GoAllegheny
Posts: 310
Joined: Fri Nov 17, 2000 4:48 am

Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 5:59 am

Has anyone ever encountered friends or others who think that commercial airline pilots are just overpaid bus drivers of the sky? I've been amazed at the number of my otherwise intelligent friends who think that. Don't get me wrong - I've met a couple of pilots (pre-9/11) who had grown tired of the routine and the automation, and perhaps they thought of themselves as bus drivers, but I hadn't realized the extent to which the general public thought that as well, even as pilots continue to be responsible for hundreds of lives at a shot and millions of dollars of expensive equipment.

We've come a long way (down), I would say. Perhaps in this sense the industry is a victim of its own success.
 
tommy767
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:05 am

I disagree. I think pilots should make a lot of money. There not overpaid bus drivers b/c the two are different things.
"KEEP CLIMBING" -- DELTA
 
SSRJ
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2000 6:28 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:16 am

During day to day operations, pilots of modern airliners are more technician/computer operator than anything else - and they are overpaid - at the major airlines.

On bad weather days, with decreasing vis - they earn every penny they get paid.

The guys that do earn their pay every day are those souls flying older jet and turboprop equipment. You should see the guys that fly aircraft like the Metro III as they literaly wrestle their aircraft around Florida thunderstorms and other bad weather.

They really WORK.

Thanks,
-SSRJ

When all else fails, read the directions. Else then, get the hammer
 
donder10
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:20 am

It doesn't cost $100k plus just to become a bus driver.Only a lucky few get into the majors anyway.
 
Guest

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:37 am

There's only about 85,000 airline pilots in the United States right now. How many bus drivers are there?
 
OPNLguy
Posts: 11191
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:46 am

A rather inflamatory choice of topics...

Was Al Haynes an "overpaid bus driver?" I think the survivors of UAL 232 would argue otherwise... (I sure would...)
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
SSRJ
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2000 6:28 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:48 am

If there are about 85,000 airline pilots in the United States, that also means that there are about 85,000 airline pilots that think they should be CEO of their airline just because they know how to fly an airplane.

Let's make it clear:

1. Pilots drive/control airplanes for a living.
2. Airplanes fly.

Pilots in effect drive very technical machines that carry people from place to place - like a bus driver. They are both demanding jobs that require professionalism and safety, or people die.

Thx
When all else fails, read the directions. Else then, get the hammer
 
shankly
Posts: 1202
Joined: Tue Jan 11, 2000 10:42 pm

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:48 am

There will never be a 400 seater bus that will loose an engine at max weight at V1 at night in a rain storm. Worth every penny.
L1011 - P F M
 
Guest

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:51 am

If I'm flying to BOS when there's fog everywhere with 200 passengers and the Captain or First Officer lands the plane safely, I say give them a bonus. I could see the "Bus Driver" argument if the weather is perfect, but for those of us who reside in the northeast we know that isn't always the case. I still find it amazing to see a 744 or 777 land in any type of conditions. I don't think pilots are overpaid at all, I believe a vast majority are underpaid.

 
SSRJ
Posts: 25
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:52 am

A pilot will never drive a bus on a muddy dirt road within inches of a 2,000 foot cliff with no wings in a rainstorm in a thirld world country for a living.

No wings.

Hey guys, I gotta go catch a Frontier flight to ATL via DEN.

And I am very happy that my pilots will be TRAINED to do a very repetitive job VERY WELL.

Have a great weekend.

Thanks,
SSRJ
When all else fails, read the directions. Else then, get the hammer
 
SSRJ
Posts: 25
Joined: Fri Jun 23, 2000 6:28 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:55 am

The machine lands in zero vis.
Now if your in a CRJ and you're CAT III and can't go down to 100' on auto pilot and the vis and celing suck.. You ARE earning your pay and are beyond a bus driver.

See my previous comments about good/bad weather.


Keep it real.
-ssrj
Bye ! or I'll miss my flight!  Smile/happy/getting dizzy
When all else fails, read the directions. Else then, get the hammer
 
cancidas
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:57 am

we're not bus drivers. we do the job because we want to. thats all there is to it. what Donder10 said, we sink so much money into getting our lisences that getting paid that much money is fair.
"...cannot the kingdom of salvation take me home."
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:01 am

SSRJ,

Man, I can't wait until some of the line pilots catch wind of this...you're gonna get it...

