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Labor Strife At ... Southwest?  
User currently offlineFWFlyer From United States of America, joined Sep 2007, 9 posts, RR: 0
Posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 17 hours ago) and read 5218 times:

Interesting story on rare union grumbling at Southwest Airlines.

Complete info here: http://startelegram.typepad.com/sky_talk/2008/11/pilots-blast-so.html

Quote:

Southwest employees grumble about Mexican code-share deal

By TREBOR BANSTETTER
tbanstetter@star-telegram.com

Employees of Southwest Airlines worry that new partnerships with Mexican and Canadian airlines will spur growth at foreign airlines while jobs stagnate at the Dallas-based discount carrier.

Workers at Southwest, particularly pilots and flight attendants, have been buzzing this week about a new alliance with Mexican carrier Volaris, which will allow Southwest to sell fares to Mexican cities. The deal, announced Monday and scheduled to begin in 2010, would have Volaris ferrying passengers to Mexico after they connect from Southwest flights.

Southwest recently announced a similar alliance with Canadian carrier WestJet on flights to Canada.

"We think our pilots should be doing this flying, rather than creating growth opportunities for other airlines," said Carl Kuwitzky, a Southwest pilot who is president of the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association. He said the partnerships are particularly frustrating, given that Southwest isn’t likely to grow next year.

"It’s a bitter pill to swallow," he said. "You sit there at a gate in Chicago and see a WestJet plane leaving for Toronto full of passengers we brought them."



30 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineCatIII From United States of America, joined Mar 2008, 3091 posts, RR: 4
Reply 1, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 5159 times:

So what's the difference in SWAPA's mind between the codehare with Volaris and the codeshare they had with ATA?

User currently offlineC767P From United States of America, joined Oct 2008, 893 posts, RR: 2
Reply 2, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 16 hours ago) and read 5113 times:



Quoting CatIII (Reply 1):
So what's the difference in SWAPA's mind between the codehare with Volaris and the codeshare they had with ATA?

Wasn’t ATA codeshare primarily to get Hawaii on the route map? The ocean/ETOPS could have been enough of a reason to satisfy the pilots for why they did that?

What kind of cost would be involved for WN to fly their own metal to Canada and Mexico?


User currently offlineAirframeAS From United States of America, joined Feb 2004, 14150 posts, RR: 24
Reply 3, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 15 hours ago) and read 4950 times:



Quoting FWFlyer (Thread starter):
"We think our pilots should be doing this flying, rather than creating growth opportunities for other airlines," said Carl Kuwitzky, a Southwest pilot who is president of the Southwest Airlines Pilots Association. He said the partnerships are particularly frustrating, given that Southwest isn’t likely to grow next year.

"It’s a bitter pill to swallow," he said. "You sit there at a gate in Chicago and see a WestJet plane leaving for Toronto full of passengers we brought them."

The author of that article has a pretty good point there though....



A Safe Flight Begins With Quality Maintenance On The Ground.
User currently offlinePyrex From Portugal, joined Aug 2005, 4059 posts, RR: 30
Reply 4, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 4890 times:

Just proof positive that Southwest is now a full-fledged legacy carrier, complete with moronic pilot unions who are uncapable even of understanding the meaning of the word "code-share".


Read this very carefully, I shall write this only once!
User currently offlineEWRCabincrew From United States of America, joined May 2006, 5527 posts, RR: 56
Reply 5, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 14 hours ago) and read 4875 times:

What bitter pill is there to swallow. WN makes money off these code shares.


You can't cure stupid
User currently offlineSPREE34 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2264 posts, RR: 9
Reply 6, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 4798 times:

It's a good way to bring in revenue without the expenses incurred setting up an international operation.

I can see the Union position that says "see a WestJet plane leaving for Toronto full of passengers we brought them. ", and, they seem to forget, the WestJet plane also brought them (SWA) a bunch of people who are now sitting behind the SWAPA member.

WestJet and SWA both pick up revenue. WestJet or Volaris eat the extra cost associated with international certifications and operations.

The argument that " rather than creating growth opportunities for other airlines," shows a lack of the bigger business picture. Perhaps, without the codeshare, neither carrier could support the route and frequency profitably.



