Question for UAL Guys...................

Boz

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 25, 2001
Posts
176
Total Time
16000+
I undersatnd that ALPA and UAL have comprimized with further furloughs reductions to not take place untill March 2002.

But what is happening during this time with negotiations with the guys that where furloughed and had completed there probationary year? (124) out of (591)

How about the what is happening with the guys taking early retirement, leaves of absences, and reductions in the monthly bids to 60 hours. I have not heard to much regarding this on the UAL forum and am curious to see where we are at today.

I read today that UAL loads where at 89.2% this thanksgiving, but I also read that we needed a 96% load to break even. I am just trying to get a picture of some sort, as to what the future at UAL will be come next year, I know only time will tell, but curious as to what you might be thinking! I like the insight I get from this board. Like someone stated earlier this is something you can't get from Air Inc, AEPS, UPAS, etc.......thanks for your thoughts.
 

ual737

New member
Joined
Nov 25, 2001
Posts
4
Total Time
6000
UAL

Boz, The botom line is that UAL has more money going out than it has going in - basic econ. Can't keep losing money and stay in business. I'm not a big fan of giving back what one has worked so hard to get - you may never get it back. However, this may be a time when we need to take a good look at it. My personal oppinion is we need to make some sort concession and re-establish a new baseline so we can get back in the black. This could be a contractual agreement, ie. at "X" date normal pay would go back into effect. Dubinski (UAL ALPA) scares me a little with his absolutely, "Final Answer" no pay cuts hard line. I believe if we (the pilots) took a small pay cut, the mechs may step back a little until we get back on our feet. The botom Line.... The Unprecedented events of 9/11 forced the industry to take unprecedented steps to regain momentum. We have to get on board or we are going to be left behind. There is no reason we should have to fill our plane to 96% to make money.

I say one more round of furloughs and two years before we get called back unless the aforementioned takes place.
 

Gordo

GO TERPS
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
57
Total Time
7,200
I listened to the ALPA hotline this morning. Their message dated Wed Nov 21 said that UAL and ALPA have agreed not to furlough the 403 pilot tentatively scheduled for Jan and Feb and delay them until March if necessary. Then if the company needs to furlough them, ALPA has approved them to give only 15 days notice versus the contractual 30 days.

UAL and ALPA are looking into other ways to mitigate more furloughs including an increase in the number of 60 hour surplus lines as a way to reduce costs.

Certainly with over 1260 surplus bumps as of 31 OCT there is a massive training movement in TK. It seems to me that even with just retraining those 1260 surplus bump pilots that'll take TK at least a year to get through them, and now with more bump letters coming out, I don't see the UAL 591 being recalled any time soon.

TK can only sustain so much training and now they have two fewer airframes therefore fewer sim devices to train on. During the heyday, TK could only handle 100 new hires a month plus retraining and currency for equipments changes.

As one of the many UAL furloughees, I can only hope that everything turns around and the company starts posting profits.

The 89% load factor is good though since it means the public is out there flying. If public confidence increases all airlines should be able to charge what they need to, in order to post profits.
 

Zarathustra

Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
16
Total Time
3000
Short Courses and Retirements.

Bear in mind that 100 new hires requires a lot more capacity than re-quals and short courses. Haven't heard anything on many people taking early outs. Projected 2002 retirements are 360 (don't know if that includes 20% for herpes or not, some figures do, some don't), 2003 retirements 300, another 300 in 2004. Conservative, if UAL stays at same size, no more furloughs, etc., etc., etc., looks like 591 back in late 03 early 04.

Avolar has hired at least 15 of the 591 for limited ops. Real hiring push should come in Jan to anticipate ramping up for April. Hiring is not being done in seniority, one of the 15 had two months. Don't know what the criteria might be, no herpes resurrected b/c it's going to be run 121. No info. at all on interviews, if they even take place, domiciles, if they will have any, it's all in stealth mode. 591 don't have to give up numbers.

Any info. from Delta guys? Rumor that furloughees get a year of jumpseat privileges (Any truth? Passes?)
 

ual591

New member
Joined
Nov 27, 2001
Posts
2
Total Time
3300
It sounds like the 124 are being swept under the rug for the time being. One additional note: I think the number represented by this grievance is actually a little greater than 124. Because pilots at United don't necessarily come off probation in seniority order, the total number represented should probably be everyone senior to the most junior pilot off probation. I'm not sure the seniority number of the most senior pilot furloughed, but I believe the most junior pilot off probation was 10,005.

I haven't seen any results of the reduction agreements. I do find it very interesting that all they were called prior to a week ago were "surplus reductions", and now they are being called "furlough reductions". The talk is sounding like before last week's "good news" that furloughs were a certainty in Jan and Feb. This is also interesting because the CEO's message over a week ago said that no further furloughs beyond those that have already been furloughed was expected.

Don't believe those 96% load factor numbers. I think those were probably taken from how many seats would have to be sold to make up for the 15 million a day the company said it was losing. That 15 million came out before the furlough, parking of 727 and 737-200, and schedule reduction.