Pilots in effect drive very technical machines that carry people from place to place - like a bus driver. They are both demanding jobs that require professionalism and safety, or people die.

Man, life according to you must just be so black and white...a simple explanation for everything...

A bus is not a technically sophisticated machine. It drives along the road. There are what....hundreds of millions of cars in the United States alone. A bus driver, in effect, has very little training over the level of the average private driver -- of which the overwhelming majority of the population is. They learn to drive a bus, put on a bus driver uniform, and drive senior citizens to casinos. There's really not a lot more to it than that.

Pilots, on the other hand...I can't believe someone with your alleged position in an airline doesn't know what pilots do.

We pay tens of thousands of dollars out of pocket for highly specialized training; training that the majority of the population just doesn't receive. We study every aspect of our aircraft, from the inner workings of the guidance equipment to the way the toilets flush. Show me an average bus driver that knows completely how every item on his bus works and I'll eat my shoe.

On top of that, pilots go through a VERY selective hiring process. Airline pilots spend weeks in ground school at an airline to learn everything about the specific aircraft type we're flying. If you don't make the grade, you flunk out..and what other major airline is going to hire someone that flunked an indoc program at another major?

And then, there's the issue of recurrent training. I don't know a single pilot who doesn't sit around studying everything he can in his spare time, trying to stay ahead of the curve. Every six months we're back in the classrooms and back in the sims...refining our skills, catching up with the industry and the art of aviation. Sounds something like a doctor...doesn't it?

Then they get in the airplane, make critical life-or-death decisions, go through incredible amounts of paperwork that MUST be correct or it's their job, and rocket scores of people through the skies in a metal tube with skin about the same thickness as your pinky finger.

But yeah, we're nothing but bus drivers.

Go Greyhound,
Jon
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
DoorsToManual
Posts: 1453
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:02 am

Why focus on pilots? How about those greedy CEOs that get rewarded for guiding their respective companies towards bankruptcy?  Insane

No, I think there are more serious anomalies in remuneration in other industries...

Anyhow, the analogy with bus drivers isn't really helpful; pilots bear more training and responsibility, as well as having to contend with smaller/changing margins for error & dire consequences should mistakes be made.

That doesn't mean I think pilots should be paid the ridiculous amounts paid to other professionals/CEOs....but the whole issue of pay is quite complex, and I for one don't think it's as simple as just saying 'they get overpaid'.

Probably the vast majority of pilots aren't on the pay many think they are. I'd say very few would be earning over $100k....

rgds

[typo edit]

[Edited 2003-09-20 00:10:28]
 
JBirdAV8r
Posts: 3454
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:07 am

Probably the vast majority of pilots aren't on the pay many think they are. I'd say very few would be earning over $100k....

No doubt. The vast majority of pilots...the ones less glamorized, the ones you don't hear about...make a pittance.
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
flyboyaz
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:09 am

It depends on the airline I guess....I agree some make too much. When they make more than the president, that's a bit much. But they have a lot of responsibility!
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:13 am

When they make more than the president, that's a bit much. But they have a lot of responsibility!

Lots of people make more than the President. What's he making now, anyway, around $200k a year? I can count the number of pilots I know that are currently making over that on one hand...and I know a lot.

So some of our higher-pay doctors and lawyers are making too much then?

I say...hey, if you're a 55-year old airline pilot making $200k a year...great. You paid your dues...you deserve it.
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
Guest

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:17 am

Don't compare salaries to the President unless you're prepared to include all of the benefits (houses, transport, security, meals, etc).
 
futureualpilot
Posts: 2404
Joined: Thu May 25, 2000 10:52 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:33 am

Unfriendly Skies is a great book(a little dated, but still very good) that will lay it all out on just why pilots are paid so much. They earn every penny, and there is a reason they are professionals, not bus drivers.
Life is better when you surf.
 
flyboyaz
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:35 am

It's still alot of money. I always thought the pres was underpayed anyhow! OH well.
Catch a ride on a smile!
 
fspilot747
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:40 am

"Has anyone ever encountered friends or others who think that commercial airline pilots are just overpaid bus drivers of the sky


often. but when shit hits the fan at 37,000 ft at Mach 0.84, they tend to quiet down.

