It says in the handboook vacation is usually bid on in 2 week intervals, do you get multiple 2 week vacations?
Welcome to the forum!
When you mention the handbook and time at home are you referring to ATP’s fast track program?
Yes, the fast track program says that your stationed at a base and get 2 weeks vacation, my main concern is that you can’t start a family or keep up with friends if your only home 2, 4, or even 6 weeks a year
ATPs Fast Track and subsequent instructing is designed for you to get trained and build your time asap. The training is 7mos and then there’s a year to a year and a half for instructing. Frankly 2 weeks is generous and equal or more than you’ll get for a few years after getting to the airlines. It requires hard work and sacrifice which means minimum time for family and friends and it’s definitely not the time to start a family.
I’m OK with that, I’m more wondering if 10 or 20 years down the road when you have more seniority, if it’s just common place to be stationed away from home the entire year?
You seem a bit confused. If you choose to commute (aka not live at your base, which is of course a choice), you will have time to jump on a plane go home whenever you’re not working. The issue is, depending on where you live and where you’re based, getting home could be a challenge and you’ll inevitably lose days off in the process.
As far as vacation goes, yes as you gain seniority but it’s not going to be much more than 6 weeks off. That’s called retirement.
I get five weeks of vacation per year, bid in one or two week intervals. This is in addition to the 12-15 days off per month that I get.
If you are stationed some place that you do not live, you can either chose to commute home on your days off (not recommended), or move to the base. You will have plenty of time to start a family and have other relationships.
ATP’s Fast Track program is only 7 months. While you’re allowed up to 2 weeks vacation it isn’t guaranteed. You need to be prepared for a full time commitment, 7 days a week. If you request time off, it will be granted if you are in good standing in the program meaning you are on time and passing required stage checks. If you are struggling in the program, time off will often not get approved. You didn’t mention where you live whether you have a ATP location close to your home town or not. If so, you can live at home, report to the training center each day and be home every night. Living in ATP housing is an option if you do not live near a training center and need a “crash pad” to get through the 7 month program without uprooting your family.
My only concern was for the future starting a family and raising kids, which Chris answered pretty well for me. If I’m working out of a different base every year for the first 5 years or so I’m fine with that. My only other question would be say 5-10 years down the road when you start to get options of where you want to work out of, do the options stay mostly the same where you could work out of one place for a couple years, or are more senior pilots constantly jumbling up the bids where your still moving around alot?
It’s actually the opposite. Senior pilots have, by nature of their seniority, gotten the aircraft, seat and base they want. They rarely move and will often only make a move if there’s a new aircraft that pays more money.