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Big Perm
02-22-2018, 09:07 AM
ALASKA living in Seattle VS UNITED SFO based living in Seattle
This is ďhypotheticalĒ of courseÖ.Iím trying to get some input on which of these course of actions you guys and gals would suggest and why. I have about 25 years left to fly and plan on staying in Seattle.
-Both are great gigs. Most people emphasize living in base over all other aspects.
-There are about 25 flights a day between SEA and SFO.
-Currently no scope protection at Alaska.
-Wide body opportunities at UAL.
-Future mergers possible at Alaska could have an impact.
-Work rules differences?
-Upgrade time likely to be similar ~6 years?
-Proportionally, it looks like more retirements at UAL in the coming years vs more growth at Alaska (trying to go from 2900 pilots to 4000 in 3 years).
-UAL pays more but you could potentially make up for that living in base with Alaska.
Iím not trying to turn this into a ****ing match. Just looking for input between living in base with Alaska vs commuting to San Fran with UAL from Seattle. Thank you in advance.


lpcunity
02-22-2018, 09:13 AM
What up Big Perm.
Iím an Alaska pilot with 3 years in and I have my app in at UAL. I think your 25 years would be better spent at UAL. I wish they would call me. Alaska is a great job but Iím confident UAL is better even commuting.

pete2800
02-22-2018, 09:15 AM
If you're senior to me you should definitely leave for United. :D


ImperialxRat
02-22-2018, 09:25 AM
I believe that even with commuting to SFO you will have more days home at UAL. UAL you can trade, bid, and manipulate your schedule to give yourself commutable trips. You will gain seniority at a much faster rate at UAL, and as you mentioned the opportunity for widebody flying and more pay.

SFO is a relatively junior base, and my buddy who has been at UAL 3 years can hold SFO 777 or 787.

Pogey Bait
02-22-2018, 09:34 AM
What about Delta, you could end up based in SEA with them. With that said if you have offers from both Alaska and United then I would personally commute to SFO for United. United is a real airline that flys globally, Alaska is a small Pacific Northwest airline. You could get on with United and still apply to Delta.

Chuckie
02-22-2018, 02:15 PM
It's not a clear-cut decision, because I know that living in base makes the job completely different than commuting. Also, commuting into and out of SFO can sometimes be a mess when the weather rolls in, and I suspect that SEA can be the same. Obviously the best of both worlds for you would be DAL, but you hit all the high points for jumping over to UAL. I'm not as optimistic that you'd be home more often at UAL because of the commute, but without a doubt they have much more scheduling flexibility there. A close friend was hired in early 2016 and was 737 SFO for a while. Over the past holidays, he was able to drop/trade/whatever on his schedule to have all of the holidays off and drop well below monthly min guarantee. I'm from the VX side but I can imagine that that sort of stuff is not gonna happen here at AS any time soon.

flysnoopy76
02-22-2018, 03:30 PM
Commute for United, even if you have to go to Newark.

TripleCrank
02-22-2018, 04:06 PM
Everyoneís wants, needs, family situation...etc is different so do whatís best for you.

Personally I would not commute for a career; I would pick which company I prefered and then relocate to one of their bases.

Reactivity
02-22-2018, 08:26 PM
Commuting suuuuuucks, and I only do it once a month most months. I also know a SFO-based UAL pilot who lives in the Seattle area. He did the math on how much of his life he spends commuting, and the result was pretty depressing.

That said, Iíd rather you go to UAL.

NavyFlyer
02-23-2018, 06:56 PM
Delta. Be based at home and fly widebodyís your first year. Why commute to UAL?


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Klsytakesit
02-23-2018, 08:45 PM
Hard to answer....You are not making an equal comparison....Alaska is a small domestic west coast regional airline and United is a very large international major airline. Those are the choices you need to make...

Going2Baja
02-26-2018, 07:29 AM
Hard to answer....You are not making an equal comparison....Alaska is a small domestic west coast regional airline and United is a very large international major airline. Those are the choices you need to make...

Except at UAL or DAL you can have the Alaska lifestyle of 737/320 flying AND/OR also have the opportunity to fly large widebody International. Alaska is a stepping stone, why would you hold yourself short? There are 10 year pilots at Alaska wondering if they should make the jump.

