 2022 I think … May be permanent. May not be. 

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Posted (edited)
16 hours ago, di1630 said:

How tough is commuting?

What if you can’t get a jump seat to where you need to go?

 

Varies wildly, with so many factors to consider.  Some commutes are what some say are "super easy," and others are damn near impossible.  Weather/IROPs can really throw a wrench into your plans.  I left AAL for DAL because commuting absolutely sucks.  I was staring down the barrel of a career of being gone a few more nights/month without pay...as in, another work month+ (per year) worth of days gone from home.  Being on a WB can greatly mitigate this, so something to consider.  Some prioritize location over those extra nights at home which I get, but it certainly wasn't for me.

 

DAL has an unable to commute clause, whereby if you have a realistic backup (ie...seats open) and you just couldn't make it, they'll drop the trip without pay.  A few times here and there, no big deal.  Start making a habit of it and the Chief pilot is probably going to schedule a meeting.  I'd assume that most of the other airlines have something similar.  Right now it's moo point here at DAL since we have positive space commuting, but it's not actually in the contract, so it can (and likely will) be pulled at any time.  

 

 

16 hours ago, Ryder1587 said:

Also looking for info on commuting.  My #1 and 2 airline choices I would have to commute a state away.  My number 3 has a hub in where I will be living.  Anybody commuted long term with any advice ?

 

My view on commuting...I'd move #3 up to the #1 spot. If I absolutely had to commute, if they're not already, FDX/UPS would be my top choices.  They appear to have a decent amount of trips that begin/end with deadheads, which would make commuting much less stressful!  Seriously though, not commuting is like having an entirely different job!  

 

In my short 8-9 years of airline flying I've witnessed some ridiculous buffoonery (and some serious blood pressure) by guys trying to catch a commute flight.  I never dreamed I'd be in a situation where I thought I'd have to call a go-around from the jumpseat...but sometimes that's what you get when both pilots are trying to catch the last commute flight out of town.  The happiest commuter I ever met was the guy who just gave up and always commuted up the night prior and stayed at the DTW Westin.  If we got in late at the end of the trip he just went back to the Westin and got a room.  Then again, he said his wife made 3x what he did and they had no kids...so no real stress of missing nights/spending money.

 

 

Edited by SocialD
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17 minutes ago, SocialD said:

Then again, he said his wife made 3x what he did and they had no kids...so no real stress of missing nights/spending money.

I think this is one of the most impactful variables.  If wife's got her own thing going on and kids are gone or never were, it's a whole different ballgame than when your commute has cost you tball games and dance recitals.  I moved to base and will stay at least as long as kids are in the house.  Once they're on their own, commuting to a WB is high on the list of options.

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6 hours ago, Ryder1587 said:

Also looking for info on commuting.  My #1 and 2 airline choices I would have to commute a state away.  My number 3 has a hub in where I will be living.  Anybody commuted long term with any advice ?

Your #3 needs to be your #1.  Seriously.  This is a different job when you commute.  The biggest foot stomp advice I got as a wee lad thinking about applying to airlines was "Don't commute!"  As someone who lives in base but isn't senior enough to hold it, I can tell you my morale and will to live is completely different on trips that I commute on versus trips I pick up here in base.  Things to consider when commuting:

1.  Making sure there are flights that have empty seats to get you to your base

2.  Booking at least 1 hotel per trip, maybe 2 if you get delayed or extended

3.  Packing an extra pair of clothes for an extra night.  This seems trivial but it makes a difference when I'm trying to shoehorn all my shit into my 737 approved roller bag.

4.  If you have a late start to a trip, do you commute the morning of or the night prior?  Spending all morning commuting just to start your pairing later in the day is probably the biggest kick to the crotch there is.  If you commute the night prior, there's an extra hotel you have to pay for.

5.  Weather delays or diverts.  They happen often.  So when you divert to Burnt Scrotum, NM as a commuter, it's on you to get home.  As a non-rev passenger you're the lowest man on the give-a-shit scale for the airline.

6.  Running through the terminal to catch the last flight home, only to watch it push back.  This is my favorite.

The list goes on.  There are 6900 different factors to base your airline decision on, but if you know where you want to live, pick the airline with a base there.  Upgrades, money, time off, etc all mean jack shit if you're commuting.  Just my opinion.

