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View Full Version : MQ to SY (Change My Mind)


UnprotectdPilot
10-16-2019, 11:33 AM
I'm with Envoy, live in-base (ORD), and have 6-7 years until I flow to AA unless we have some crazy level of captain attrition in the next few years.

I'm considering Sun Country.

Pros
+ New contract coming next year (at least I believe so)
+ Switch to the ULCC/LCC model (possible growth [still speculative])
+ 737 type rating with time in type
+ Upgrade isn't super long

Cons
- Commuting ORD to MSP
- Pay difference isn't all that significant
- Giving up a flow-thru may be a bigger gamble than it's worth

I guess I'm considering the company from a 'buy low' mentality. Hiring at the Big 6 is about to skyrocket forcing movement everywhere. If SY wants to compete, they're going to have to step up.

Am I wrong in my thinking or is this company going nowhere?


apex7
10-16-2019, 01:42 PM
I wouldnít do it. Upgrade is at least 3 years right now, and from what everyone has been saying they wonít renew the contract anytime soon.

The ORD-MSP commute is horrible. I did it myself. Itís one thing doing it for a regional where you can hold a line easily and commute to ďcommutableĒ lines, but unless things change here soon you will be on reserve for a good solid year. Thatís 10 days off a month. They will be calling you on your final reserve day pretty much all the time sending you out for some turn that gets back in base at midnight, so thereís another day lost sitting in a crash pad instead of being home.

First year pay is a big hit. $48/ hour sounds ok but when you never have an opportunity to work overtime or pick up anything, you are looking at paychecks in the $1300 range after deductions, and then you gonna be paying for a crashed on top of that? It blows my mind that people commute for this place.

Now if you can move to MSP, thats a whole different story. Besides the crappy first year pay , itís not a terrible place to be while you wait out on your call from a major. But I donít know if your hoping for american eventually leaving envoy to come here might not sit too Well for them? Just my 2c.

Starchkr
10-16-2019, 08:33 PM
I'm with Envoy, live in-base (ORD), and have 6-7 years until I flow to AA unless we have some crazy level of captain attrition in the next few years.

I'm considering Sun Country.

Pros
+ New contract coming next year (at least I believe so)
+ Switch to the ULCC/LCC model (possible growth [still speculative])
+ 737 type rating with time in type
+ Upgrade isn't super long

Cons
- Commuting ORD to MSP
- Pay difference isn't all that significant
- Giving up a flow-thru may be a bigger gamble than it's worth

I guess I'm considering the company from a 'buy low' mentality. Hiring at the Big 6 is about to skyrocket forcing movement everywhere. If SY wants to compete, they're going to have to step up.

Am I wrong in my thinking or is this company going nowhere?

Have you commuted before? Commuting to SY is brutal even as a line holder until you can get lots of seniority but even then the lines here are not designed for commuters.

One would think theyíd have a lot of pressure to come up with a decent contract relatively quickly to attract talent and grow but recent events suggest otherwise. I for one expect a difficult road ahead with negotiations. I hope Iím wrong.

Coming here is a significant gamble. Not that anything in aviation is a sure bet, but this is a lot of risk without much reward unless you want to live in the twin cities.



Remember, as of right now SY does not provide hotels or per diem during training.


doubletap
10-17-2019, 05:38 AM
Gawd that sounds ****ty.

How many trips are starting and/or ending out of base - Ive heard there are quite a few starting & ending out of PDX already...any sense on the truth there?

rickair7777
10-17-2019, 06:41 AM
Legacies are not going to value ULCC major airline experience over regional experience. An extra type will help of course but can you get that envoy? If it were me I'd probably wait for flow and apply to other big-six airlines in the meantime.

Right now waiting for big six is probably a safer path to happiness than rolling the dice on a small ULCC. Although if they have a big base where you want to live, it's probably safe to assume that their pay will HAVE to come up to ballpark parity with other second-tier/LCC's.

Packrat
10-17-2019, 10:35 AM
Legacies are not going to value ULCC major airline experience over regional experience. An extra type will help of course but can you get that envoy? If it were me I'd probably wait for flow and apply to other big-six airlines in the meantime. .

I'm with rickair. Why jump to another airline, start at the bottom when your regional experience is going to be just as attractive to a major airline? The flow is just icing on the cake. You may be gone to a major before your flow date anyway.

maverickchill
10-17-2019, 11:47 AM
both Spirit and Frontier have ORD base and higher pay...commuting for SC sounds awful, i think i would keep building PIC and enjoy life until American calls.

nibake
10-17-2019, 05:55 PM
The company is trying really hard to go somewhere, but it is still a small airline and as such a pretty big gamble unless you have a good reason. Why not try for a different ULCC as others have mentioned? If you can get on at Frontier or Spirit you won't have to worry about the pay being an "if." The low upgrade time is good, but that alone shouldn't be enough reason to make the switch.

MedSledDriver
10-17-2019, 11:25 PM
I'm with rickair. Why jump to another airline, start at the bottom when your regional experience is going to be just as attractive to a major airline? The flow is just icing on the cake. You may be gone to a major before your flow date anyway.
Really? Like not even a little?