Baja.

flysnoopy76
02-26-2018, 10:24 AM
Except at UAL or DAL you can have the Alaska lifestyle of 737/320 flying AND/OR also have the opportunity to fly large widebody International. Alaska is a stepping stone, why would you hold yourself short? There are 10 year pilots at Alaska wondering if they should make the jump.

Baja.

Iím not sure the lifestyle at Alaska is comparable to United or Delta even given the same equipment. An earlier post stated Alaska really is a regional airline which looks like a major because of the equipment and almost the pay. The rest of the contract lags several of the regionals nowadays.

KnockKnock
02-26-2018, 11:45 AM
As far as the same equipment goes. Iíve been told the exact opposite from my buddies at UAL. Theyíve shown me their schedules and told me theyíre doing the same type of flying they were doing at the Regionals. Alaskaís flying is far better then the 4 and 5 legs a day I was doing in RJís. I wouldnít base my decision on narrow body flying, Iíd base it on the eventual wide body flying. Thatís where the gains are exponential.

Arctichicken
02-26-2018, 02:48 PM
By definition, Alaska is a legacy. In reality, it's something between a regional and a legacy. For a "smaller" medium sized airline, it has many faces. Pay is okay, QOL is okay depending on seniority, and career expectation is just okay. In its current form, it's a mediocre career airline at best. No one has a crystal ball. How times have changed.:rolleyes: I remember friends from the big 3 knocking on my door, mainly after 9/11 for obvious reasons.
The flying and trips are better than most narrow body flying at the big three, in my opinion. We don't fly more than 3 legs a day in most cases. Most days are 1 or 2 legs, which depends a lot on the base and seniority, as always. There are 5 leg days through the southeast and a few 4 leg days but that's still fairly rare. Alaska is still a west coast airline so we stay in the same time zone more often than not. The most you will see is 3 hours either side. The layovers are fairly decent; no Lubbock or Amarillo layovers.:D With some seniority and/or luck, you could be laying over in Hawaii, Costa Rica, and resort towns in Mexico. That's something you won't see too often on a narrow body at the big 3.
Our pairings and schedules are some of the worst in the industry, in my opinion. This is where QOL takes a huge dip. We have inefficient trips and lines, which means more time away from base with less pay. Trip trading is almost nonexistent here. There is very little, if any, flexibility once you are assigned your schedule.
Upgrades are at about 4-5 years. Being junior will suck, especially in Seattle. The company runs a very lean operation and management will never adequately staff the company.
We have 5th year FOs (normally younger/newer) leaving for the big 3, FedEx, UPS, and even SWA. This should give you an idea whether you want to come here or not. The reasons for leaving range from better pay, scope, career advancement, scheduling, and commutability. We've lost some sharp FOs to greener pastures due to company's negligence.
Alaska will always be a small fish that constantly needs to check its six to survive. This management does not have the balls, vision, or the skills to be the premier west coast airline. Their huge egos, unwillingness to change, and inability to lead through cohesiveness seem to always be their downfall. If I were looking for a job today, Alaska would be my last stop, just short of a job with a regional. I wouldn't come here just to be able to drive to work. It is, however, a premier stepping stone "major" airline.

Pogey Bait
02-26-2018, 04:23 PM
By definition, Alaska is a legacy. In reality, it's something between a regional and a legacy. For a "smaller" medium sized airline, it has many faces. Pay is okay, QOL is okay depending on seniority, and career expectation is just okay. In its current form, it's a mediocre career airline at best. No one has a crystal ball. How times have changed.:rolleyes: I remember friends from the big 3 knocking on my door, mainly after 9/11 for obvious reasons.
The flying and trips are better than most narrow body flying at the big three, in my opinion. We don't fly more than 3 legs a day in most cases. Most days are 1 or 2 legs, which depends a lot on the base and seniority, as always. There are 5 leg days through the southeast and a few 4 leg days but that's still fairly rare. Alaska is still a west coast airline so we stay in the same time zone more often than not. The most you will see is 3 hours either side. The layovers are fairly decent; no Lubbock or Amarillo layovers.:D With some seniority and/or luck, you could be laying over in Hawaii, Costa Rica, and resort towns in Mexico. That's something you won't see too often on a narrow body at the big 3.
Our pairings and schedules are some of the worst in the industry, in my opinion. This is where QOL takes a huge dip. We have inefficient trips and lines, which means more time away from base with less pay. Trip trading is almost nonexistent here. There is very little, if any, flexibility once you are assigned your schedule.
Upgrades are at about 4-5 years. Being junior will suck, especially in Seattle. The company runs a very lean operation and management will never adequately staff the company.
We have 5th year FOs (normally younger/newer) leaving for the big 3, FedEx, UPS, and even SWA. This should give you an idea whether you want to come here or not. The reasons for leaving range from better pay, scope, career advancement, scheduling, and commutability. We've lost some sharp FOs to greener pastures due to company's negligence.
Alaska will always be a small fish that constantly needs to check its six to survive. This management does not have the balls, vision, or the skills to be the premier west coast airline. Their huge egos, unwillingness to change, and inability to lead through cohesiveness seem to always be their downfall. If I were looking for a job today, Alaska would be my last stop, just short of a job with a regional. I wouldn't come here just to be able to drive to work. It is, however, a premier stepping stone "major" airline.