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11 hours ago, Ryder1587 said:

Also looking for info on commuting.  My #1 and 2 airline choices I would have to commute a state away.  My number 3 has a hub in where I will be living.  Anybody commuted long term with any advice ?

The other reason commuting sucks aside from the 100% valid points above is I was caught a little off guard by how much time I’d lose putting together and then changing my commute plan. Different guys/gals put differing levels of concern into getting to work. For example, at SWA if you tell the schedulers that you tried to make a commute but got bumped for no fault of your own they’ll either let you rejoin your trip in progress, offer reassignment, or trip drop (no pay) without raising any eyebrows. Pretty sure most airlines have similar policies. 
But if it matters to be home on time you’re going to be tied to your phone all day or for a few days refreshing the latest delays, gates, loads, etc. It’s inevitable that you get delayed and miss your direct commute home, so now you’ve got to figure is it better to try for LAX-SLC-DEN with a long layover or can you Frankenstein an itinerary where LAX-SEA-DEN actually gets you in sooner with less chance of being bumped? Is it better to do 2 legs on company metal with more open seats or roll the dice with a lower jumpseat priority on a nearly-full direct OAL? And you’re trying to figure this stuff out while flying your trip. I’m getting myself all stressed just thinking up hypotheticals over here. That said, some people do it for decades, so I think as long as you have the right constitution for it (which clearly, I don’t), it’s manageable. Living and working between high-volume cities with numerous flights options (ie LAS-LAX) doesn’t hurt either. 
I’ve heard of one exception to what I just described (aside from Delta’s recent positive-space agreement), but I’m not smart on it: is it true FDX reimburses for positive space tickets on any pax carrier? If I were a long term commuter that’d be a game changer... 

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Posted (edited)
5 hours ago, Hugo Stiglitz said:

The other reason commuting sucks aside from the 100% valid points above is I was caught a little off guard by how much time I’d lose putting together and then changing my commute plan. Different guys/gals put differing levels of concern into getting to work. For example, at SWA if you tell the schedulers that you tried to make a commute but got bumped for no fault of your own they’ll either let you rejoin your trip in progress, offer reassignment, or trip drop (no pay) without raising any eyebrows. Pretty sure most airlines have similar policies. 
But if it matters to be home on time you’re going to be tied to your phone all day or for a few days refreshing the latest delays, gates, loads, etc. It’s inevitable that you get delayed and miss your direct commute home, so now you’ve got to figure is it better to try for LAX-SLC-DEN with a long layover or can you Frankenstein an itinerary where LAX-SEA-DEN actually gets you in sooner with less chance of being bumped? Is it better to do 2 legs on company metal with more open seats or roll the dice with a lower jumpseat priority on a nearly-full direct OAL? And you’re trying to figure this stuff out while flying your trip. I’m getting myself all stressed just thinking up hypotheticals over here. That said, some people do it for decades, so I think as long as you have the right constitution for it (which clearly, I don’t), it’s manageable. Living and working between high-volume cities with numerous flights options (ie LAS-LAX) doesn’t hurt either. 
I’ve heard of one exception to what I just described (aside from Delta’s recent positive-space agreement), but I’m not smart on it: is it true FDX reimburses for positive space tickets on any pax carrier? If I were a long term commuter that’d be a game changer... 

Sort of. FedEx allows you to "deviate" from a planned deadhead. If you get a trip that starts with a deadhead (riding in the back), they will switch the starting airport from your hub/domicile to wherever you want, as long as the cost is equal to or less. But they also have a "bank" I believe where you can store up the cost difference of cheaper deviated deadheads for when the deviated leg is more expensive than the original deadhead. 

 

With AA, if your trip starts or ends with a deadhead, you can switch it to a deadhead from/to your home city. Cost doesn't matter, but unlike FDX, it has to be on AA metal. Very common tactic for commuters.

Edited by Lord Ratner
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On 7/9/2021 at 8:13 AM, Lord Ratner said:

Sort of. FedEx allows you to "deviate" from a planned deadhead. If you get a trip that starts with a deadhead (riding in the back), they will switch the starting airport from your hub/domicile to wherever you want, as long as the cost is equal to or less. But they also have a "bank" I believe where you can store up the cost difference of cheaper deviated deadheads for when the deviated leg is more expensive than the original deadhead. 