I don't understand everything I don't know about this.
User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17823 posts, RR: 46
Reply 7, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 4766 times:



Quoting CatIII (Reply 1):
So what's the difference in SWAPA's mind between the codehare with Volaris and the codeshare they had with ATA?

There wasn't a peep about the TZ or WS codeshare but now that it's a Mexican carrier, suddenly it's "outsourcing".



E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineQANTAS747-438 From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 1984 posts, RR: 2
Reply 8, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 4756 times:



Quoting CatIII (Reply 1):
So what's the difference in SWAPA's mind between the codehare with Volaris and the codeshare they had with ATA?

EXACTLY! And I'll add to that... what's the difference in SWAPA's mind between ATA, Westjet and Volaris? The answer is MEXICO. But many of our employees think with their luggage and sun tan lotion and not the operational side. Everything I've heard from one another is that the beef is with the FAs and Pilots... everyone else is super excited. I think that they just want to overnight in Cancun and Cabo and can't if Y4 is flying it.

I also believe that nobody had a problem with ATA flying to a destination like Hawaii because we got free flight benefits on them. No flight benefits have yet been announced. I bet once they do announce something on Y4, this will all calm down.

Nobody where I work can understand what the problem is. A wise man in my department said it best... they do the work, they fly the planes, and we get the money. At THIS stage of the game... let's just take the money where we can get it!



My posts/replies are strictly my opinion and not that of any company, organization, or Southwest Airlines.
User currently offlineQANTAS747-438 From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 1984 posts, RR: 2
Reply 9, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 13 hours ago) and read 4756 times:



Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 7):
Quoting CatIII (Reply 1):
So what's the difference in SWAPA's mind between the codehare with Volaris and the codeshare they had with ATA?

There wasn't a peep about the TZ or WS codeshare but now that it's a Mexican carrier, suddenly it's "outsourcing".

Again.... exactly. Perfectly said.



My posts/replies are strictly my opinion and not that of any company, organization, or Southwest Airlines.
User currently offlineCubsrule From United States of America, joined May 2004, 23299 posts, RR: 20
Reply 10, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 4670 times:



Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 8):
Nobody where I work can understand what the problem is. A wise man in my department said it best... they do the work, they fly the planes, and we get the money. At THIS stage of the game... let's just take the money where we can get it!

No more calls, we have a winner.

What people don't understand is that the problems with operating to Mexico are related to far more than the expense of changing the certificate and opening stations there. Flying to Mexico would disrupt WN's business model for a variety of reasons

-There's at least some demand for flights that occur overnight, which is an operational no-no for WN.
-The quick turns that WN relies on are much harder when DHS inspections are required between flights
-Crew scheduling is potentially more difficult; crews can get caught in immigration or customs

Why deal with all of these hassles when someone else can?



I can't decide whether I miss the tulip or the bowling shoe more
User currently offline413X3 From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 1983 posts, RR: 0
Reply 11, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 12 hours ago) and read 4629 times:



Quoting MaverickM11 (Reply 7):
There wasn't a peep about the TZ or WS codeshare but now that it's a Mexican carrier, suddenly it's "outsourcing".

Did any of you actually read the article? The point the pilot made was simple. Southwest is not growing next year, so he thinks instead of code sharing, they should be doing the flying, allowing the company to grow with their own employees.


User currently offlineCjpark From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 1266 posts, RR: 7
Reply 12, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 4583 times:

From the looks of things at the front gate at Love Field today the pilots are not the only ones that are unhappy.

Southwest Employees were standing at the front gate with holding Picket signs. I took a picture with my phone. The only sign I could read from the picture had print on side that reads; What happened to putting employees first? On the other side was; Is this really Southwest Airlines?

TWU Local 555.



"Any airline that wants to serve the [region] can go to DFW today and fly anywhere they want," WN spokesman Ed Stewart
User currently offlineEWRCabincrew From United States of America, joined May 2006, 5527 posts, RR: 56
Reply 13, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 11 hours ago) and read 4571 times:



Quoting 413X3 (Reply 11):
they should be doing the flying, allowing the company to grow with their own employees.

