Connect and get the inside scoop on Airline Companies

Welcome to Airline Pilot Forums - Connect and get the inside scoop on Airline Companies

If this is your first visit, be sure to check out the FAQ. Join our community today and start interacting with existing members. Registration is fast, simple and absolutely free.


User Tag List

Post Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 05-12-2015, 07:42 AM   #1  
Gets Weekends Off
Thread Starter
 
Joined APC: Aug 2005
Position: Airbus
Posts: 635
Default Benefits of JS reservations, a must read.

The Jumpseat Controversy Explained



Although this is a CLT Domicile Base Blast we are posting this to the website to be read by all American Airlines pilots.

Fellow American Airlines Pilots,

As most of you know there has been a disagreement among the APA Board regarding the preferred process for the awarding of the privilege of occupying the Flight Deck Jumpseat. We said it that way for a reason. It is the Captains Jumpseat, and it is by his/her authority that anyone rides, no matter what methodology is used to sort potential occupants. The ability to ride the Flight Deck Jumpseat is a privilege that professional pilots have had since the beginning of commercial aviation. It is a professional courtesy that the Captain - and only the Captain - can extend to his/her fellow professional aviators whether they are of his/her airline or another. This privilege is never taken for granted no matter how junior the Captain may be or how senior the jumpseater may be. If you think about it, it is one of the last areas of Captains’ authority that has remained unchanged over time. We as professional pilots have always policed this privilege ourselves. We can, and should, work through our current disagreement without outside interjection.

It’s not about Seniority

Seniority is the heart of the airline employees’ world. Whether you are a pilot or a baggage handler, seniority rules your work life in some form. It determines how much money you make, when you will get vacation and occasionally whether you will keep your job. It is the reason why mergers almost never end with a combined seniority list without arbitration or legal action. Seniority is everything! Then why not let seniority rule for the jumpseat? When it comes to the jumpseat, predictability trumps seniority! Even if you are senior you want predictability over probability. Unless you are number one on the seniority list, you don’t want a seniority only jumpseat system. The ability to know for sure that you will be on that particular flight, days in advance, far outweigh the right to exercise seniority and not know for sure you will be the “winner” until departure time. Right now, at LUS, we have the ability to book positive space travel (Jumpseat) anywhere in the world we fly seven days in advance without paying or asking any management personnel. This is the equivalent of buying a full fare ticket seven days out. That is a huge benefit!

It’s all about the reservation

Using a seniority based system does not preclude having a reservation system, but it does delay the ability to know if you were awarded your choice. With FCFS you check to see if the Jumpseat is available, and if it is, you immediately book it. You know right then you have a ride. A seniority based system would work similar to sequence (trip) bid closings. At some point the “JS Bid” for a particular flight would close and a reservation awarded. If you are not awarded your choice you would need to make other arrangements. If there were a hybrid system as was proposed by the DFW resolution of 7 days for seniority, closing at 24 hours before the flight, then first come first serve (FCFS), you would only have 24 hour notice to make other arrangements. That is not enough time. Now, another jumpseat requester could beat you to the reservation on a FCFS basis, especially if you are not watching the “bid close” at exactly 24 hours out. As you can see, the further out that you know if you got your bid awarded, the more time you have to look for other open jumpseats or change trips to coincide with your reservation(s). The hybrid system will work and may very well be the best system, but you must have ample time to know the results of the award. Two days of seniority and five days of FCFS is the minimum time that we recommend, since you can book travel to and from your sequence (trip) in one reservation.

It’s best for all of us

As the two most senior members of the Board (Bob with 30 years and Ron with 31 years), one must wonder why we are so passionate about a FCFS system. When we ask that question to the other Board members that are so fixated on a seniority only system, they get that “deer in the headlights look”. I guess they just think we don’t know how great playing “roll-the-dice” is when commuting. During the Board meeting one evening when discussing the Jumpseat issue, I asked a pro seniority Board member how many pilots he had. He said 3,300 or so. I said, “Great! What are you doing for the other 3,200 of them?”

This is a lifestyle and Safety issue

With the current seniority based system, LAA pilots have to show up several flights in advance of what is necessary with a reservation system. LUS pilots book their jumpseat days out and show up for their reserved flight only. This is a tremendous lifestyle benefit considering it is hours more time that you can stay at home with your family, and more importantly, show up for work rested and “fit for duty.” As most know, during the proposed rulemaking of FAR 117 the commuting issue was the 800-pound gorilla in the room. Luckily, it was decided to leave specific language out of the law, but it does talk about commuting and the need to be rested in the commentary. It is your duty by law to be rested and fit for duty before flight. Adding extra hours sitting around an airport may make that more difficult.

