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View Full Version : Attempting to make the switch


thejetpilot
08-24-2018, 01:44 PM
Hey everyone, just a west coast charter pilot trying switch over to the airlines, who submitted my app to the west coast sister company that flys 175s, struggling with the wait due to the backlog. Highly tempted to give TSA a shot considering the DEN base going junior, which can arguably be a decent commute from the west coast. Thoughts on getting onboard with TSA?


m20cmark21
08-25-2018, 02:16 PM
Hey everyone, just a west coast charter pilot trying switch over to the airlines, who submitted my app to the west coast sister company that flys 175s, struggling with the wait due to the backlog. Highly tempted to give TSA a shot considering the DEN base going junior, which can arguably be a decent commute from the west coast. Thoughts on getting onboard with TSA?

Apply on airlineapps, interview, start class. Do it!

thejetpilot
08-25-2018, 02:33 PM
Apply on airlineapps, interview, start class. Do it!
I'm guessing you're at TSA. How do you like it there? Any advise?


Metering
08-25-2018, 03:11 PM
I'm guessing you're at TSA. How do you like it there? Any advise?

Stay Away from Trans States until they finish shutting down their east coast bases and complete their restructuring. Also, the higher ups are playing games with the union in regards to the new contract negotiations. To me it looks like there is a big announcement coming. Either a merger of the TSH carriers to one airline or a buyout buy another entity. Time will tell, but Trans States is toxic right now.

thejetpilot
08-25-2018, 04:10 PM
Stay Away from Trans States until they finish shutting down their east coast bases and complete their restructuring. Also, the higher ups are playing games with the union in regards to the new contract negotiations. To me it looks like there is a big announcement coming. Either a merger of the TSH carriers to one airline or a buyout buy another entity. Time will tell, but Trans States is toxic right now.

How long would you say until it supposed to get better ?

FlyingKat
08-25-2018, 07:28 PM
Stay Away from Trans States until they finish shutting down their east coast bases and complete their restructuring. Also, the higher ups are playing games with the union in regards to the new contract negotiations. To me it looks like there is a big announcement coming. Either a merger of the TSH carriers to one airline or a buyout buy another entity. Time will tell, but Trans States is toxic right now.

This is a bit overstated. Whatever happens with TSA there will be a Denver base for the forseeable future because UAL wants the XRs there. If west coast and Denver are what you want, you should be fine. If you want an East Coast base you might want to rethink things. Worst case you get STL or ORD out of the box, but should be able to get DEN quickly because it will be a large base. ORD isn't a bad commute from the west coast if you get stuck there. STL is well, hell for commuters but you should be able to get out of there to ORD or DEN quickly.

Seems pretty likely we're getting bought, most likely by Republic but we'll see if that happens.

thejetpilot
08-26-2018, 12:18 PM
This is a bit overstated. Whatever happens with TSA there will be a Denver base for the forseeable future because UAL wants the XRs there. If west coast and Denver are what you want, you should be fine. If you want an East Coast base you might want to rethink things. Worst case you get STL or ORD out of the box, but should be able to get DEN quickly because it will be a large base. ORD isn't a bad commute from the west coast if you get stuck there. STL is well, hell for commuters but you should be able to get out of there to ORD or DEN quickly.

Seems pretty likely we're getting bought, most likely by Republic but we'll see if that happens.
Thanks for your input! Yes, I prefer to be west coast, or at least at close as I can get to it! I know it's been a hot topic for a while now

Knobcrk1
08-26-2018, 03:48 PM
What are you flying? We’ve had quite a few leave for Corp/charter jobs lately. Buyer beware. Also TSA is definitely not west coast friendly, there’s Denver but it’s not stable as staffing sucks and you’ll be commuting on min days off.

m20cmark21
08-26-2018, 04:34 PM
I'm guessing you're at TSA. How do you like it there? Any advise?

Yes, I'm at TSA. What type of advise you looking for? If you want DEN, TSA is solid, if you want "west coast," why not SkyWest or Horizon?

How long would you say until it supposed to get better ?

Anybody who attempts to answer this will be merely guessing from their own personal experience. "Better" is a relative term here in the regional airline world. I came here for DEN, upgraded quickly, and have as good a QOL as I can imagine for someone not working 9 days a month while making $300k a year...

What are you flying? Weíve had quite a few leave for Corp/charter jobs lately. Buyer beware. Also TSA is definitely not west coast friendly, thereís Denver but itís not stable as staffing sucks and youíll be commuting on min days off.

Agreed, looks like DEN is FINALLY going to be the "stable/growing/large" base the company has been promising for over 3 years...

thejetpilot
08-26-2018, 08:12 PM
Iím flying an older light jet in Southern California, any RJ will be an upgrade to me. A CRJ-200 is new compared to what I fly. Always on call. Always wanted to go to the airlines from the very beginning. Heard things about SkyWest, and itís really become more ďeastĒ than west. Horizon bases are 3 hours north and I really would not want to go from a jet to a turboprop, Iíve applied to the 175 sister company, but thereís a standstill with hiring.

Bellanca
08-29-2018, 03:39 PM
It's honestly hard to say what the future will bring.