Like WestJet should be instead of using WN. It works both ways. Code sharing combines the two and makes money for all parties without adding more cost for station set-up, hiring more employees, etc..



You can't cure stupid
User currently offline413X3 From United States of America, joined Jul 2008, 1983 posts, RR: 0
Reply 14, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 4464 times:

But what Westjet does is not what they are worried about. The pilots are merely pointing out that the company was constantly growing in past years, so agreements with other carriers were ok. But now since growth has slowed, some feel they should be flying if they are selling all the seats.

User currently offlineEWRCabincrew From United States of America, joined May 2006, 5527 posts, RR: 56
Reply 15, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 10 hours ago) and read 4441 times:



Quoting 413X3 (Reply 14):
But what Westjet does is not what they are worried about.

Okay, then replace Westjet with Volaris. It still works both ways. Volaris could fly into the US, but can make more money doing codeshares with WN. Like WN can with Volaris.

There is no reason to worry at all. Airlines are businesses. They have to do what is best for their shareholders, not about having a pilot upset that he can't fly to Toronto.

Codesharing saves the company money and time. Paramount in an economy like today.



You can't cure stupid
User currently offlineSPREE34 From United States of America, joined Jun 2004, 2264 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4267 times:



Quoting FWFlyer (Thread starter):
"It’s a bitter pill to swallow," he said. "You sit there at a gate in Chicago and see a WestJet plane leaving for Toronto full of passengers we brought them."

Correct me if I'm wrong, but the WestJet codeshare hasn't started yet has it? Starts mid, or late 09???

So he might be hallucinating? Did the WestJet 737 at the other gate actually exist? Was William Shatner in a window seat?



I don't understand everything I don't know about this.
User currently offlineOsiris30 From Barbados, joined Sep 2006, 3192 posts, RR: 25
Reply 17, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4238 times:



Quoting SPREE34 (Reply 16):
Correct me if I'm wrong, but the WestJet codeshare hasn't started yet has it? Starts mid, or late 09???

So he might be hallucinating? Did the WestJet 737 at the other gate actually exist? Was William Shatner in a window seat?

Just shows you how assinine the whole thing is. That's WJ 737 left full of PAX WJ got all by themselves (insert finger to SWAPA here). Sounds like WJ will be brining WN more traffic than vice-versa.



I don't care what you think of my opinion. It's my opinion, so have a nice day :)
User currently offlineREALDEAL From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 18, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4215 times:



Quoting Cubsrule (Reply 10):
-There's at least some demand for flights that occur overnight, which is an operational no-no for WN.

why ?

Surely red-eyes give you better utilisiation of an expensive asset?

Quoting 413X3 (Reply 11):
Southwest is not growing next year, so he thinks instead of code sharing, they should be doing the flying, allowing the company to grow with their own employees.

With the mess the U.S. is in economically, it's surely time to bunker down & not start competing with likes of Volaris in particular who muct have much lower labour costs.


User currently offlineTravaz From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 309 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 7 hours ago) and read 4194 times:

What is the reason SWA is not growing this year? Because managers made good conservative judgements to not take on any more risks or spending to promote growth in a tuff enviornment . Cosdeshare allows REVENUE growth without large outlays. You should all be happy that you are not shrinking and having people laid-off. Unions have killed more than one airline. They should be holding signs that say thank you !

User currently offlineQANTAS747-438 From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 1984 posts, RR: 2
Reply 20, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 4148 times:

Travaz---

Well said... good job and thanks.



My posts/replies are strictly my opinion and not that of any company, organization, or Southwest Airlines.
User currently offlineAtrude777 From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 5702 posts, RR: 52
Reply 21, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 6 hours ago) and read 4122 times:



Quoting QANTAS747-438 (Reply 8):
I also believe that nobody had a problem with ATA flying to a destination like Hawaii because we got free flight benefits on them. No flight benefits have yet been announced. I bet once they do announce something on Y4, this will all calm down.

I believe only the WN in flight crew did. We as ground ops didn't. We only got the pass bureau benefits which was 15 bucks domestic, 30 bucks hawaii and mexico.

I as a CSA don't ever recall "free flights" on ATA ever.



