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Old 08-29-2007, 05:51 PM   #1  
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Default CAL vs. CPS/NWA dilemma

Let me start this by saying I have very little interest in getting slammed for asking my questions by people with nearly no airline experience. I'm posting this in the 'Major' forum for that reason. I respect a lot of the caliber of my peers on here, so I'm merely asking for opinions. In no way am I in a position to be critical of any one legacy over another. I would just like some opinions that can be backed up with a few facts to help me sort my thoughts out.

I just got the phone call from CAL to interview anytime in Sept. I had to schedule in Oct. since I'm in YUL doing sims for Compass. (whoops). What do you guys think? Stick it out at CPS and hope to flow to NWA in 30 months or take a job at CAL in Oct. if one is offered to me? Could be a VERY tough call, as I'd be giving up a CA position with great seniority and some needed PIC turbine (I was just shy of 1000). I really don't want to be hopping companies so quickly. Don't slam me for going to CPS, it was a great opportunity but the appeal of NWA is waning as I talk to their current pilots who consistently preach doom and gloom and now that NWA is hiring off the street who cares about a flow through? I have a feeling CAL will be around for a while, but am wary of going somewhere that just had a major hiring boom the last couple years. I have little desire to sit as a RSV F/O forever in EWR. But who does? Anyway, let's hear it! Any info. would be greatly appreciated. I'll start digging in the threads for gouge.

And since it will be asked, my experience is as follows: E-175, G-1159, LR-60 types. 4800TT, 4000Turbine, 900PIC turbine, 121 (ACA RJ F.O.), 135 time, 4-year 'degree' from evil ERAU and I just turned 27.
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Old 08-29-2007, 06:00 PM   #2  
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At your age you have the time to wait out some discomfort (say RSV in EWR). CAL and NWA are both career destinations...let's assume that the NWA pilots will fix some of their issues in the long-term.

Where would you rather spend your career? CAL or NWA? Go there...

If the answer is FDX, better stay at CPS and get the PIC. If cargo doesn't work out, you can still flow through to NWA.
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Old 08-29-2007, 06:06 PM   #3  
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Originally Posted by rickair7777 View Post
At your age you have the time to wait out some discomfort (say RSV in EWR). CAL and NWA are both career destinations...let's assume that the NWA pilots will fix some of their issues in the long-term.

Where would you rather spend your career? CAL or NWA? Go there...

If the answer is FDX, better stay at CPS and get the PIC. If cargo doesn't work out, you can still flow through to NWA.
I agree with everything he said...
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Old 08-29-2007, 06:06 PM   #4  
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Easy. CAL.

I've heard nothing good about the morale at NWA. CAL has it's issues, but who doesn't, yet morale is better there. NWA is still under a concessionary contract. I can tell you, that's something to think about. Working conditions go to hell in those circumstances. I don't know the terms of Compass and NWA agreement, but those can always changes, just as the flowthrough can. If you take the Compass upgrade, then you're stuck. It's harder to leave.

Oh, if you're not married, don't!
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Old 08-29-2007, 06:17 PM   #5  
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Life, did you have some internal recs to get your interview at CAL, or did you get called due to airlineapps? Thanks and good luck to you.
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Old 08-29-2007, 06:48 PM   #6  
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Quote:
Originally Posted by LifeNtheFstLne View Post
Let me start this by saying I have very little interest in getting slammed for asking my questions by people with nearly no airline experience. I'm posting this in the 'Major' forum for that reason. I respect a lot of the caliber of my peers on here, so I'm merely asking for opinions. In no way am I in a position to be critical of any one legacy over another. I would just like some opinions that can be backed up with a few facts to help me sort my thoughts out.

I just got the phone call from CAL to interview anytime in Sept. I had to schedule in Oct. since I'm in YUL doing sims for Compass. (whoops). What do you guys think? Stick it out at CPS and hope to flow to NWA in 30 months or take a job at CAL in Oct. if one is offered to me? Could be a VERY tough call, as I'd be giving up a CA position with great seniority and some needed PIC turbine (I was just shy of 1000). I really don't want to be hopping companies so quickly. Don't slam me for going to CPS, it was a great opportunity but the appeal of NWA is waning as I talk to their current pilots who consistently preach doom and gloom and now that NWA is hiring off the street who cares about a flow through? I have a feeling CAL will be around for a while, but am wary of going somewhere that just had a major hiring boom the last couple years. I have little desire to sit as a RSV F/O forever in EWR. But who does? Anyway, let's hear it! Any info. would be greatly appreciated. I'll start digging in the threads for gouge.