DEN is going junior at the moment and is likely to stay that way.

The staffing situation over the summer has been rough to say the least. Lots of people at min days, but some good money to be made. You'll get 121 time fast if you're just looking to check boxes on applications.

I personally think Compass is the better airline.

However, rumors of a buyout/merger have been going around for quite a while. If they are true, you'd be best to have the first class date/ highest seniority you can get. With that being said, there would probably be some sort of seatlock or fence to prevent people from all jumping over to the 175 as the 145 flying would potentially wind down. Translation: it could be a long while to get LAX or SEA even if we merge. Finally, a potential merger would take time, and a lot of people hope they will be at mainline before all of that shakes out.

savedbythevnav
09-05-2018, 01:24 PM
I caution people about Compass. Long term, hell even short term, I worry about what their future will bring. When the DL contract comes up, I just have this feeling a renewal isn't on the table.

It could be a pile, what do I know? Today's best can be tomorrow's worst, and vice versa.

TyWebb
09-24-2018, 05:53 PM
I am glad I bumped into this thread. I know there's some issues at TSA at the current moment but being a west coaster there aren't as many options. Compass and Horizon are both extremely backed up apparently. I had not even looked at other options till a friend interviewed last month and was told training wouldn't start till after the first of the year without further about a date... just "it'll be next year". No big deal for him as he can keep his CFI gig but I am trying to find an option that won't consist of me dwindling my saving account to nothing.

Excargodog
09-24-2018, 07:24 PM
I caution people about Compass. Long term, hell even short term, I worry about what their future will bring. When the DL contract comes up, I just have this feeling a renewal isn't on the table.

It could be a pile, what do I know? Today's best can be tomorrow's worst, and vice versa.

Every single regional is just as vulnerable as Compass. All are at risk for their next contract renewal. Even wholly-owneds are not immune. Hell, they may be at WORSE risk. Until eight years ago Compass WAS a Delta wholly owned until they were sold to TSH. Six years ago Delta CLOSED Comair.

Anybody who believes their regional job is "safe" is fooling themselves.

Tyrion
09-27-2018, 10:02 AM
With the state of the industry, just get to the first company that will get you flying without killing you in the process. You don't have to get married to TSA, just date and fool around until something better comes along. Don't spend the bonus money that you have to pay back if you leave early.

TSA is probably not a place that you want to go to build up your 401k plan, but they will get you 1,000 hours of 121 time in a RJ faster than just about anyone out there. Just don't expect a quick upgrade. After that, you have plenty of options to consider.

FWIW, Compass is probably not the best place to wait for a call. They could possibly be losing both their Delta and American flying. Sure, I'd fly for them today, but I wouldn't pass up a similar paying job waiting on them.

Tankerds
10-07-2018, 08:42 PM
As a former TSA pilot, I'd advise you don't make the same mistake as me and choose a regional solely on base choice. I made that mistake with TSA and chose it because of the RDU base, and it was a big mistake. I spent about 10 months in DCA/IAD co-domicile, (of which 1.5 months was on reserve, really not bad) and I bid to fly out of DCA rather than IAD due to the easier commute (about 12 flights daily, 8 AA/4 DAL). I finally got RDU my last month around the same time I found out the base was closing, but not just RDU also IAD/DCA. Meaning I would now have to commute to ORD, if I could even get in. And if I could get in, I was looking at reserve again. In order to hold a line I was most likely looking at DEN, and I'm not commuting for a regional for 3.5-4 hours with ****ty pay just to do a day trip sometimes.

The advice I give now to guys is to go to one of the following: Envoy, PSA, Piedmont, Endeavor, Republic (maybe Skywest as well, but only if the base options suit your needs). The wholly owned gives you that career path, and Republic is just a strong company that now seems very stable due to its fleet and how optimal the 175 is for the Majors.

As far as life at TSA... The pilot group and FA group were great. Some really awesome guys and gals there. Management was so disorganized, and constantly lied to us. We found out things about the company via news articles before they would tell us. Additionally, they'd say via the company calls that something was definitely not happening, then weeks later it did (which we would find out via news articles, followed by a company memo a day or two later). The training department is actually very good, one of the best of the regionals honestly. TSA does have some contract language that puts them competitive with the other top regionals, but also some (especially JR manning) that puts them comparable to some of the worst. Because TSA is having such a tough time getting pilots (and also getting them to STAY), JR manning is rampant and causing even more guys to leave. The COO Fred Oxley recently "retired", and the company just seems more interested in getting a buyer than actually making some good changes to keep it alive and a good QOL for everyone working there.

I really urge you to look elsewhere, you will regret working for TSA. Look, when people say "all regionals are ****ty" they are definitely right. BUT, there are definitely some out there that are significantly more ****ty than the others. It's mainly due to which ones are feeling the squeeze from the shortage. Because although TSA is jr manning like crazy and say, PSA, is not, is only due to the fact that PSA right now isn't having trouble staffing their airplanes. I know they would be JR manning just as much as TSA is if they were having to start cancelling flights due to no crews. That being said, it makes no sense to join an airline that is having those kind of issues, it is not your job to staff the airline...