Airline Pilot Forums

Airline Pilot Forums was designed to be a community where working airline pilots can share ideas and information about the aviation field. In the forum you will find information about major and regional airline carriers, career training, interview and job seeker help, finance, and living the airline pilot lifestyle.




jrav8r
11-05-2017, 07:56 AM
Hi,

I was wondering what everyone's thoughts are of a regional captain being able to leave 121 and hire direct entry into left seat corporate?


Bucknut
11-05-2017, 08:14 AM
The biggest challenge is realizing that a Corporate Captain is responsible for everything including dispatch, weather, weight and balance, rental cars for the boss. It is a less structured environment typically including training. I trained many Airline to Corporate pilots and they had a hard time with realizing that certain training organizations will not provide you with mandated call outs. Your flying skills should serve you well because you are doing more flying then the average Corporate gig. If you go to a private organization get ready for politics and a little sucking up too, it's just part of the game.

HwkrPlt
11-05-2017, 09:36 AM
Why do you want to make the switch? What do you think you will gain with the change?


jrav8r
11-05-2017, 11:18 AM
I think some regional pilots become dissatisfied and look for a change to corporate. If you are a currently a regional captain, it would be nice to make the change without being an FO.

HwkrPlt
11-05-2017, 11:25 AM
I think some regional pilots become dissatisfied and look for a change to corporate. If you are a currently a regional captain, it would be nice to make the change without being an FO.

It all depends on where you get hired. Some places hire people as first officers, some people hire people directly as captains. But I would strongly suggest you stay at the regionals and try to get hired at a major. Unless you have really strong networking skills, and know the right people, it will be very hard to get a top tier corporate job.

galaxy flyer
11-05-2017, 01:09 PM
It’s certainly possible, but probably unlikely. Not because of flying skills as much as all the attendant stuff—dealing with your own dispatching, handling bills at FBOs, making arrangements, and just learning how the operator operates. It’s not rocket science, but just like at your airline there is lots of procedures and customs to adopt.

Likely harder to go direct into an international operation from regionals—several more layers of stuff. And you will need good contacts. Pilots with good corporate contacts have a huge advantage, get the really good gigs effortlessly.

GF

flynavyj
11-05-2017, 05:28 PM
I took the "long" way round to the corporate pilot world. Regional FO -> Regional CA -> Left professional flying (6 years - did part time instructing) -> 135 SIC -> 135 PIC -> Corporate PIC

The 135 time was great for learning more about the charter and corporate environment. It's different than 121, but still not difficult just different.

I think going direct it'd be a difficult transition to make, unless you have some experience in that arena already. But passed that, just get used to cleaning and detailing planes. With the way salaries have gone in the regional world, financially it'd likely be a lateral...might make a little more corporate initially, but nothing compared to 121 major salaries...or 121 retirements (as they stand right now)

Lucky8888
11-05-2017, 05:43 PM
The biggest challenge is realizing that a Corporate Captain is responsible for everything including dispatch, weather, weight and balance, rental cars for the boss. It is a less structured environment typically including training. I trained many Airline to Corporate pilots and they had a hard time with realizing that certain training organizations will not provide you with mandated call outs. Your flying skills should serve you well because you are doing more flying then the average Corporate gig. If you go to a private organization get ready for politics and a little sucking up too, it's just part of the game.

Obviously, many corporate departments work this way but many do not. In operation, the flight crew isn't responsible at all for things like dispatch, weather, W&B, rental cars, hotel rooms, etc. We have other people to do those things and, we don't "scrimp" on the whatever it costs to be a safe operation. So, like most things in life, there are the good and there are the bad.

galaxy flyer
11-06-2017, 11:55 AM
Lucky8888,

While your operation was much like mine; compared to an airline, the corporate captain is much more “on the spot” when things go ****-eyed. There’s no “reserve” pilot available; if there’s a last minute change, it’s the captain that has to make it happen. The airline dispatcher has a legal responsibility to monitor and make decisions with the crew. No such legal position in corporate.

GF

Lucky8888
11-06-2017, 05:34 PM
Lucky8888,

While your operation was much like mine; compared to an airline, the corporate captain is much more “on the spot” when things go ****-eyed. There’s no “reserve” pilot available; if there’s a last minute change, it’s the captain that has to make it happen. The airline dispatcher has a legal responsibility to monitor and make decisions with the crew. No such legal position in corporate.

GF

Good points.

galaxy flyer
11-07-2017, 08:43 AM
In one morning on a recent trip, I had my co-pilot’s bags stolen at the hotel lobby, a request to move up the departure time and a SAFA check (Italy). That kind of morning will not happen at a regional. Add in weather or a mechanical and it’s not a day at any airline.

GF

HwkrPlt
11-07-2017, 09:06 AM
But on the plus side, there is a bit less oversight on the corporate side. If you find a solution to a problem that is outside of the box, you don't have to worry about repercussions from on high if you take matters into your own hands, assuming it legal per the FAR's.

The Plainsman
11-08-2017, 07:02 AM
Regional Captain to Left seat corporate?

Go down to the local FBO and ask around about the local 135 outfit flying Barons, King Air's etc. Learn the non-flying aspects of the business. You might have to grind it out for a while slinging gear and "paying your dues" even in the corporate world. Most departments have Co-captains and insurance dictates specific amount of time in type for PIC designation.

If you are fortunate enough for a part 91 department to give you a look, be humble! Most 91 ops have been flying a long time, fly the planes the way they want them flown, not "how we did it at XYZ Airlines".
Stick & Rudder skills are just the tip of the iceberg.

In short, good sense of humor, humble attitude, and servant-leadership will take you a long way...

good luck...

sf340b
11-08-2017, 11:57 AM
It is definitely an eye opening change from printing paperwork and saying, "Gimmee moar gas." to "Go from A to B right now? How the Ph#& are we going to do that?"

Who is going to flight plan this? Who is going to load the bags? Do we have enough fuel? Is there an airport there? Is it open? Are there any NOTAMS? Can we get gas there? From who? Are they open? How do we pay for the gas? What do you mean, "That's what I get the big buxx for?"