And since it will be asked, my experience is as follows: E-175, G-1159, LR-60 types. 4800TT, 4000Turbine, 900PIC turbine, 121 (ACA RJ F.O.), 135 time, 4-year 'degree' from evil ERAU and I just turned 27.
When I started out in aviation life, I had the similar credentials, except I was younger. "Freight dogs" were just that, FDX was still flying Falcon 50's and the pilots were paying for fuel with their personal credit cards. UPS used a conglomeration of "non-scheds" like Ryan Air to haul their air freight, and their captains work for 40K/year (about 1/3 of pax carrier legacy), with no benefits or retirement. I was very happy to be hired at AAL in 1986 at age 24.

Today, those same "freight dog" captains out earn me by 70K/year and have very bright futures. I can make the same comparison with SWA. I knew guys in 1986 that quit AAL to work for Piedmont (bought by US Air) that are now on furlough and working for the new "Republic" as captains for 60K/year (or less). I've flown with FO's at AAL with 10 years seniority that can't go to FDX or UPS or SWA because they lack PIC.

I guess the moral of the story is: short term career decisions are tough to make. You have to look at the long term, get the PIC, then move on.

Good Luck.
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Old 08-30-2007, 05:06 AM   #7  
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Life,

I'm pretty sure the flow up agreement from CPS to NWA has some wording in it that only allows for the flow up depending on the staffing at CPS. In other words if staffing at CPS is tight then NWA will not pull from CPS (this may have only pertained to furloughed guys only not sure). For furloughed NWA guys working at CPS there was the 30 month deal. I'm just not real confident in flow thru agreements.

I would be hard pressed NOT to leave Compass (with the hope of someday moving to NWA) if offered a position at CAL. NWA has some really bad morale problems. I read on the NWA ALPA web-board that last year some 150 plus pilots under the age of 55 have left for other things....could be good for seniority when you think about but there are still many angry people there.

CAL is looking at hiring about 400 to 500 more dudes between now and the summer of 08 and you want to be in the front of that wave (that's a good hunk of seniority). The other option...hang at CPS and hope in 30 months with a bunch of folks hired at NWA before you that you may flow thru to NWA...and possibly fly a 190/195 on the mainline (NWA is looking at the 190/195 as the DC-9 replacement).

My choice...I left NWA.

Good luck.

Rosie
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Old 08-30-2007, 05:50 AM   #8  
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1000 pic will open up a lot of doors. CAL may close, but DAL, FDX, and UPS, SWA become possibilties.
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Old 08-30-2007, 06:12 AM   #9  
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CAL still has a lot of retirements. There would be plenty of movement until age 65 passes or some major event that affects all airlines. I like it at CAL, but I was not in your position. I'd go with the first offer. If CAL happens first, take it. If NWA does, take that. You're lucky to have options. Most don't. You're young, so it doesn't matter too much. Once you're hired, who cares about PIC time. You can sit wide body FO for 20 years if you wanted or upgrade in a few years. Good luck.
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Old 08-30-2007, 06:20 AM   #10  
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Originally Posted by Oldfreightdawg View Post
When I started out in aviation life, I had the similar credentials, except I was younger. "Freight dogs" were just that, FDX was still flying Falcon 50's and the pilots were paying for fuel with their personal credit cards. UPS used a conglomeration of "non-scheds" like Ryan Air to haul their air freight, and their captains work for 40K/year (about 1/3 of pax carrier legacy), with no benefits or retirement. I was very happy to be hired at AAL in 1986 at age 24.

Today, those same "freight dog" captains out earn me by 70K/year and have very bright futures. I can make the same comparison with SWA. I knew guys in 1986 that quit AAL to work for Piedmont (bought by US Air) that are now on furlough and working for the new "Republic" as captains for 60K/year (or less). I've flown with FO's at AAL with 10 years seniority that can't go to FDX or UPS or SWA because they lack PIC.
Wow.

Thanks for the real life cookie crumbles stories.

BTW Life, what about the Compass 1 yr. training bond you signed for? Something for your honor and integrity to consider.
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