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Bottom of SWA or bottom of new American?

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Bottom of SWA or bottom of new American?

Old 11-20-2013, 08:12 AM
  #151  
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I have done both, 5 leg domestic and 1 leg transatlantic for part 121 airlines and done nearly every type of flying for the military (heavies). I prefer domestic for the radio coverage and lots of places to land when stuff hits the fan. I prefer long haul for cooler/longer layovers and less landings to show off my poor landing skills. Each has good points bad points but as others have stated, I can't sleep properly on a jet nor when crossing more than 2 timezones. Having the option to choose (eventually) at AA would be nice for most people but nobody has mentioned SWA's intl push out of Hobby to begin next year. We don't know if it's only going to be "close in" destinations of 2-3hrs or maybe 6 hr legs when the 7/800 MAX's hit. They may still go to Hawaii someday as well. Will Asia or Europe ever happen at SWA, prob not but they may go like gangbusters in Central/S. America/Carribean if they see profits there. They may even do the same out of Love if the Hobby stuff works out great, who knows...Back to the OP, go with the one that hires you first, go with the one that has the closest hub (driving to work is much better than flying) second, and go with the one that you think will make you the happiest, third. If you absolutely must fly widebodies internationally, the choice has been made for you. The first 2-3 yrs at either place will be about the same QOL wise, expect reserve lines. The pay at SWA the first 3 yrs should be quite a bit better but if all things go as planned (they never do) the next 20 yrs, AA may pay more. People are talking about AA's 2018 pay scale, I REALLY hope they get it but many a beautiful contract has been yanked from the pilots before it came to total fruition. SWA currently doesn't have any "planned" pay raises (and probably won't get any 8.5 or 18% raises like AA is planned to get) but if they can get 4-5% annually for the next few years in their negotiations, that would keep their pay above everybody elses on the 737. Lots of stuff to consider, the answer will become clear in 30 yrs...best of luck!
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Old 11-20-2013, 08:32 AM
  #152  
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There's no doubt that the time zones can really wallop you. Most guys find what works for them, and every trip, there's a discussion on individual "sleep recipes".

"I sleep for 3 hours, then work out. One beer after dinner and I'll be light's out."

"If it's night time at home base, I try to sleep. Otherwise, I stay active."

That sort of thing. Everyone has their own routine. In London, at least, for the typical AM arrival, 2 hours rack time, activity, then some pub grub and a pint will knock me out.

I have petitioned management for the ultimate WB long haul trip... One that would be incredibly gentle on the body. Right now, we launch for deep South America at 2000 or so. 30+ hours layover, and it's all-nighter home, 0500 arrival. It hurts, which is why Sao Paulo and similar go junior.

How about launching those trips at 0800? You arrive early evening, about 3 hours or so of time zone difference. Sleep normally. Launch for home at 0800 local. Overfly the incredible Amazon basin in daylight, and maintain a normal body clock.

I guarantee such a trip would instantly go senior over Tokyo and Europe.
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Old 11-20-2013, 08:43 AM
  #153  
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Originally Posted by ForeverFO View Post
There's no doubt that the time zones can really wallop you. Most guys find what works for them, and every trip, there's a discussion on individual "sleep recipes".

"I sleep for 3 hours, then work out. One beer after dinner and I'll be light's out."

"If it's night time at home base, I try to sleep. Otherwise, I stay active."

That sort of thing. Everyone has their own routine. In London, at least, for the typical AM arrival, 2 hours rack time, activity, then some pub grub and a pint will knock me out.

I have petitioned management for the ultimate WB long haul trip... One that would be incredibly gentle on the body. Right now, we launch for deep South America at 2000 or so. 30+ hours layover, and it's all-nighter home, 0500 arrival. It hurts, which is why Sao Paulo and similar go junior.

How about launching those trips at 0800? You arrive early evening, about 3 hours or so of time zone difference. Sleep normally. Launch for home at 0800 local. Overfly the incredible Amazon basin in daylight, and maintain a normal body clock.

I guarantee such a trip would instantly go senior over Tokyo and Europe.
Some folks are wired for one type of flying over the other. For international, sleep is the key. If you can sleep on the plane, that's most of the battle. If you can't, it won't be fun and will probably be miserable.

