After months of climbing the seniority list, in March I was senior enough to hold a line! It was a pretty packed schedule plus I had to make a few trades to get time off the third week of March to attend the WAI conference in Nashville, TN.
Total: 87 hours of block, credited about 93 hours with 10 days off.
1-Reserve 9am-9pm (carried over from Feb bid)
Is ORD your base? I noticed some trips starting in ORD and some In DTW. Did you have to fly in the night before for those trips? Just asking out of curiosity.
Guess that’s the life being low on seniority?
Basically if you were a commuter, That day off you had in between 5 and 7 and 10 and 12 would be strictly used to travel, so almost no point in flying home and then flying back?
Are most low senior line holders schedule like this, so if one commuted, they could basically just be gone for 2 weeks straight? Maybe try to fly home, depending where, but not realistic.
I am based in ORD. However, the DTW base is a little low on staff so I was assigned DTW based trips with a deadhead on each end. Typically I’d cancel the deadhead and fly from Charlotte straight to Detroit since I am a commuter. I really enjoyed the trips. Out of Chicago, we rarely get trips on the CRJ 900. It’s mostly CRJ 200 trips for United and CRJ 700 trips for American.
This schedule isn’t going to be the norm. The bidding system we use actually builds schedules with a minimum of 2 days off between work blocks. I made some trades to get some time off the third weekend of March. To do that, I had to sacrifice a few days off in between trips.
It depends on how easy your commute is. So far I’ve never not come home between trips and only commute up the night before once. You also need to consider the report and release times of each trip. Typically I bid for trips with a report time after noon and a release before 2pm so that I can commute up the day of and go home the last day.
Makes sense. I see what you replied to Brandon.
And how this isn’t your norm… I somewhat assumed it wasn’t because because of commuting. Can you say that it’s normally fairly easy to switch a couple days with someone if you wanted a specific weekend off? And it also makes sense about to bid afternoon trips, so you normally can travel in the same day.
Keep in mind that nobody wants to work weekends, so it is rather hard to trade as you are saying. I find that for the most part, I might be able to trade the trips themselves, but the days worked rarely change much.
I understand. More so of a trading type thing then just giving trips away, so in return it’s fair for both sides.
It depends on the staffing and how much flying is being done. Right now, it is incredibly hard to trade at SkyWest. Reserve staffing is low and most people are getting schedules with heavy block time so little wiggle room to swap things. There are FAR rest requirements that have to be met and right now we are getting scheduled to the max of those limits so unless the trade provides more time off or less flying, it probably won’t go through.
I hope you’re doing well! How are you finding commuting to ORD at the moment? Have you ever had trouble getting to your base or is it generally not that difficult? I just signed as a cadet with Envoy, so any of their 3 bases will be away from me in Charlotte. Undecided whether or not I would move to live at my assigned base. I don’t mind losing a day in between, before, or after to commute, but if it becomes too much of a problem, I’m ok with living just about anywhere. I should think it’s not too difficult to commute from Charlotte since there are lots of possible flights, but I also know commuting is hit or miss with most people, especially on reserve. What’s been your experience so far?
Congrats on signing with Envoy! Very exciting news! Crazy to see how far you’ve come.
I’ll premise this and say, if I had a choice I wouldn’t commute. But for my situation right now, it’s a choice I’m happily making. Will I do this for the long haul? Probably not. To say it was tough on reserve is an understatement. I spent so much time in hotel rooms on my own dime waiting for the phone to ring when I could have been sitting at my own apartment. As a line holder, it has been easier but with so much flying to be done right now, most people are only getting the minimum 2 days between trips…not a lot of time for a commuter to get home and back. It would be much more doable with a crash pad, but that’s just more time you’re not at home if you choose to stay there in between trips. I cherish every night in my bed at home even if I’m headed right back out within a day or two.
I have seen some reduction in flying on the American side recently but even so, the commute from Charlotte isn’t bad. For AA it’s hub to hub and on United you’re flying to a hub so there are flights almost every hour and a half from 6am-10pm. It helps that the first and last flight of the day on United is typically flown by SkyWest, so that card helps a lot (we get top seniority on our operated flights). Plus, I’ve used the first come first serve aspect of Southwest jumpseat policy to get me to Midway once. Just a short Uber ride to O’Hare.
So all in all, it’s working for me right now. I haven’t missed a report time yet and I’ve only gone up the night before once… but I do feel the pinch with the minimum time off between trips.
Hope this helped. Good to hear from you!
The same logic applies though. Very few people are going to want to trade your Friday - Monday trip for their Monday - Thursday trip, there is no reason for them to do so. As a new pilot, I would plan on working weekends and holidays for some time to come.
Completely understandable, I just was just wandering if something came up, if it was possible. But I understand all situations are different. With the shortage, and a lot of flying going on. Plus all the other factors. Thank you!
This is one of those situations where you really want to practice the Golden Rule, karma, whatever you want to call it. I have many friends and when they call and ask for a trade for something they need (not just because it’s a lousy trip) I always say yes and I expect the same in return.
Agree there as well. Always good to have friends and return the favor when needed!
Quick question Hannah, since you may know. I start indoc Monday, and was just wondering what day you pick/know what base you receive? Does this happen well after indoc, or during indoc?
We filled out a form during one of the first days of Indoc (during lunch break) with our top 10 choices for base ranked. It took until about mid-sims to hear where we were assigned.
The first day of ground, you bid for your sim slot and partner.
Congrats on holding a line. What are the blue and grey stripes on your schedule? On your “on” days, how many hours did you actually spend flying?
Each day on the calendar symbolizes a timeline. First of the morning is on the left and as the day progresses it moves right like you read. The blue is duty on time while the grey is layover time.
On average, each “on” day I flew between 3-6 hours and was on duty 7-10 hrs.
Awesome congratulations !!