Regarding this thing.. speaking as if I was a CSA at STL for WN. I wouldn't protest this code-sharing at all. Maybe it is the mgr inside me speaking (as I am studying avm mgmt at school now), I recognize the business side of code sharing, and warmly welcome it.

If this brings more money and revenue to SWA without reducing pay, benefits, and job losses I am all for it! It was mentioned that ATA brought around what 50 Mill to SWA? Do realize folks that COULD have been the mere difference between profitability or not.

Without that 50 mill from the code share, WN could have lost money.. no money, no profit sharing. No money, potential job loss, THEN start complaining about code sharing.

I am being a bit too drastic I realize but, again I do recognize the importance of code sharing and would warmly welcome it.

Do I wish we would expand intl on our own planes? Absolutely but for now I am happy with what they are doing.

Alex



Good things come to those who wait, better things come to those who go AFTER it!
User currently offlineF9Animal From United States of America, joined Dec 2004, 5120 posts, RR: 28
Reply 22, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 5 hours ago) and read 4064 times:



Quoting FWFlyer (Thread starter):
Interesting story on rare union grumbling at Southwest Airlines.

I don't think there is any reason for the unions at WN to be grumbling about this. I see it as the potential for WN to test the likely chance that they will be doing this flying on their own in the near future. I also see it as an additional source of income, and makes it even more attractive for customers who frequent Mexico and Canada.



I Am A Different Animal!!
User currently offlineADXMatt From United States of America, joined Jul 2006, 954 posts, RR: 1
Reply 23, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 2 hours ago) and read 3497 times:

I agree with the pilots that during the TZ code share WN was growing and sticking to their model of second tier airports and such. TZ also gave WN Hawaii. Hawaii on a B737 and low yields would be difficult for WN. TZ gave WN the congested airports like LGA where WN didn't want to go to.

The landscape has changed. The WN model has changed with PHL/SFO/DEN. WN growth is flat for next year.

WN can easily make money going to the Mexican resorts. WN has a great product and a great following. Mexico is an easy reach for the B737. There would be some start up costs for the overwater equipment and training but not very much in the sceme of things.
Schedulers having to learn Flag rules vs Domestic rules is minor training in the grand scheme of things.

I could see the pilots buying off on USA-Toluca on WN metal and code share on Volaris to the connecting cities in Mexico. That would still be a big win for Volaris.

I'm not sure on the Canadian markets so I don't want to comment on WestJet.


User currently offlineRachelBDL From United States of America, joined Oct 2005, 72 posts, RR: 1
Reply 24, posted (6 years 1 month 6 days 1 hour ago) and read 3387 times:



Quoting Cjpark (Reply 12):
Southwest Employees were standing at the front gate with holding Picket signs. I took a picture with my phone. The only sign I could read from the picture had print on side that reads; What happened to putting employees first? On the other side was; Is this really Southwest Airlines?

TWU Local 555.

TWU Local 555 is the union that represents ramp agents, operations agents, and provisioning agents. We've been going through contract negotiations for most of the year and it's now stalled on pay issues. But the codeshare might be part of it. I'm cautiously optimistic that it could work out to be a good thing, and maybe kind of like TZ, we could be taking over these routes in a few years once things are more stable (fingers crossed).



I not only drink the KoolAid, I do the Jello shots too!
25 N702ML : I think it is obvious..... First of all, ATA provided connections to a market WN could NOT serve without modifications to their aircraft. WN aircraft
26 Boo22 : The union bosses want more bodies paying dues to pay for their big caddies. Its a tough job just taking a cut off the top of everyone's wages. As soon
27 Cubsrule : I don't know that they necessarily do. The aircraft have to be down for m/x at some point, and overnight is as good a time as any-- airlines with lot
28 EWRCabincrew : Maybe additonal costs the company does not want to expense, when it can do it for, essentially, free with code-sharing. You get the flights, passenge
29 N702ML : That is a good point, EWRCabincrew, and i just want to make sure since your post starts with a quote from me, i simply was explaining WHY some of the
30 Revelation : Finally, after 26 posts, someone gets it. In this picture, every one is happy, except the ones who live off union dues.
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