The nimble junior pilot myth

It appears there is a fear among the LAA side that it will become difficult to reserve a Jumpseat because computer savvy junior pilots will beat them to the reservation. While it is possible that someone could book before you, there is no way anyone can game the system. Additionally, it is rare at best that you will even need to book exactly 7 days out at midnight. We have both commuted our entire careers and cannot remember when we have felt the need to set an alarm to make our reservation. We do concede that it is possible so that is why we agree that a seniority aspect should be incorporated into the process. Seven days out (or more) for two (2) (or more) entire days a senior pilot may reserve whatever seats he/she desires. We bid our lines of flying a month or more out. It is not unreasonable to ask that we make our Jumpseat decisions (seniority bid closing) at least 5 days out so the system will function smoothly for the benefit of everyone.

Conclusion

We are all in favor of a hybrid jumpseat reservation system, but the seniority aspect of it must close early enough to provide for timely adjustments. We feel that a seven (7) day system with the first two (2) days of seniority bidding and the last five (5) days for FCFS is the most workable system. Because of not knowing how the bid results will turn out, we must allow time to make other plans. Even if you can see who is bidding, you will never know if someone senior jumps in at the last minute and changes everything.

The current FCFS system has worked great for LUS. The West pilots had a seniority system and adopted our FCFS reservation system in 2007 and absolutely love it! In fact, they have been the most vocal advocates of it. Additionally from what we have been told by the Jumpseat Committee, the Company’s currently proposed system is a simple phone based reservation system. It simply makes a reservation just as a passenger’s reservation. There is no ability to add computing logic to run a bid. If that ability changes in the future we would be open to a hybrid system that allows for optimum workability for the line pilot.

The resolution offered was an attempt to force an essentially full seniority based system with virtually no ability to correct a bad bid result upon the pilots. There was no attempt to listen to logic or reason. It was “our way or the highway.” The bulk of the Board chose the “highway” and left the meeting. The hypocritical argument of some Board members preaching the APA Constitution and Bylaws about the “Seniority Principle’s” is admirable, but has been clearly disregarded in the past history of APA. When the Company said that they were going to adopt the LAA FCFS non-rev system we strongly protested. We sent out base blasts asking pilots to go to a website that was gathering names for a companywide petition against the FCFS non-rev system. There was not a peep out of APA in support of this effort. It is an entirely different story when you are competing against over 100,000 employees, and their families, for a cabin seat.

We will have time to test the reservation system before the SLI is fully administered. Give it a chance. If after you have tried it, and if there is a large outcry of disappointment, we pledge to look into changes.

Regards,
CLT Reps
nwa757 is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 07:45 AM   #2  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Arado 234's Avatar
 
Joined APC: Nov 2013
Posts: 1,095
Default

Thank you for posting this. I hope AA pilots educate themselves about this!
Arado 234 is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 08:04 AM   #3  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Joined APC: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,100
Default

And I say again, the Company has ALREADY decided. This update is LEGALLY, HISTORICALLY AND FACTUALLY FLAT OUT WRONG about "the jumpseat".

The agreements for the jumpseat "sharing" with other carriers is negotiated between the Companys. While pilot "input" is certainly undertaken, the reality is the jumper is COMPANY property and the COMPANY sets the rules. The "Captain discretion" is limited in many respects. FAA, SS and CK Airmen all have federal statutory access to the flight deck. If the Company says FCFS it is up to them whether they will accept the APA input or not.....but it IS solely up to the Company.

I believe the IVR should be FCFS and I will give them MY input. You may give them yours, but in the end I highly doubt they will change it.

My 2 cent.
Route66 is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 12:42 PM   #4  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Joined APC: Apr 2012
Posts: 353
Default

I have to agree. That's only part of the letter that is incorrect. Who dictates who rides the jumpseat is not the CA on a macro level. It actually involves the DHS, the Department of Transportation, the FAA, the company, and finally down to a micro level of the CA. The company has a Macro control at its level as well and can dictate the use over the CA.

Here's an example of how it's NOT the CA's seat until someone requesting a ride has cleared all the other agencies control and policies, and is literally asking the CA for a ride. Remember after 9/11.....who controlled the "non use" of the JS and made commuting and travel another nightmare during those times? Answer: It was not a Captain, and not one CA controlled the seat on "their" plane during those times.

