Bidding on schedules

How does bidding for schedules work? I’ve seen this on a few articles and when I think of bidding I’m thinking of who will do it the cheapest. Lol


It’s got nothing to do with money, although many pilots wish it did, and everything to do with seniority.

At this point most airlines have some form of PBS (preferential bidding system). Basically the pilot puts in their preferences and the system will build them a schedule from the existing pairings (trips) to try and honor those preferences. The preferences can be really almost anything you can think of. They range from days off, to destinations and even who you want or don’t want to fly with. This is also where seniority comes most into play as the system starts with the most senior pilot and works it’s way down. The number 1 most senior pilot will essentially get exactly what they want as the system has ALL the trips available to work with. As it works it’s way down obviously there are less and less trips so it’ll try and honor your top preferences first as best it can to build a schedule. Eventually it gets to the bottom where you’ll end up with whatever is left.


1 Like