I find it discouraging that Frontier is adding flights out of Denver, one is even to Chicago. That shows me United just might have cut capacity a little too much, and is in no big hurry to make themselves more available to the customers which are coming back.
 

P3-Adub

Bye Bye !!!
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Posts
195
Total Time
7,200+
DEN is adding some more flying soon. However they just bumped another 60 Guppy captains. It was also announced non-stop service to Hawaii twice a week, Sat & Sun. The DEN - HNL will be flown in a 777, still no more chance of DEN becoming a domicile for that one. I agree that it is frustrating seeing Frontier and Southwest make a rapid comeback and actually grow while we are in a hold. Aalso hate to see all of the SJs as they are now called taking our flying.
 

Rottweiller

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
429
Total Time
>1
If you are reffering to the RJ's as SJ's (can imagine what the S probably stands for) I am sorry that you feel they are taking your flying.

But, the regionals flying has been cut back - FACT

The regionals have also had furloughs because of the reduced flying - FACT

The break even load factor on an RJ is 35-40% (18-20 pax) - FACT
Average RJ load factor is 80-84%

At the moment the regionals are basically a cash cow for the majors (particulary UAL) so you have to ask "who paid for my pay check last month?"

I am tired of hearing that "the regionals this..." and "the regionals are taking our flying" we too have taken hits not just the heavy metal drivers.
 

FlyingSig

Double Breasted _ _ _
Joined
Dec 1, 2001
Posts
560
Total Time
7000+
Re: Short Courses and Retirements.

Zarathustra said:

Any info. from Delta guys? Rumor that furloughees get a year of jumpseat privileges (Any truth? Passes?)
DAL furloughees get 1 year regular pass for all on pass list(family/companion/etc). Already issued buddy passes are still valid. After that they get S3-B passes for the entire time on furlough. Our contract states that we get jumpseat privileges the entire time on furlough but the FAA said no to this so the company came up with the S3-B deal.

So now a question back at ya.... how goes the UAL Force Majeur grievance? When it going to be heard etc.. etc..?
 

P3-Adub

Bye Bye !!!
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Posts
195
Total Time
7,200+
SJs - Small Jets. I guess there was some concern over the use of the term RJs- Regional Jets as they are now refered to in our contract. Again, no disrespect for the size, I flew much smaller jets than the Bombardier or EMB Jet.

There are now many SJs on old UAL Shuttle & Mainline routes.

Southwest Jets - good one !
 

canyonblue

Everyone loves Southwest
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
2,314
Total Time
15000+
Well from flying some United mainline routes I think you may want the "SJ" to stand for SAVIOR JETS. With some loads on these routes being around 15-35 I'm sure you are glad not to be losing big money sending a 727 or a 737-200 on these loads. Bottom line is United tells us where to fly them and when. If you can turn a profit on some of these routes with these loads then someone in HQ would love to hear how. When times get better you will have the routes back as no bean counter at UAL is going to lets more money slip away. Then maybe our pilots will complain about the LJ's taking our flying. Also a recent article in a business publication had a graph showing the change of flying since 9/11 in respect to RJ/Mainline routes. United had the smallest % with USAirways the largest. There is only one way to make money in business, increase profits.
 
Last edited:

Andy

12/13/2012
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Posts
3,101
Total Time
121312
Rotweiller, you sound like you've got some pretty thin skin there. At UAL, we have a huge problem with SJ expansion during mainline contraction. That's great if you want to stay flying for someone like Skywest or Comair, but I prefer to fly for a major, and I think that most other pilots aspire to do the same.
A while back, I posted numbers from the FAA's website showing no less than 20% growth per annum at regionals vice approximately 3% growth at the majors over the last 5 years. Regionals have seen the bulk of the increase in flying, and now at UAL we see our regional feeds taking over mainline routes. This is a problem for those of us who wish to fly at the majors.
If you're happy to make a regional a career, good on ya. I prefer the pay and time off that a major offers.

And yes, SJ = small jet. Do you find it offensive? It wasn't intended to be. Last I recall, there were several regional pilots who were complaining about them being called regional jets.

As for your facts, great. I can point to facts that show just the opposite. It just depends on who crunches the numbers.
 

Marko Ramius

Vilnius Nastavnic
Joined
Nov 25, 2001
Posts
378
Total Time
25 w/L
Rottweiller said:
If you are reffering to the RJ's as SJ's (can imagine what the S probably stands for) I am sorry that you feel they are taking your flying.

But, the regionals flying has been cut back - FACT

The regionals have also had furloughs because of the reduced flying - FACT

The break even load factor on an RJ is 35-40% (18-20 pax) - FACT
Average RJ load factor is 80-84%

At the moment the regionals are basically a cash cow for the majors (particulary UAL) so you have to ask "who paid for my pay check last month?"