FSP
 
MD11LuxuryLinr
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 7:49 am

My roommate thinks pilots are overpaid bus drivers. Of course I disagree, radically. I don't know any bus drivers personally, but I'm pretty sure it doesn't take a bachelors degree and thousands of hours of driving to be a bus driver...
Caution wake turbulence, you are following a heavy jet.
 
Captain Moya
Posts: 64
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 8:08 am

"Pilots in effect drive very technical machines that carry people from place to place - like a bus driver. They are both demanding jobs that require professionalism and safety, or people die."

I disagree. You can't compare a bus to a plane, man. A bus can pull over on the side of the road if something goes wrong for any reason - an aircraft doesn't have that option. This is where thousands of dollars and thousands of hours of flight training come in baby!
 
OPNLguy
Posts: 11191
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 8:19 am

>>>often. but when shit hits the fan at 37,000 ft at Mach 0.84, they tend to quiet down

Nicely said...
ALL views, opinions expressed are mine ONLY and are NOT representative of those shared by Southwest Airlines Co.
 
StevenUhl777
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 8:19 am

Not to spark a political firestorm here, but to answer an earlier inquiry, the President now earns $400,000 annually. I believe this started when George W. Bush took office in 2001. I think Bill Clinton was at $200k. Congress I believe sets the salary for the President.

For the most part, on an uneventful flight, pilots are managing the flight systems, dodging weather developments, etc. When things go south for whatever reason, better hope he/she knows what's going on. Much rather see the captain make $200k, etc. than put my life in the hands of a computer. I agree...Al Haynes earned every penny, and then some, on UA232, just like so many others in a difficult situation.

Out of respect for my Dad, who was a UA mechanic, I will also offer up this point: remember that the salaries of pilots are based on the fleet type, seniority, route, etc., they operate, and that is stated in their contract. Having said that, remember that mechanics and ground crews and flight attendants, as well as c/s agents MAKE THE SAME RATE *regardless* of what aircraft they work on. My Dad (and those like him) earned his same hourly rate to work on those various fleets and regardless of the complexity of the problem or aircraft, and that rate was pale in comparison to what the pilots make to operate them. If the aircraft isn't operable, the pilot is then worth $0, he/she sits in the ready room until the plane's ready to go. Now, in a case like that, all of a sudden the mechanic is worth his/her weight in gold! This is a perceived inequality amoung most airline worker groups that has created a lot of animosity and ill will towards flight crews at virtually every major carrier. How will that get resolved? I don't know.
And the winner for best actress is....REESE WITHERSPOON for 'Walk the Line'!!!!!!!!
 
Guest

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 10:07 am

Overpaid...
xxx
Many of you know I am a management 747 captain and check pilot/instructor.
Because of the devaluation of the ARG. Peso, my monthly salary is approximately US$3,500... Before the devaluation, it was about US$10,000...
xxx
In 1991, last yearly salary 747 captain with PanAm was US$117,000 before taxes. Yet at that time, United paid $220,000 to their 747 captains with the equivalent seniority I had. AA and Delta pilots laugh at my present salary.
xxx
I am subject to a medical exam every 6 months, and to a simulator check as well, and any problems, I would see my licence go... Many highly paid professionls (doctors, lawyers) are not subject to these checks.
xxx
A lawyer or doctor may be saving the life of 1 patient in surgery, or the life of a criminal from the electric chair... I am responsible instead, ot the life of, up to 500 passengers and crewmembers, including mine. If the surgeon makes a mistake, he lives... Likely that I would not survive a mistake.
xxx
I am complaining about my salary. Yet, I know that third level carriers in the USA are insulting first officers by a salary of $18,000 a year. They are often living away from their home, and work long duty hours. Your hear that pilots only fly (you understand "work" by this) some 70-80 hours monthly... Wrong.
xxx
If I work a full monthly schedule I will be ON DUTY some 120 to 160 hours monthly, at any time of the day or the night, be away from home for 15-20 nights a month average, yet in many hotels I stay, a cup of coffee (without refills) I will pay US$3.oo + a tip.
xxx
I know truckdrivers making the same salary as I presently have, but they pay $3.99 for a breakfast. Wish we stayed at truck stops and get free refills for coffee... By the way, because of mishandling of my airplane (fuel consumption and choice of flight levels) I can cost my airline $2,000+ in extra consumption per flight, or even more.
xxx
There are overpaid pilots... yes it is my opinion. I had an acquaintance (UAL) captain 747, salary (he said) was $238,000, yet so senior he could "bid" reserve and stay home at all times, UAL managed to have him fly a total of 100 flight hours IN A CALENDAR YEAR (he boasted that fact)... In effect then, he was paid... $2,380 per flight hour... (that was 1996)...
xxx
I think about the guys with a third level air carrier, flying a Brasilia as first officers for $18,000 a year salary, yet they paid over $100,000 to get their licenses and experience to become an "overpaid airline pilot"...
xxx
Not so happy contrails, at times  Big grin
(s) Skipper
 
