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Regional Pay Comparison  
User currently offlineJadedmonkeys From United States of America, joined May 2004, 67 posts, RR: 3
Posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 3151 times:

here's the link http://www.doihaveafuturehere.org

It's an interesting blog on regional pay, especially how much they make the first year. I wonder how much of the public actually realize how much these pilots make. The graphs are pretty interesting too. It's no wonder student pilot license issuance are dwindling every year.

22 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineN702ML From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 3117 times:

I will add this....in 1999/2000 i was a flight attendant for Comair.

Suprisingly, we were paid very well. Our starting rate was more than some of the major carriers. If I recall correctly, I think we started at $19+ an hour and that was in 1999.

However, this was the year leading up to the Comair pilot strike and we heard many, many times that WE as first year flight attendants made MORE than the first year pilots.

That was incredible.

I still remember once the strike started, a local Cincinnati radio station started playing a song. I recall some of the lyrics:

"Welcome to the walk-out, Comair pilots are on strike. If you have to get there, take your skateboard or your bike. Their wages are low, thats the cause of this whole thing, first-year pilots would make more if they worked at Burger King."

The sad thing was....that was probably true.


User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25794 posts, RR: 50
Reply 2, posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 7 hours ago) and read 3090 times:

Keep in mind, unions like ALPA are as much to blame for this as anyone.

To ensure high pay for top seniority, the bottom half gets the shaft. There has been more then one airline that has proposed flatter pay rates that would raise new hire pay, much at the expense of the top earners.



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineTheGreatChecko From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 1130 posts, RR: 2
Reply 3, posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 3029 times:



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 2):
To ensure high pay for top seniority, the bottom half gets the shaft. There has been more then one airline that has proposed flatter pay rates that would raise new hire pay, much at the expense of the top earners.

That would be true if the senior guys at the regionals were paid like their counterparts at the majors.

ALPA and the other major airline unions had a hand in this, but not because of the pay. There is a lot more to this than just pay at the majors.



"A pilot's plane she is. She will love you if you deserve it, and try to kill you if you don't...She is the Mighty Q400"
User currently onlineN104UA From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 917 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 6 hours ago) and read 3017 times:

Well I had to stop being an aviation major because I could not afford it, cause $100,000 for all my ratings and licenses and then making $20,000 a year, I could not see how I could make money doing that.


"Learn the rules, so you know how to break them properly." -H.H. The Dalai Lama
User currently offlineJadedmonkeys From United States of America, joined May 2004, 67 posts, RR: 3
Reply 5, posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 3 hours ago) and read 2841 times:

It would be interesting to see which of those carriers are ALPA carriers, Teamsters, in-house and non union.

User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25794 posts, RR: 50
Reply 6, posted (4 years 10 months 3 days 1 hour ago) and read 2738 times:



Quoting TheGreatChecko (Reply 3):
That would be true if the senior guys at the regionals were paid like their counterparts at the majors.

During the Crandall days AMR proposed to place everyone under a more egalitarian single seniority list. To accomplish this this however the more senior guys would have to take a haircut.

Also the growth of regionals and their 3rd class pay rates vis-a-vis majors have not happened in a vacuum but over long periods with union involvement. The proffer to operate smaller planes and subsequent scope relief were made virtually with tacit labor agreement (sans the post 9/11 BKs) and unions repeatedly ate their young to protect the benefits of the senior guys.



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineHatbutton From United States of America, joined Mar 2005, 1500 posts, RR: 14
Reply 7, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2546 times:



Quoting Jadedmonkeys (Reply 5):
It would be interesting to see which of those carriers are ALPA carriers, Teamsters, in-house and non union.

QX are the highest paid and they are Teamsters.


User currently offlineSwa4life From United States of America, joined Jul 2009, 385 posts, RR: 1
Reply 8, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2516 times:

It would appear that Southwest Airlines ramp agents make more than regional pilots. Probably even more so after the 3rd year.

User currently offlineThePinnacleKid From United States of America, joined Feb 2005, 725 posts, RR: 8
Reply 9, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2501 times:

The only thing that this does chart does not take into account but, what makes up a HUGE disparity from regional to regional is the actual language of the contracts that govern their pilot groups working rules... and pay. Some airlines do not pay when the flight is canceled for maintenance or weather; some carriers don't do "block or better," the carriers don't honor vacation the same, some carriers don't have commuter clauses, etc, etc, etc.... All of these little nuances make up a huge difference in pay at the end of the year and they are unable to be charted. In addition, this graph doesn't take into account aircraft size disparity... ExpressJet and AirWisconsin operate only 50 seat aircraft while Republic now has EMB-190's on property... the fact that over 3 years both of the former pay higher says something when the aircraft is 3/4 to half the size....

All of that said, it is a very interesting graph, you just have to be able to read between the lines a little and draw your own inferences.