I am tired of hearing that "the regionals this..." and "the regionals are taking our flying" we too have taken hits not just the heavy metal drivers.
First of all, the government paid my check last month since I am furloughed so I won't spend much time pondering that question. When you boil it all down, it's a contractual issue which I am sure any airline pilot can understand. We (UA) were planning on pull down mainline flying to contractual limits prior to 9/11-now they have just abrogated the contract. We have a very detailed contract(lawyers sometimes do work for you!) that doesn't have force majeur to cover this type of situation. When I saw our scope language from C2K last September, I remember saying to my instructor that the bulk of our pilots don't know what we just signed up for. Well we got it, and the best part is that we don't even understand the situation in the slightest. As a UAL pilot, I take full responsibility for missteps, it's not the Express carriers fault. They just do what they're told by management. While I don't hold them accountable for flying the routes, I do hold their union MEC's responsible for not even voicing one iota of support for their furloughed ALPA bretheren. There is no valid reason that we couldn't be interviewed for jobs on the bottom of your lists other than sour grapes. The Comair MEC sent us a letter of gratitude for helping out with stike funds last spring, funny how they don't issue a letter supporting ALPA distressed carrier status when their carrier has stated that they won't even interview us. So in the end, you are right in that too many major airline pilots have looked down on regional people for too long, but right now the regionals aren't proving themselves to be any better. I think we (ALPA) as a whole would rather spend our time beating each other up at every turn and complaining about it then taking a reaslistic attempt to fix things.
 

canyonblue

Everyone loves Southwest
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
2,314
Total Time
15000+
Marko Ramius said:


While I don't hold them accountable for flying the routes, I do hold their union MEC's responsible for not even voicing one iota of support for their furloughed ALPA bretheren. There is no valid reason that we couldn't be interviewed for jobs on the bottom of your lists other than sour grapes.
You could be at the top of our list if you had a flowthru. Our MEC had tried for years to get a flowthru without any luck. When times were good the UAL MEC wanted nothing to do with us, now we have alot of pilots who are glad we are not in the same situation as Eagle or COEX losing Regional jobs at the expense of a flowthru. Consider the flowthru at Express dead in the water. Other than that we would hire UAL furloughed pilots but I imagine they would have to resign seniority.
 

20/20

Member
Joined
Dec 2, 2001
Posts
8
Total Time
18,000
Canyonblue,

The lack of a flowthrough was not really killed at UAL per say. The real problem with such here, unlike at Eagle or CALX, is that UAL does not do the hiring for the UAX carriers. Thus UAL would be ceding the hiring standards to an outside entity. I am NOT saying or implying anything negative about the standards at any of the UAX carriers, but the simple fact is that they differ from each other as well as from UAL. Personally I would be much more inclined to have supported a flowthrough if UAL did the hiring for UAX as AMR does for Eagle and CAL for CALX.

In the long run, I believe that we would all be better off if UAL owned and ran the express carriers ala AMR or CAL. It would mean more control over the UAL brand, more coordination, level standards, more pilot stability (at both ends), etc.
 

Wiggums

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
1,040
Total Time
.
The last thing an airline like Comair would want to do is hire pilots on furlough from a major. Would you give up your recall rights at United to be an RJ FO? Even if you tell Comair you would there is a history of pilots jumping ship once they get recalled. Why should Comair foot the bill for training just to get screwed over a short time later? Employers want to stay away from someone who the know will have no loyalty to their operation. Yes, it's disappointing that being on furlough makes you less competitive for other flying jobs, however, that's reality.

On the small jet issue. Small jets are NEVER going to go away. They are proven money makers and management will use every trick in the book to be able to operate them. Even if your airline manages to scope out small jets, some other operation will come setup shop down the street and will have to competitive advantage over your airline. Yes, you may prefer to work at a major airline, but the market says otherwise. A few thousand pilots, no matter how united, cannot counter market forces. It's like trying to hold back the tide at the beach; it'll work for a little while, but eventually you'll be defeated.
 

Zarathustra

Member
Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
16
Total Time
3000
Response to Flying Sig

The grievance on SJs and the 124 is being held in abeyance until March, in return for no furloughs in Jan and Feb. Hopefully things will start to settle down and some real fleet planning will take place in the meantime.

The info on the Delta passes is appreciated. UAL management refuses this on the grounds of "tax purposes". It seems to me Delta management is running circles around UAL and AMR and that Delta is the one who will come out of all this much stronger. At least it's not as rudderless as with Goodwin.
 

Marko Ramius

Vilnius Nastavnic
Joined
Nov 25, 2001
Posts
378
Total Time
25 w/L
canyonblue said:


You could be at the top of our list if you had a flowthru. Our MEC had tried for years to get a flowthru without any luck. When times were good the UAL MEC wanted nothing to do with us, now we have alot of pilots who are glad we are not in the same situation as Eagle or COEX losing Regional jobs at the expense of a flowthru. Consider the flowthru at Express dead in the water. Other than that we would hire UAL furloughed pilots but I imagine they would have to resign seniority.
Point taken canyonblue, I was still at an Express carrier when some of the flowthru talk was going around the ranks, but like you said it never got anywhere then, and I'm sure it won't get anywhere now. Don't get me started on the seniority number thing!!:D
 
Top