June was my second month on reserve. As a commuter, I prefer picking up open time trips to fill my reserve days. Overall I had 16 days off, 54 hours of flying with 73 hours of pay. I did my first redeye from Seattle to Newark, had a nice 30 hour layover in Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic and scored a week off in the middle of the month for my birthday.
6: -EWR (redeye)
12: (30 hr layover)
A belated Happy Birthday to you.
Not a bad looking schedule. What do the various codes mean? LSR, HDO, RLFD, UNAV?
LSR= Long call reserve (12 hours)
HDO= Holy day off
RLFD= Released from duty (typically released from reserve prior to a trip starting so you stay legal for the trip)
UNAV= coded for a trip I snagged to consolidate my hours (100 hours in 120 days)
Holy day off??
I missed FDO and TFDY?
What is consolidation of hours. Are you required to fly 100 hours every 120 days or within the first 120 days of employment (post training)?
I keep meaning to watch that, haha.
Part 121 Consolidation requires a pilot to fly 100hrs within the first 120 days after they complete training. After that you simply need to maintain landing currency.
Okay. That is what I gathered from you guys mentioning it. So average 40 a month. Is it ever a problem to get those hours, at least nowadays? It seems new hire reserves are rarely sitting their entire reserve call.
That can vary greatly by the airline, fleet, staffing, time of year, etc etc etc. Some overfly their guarantee, others need to get back in the sim because they don’t get their 100hrs. There is no “usually”.
On reserve there are holy days off (HDO) and flexible days off (FDO). Crew scheduling can not work you in to a HDO unless you’re given add pay and another day off restored later in the month. However, an FDO you can be worked in to with less consequence for scheduling.
TFDY are paid transfer days. All new hires get three paid days to “move to base”.
As for consolidating, it’s in the company’s interest to get you your hours on time. They will fill out schedule to make sure it happens. Getting a pilot back to the training center and in the sim is costly.
So if HDOs and FDOs can be worked into, do you not really have any firm, true days off (for example scheduling plans that will 100% happen that day)?
HDO’s are as close to that as you can get while on reserve. They are protected as much as possible with the notion that the unexpected happens sometimes.
For example when going in to your last day of reserve if you’re not assigned by 10am and the next day you have an HDO you’re released early.That helps prevent you from getting reassigned in to an HDO. If it’s a FDO, you have to stick around until 3pm.
I’ve only been worked in to an HDO once and I ended up getting the day off restored on Fourth of July so it actually worked out well in my favor.
Please bear in mind that Hannah is discussing things that are particular to United. Different airlines use different terms and can have vastly different contracts. At United even, much of this will be changing with the new contract.
I have very rarely been worked into my days off, usually it was precipitated by a mechanical or weather related cancellation.
As Chris pointed out these things can vary from airline to airline. At Hawaiian we have GDOs which are GUARANTEED Days Off which cannot be touched.
Cool. Yeah, just wondering what the different codes meant. And I’m now thoroughly confused as to how days off work, haha, but that is a few years off in the future to worry about, and I figure there are some handbooks.
Really nothing to be confused about. All airlines have different codes for days on and off and most have provisions that state if the airline is really jammed up they can move your days.
The “handbook” you’re referring to will be your contract which is the real take away from this thread. When we make references to quality of life provisions, day off protection is a big one. Far too many new pilots get into an airline and are blinded by what we call “shiny things” (aka pay rates). What they don’t realize are the rates come and go but once you surrender work rules you never get them back.
Hey Hannah! You mentioned in your original post that you’re a commuter, does that mean you fly from the airport closest to your home to where your first flight is? If so, who pays for that flight from your home to your first job location? Also, if I am understanding this, is it normal in the industry to live away from your airline hub?
Yes, that’s right! I’m based in NY right now but I live in Charlotte. That means before and after every trip I’ve got one more leg to ride before I’m home. It’s the beautiful part about being an airline pilot, you can live wherever you want! However, being a commuter is a choice and it comes at a cost. It’s stressful, comes with many headaches and reduces the time you have at home overall.
There’s a large population of commuters at every airline. The commute is the responsibility of the pilot. You can non-rev, meaning standby for free open seats. However, if there aren’t any seats you don’t get on. Occasionally I will buy a discount ticket just so I don’t have to worry as much about getting to work on time.
How did being based in NY come about? If you wanted to be based in ie… Cleveland - would that have been possible or do they basically stick you where they want initially?
In addition, down the road, if you moved to Orlando and wanted to be based there, what does that look like?