Thank you.....................

OCCP
02-26-2018, 06:27 PM
Alaska will always be a small fish that constantly needs to check its six to survive. This management does not have the balls, vision, or the skills to be the premier west coast airline. Their huge egos, unwillingness to change, and inability to lead through cohesiveness seem to always be their downfall. If I were looking for a job today, Alaska would be my last stop, just short of a job with a regional. I wouldn't come here just to be able to drive to work. It is, however, a premier stepping stone "major" airline.



Probably the most accurate thing Iíve ever read on apc. Well said dude!

ZINTKAZ
02-26-2018, 06:30 PM
By definition, Alaska is a legacy. In reality, it's something between a regional and a legacy. For a "smaller" medium sized airline, it has many faces. Pay is okay, QOL is okay depending on seniority, and career expectation is just okay. In its current form, it's a mediocre career airline at best. No one has a crystal ball. How times have changed.:rolleyes: I remember friends from the big 3 knocking on my door, mainly after 9/11 for obvious reasons.
The flying and trips are better than most narrow body flying at the big three, in my opinion. We don't fly more than 3 legs a day in most cases. Most days are 1 or 2 legs, which depends a lot on the base and seniority, as always. There are 5 leg days through the southeast and a few 4 leg days but that's still fairly rare. Alaska is still a west coast airline so we stay in the same time zone more often than not. The most you will see is 3 hours either side. The layovers are fairly decent; no Lubbock or Amarillo layovers.:D With some seniority and/or luck, you could be laying over in Hawaii, Costa Rica, and resort towns in Mexico. That's something you won't see too often on a narrow body at the big 3.
Our pairings and schedules are some of the worst in the industry, in my opinion. This is where QOL takes a huge dip. We have inefficient trips and lines, which means more time away from base with less pay. Trip trading is almost nonexistent here. There is very little, if any, flexibility once you are assigned your schedule.
Upgrades are at about 4-5 years. Being junior will suck, especially in Seattle. The company runs a very lean operation and management will never adequately staff the company.
We have 5th year FOs (normally younger/newer) leaving for the big 3, FedEx, UPS, and even SWA. This should give you an idea whether you want to come here or not. The reasons for leaving range from better pay, scope, career advancement, scheduling, and commutability. We've lost some sharp FOs to greener pastures due to company's negligence.
Alaska will always be a small fish that constantly needs to check its six to survive. This management does not have the balls, vision, or the skills to be the premier west coast airline. Their huge egos, unwillingness to change, and inability to lead through cohesiveness seem to always be their downfall. If I were looking for a job today, Alaska would be my last stop, just short of a job with a regional. I wouldn't come here just to be able to drive to work. It is, however, a premier stepping stone "major" airline.

A very good and brief description of Alaska Airlines for those considering working here. Rewind 18 years ago, this would be my last stop as well. Although some diehard ďArctic PigeonsĒ would disagree.

Packrat
02-27-2018, 06:30 AM
Rewind 25 years and AS Captains made $40 MORE an hour than UPS. $154 vs. $111. How times change.

KnockKnock
02-27-2018, 06:58 AM
And times will change again. The one constant in this industry is the never ending change. Iím confident AS will take another turn for the better. The old mindset is being replaced. This is why Iím comfortable hanging my hat here.