I’m a little surprised to hear that 737 ULCC time isn’t weighed any more favorably than regional 121 time. I can see the appeal of staying, upgrading, then getting involved with the training department all at a regional, but that 737 tho.. would it not be a better deal to do all of that at sunny?

I’ve read that a 737 type looks real good to Southwest, but that’s about it.

Packrat
10-18-2019, 03:20 AM
Really? Like not even a little?

Iím a little surprised to hear that 737 ULCC time isnít weighed any more favorably than regional 121 time. I can see the appeal of staying, upgrading, then getting involved with the training department all at a regional, but that 737 tho.. would it not be a better deal to do all of that at sunny?

Iíve read that a 737 type looks real good to Southwest, but thatís about it.

All the majors want is Part 121 Turbine PIC time. Doesn't matter if its in a 737 or an E175. The type rating is irrelevant because the major airline is going to put you through the entire training program for whatever jet you are going to fly.

The only advantage to having the type rating would be having a Company checkride vs. a type rating ride. And you wouldn't even get that until you upgraded at the major airline.

That's exactly what happened in my case. I had a DC-9 type rating from the Navy. When I had my initial Captain upgrade on the MD-80 I only had to have an initial Company check since the DC-9 type rating was already on my license.

The original poster is much better off building his Captain TPIC at the regional than jumping over to Sun Country.

rickair7777
10-18-2019, 06:16 AM
The only advantage to having the type rating would be having a Company checkride vs. a type rating ride. And you wouldn't even get that until you upgraded at the major airline.

FO's pretty much all get the type rating today, to comply with ICAO. If you have the type is does provide a slight theoretical advantage as to how the checkride is conducted (more flexibility for re-training).

saab2000
10-19-2019, 01:16 PM
Nobody should assume that going to Sun Country will result in an easy type rating. I spent a year there and the training was no joke. I have roots in the area and went there eyes wide open. So none of it caught me off guard. But it was a big pay cut for me leaving a 'quality regional' (oxymoron) and it is most definitely not commuter friendly. It's designed around living in base and there has been turmoil over a rumored distant base.

I'd only really recommend it if you have roots in the MSP area and plan to live there. Don't go there assuming you will skate through training because you won't. People bust rides, which nobody wants. It's likely that someone with significant 121 time won't struggle in training but it was an eye opener for me. Don't underestimate it.

If I were looking to leave Envoy I'd look at the other ULCCs first. They would appear to have a more solid future. Again, for people with no connection to the Twin Cities, Sun Country is a bit of an odd choice. For people with a connection, it's logical but ask around. I'm glad I spent a year there and I won't bad mouth the place, but I'm also glad I had the opportunity to move to a larger, more stable airline.

JimWA77
10-21-2019, 05:07 PM
Nobody should assume that going to Sun Country will result in an easy type rating. I spent a year there and the training was no joke. I have roots in the area and went there eyes wide open. So none of it caught me off guard. But it was a big pay cut for me leaving a 'quality regional' (oxymoron) and it is most definitely not commuter friendly. It's designed around living in base and there has been turmoil over a rumored distant base.

I'd only really recommend it if you have roots in the MSP area and plan to live there. Don't go there assuming you will skate through training because you won't. People bust rides, which nobody wants. It's likely that someone with significant 121 time won't struggle in training but it was an eye opener for me. Don't underestimate it.

If I were looking to leave Envoy I'd look at the other ULCCs first. They would appear to have a more solid future. Again, for people with no connection to the Twin Cities, Sun Country is a bit of an odd choice. For people with a connection, it's logical but ask around. I'm glad I spent a year there and I won't bad mouth the place, but I'm also glad I had the opportunity to move to a larger, more stable airline.

Concur about the training, it's well done, and definitely no joke. High data rate instruction, especially for a former 'pampered' AF driver in a jet built in the 60s. There has apparently been a few improvements in avionics in the last 50ish years... ;) I'm just finishing OE now, and the LCAs are great! Professional, firm yet fair, all that typical pilot stuff.

As for the company itself, we have got some new management that seem like we're about to get after it in a good way. I am still happy to be here! However, I live in the Twin Cities, want nothing to do with commuting, and can't believe guys that do.

PilotPops
11-13-2019, 03:10 PM
All the majors want is Part 121 Turbine PIC time. Doesn't matter if its in a 737 or an E175. ...


This may be old news, but UA hires XJT and probably other regional flow partner FO's (no PIC) with 3,000 turbine time. My son was hired in June with just over 4,000 hours on the E145 acquired over 5.5 years with XJT.

(Why am I on the forum? I used to and will soon again fly a lot on SY, and a few years ago I tried to get my son to apply to fly for them.)

Gone Flying
11-15-2019, 08:42 AM
FO's pretty much all get the type rating today, to comply with ICAO. If you have the type is does provide a slight theoretical advantage as to how the checkride is conducted (more flexibility for re-training).

pretty sure a PIC type is a 121 requirement for both pilots as of 2016