Alessandro
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 11:49 am

Hard to say, not all pilots get a job, but the bus drivers usually get a job.
Bus licence goes for most buses if not all, but pilots are only allowed to fly
a limited numbers of airplane types.
From New Yorqatar to Califarbia...
 
N766UA
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 11:58 am

I disagree. You can't compare a bus to a plane, man. A bus can pull over on the side of the road if something goes wrong for any reason - an aircraft doesn't have that option.

Um, excuse me, but didn't you see the movie "Speed?"  Big thumbs up
This Website Censors Me
 
POSITIVE RATE
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 12:18 pm

Nope i think airline pilots deserve evry penny they get. To suggest that an airline pilot is a 'bus driver' is ludicrous. Do bus drivers have 400 lives in their hands? Do bus drivers have to make 0 visibility approaches? Do bus drivers drive a 350 tonne bus? Do bus drivers get checked in a simulator every 6 months? Do bus drivers have a stringent medical they need to pass? And if something goes wrong with the bus the driver will simply pull over to the side of the road and that's it. If something goes wrong with the plane the pilots have to deal with it in flight, they don't have that luxury.
 
flyingbronco05
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 12:20 pm

I know a guy who flies for a fortune 500 company and he said he gets paid well over $115,000 a year.

He has been flying jets since 1998 and is type certified in:

Dassault Falcon 50's
Dassault Falcon 900's
Cessna Citation II's
Cessna Citation Excel's

And he flew Cessna 414's and Dassault Falcon 20's before they got the new planes.

He thinks he is underpaid mainly due to the hours he flies and where he flies to.

FB05

BTW, he is 32 years old with a wife and 5 year old daughter.

[Edited 2003-09-20 05:21:19]

[Edited 2003-09-20 05:23:25]
Never Trust Your Fuel Gauge
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 1:43 pm

I know a guy flying for a F500 company myself...I'd imagine he makes that much, but he's around 26...they bought him a house, and as soon as his kid's born, he's getting another one....

Maybe I'm thinking along the wrong track  Big grin
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
jetdeltamsy
Posts: 2688
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Uhhhh....don't Think So

Sat Sep 20, 2003 1:54 pm

pilots are highly intelligent people. highly trained, educated, etc... the requirements for their job is among the most rigorous of any profession.

there are many with an attitude, some are idiots. it's a high-testosterone environment.

by the time someone get into the cockpit at my company, i know they're a professional. a blue-collar professional.

Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
ual777contrail
Posts: 2914
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 1:57 pm

GOAL,
You started a topic that is very taboo on this forum, pilot pay.

Be careful there are some very sensitive pilots on this forum.


UAL 777 CONTRAIL
 
BN747
Posts: 5344
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 2:08 pm

Tell your friends/roomate (the bus driver supporters) that a surgeon usually holds a single life in his hands in a day. Many 'flying' bus drivers hold anywhere from 50 to 1200 lives ( a 747 pilot doing 2-90 minute roundtrips HKG-TPE-HKG) in their hands in a single day.

This pilot may be in the middle of a divorce, his best friend may have stolen his wife, a daughter or son recently lost to cancer or an accident...but all those airborne people simply hope this guy will be having a nice day. And the pilot has to put all his personal worries aside and is constantly reminded of the passengers relying upon him/her. The ground bus driver can dwell on his worries the entire day while stopping every 1/8 of a mile, the other guy can't...and he deserves every penny and then some!