"Sonny, did we land? or were we shot down?"
User currently offlineCrash65 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 74 posts, RR: 2
Reply 10, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 15 hours ago) and read 2469 times:

In 1993 as a Continental Express First Officer, then non union, my starting pay was $12.69/flight hour. Flight Attendant starting pay rate was $14.00. The FO pay rate (at that time) did not catch up with FA pay until 4th year.

[Edited 2009-12-28 07:56:05]

User currently offlineSWA TPA From United States of America, joined Aug 2001, 1559 posts, RR: 34
Reply 11, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 9 hours ago) and read 2319 times:



Quoting N702ML (Reply 1):
I will add this....in 1999/2000 i was a flight attendant for Comair.

Suprisingly, we were paid very well. Our starting rate was more than some of the major carriers. If I recall correctly, I think we started at $19+ an hour and that was in 1999.

I started at Comair as a FA in 2007 and we started out at about 16.00 and some change. The 2nd year we get a nice jump up to 23.00 an hour though  Smile
I have heard that we make more than a first year FO also, thats just sad...

SWA TPA



I believe I can fly.....
User currently offlineBahadir From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 1806 posts, RR: 11
Reply 12, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 2250 times:



Quoting Crash65 (Reply 10):
In 1993 as a Continental Express First Officer, then non union, my starting pay was $12.69/flight hour. Flight Attendant starting pay rate was $14.00. The FO pay rate (at that time) did not catch up with FA pay until 4th year.

Yeah but what was the equipment you were flying? The biggest I recall was an ATR42. Brakillya or Beech1900 was most likely the equipment. Today we have people making $23 /hr with 99 seats behind them. That's less than $0.50 /seat in an hour long flight..

The problem is not so much the unions but the stupid RLA. Pilots have no say on their contracts, cannot do job actions but companies can declare Ch.11 and throw the contract out of the window..



Earthbound misfit I
User currently offlineTheGreatChecko From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 1130 posts, RR: 2
Reply 13, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 2219 times:



Quoting Bahadir (Reply 12):
Pilots have no say on their contracts, cannot do job actions but companies can declare Ch.11 and throw the contract out of the window..

DING! DING! DING!

I think we have a winner.



"A pilot's plane she is. She will love you if you deserve it, and try to kill you if you don't...She is the Mighty Q400"
User currently offlineGoldenshield From United States of America, joined Jan 2001, 6074 posts, RR: 14
Reply 14, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 2128 times:



Quoting Swa4life (Reply 8):
It would appear that Southwest Airlines ramp agents make more than regional pilots. Probably even more so after the 3rd year.

You do realize that this is only the first 3 years of FIRST OFFICER pay, which is nowhere near captain pay, let alone the fact that you are comparing a mainline carrier to regionals. It's a well known fact that pilots have to start somewhere, and those not taking the military route won't be hired at a major until they have enough time to be looked at by a major, which means they start at a regional or even part 135 operation.

So, that said, your comparison is poor, regardless of the pay discrepancy.



Two all beef patties, special sauce, lettuce, cheese, pickles, onions on a sesame seed bun.
User currently offlineTheGreatChecko From United States of America, joined Mar 2004, 1130 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 2079 times:



Quoting Goldenshield (Reply 14):
You do realize that this is only the first 3 years of FIRST OFFICER pay

I'm sure SWA4Life was very much aware he was comparing regional airline FO pay to SWA RAMP AGENT pay.  Wink

I'm sure you would agree that no matter the airline, the first year FO should make as much as the guy loading the bags.

Checko



"A pilot's plane she is. She will love you if you deserve it, and try to kill you if you don't...She is the Mighty Q400"
User currently offlineJfkgaylga From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 16, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 2 hours ago) and read 1986 times:

Who cares if it is only the first 3 years of regional FO pay? Coming from a former regional FO at Eagle, it's an embarrassment!

I graduated with a hundred grand of education behind me. I was very proud to be hired by Eagle and wear my uniform. But that pride wore thin after 6 months or so when I realized that every one of my friends that stayed home and went to a local college and got ordinary jobs:

1. Made more money then me
2. Had a better schedule than me (nights, weekends, holidays, special events)
3. Didn't have a minimum wage employee in Dallas controlling their lives with a horrific reserve extension policy. Ask an RJ pilot how violating it is to have your turn to CLT be extended to a 2, 3, and 4 day trip . . . won't be home tonight honey!
4. Had a better medical plan than me
5. Had a better retirement plan than me.

My friend the teacher made a lot more than me.
My friend the computer programmer made a lot more than me.
My friend the accountant started working 2 years after me and made double what I made in year 3 during her first intern year.
My friend the secretary made more than me.

It was and is a disgrace. Everyday that I put on my uniform and had people ooh and ahh over it, I felt like I was a sham . . . I couldn't even pay my measly bills . . . and at the time they were measly.

It wasn't until my current job that I started to have pride not only in flying, but in my profession. I am making what a young professional with a unique skill set should be making and I am damn proud of it!

