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Old 01-31-2008, 05:58 PM   #21  
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Some corporate operators don't think 121 pilots want to deal with everything you have to do as a corporate pilot -- in corporate flying, you're the ramp agent, the baggage handler, the cleaner, etc, etc... If you're coming from the 121 world and use to having a large team to help you out, it can be quite a transition and many 121 pilots find they don't like it. On the other hand, many pilots get into corporate flying and find it's the best flying they've ever done...
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Old 01-31-2008, 06:04 PM   #22  
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With a good principle, it can be the best flying you've ever done. My only caution would be to make sure you're prepared for the possibility of the job going away. Either the owner dumps the flight department or retires and the flight department goes away or it goes away for any number of reasons. Also, no union protection in the corporate world -- someone wakes up and decides they don't like you one day and you're gone. That being said, nowadays, it's a crap shoot in any flying job. Even if it does go away, having the Global Express type rating would be a big plus in finding more corporate work. As I'm sure you've figured out, corporate flying is all about who you know and being in the right place at the right time. If you do make the transition, I'm sure you'll really enjoy the flying!

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Hi, I'm new here . . . I have almost 12 years seniority with a major airline, and also have a Captain's bid with that airline. Unexpectedly, I may be offered an outstanding corporate job (through a pilot friend), flying a Bombadier Global Express. The corporate job salary & benefits will be approximately the same (if not more) as my airline Captain pay, yet I will work considerably less hours and be home more. Overall career earnings would be on-par with both, yet the average corporate job length is probably not as long as my remaining 20 years of airline flying (I'm 45).

The company is privately owned (I don't want to give names), but from what I have researched, it is very well off. The flying operation is small and there is no on-call, etc. The pilots can work out their own schedules most of the time. The only negative with the whole situation is that their President/CEO, who is a highly powerful individual in the business world, but he is well up there in years of age. This individual is the mover-and-shaker for this company, and does the "bulk" of the flying in the back of the jet. My concern is the long-term prospect of this job. I have talked to the pilot and he says everything is in place to keep the flight dept for years, but in the corporate world nothing is guaranteed. He has been very honest with me with all the positives and negatives of this job (right now the positives outweigh the negatives).

I'm interested in hearing from anyone who has gone from a major airline to corporate, especially from the Captain's seat. I will be commuting to the airline Capt's seat, working approximately 90 hours per month, yet the corporate job is in my back yard and a lot less flying. Also, once qualified in a Global Express, if the job ever goes away, is it easy to find another corporate job? I hear it is a very close community.

To close, I have not yet been offered this corporate job, as I am now doing heavy research. I would be giving up another 20 years of airline flying which is a lot. Yet when contract time comes around in a few years I do believe the unions (all of them) will strike, with the possibility of a company sell-off by management. This, and the attitude of the major airlines employees right now is "toxic," which aside from the flying, can be a detriment. I have thouroughly enjoyed the airline job (flying, layovers, etc), but the labor-management conflict is a hard fought battle that is never ending, and contributes to too much negativity. Finally, I realize a lot of you would love to have this "problem," of mine. I am very grateful for both my airline job and the potential corporate offer, yet it will be a huge career decision for me if I am offered the corporate job to my satisfaction. Thanks for your replies.
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Old 02-05-2008, 10:49 PM   #23  
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A friend of mine that never went back to U.S. Air said althought is making 150-200K per year flying contract on G-3.G-4's his quality of life sucks compared to what he had at the airlines.
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Old 02-05-2008, 10:54 PM   #24  
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I have flown 121 and 135/91 jobs. To be honest the flying is more fun in 135/91. The problem is you end up being the *itch to either the management company or the owner and if your owner decides he can almost do anything he wants to you and there is no union protection. You will also find alot of corporate/charter guys undersell themselves below NBAA or Pro Pilot magazine industry pay rates.
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Old 02-09-2008, 03:45 PM   #25  
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There are many few corporate pilots who have had the SAME job for most of their carear. My mom is a corporoate flight attendant and has been with like 5 different corporations..... job security is non existant..... when costs have to be cut, they usually get rid of the gulfstreams lol
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Old 02-09-2008, 04:49 PM   #26  
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I am sure no job id forever but I have been with my company 10 years. I dont see the flt department going away for a long time...
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Old 02-09-2008, 08:24 PM   #27  
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^ Same here. Most guys at my department have been here 25+years. Very telling if you ask me.
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Old 02-11-2008, 01:35 PM   #28  
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As a WHOLE how many corporate pilots do you know who have only worked for 1 or 2 companies....... not many... My moms company just took order of a brand spanking new custom G-450.... well 2 months later, company sold, divided up. Bye Bye flight department.... Who woulda thought?
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Old 02-12-2008, 06:21 AM   #29  
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Quote:
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As a WHOLE how many corporate pilots do you know who have only worked for 1 or 2 companies....... not many... My moms company just took order of a brand spanking new custom G-450.... well 2 months later, company sold, divided up. Bye Bye flight department.... Who woulda thought?
BIG airplanes become BIG targets, it's just a fact of life in this business.

As a WHOLE, if you fly for a financially stable company that is not a takeover candidate with a culture that supports corporate aviation, then I would say that long-term, stable employment is pretty much in the bag. Having the right aircraft for the corporate mission is also very important. If load factors are (e.g.) running at three and average stage length is 1.2, then the corporation does not need a G450.

If you fly for a relatively new company that has not had a department for over five years, then I would be cautious. Many companies seem to lose aircraft congruently with IRS MACRS depreciation schedules.

If a corporation flies 100-250 hours per year, I would be cautious as well. Utilization of this type would be better suited with a fractional share or a pre-purchased block of charter hours.

You have to complete your due diligence before accepting any offer from any corporate flight department. Culture and utilization are the brick and mortar of determining secure employment.
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