This is why APA will never control the jumpseat or its use no matter how many resolutions they pass. I like the letter and agree there is a better way to award the seat, but in the end, it's a policy
drinksonme is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 01:13 PM   #5  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Joined APC: Mar 2008
Position: A-320
Posts: 1,058
Default

Here's a typical example of how the jumpseat reservation works. I am junior, so I ride the bid sheet a lot, so i don't always know my schedule more than 2 days in advance. This week I'll be flying out on Wed for a morning trip on Thurs. I have a 2 leg, cross country commute. I checked flights Mon night, 36 hours out. For the first leg there are 7 open seats. I got the primary. The second leg is PHX-PHL, a route that's typically full. The first flight after I get in is full, neither jumpseat reserved. It's a 29 min turn, so I decide to go with the next flight where I am the Alternate and if I get in early I'll try for the earlier flight.
I'm junior, booked my commute 36 hours out and got my first choice on both flights, one being a commuter heavy route. Stress level for my commute is pretty much zero. This is pretty typical.
viper548 is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 01:19 PM   #6  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Joined APC: Dec 2007
Position: Window seat
Posts: 4,448
Default

So a 'seniority for the first four days' system would have been a non-issue.
Sliceback is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 01:24 PM   #7  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Joined APC: Mar 2008
Position: A-320
Posts: 1,058
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sliceback View Post
So a 'seniority for the first four days' system would have been a non-issue.
Not at all. I'm sure there are lots of people that plan their commute 7 days out, but I'm able to do mine 24-48 hours out without a problem.
viper548 is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 01:35 PM   #8  
Organizational Learning 
 
TonyC's Avatar
 
Joined APC: Nov 2005
Position: Directly behind the combiner
Posts: 4,579
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by drinksonme View Post

Who dictates who rides the jumpseat is not the CA on a macro level. It actually involves the DHS, the Department of Transportation, the FAA, the company, and finally down to a micro level of the CA. The company has a Macro control at its level as well and can dictate the use over the CA.

14 CFR §121.547 is the controlling regulation. It says that in order for a person to gain access to the flight deck, that person must have the permission of:
1) The Admiistrator, and

2) The Certificate Holder, and

3) The Pilot in Command
Permission is required by all 3. Permission can be denied by any one. The Pilot in Command is one who can deny permission.

If the Captain says, "No", the jumpseater don't go.

Period.


So, what were you saying about The Company dictating over the Captain?






.
TonyC is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 01:44 PM   #9  
You scratched my anchor
 
Al Czervik's Avatar
 
Joined APC: Feb 2011
Posts: 2,945
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sliceback View Post
So a 'seniority for the first four days' system would have been a non-issue.
Nope.


Filler
Al Czervik is offline  
Old 05-12-2015, 02:06 PM   #10  
Gets Weekends Off
 
Joined APC: Nov 2014
Posts: 1,100
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by TonyC View Post
14 CFR §121.547 is the controlling regulation. It says that in order for a person to gain access to the flight deck, that person must have the permission of:
1) The Admiistrator, and

2) The Certificate Holder, and

3) The Pilot in Command
Permission is required by all 3. Permission can be denied by any one. The Pilot in Command is one who can deny permission.

If the Captain says, "No", the jumpseater don't go.

Period.


So, what were you saying about The Company dictating over the Captain?






.
That IS the pecking order. The FAA (administrator) THEN the Company (Certificate holder, if approved by the administrator) THEN the PIC (Captain, which BTW is not mentioned as ""CAPTAIN" in the FAR's).

Here is the point: If the "Captain" denies a jump seater because he is FAA, SS or CK Airman.....expect to get a visit to the CP and explain it.

If the "Captain" denies the JS to anyone other off airline no harm no foul. Deny the JS to our own (either LAA/LUS/LAWA...etc. you can expect problems.) But if the Company sets the policy to FCFS it is possible that the APA could try to convince them of something other but after the Kirby Crew news last week.....well.....I kind of doubt the Company is going to REPROGRAM the IVR system after all the work gone into it and ALL the time it will take to satisfy the few "senior" guys libido's, all the while occupying valuable programmer time with something that already works.
Route66 is offline  
 
 
 

 
Post Reply
 



Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes


Related Topics
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
DAL Poolie Info Indy Delta 8288 12-28-2018 06:40 AM
Delta Medical Benefits for Ex-Military andyaf27 Major 10 12-15-2014 01:05 PM
Military Leave Policy Reminder Dave Behnke Cargo 109 08-27-2014 01:45 PM
Flight Benefits? What Flight Benefits?? (UAL) SuperConductor Major 86 08-27-2012 09:45 AM
DOJ Sues AMR Over Reservist Pilot Benefits RockBottom Major 0 01-12-2006 05:36 PM


All times are GMT -8. The time now is 08:10 PM.