Klsytakesit
02-27-2018, 06:22 PM
19 years in and Alaska is virtually unchanged..
Be happy with how it is today. It will likely be unchanged
in another 19 years. Or it will no longer exist. It is a decent west coast regional as it exists today. Be happy

WutFace
02-27-2018, 08:48 PM
19 years in and Alaska is virtually unchanged..
Be happy with how it is today. It will likely be unchanged
in another 19 years. Or it will no longer exist. It is a decent west coast regional as it exists today. Be happy

I know you're trying to make me feel better, and I appreciate that.
But damn is that depressing.

NxNW
06-28-2019, 07:18 PM
Any chance of throwing some more gas on this fire? Have a CJO from United, live in Seattle, and wondering if AS is still worth pursuing.

SkyKing466
06-28-2019, 07:24 PM
Until you also have a CJO from Alaska as well your decision is made. Don't turn that down waiting for the Eskimo to call!

That aside as things stand today you're better off going to United and not looking back.

Reactivity
06-29-2019, 01:56 AM
Any chance of throwing some more gas on this fire? Have a CJO from United, live in Seattle, and wondering if AS is still worth pursuing.

What - are you crazy? Airline job offers donít grow on trees. If I had an offer from United, Iíd happily commute to SFO for the rest of my career and never give those screwy HR types in Angle Lake another thought. I say this as someone who has been pursuing Alaska since 2002. Maybe that will help clarify your thoughts on this question.

flysnoopy76
06-29-2019, 03:43 AM
Any chance of throwing some more gas on this fire? Have a CJO from United, live in Seattle, and wondering if AS is still worth pursuing.

Is this really a serious question?

Big Perm
06-29-2019, 04:44 AM
Congrats on the CJO. I had offers from both companies and am comfortable with my decision.
The commute from SEA to SFO isn't fun but it's worth the seniority progression due to mandatory retirements and about 3% growth. Someday when you get to a widebody, the commute should get easier as it's afternoon/evening departures and you're only doing it 3 times a month.
SFO is united's junior base. You will see great progress....I've been here nine months and am 50% in my catagory. I bid for three work groups...so I do a 5/6/4 day trips in July for example to minimize the commute.

lowflying
06-29-2019, 11:25 AM
Any chance of throwing some more gas on this fire? Have a CJO from United, live in Seattle, and wondering if AS is still worth pursuing.

Go to SeaTac and ask any Alaska pilot under 50 who's not wearing a hat. I'd bet big money that after they've gotten their laughing under control 99% of them will tell you to go to United.

At this point Alaska's contract is on par with Frontier. United has one of the best contracts in the industry. You could probably buy positive space tickets everytime you commute with the difference in lifetime earnings

Arctichicken
06-29-2019, 12:34 PM
Here’s another angle: You can go to a Ivy League college and choose from variety of majors or opt for a barely accredited college and either study basket weaving or under water fire prevention. The pendulum swings everywhere but here. I think you get my drift.

Moonwolf
06-29-2019, 05:52 PM
I've know about 3 guys at Alaska that left in base to go to united to commute. Nobody that I've heard goes the other way around

Nucflash
06-30-2019, 01:42 PM
I wonít echo most of what has been said here (which I believe to be correct), but I will echo the trip trading bit. Opportunities to manipulate your schedule at United (in the right fleet and seat) are pretty phenomenal and presently thereís nothing to touch it at AK. Itís just a huge deal to be able get rid of garbage and pick up something good over it, or put your name in for premium pay and have it auto pickup, etc etc. I hope PBS and a good trip trading system is being discussed at part of the new AK CBA.....

Beta82
07-01-2019, 04:55 PM
I believe reserve for UAL is all long call also, that might be a factor in your decision? I hear reserve at Alaska is a special kind of hell. Go to United. I'm leaving Alaska after two and a half years, I wouldn't recommend anyone come here if they have an opportunity at the big 4.

Work4life
07-01-2019, 06:00 PM
I left almost a year ago and haven't looked back. The only thing going for Alaska were the crew. I miss flying with majority of them but QOL/schedule is so much better at the gravy train. The grass is muuuch greener for sure. If you're as unhappy with crappy scheduling and subpar management as I was, I highly recommend leaving for the big boys.