As for the fall off in student pilots . . . I couldn't be happier. It is capitalism (the law of supply and demand) at it's best. When the economy recovers (and it will) there will be a huge shortage of pilots and the days of FOs topping out at $37 an hour x 75 hours a month will be over.

Pilot PJ


User currently offlineSwa4life From United States of America, joined Jul 2009, 385 posts, RR: 1
Reply 17, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days 1 hour ago) and read 1943 times:

Out of curiosity, how much do 1st 2nd and 3rd year regional captains make?

User currently offlineMSPNWA From United States of America, joined Apr 2009, 1969 posts, RR: 2
Reply 18, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days ago) and read 1931 times:



Quoting Jadedmonkeys (Thread starter):
I wonder how much of the public actually realize how much these pilots make.

Few. My parents often say that when they talk to friends about how much my brother makes as a regional FO, those people are very surprised. Many people automatically think that "pilot=big money". That's often not the case.


User currently offlineFlyMIA From United States of America, joined Jun 2001, 7215 posts, RR: 9
Reply 19, posted (4 years 10 months 2 days ago) and read 1887 times:



Quoting MSPNWA (Reply 18):
Many people automatically think that "pilot=big money". That's often not the case.

This is very true. People always ask me so you still want to be an airline pilot and I say no just decided to keep flying a hobby and people ask why. When I tell them that Regional pilots make $20,000 a year and even major airline captains dont make over $130,000 they are shocked.

Quoting Jfkgaylga (Reply 16):
graduated with a hundred grand of education behind me. I was very proud to be hired by Eagle and wear my uniform. But that pride wore thin after 6 months or so when I realized that every one of my friends that stayed home and went to a local college and got ordinary jobs:

1. Made more money then me
2. Had a better schedule than me (nights, weekends, holidays, special events)
3. Didn't have a minimum wage employee in Dallas controlling their lives with a horrific reserve extension policy. Ask an RJ pilot how violating it is to have your turn to CLT be extended to a 2, 3, and 4 day trip . . . won't be home tonight honey!
4. Had a better medical plan than me
5. Had a better retirement plan than me.

My friend the teacher made a lot more than me.
My friend the computer programmer made a lot more than me.
My friend the accountant started working 2 years after me and made double what I made in year 3 during her first intern year.
My friend the secretary made more than me.

And this is the exact reason I decided not to pursue a career as a pilot. Sure after some time you can make decent money at a major airline. But I too often see a 50 something year old captain flying a Eagle ERJ or Republic ERJ-190. Not exactly the type of pay or job I would want at 50 years old. Every so now I then I think I will regret it, especially if their is a pilot shortage and pilots start making more money. But I have heard that stuff from people for 7 years now. Oh in 2 years there will be a pilot shortage etc.. Everytime I do see that 50 something year old looking Regional Pilot that makes me not regret my decision to not spend college flying.



"It was just four of us on the flight deck, trying to do our job" (Captain Al Haynes)
User currently offlinePilotpip From United States of America, joined Sep 2003, 3150 posts, RR: 11
Reply 20, posted (4 years 10 months 1 day 23 hours ago) and read 1869 times:



Quoting Swa4life (Reply 17):
Out of curiosity, how much do 1st 2nd and 3rd year regional captains make?

Doesn't really matter. There is no such thing right now. Even at airlines that have had historically fast upgrade times (usually the lowest paying and lowest quality of life) the upgrades are stretching into much longer times than 3 years.

Typically, Captains make somewhere in the range of 40-60% more than FOs.



DMI
User currently offlineJfkgaylga From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 21, posted (4 years 10 months 1 day 16 hours ago) and read 1788 times:

"When I tell them that Regional pilots make $20,000 a year and even major airline captains dont make over $130,000 they are shocked. "

The major airline captain number is artificially low. Very much so. I can't speak for every airline but at mine, about 50% of all pilots are above the Highly Compensated Employee threshold set by the government. (~$105,000USD) A good portion of them (Captains) are well above that.

If you take 12 year pay on a narrow body at a lot of these airlines you will get a number in the mid $150 per hour range. For argument sake, let's take $150 per hour. Now take the lowest guy on reserve that usually gets 75 hours per month. That's $135,000 per year. Keep in mind most guys are well above 75 hours, and you get the picture.

Throw in widebodies and higher hourly pay and you get a clearer idea of major capt pay. Probably much closer to $150,000.

Pilot PJ


User currently offlineCrash65 From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 74 posts, RR: 2
Reply 22, posted (4 years 9 months 2 weeks 5 days 7 hours ago) and read 1517 times:



Quoting Bahadir (Reply 12):
Yeah but what was the equipment you were flying? The biggest I recall was an ATR42. Brakillya or Beech1900 was most likely the equipment. Today we have people making $23 /hr with 99 seats behind them. That's less than $0.50 /seat in an hour long flight..

Pay was the same for all equipment types at the time. In my case, EMB-120, $12.69/30 = 43 cents / hr /seat. Had I been on the ATR about 31 cents.


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