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Old 11-13-2007, 08:19 AM   #1  
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Default Lateral move from Mesaba to SkyWest??

I was hired with Mesaba as a Saab FO roughly 6 months ago. Prior to getting hired with Mesaba, I had been interviewed with SkyWest, but didnít get the job. SkyWest was my first choice because I live in Milwaukee and would like to avoid the commute if I can. Also, I would eventually like to move out west. Denver or Salt Lake would both be places I would like to live. I have absolutely no problem with Mesaba, I just donít like to commute and Iím not terribly interested in living in any of Mesabaís bases.

So hereís the dilemma. Do I try to interview with SkyWest again and give up six months of seniority to end my commute or do I stick it out with Mesaba? I love Mesaba, I just donít like commuting. Mesaba has seen a lot of growth, so I have gotten quite a bit of seniority for only being there for six months.

Commuting to any of Mesabaís bases (MSP, DTW or MEM) is relatively easy, so itís not a total nightmare. In the long run, I would really like to move to Denver though (a SkyWest domicile). Having a good schedule and good QOL is more important to me than making a lot of money so Iím not 100% sure if I would make the jump to a major if I got on with SkyWest. I would probably be happier making less money and having good seniority at a regional. I know SkyWest is a good place, but would it be a good idea to plan on making a career out of it (I am in my mid 20ís)? If I did go to a major, I would prefer United since they have a Denver base. I guess, if I make a career at the regionals, giving up six months of seniority is not a big deal, but if I plan to make jump to a major, Mesabaís sub 6 month upgrade is the way to go.

Basically, I am thinking of doing one of three things.
  • Stick with Mesaba and try for United in 5ish years. Commute to, a junior base from MKE or DEN in order to hold a better schedule.
  • Stick with Mesaba, move to MSP when my seniority can hold it as a base and try for United in 5ish years.
  • Make the jump to SkyWest. Start as Milwaukee based (junior base) for the first few years. Once I could hold Denver as a base and have a good schedule there, make the move to Denver. Would probably make a career at SkyWest.
I guess it comes down to this, would I want to make a career at Skywest?

Do you see Skywest keeping the Milwaukee Domicile for at least the next few years.

How do you see the hiring keeping up at Skywest? Will I build seniority quickly or do you see the hiring stopping in a few months?

What would you guys do in this situation?
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:27 AM   #2  
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MKE is scheduled to stay open for at least five years and it opened up April 2007. There is a strong rumor that we will be opening up a MCI base soon with more Midwest flying.

I think it is a no-brainer. Send your stuff and we'll see you in class. This is a move you won't regret. It is unfortunate that you didn't get on six months ago, you would easily be holding 15 days off. MKE is our most junior base, so you won't be sitting reserve long.

Many have left 121 carriers with a lot longer than six months seniority they gave up. Six months is nothing. We just received an email stating another year of expected growth in 2008. I don't think you have anything to worry about with upgrades and having the PIC time in five years.
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:28 AM   #3  
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What would you guys do in this situation?
If you shine like a diamond in a goat's "rear end," don't change your position.
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:34 AM   #4  
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I'm not normally one to recommend lateral moves, but from what you're saying, trying for SkyWest would be a good move. If your priority is QOL, tied closely to not commuting and bases, and SkyWest can offer you both of those things, then they are the place for you.

Get the interview, ace the interview...THEN you have a decision to make. Good luck.
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:51 AM   #5  
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Skywest. Do it.
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Old 11-13-2007, 08:57 AM   #6  
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How much time so you have? Would you be able to take the upgrade at XJ if it came quickly? If you haven't even re-interviewed at SkyWest yet, I would assume you'd be looking at around 3 years to upgrade here in MKE(wait for interview, wait for class date, fly for 2 years, get CA award, wait for upgrade class, complete class, complete IOE). I don't know when you want to move out west, but upgradeing to DEN or SLC would probably take longer. If you were hired at XJ 6 monthes ago I assume you already have a good number of people below you, and some of them are already captains (or at least in upgrade class). If they contine to hire street CAs that should be great for your senority after upgrade, making the commute much easier (ie not commuting to reserve.) It all depends on how long it takes to get on with your major of choice, but I would say get your PIC ASAP and get out.

***

That being said, there is no reason not to interview @ SkyWest again. If you don't get it your decesion is very easy. If you do then you've got until the class date to think it over, gather extra info, and see how stuff goes at both carriers in the meantime.
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Old 11-13-2007, 09:09 AM   #7  
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I do have upgrade minimums. If I stayed with Mesaba, I'd probably bid for an upgrade in another 4 months or so. If I do move to MSP though, it will take much longer for me to upgrade. I guess the issue is that I could commute to DTW and have good seniority and a fast upgrade or move to MSP and have a longer upgrade, but not commute. I could move to DTW too, but, I'd much rather live in Minneapolis.
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Old 11-13-2007, 09:26 AM   #8  
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Another thing that seemed kind of strange. Looking at Skywest's website, Milwaukee, along with a number of other bases are not listed as domiciles. Is this a mistake?

http://www.skywest.com/careers/pilot/domiciles.php
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Old 11-13-2007, 09:28 AM   #9  
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Originally Posted by Cessnadriver View Post
Another thing that seemed kind of strange. Looking at Skywest's website, Milwaukee, along with a number of other bases are not listed as domiciles. Is this a mistake?

http://www.skywest.com/careers/pilot/domiciles.php
Must be out of date.
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Old 11-13-2007, 09:29 AM   #10  
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Stay in MKE commute to DTW or MSP or MEM working for mesaba. IF you want United you need PIC time. If you have the time upgrade, there is no reason not to. With the 15 CRJ 200's and 17 more 900's coming on the property you QOL of life will be much better sooner (I think more are coming). Take into account that the fact that "if" you get hired by Skywest you will have to start all over and hope for the chance to upgrade. Face it, FO flight time doesn't pay the bills or get you to a major. Both companies are good and you are already here. Does Skywest have a 401K program like Mesaba? Ours is one of the best in the industry. Will you be able to recoup/match the "free" money that you will make by staying at Mesaba? How many lifers are at Skywest, if you are one as well will you honestly have a better QOL there than compared to Mesaba? This flow thru could flush out many pilots at Mesaba. There is greater potential to have a better schedule as a "lifer" sooner at XJ.

It's a tough choice, good luck. It's great to just have the opportunity/options, four years ago many of us were happy just to have a job.
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