 

With AA, if your trip starts or ends with a deadhead, you can switch it to a deadhead from/to your home city. Cost doesn't matter, but unlike FDX, it has to be on AA metal. Very common tactic for commuters.

Sort of..... again. 

When you have a trip that starts or ends with a deadhead, the company buys you a ticket between your domicile and the city where the trips starts or ends.  If you choose, you can deviate from that travel plan.  The ticket they buy gets cancelled and you can buy your own using money from the cancelled ticket.  They don't move the starting airport.  You can start from wherever you want.  For front-end DHs, there is a deadline and by deviating, you're agreeing to take on all responsibility to get your ass in place on time.  If you want to buy an airline ticket, JS on company metal, hire a limo or any combination, it's up to you.  If you have money left over, you can use it to deviate on another trip by adding to the bank from that trip.

There are guys who hold double dead-heads (front and back) who almost never go to their domicile unless they have recurrent there.  All the frequent flyer miles and the benefits that come with them are yours.  I never drive to/from the airport.  100% of the time I hire a car service on Uncle Fred's dime.  If you commute, there is really no other way to do it.

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On 7/8/2021 at 6:56 PM, SocialD said:

 I never dreamed I'd be in a situation where I thought I'd have to call a go-around from the jumpseat...but sometimes that's what you get when both pilots are trying to catch the last commute flight out of town.  The happiest commuter I ever met was the guy who just gave up and always commuted up the night prior and stayed at the DTW Westin.  If we got in late at the end of the trip he just went back to the Westin and got a room.  Then again, he said his wife made 3x what he did and they had no kids...so no real stress of missing nights/spending money.

WTF, that and still having issues of finding the flap handle does not give me a warm fuzzy as a retired non revver.

I commuted 1200 miles for 25 yrs never missing a trip but in this age of packed flights, no way would I commute today.

NERD

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Well, it would appear AAL is bringing me on to hack a line number (no pay date). I had a CJO from back in March of 2020 that got COVID'd. I'm still on AD and I signed the 3 year bonus a year back. So pretty pumped they are doing this...and smart on their part since I was planning on shopping around with SWA and UAL when I eventually got out (again), but not anymore. 2 years of seniority on day 1 is pretty appealing.

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On 7/15/2021 at 5:05 PM, StoleIt said:

Well, it would appear AAL is bringing me on to hack a line number (no pay date). I had a CJO from back in March of 2020 that got COVID'd. I'm still on AD and I signed the 3 year bonus a year back. So pretty pumped they are doing this...and smart on their part since I was planning on shopping around with SWA and UAL when I eventually got out (again), but not anymore. 2 years of seniority on day 1 is pretty appealing.

Glad to hear hiring is turned back on.  Hopefully, the food will be better by the time you get here.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Folks, United Airlines had a newhire pilot class start Indoc on Tuesday (27 July). Pilots in that class (and some in other recent classes) were just awarded B777 in the vacancy bid that closed yesterday. That’s pretty decent proof that a) it should be a good time to get to the airlines, and b) the AF is potentially in deep doodoo…

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3 hours ago, LJ Driver said:

Folks, United Airlines had a newhire pilot class start Indoc on Tuesday (27 July). Pilots in that class (and some in other recent classes) were just awarded B777 in the vacancy bid that closed yesterday. That’s pretty decent proof that a) it should be a good time to get to the airlines, and b) the AF is potentially in deep doodoo…

The AF has been in deep shit for a while. They just had a COVID induced loss of sensory information and haven’t been able to smell it for the last year and a half. 

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Delta's first group of new pilot candidates arrived at the Pilot Selection office on the Atlanta campus on Aug. 2. These pilots are the first group to be scheduled for interviews since the pandemic halted pilot hiring and are the first to participate in the redesigned selection process. Successful candidates could begin their training classes as early as September.

We will hire more than 1,000 pilots by next summer as we continue to rebuild and support the network. We continue to build our pipeline of pilot candidates to support future demand and pilot attrition through our Propel Pilot Career Path Programs, community outreach and partnerships with industry organizations.

Employees who wish to recommend a pilot candidate should do so via AirlineApps
Edited by Springer
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