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Old 04-12-2021, 03:56 PM   #1  
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Question Big 4 Career Goal: 135 vs 121 TPIC

If someoneís goal is to go to AAL, DAL, UAL, or SWA (or even FDX/UPS) and theyíre lacking jet TPIC, would Part 135 TPIC time suffice to be competitive for a major? Obviously 121 TPIC would be ideal, but is their value in 135 time when applying to those jobs?

I have a friend that has lots of boxes checked: 1,500+ 121 SIC, graduate degree, multiple types, time flying heavy international, military helicopter IP, etc., he just lacks jet TPIC time and is trying to weigh options since he could get 135 TPIC time a lot quicker than his current 121 job. Thoughts?
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Old 04-12-2021, 04:11 PM   #2  
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All else equal 121 TPIC is typically better than 135 TPIC.

But since he already has 121 SIC and heavy international time, he'll probably do all right with 135 TPIC if he can get it faster than 121 TPIC.

He just needs to be prepared to answer the "why did you leave 121 for 135" question...

Right answer: I had an opportunity to get valuable TPIC experience.

Wrong Answer: Numerous wrong answers...
"I wanted to be home every night"
"I don't like time zone disruptions"
"I don't like the regimented 121 approach"

You get the idea, don't let them suspect you left 121 because you didn't like or couldn't hack the lifestyle.
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Old 04-12-2021, 04:38 PM   #3  
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Here is my (cynical) view:
https://www.law.cornell.edu/cfr/text/14/121.43

135 PIC counts for nothing unless itís 10+ seats or commuter operations aka ďscheduled 135Ē.
I donít see how 135 PIC time on your average rent-a-jet would do him any favors.
I have 135 PIC jet time and itís has done zero for me.
I used to fly with somebody from the Regionals and he went 135 for the exact reasons He mentioned and last time I saw him he was still there.
Couldnít handle the $30k+ pay cut it to go back to first year 121.
Your friend is 121, stay there.
No 135 that I know off will put you in the left seat on day 1,
Youíll spend a year right seat.
So youíre not gaining anything.
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Old 04-13-2021, 04:06 AM   #4  
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Hereís another question to add to this. Would upgrade at a regional to get 121 TPIC in a regional jet or change to a slightly (potentially much) better airline that flies aircraft in the 180 seat range?
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Old 04-13-2021, 04:13 AM   #5  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apejackson View Post
Hereís another question to add to this. Would upgrade at a regional to get 121 TPIC in a regional jet or change to a slightly (potentially much) better airline that flies aircraft in the 180 seat range?
Regional to ULCC? Get the heck out of a regional, ASAP.
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Old 04-13-2021, 04:17 PM   #6  
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Regional to ULCC? Get the heck out of a regional, ASAP.
What if said place was Sun Country? I have a CJO with them but I should also be upgrading at my regional this summer. My goal would be a ULCC like Frontier or Spirit. Sun Country just doesnít seem to be on par with them currently and want to make sure Iím getting the right kind of time.
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Old 04-13-2021, 05:53 PM   #7  
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Originally Posted by Apejackson View Post
What if said place was Sun Country? I have a CJO with them but I should also be upgrading at my regional this summer. My goal would be a ULCC like Frontier or Spirit. Sun Country just doesn’t seem to be on par with them currently and want to make sure I’m getting the right kind of time.
I don't think Sunny is going to help your career, other than a new type rating. You'll upgrade faster at the regional and TPIC is likely to be king for a while with the job market marginal. Sunny is probably best for those who live in MSP and don't want to leave or commute. Their CA scale closely resembles other major's FO scale. Unless you want to roll the dice on future growth and contractual improvements.
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Old 04-14-2021, 08:41 AM   #8  
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Iíll second that.
SC is too much of a horizontal move unless youíre really needing the 73 type.
Then again I didnít get a peep out of SW with even a 73 type rating.
Youíre overthinking this.
What do you think looks better for a future employer:
Long term employment and one type and PIC time or:
Three short terms and three types no PIC on any of them ?
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Old 04-15-2021, 04:25 AM   #9  
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I would avoid the FAR 135 segment of the industry if at all possible.

I'm at a legacy airline now, but spent the majority of my career in the FAR 135 world. It's nice to have biz jet experience as a fall back when the industry tanks (COVID being the most recent example), but in general I find FAR 135 to be poor quality jobs, not enough regulation and standards and a lot of pilots that, quite frankly, are risky, dangerous and overall not good pilots.

I found FAR 135 to be very stressful and frequently dealt with a lot of drama that just doesn't exist in FAR 121. I'm not familiar with the regionals in the last 15 years, but I regret my FAR 135 experience. It definitely made my career progression more difficult.
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Old 04-15-2021, 06:32 AM   #10  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Apejackson View Post
What if said place was Sun Country? I have a CJO with them but I should also be upgrading at my regional this summer. My goal would be a ULCC like Frontier or Spirit. Sun Country just doesnít seem to be on par with them currently and want to make sure Iím getting the right kind of time.
Do you have CURRENT apps in at Spirit and Frontier? Hours and any resume boosters updated monthly? Because both are actively hiring. And are you really pushing those apps? Networking with former coworkers for internal and external recommendations?

If you canít honestly answer those questions in the affirmative, you have far more worthwhile ways to spend your time than being an FO at Sunny.
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