Shoelu brought up some good points about swa. They don't kick your butt too hard on their schedules. I'm sure there are guys there who would love to do the long haul stuff though.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:07 AM
  #154  
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A few years ago, for the military, I flew a 10 hr leg to Buenos Aires from the East coast. 1100L departure landed around 2100L, got some nice steak/wine, slept 10 hrs, left at 1200L the next day, in my bed at midnight. Only paid 2 military days plus per diem but that would have been the ultimate 777 trip at $200/hr. Didn't hurt at all. When I fly to Europe now, it just hurts all over for 3 days...getting old sucks.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:07 AM
  #155  
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Originally Posted by ForeverFO View Post
How about launching those trips at 0800? You arrive early evening, about 3 hours or so of time zone difference. Sleep normally. Launch for home at 0800 local. Overfly the incredible Amazon basin in daylight, and maintain a normal body clock.
That would be great. But it typical fashion, sounds good till "marketing" steps in with all their usual justifications.

But I believe that some airlines (L-CAL maybe?) have tried two departures to deep SA at offset times. But I didn't really follow how it worked out. Nor how the rotation/pairing/ID/pattern/trip worked out for the crews flying it.

I also thought that they (L-CAL) as well as DAL used to do some "RIO rocket" type SA trips. Good for pay, good for min time away from home. But the recovery would seriously blow. Especially for a junior/reserve guy that may get them consecutively.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:16 AM
  #156  
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I did one of those "rockets" once to GRU, and even though it was a DH down, with only 8 real hours behind the door, it hurt. Bad. I don't see how any pilot could do a month of them and not be debilitated and a bit unsafe.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:22 AM
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AA actually has many 757 Brazil flights that fly all night down but fly a day trip back. Recife, Salvador, Brasilia, and Asuncion. Leave around 2300 arrive 0800... Return leaves around 0900 and arrives around 1700. Pretty decent from what I'm told. Best of all, it's a 3 man operation on the flights down but the IRO deadheads back on the return.

I also think AA flies a couple of daytime 777s to Buenos Aires and Sao Paolo.

Sweetest trip on the 777 (if you're local to New York) is the morning JFK-LHR. Leaves at 0900, arrives 1900. Return leaves LHR around 1700 and lands jfk around 2000. Talk about staying on your body clock! Super senior trip.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:32 AM
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Planes fly 24/7. Utilization is part of the reason for all nighters to Deep South.

AA has a handful of day trips to Deep South. Wonderful trips. JFK 1100 to GRU, day off, day flight back arrive 1600(times +/-).

Don't want guys to get the impression that they'll be flying 777's shortly after getting hired. Typical 777 FO is slightly senior to S80 CA(!). QWL. 80-90% of 777 FO's can be CA in their base. For newhires I'd guess 777 will be available in 5 yrs at the earliest(big guess).

The senior, four man (dozing for dollar trips) are flown by guys that could be 767 CA's. Again, QWL.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:36 AM
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"Sweetest trip on the 777 (if you're local to New York) is the morning JFK-LHR. Leaves at 0900, arrives 1900. Return leaves LHR around 1700 and lands jfk around 2000. Talk about staying on your body clock! Super senior trip."

Goes to BA while 777's are under overhaul eff Mar/Apr. Various durations mentioned in LHR - 3 or 6 months, until October, until the winter schedule, until December, until the end of the year.

Nice trip. Fly over. Typically the entire crew, minus slam clickers, gets a bite, sleep in(often until wake up 0730 body time), fly back. Bring a hat, it's like a transcon with the sun in your eyes.
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Old 11-20-2013, 09:58 AM
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Originally Posted by Sliceback View Post
Don't want guys to get the impression that they'll be flying 777's shortly after getting hired. Typical 777 FO is slightly senior to S80 CA(!). QWL. 80-90% of 777 FO's can be CA in their base. For newhires I'd guess 777 will be available in 5 yrs at the earliest(big guess).
That's one of the VERY important points of the whole NB/domestic vs. WB comparisons going on here;

1) It may take a while to see that. As I mentioned, all the guys talking it up (especially at AA/UAL) with the amount of furloughs/stagnation WEREN'T born in that seat seniority.

2) For the guys that my be salivating over it now waiting to be hired, life events could change, domicile shifts, getting comfortable, whatever and the gleam in the eye of doing the WB/int'l may just wane/fall by the wayside.
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