BN747
"Home of the Brave, made by the Slaves..Land of the Free, if you look like me.." T. Jefferson
 
Boeingfan
Posts: 369
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 2:44 pm

Hmmm, think about that on your next inflight non routine interruption (emergency.) You'll be glad the guy from Greyhound or dear Mrs. Jones from your county school or independent school district, are still on the ground steering 40 pax through traffic.

One emergency, el Capitan is worth a million Euros! Safety first.

I do not know anyone who really takes the flight crew for granted any more.

Old days, gone, forgotten, done.
 
VonRichtofen
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 4:12 pm

People say this because a lot of them are jealous of people with high paying, hard to get and highly respected jobs. These are the same people that say "doctors are quacks" or "Lawyers are crooks" etc. I'd like to see any of them get through medical or law school, or complete all the training required to become an airline pilot, and that's if they even pass the medical.
 
saab2000
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 4:25 pm

I am an airline pilot and I am not overpaid. I earn a salary with an equivelant buying power of maybe $25,000 per year. Yes, I can live from that. But the luxury image of the airline pilot's lifestyle is the reality of the few exceptions, not the majority.

Now let's ask about the overpaid upper and middle management (i.e. beaurocrats) of most large airlines...... How much direct contribution to the income of an airline do they provide? My own company has a lot of fat which could be cut away and not affect the quality of the flights to the customer one bit.

Maybe someone thinks the job is easy when we are cruising along in the flight levels with the autopilot on and the FMS telling us where to go. But I do not feel overpaid and underworked when I am flying an IGS approach to Lugano, with a significant tailwind component at 1000 ft AGL (none on the ground, meaning that there will be strong turbulence on short final), max landing weight and heavy rain.
smrtrthnu
 
Marco_Polo
Posts: 292
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 4:45 pm

Majoring of the U.S domestic airlines pilot are not over paid and compensations are adequate. The over paid people are doctors and healthcare people if this discussions you want to start.

Cheers - Jay
 
User avatar
wernair
Posts: 156
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 6:33 pm

Don't think that they are overpaid... It's a long and expensive way up to the sky!
Wernair Photography
 
N6376M
Posts: 2310
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 10:44 pm

I think that it is completely ridiculous to compare absolute salaries of pilots to those of other professions.

The fact is that pilots literally have the lives of hundreds of people in their hands on a daily basis.

Similarly, most of the time, things go as planned, there is not an emergency on a flight (how man engine failures at V1 at max weight occur on a typical year?) and the pilot does his job as he has been trained to do without too much extraordinary effort.

However, at times things do go bad, and during those times NO AMOUNT OF MONEY WOULD BE TOO MUCH FOR A WELL TRAINED EXPERIENCED PROFESSIONAL IN CONTROL.

The interesting thing about salary is that it is a measure of the "relative" value society places upon a particular task. Note that I used the expression relative and not absolute. This is to say that, society (IMO - correctly) places a higher value on the role of a pilot than a bus driver. Of course, there are extremes on both sides (bus drivers earning $130.000 and pilots earning $18,000 - however the average salaries do not show these discrepancies).

Now we get to the economics of the situation. There is an expectation gap between what the public is willing to pay for safe, high quality and dependable airtravel and what it costs.

I'll illustrate this expectation gap through an analogy. Everyone likes the $0.69 cheeseburgers at McDonalds, but at the same time, people realize that a $5.25 minimum wage is not enough to live on. However, if you are going to produce and profitably sell a $0.69 cheeseburger you need to limit your wage expense. How many people would support an increase in the minimum wage if it meant them having to pay $2.00 for a cheeseburger?

This tension between management and labor will always exists. I firmly believe that the rise of the internet and its ability to create a much more perfectly competitive market by giving consumers much more information regarding prices has exacerbated the problem.

Executives earn more because they've created the impression of value (rightly or wrongly). Did the retiring NYSE chairman deserve $143M in compensation - of course not, but he successfully created the impression to his fellow board members that he did.

I've never understood why the pilot unions do not take the battle on pilot pay directly to the consumers and create a better understanding amongst the general public about exactly what they do, how much training they undergo (much at their own expense) and just how critical it is for them to do this.

This argument of, "I've got a lot of responsibility but I'm not paid enough" could apply to any number of jobs - how about a military officer, how many lives can his decisions affect? How about a secret service protective agent - his job is literally to put his body between a gunman and a protectee. Is there enough money in the world to do this?

For me, pilots need to be well paid so that the profession can attract the type of intelligent, quick thinking people that makes air travel the safe mode of transportation that it has traditionally been. If it were up to me, I'd gladly pay more to ensure that I had a better pilot up front when I got on a plane - but it isn't up to me. Airline ticket prices are set by supply and demand. Until pilots as a profession create a higher degree of public understanding of exactly what they do, ticket prices will not reflect a premium for their service and questions like ARE PILOTS OVERPAID BUS DRIVERS will continue.
 
Usairwys757
Posts: 2609
Joined: Tue Jul 15, 2003 9:51 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sat Sep 20, 2003 11:33 pm

I too think its ridiculous that pilots are considered overpaid bus drivers. The last time i checked bus drivers go to school for about 6 weeks, pilots would be lucky if they were even in the air in 6 weeks of their training. Bus drivers are not under nearly as much stress as pilots are.

This is not an insult to bus drivers by any means but there is no way you can compare a bus driver to a pilot. Bus drivers do not spend the night in far away city's from their families 4 to 5 nights a week. They also do not put in the hours every week that most pilots do.

Lots of times pilots are even underpaid for the hours and hard work they put in every week, and i think this is kind of an insult to any pilot out there to be called and "overpaid bus driver". So there is not way in hell that pilots are overpaid, because they put in many hours of hard work every week.
Inactive.....
 
luisinho
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Joined: Fri Nov 24, 2000 12:28 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 12:03 am

Hiii folks  Big thumbs up

Well, i don't know if they are overpaid or not, but one thing i know:
- I love flying so much that if one airline who i worked for couldn't pay my salary, i will fly for free.

When we love one thing so much, we only think in doing it, not on profit that we can get. In portugal some people who have money to pay their formation as pilots choose this profession because it gives money, not because they love to fly. As result.... BAD PILOTS, because they are not there for love for profession, just for money, they are mercenaries, explorators, and I HATE THAT KIND OF PERSONS!!!!  Angry Unfortunately i know a few...

But about bus drivers, you are completely wrong. In portugal is very dificult to be a bus driver. First you must pass on a psicological examination, then you must study mechanics, and you must learn do drive. But you say that if an aircraft as a problem at 30 000 ft it can just pull over.

Well imagine a bus driver driving his bus, and then a car came streight to him and he had to make an evasion manouver, or there is a hole on the road, or is heavy ice, or heavy rain. In Portugal the Bus drivers are teached do drive in all conditions, the formation for a Bus driver is almost 1 year and half.

And they receive formation from the bus companies just to learn to drive a specific type of Bus. My brother is the managing director of a Bus Company, and on his corporation, all the bus drivers have specific formation to drive that specific model they will drive, just like a pilot receives formation for his own type of aircraft.

The Bus manufacturers in Europe give formation just to make sure that the bus drivers know how to drive that specific model.
The swedish SCANIA is the best on that type of formation.

So... the Bus driver is not so less important as you may think, and by the way, in my brothers company, a good bus drivers earns 2500 euros for month.
 
727LOVER
Posts: 6794
Joined: Tue Oct 09, 2001 12:22 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 12:11 am

Pilots ARE overpaid IF their airline can't afford it. Pay must be in line w/ revenue, thus when revenue declines significantly, pilots (as well as other employees) need to take a pay cut and not bitch about it. Don't get near the bankruptcy door.
"We must accept finite disappointment, but never lose infinite hope." - Martin Luther King, Jr.
 
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yyz717
Posts: 15697
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 12:24 am

Pilots ARE overpaid IF their airline can't afford it. Pay must be in line w/ revenue, thus when revenue declines significantly, pilots (as well as other employees) need to take a pay cut and not bitch about it. Don't get near the bankruptcy door.

Exactly! Right on!

Only the market place can determine whether pilots are overpaid. Pilots need to remember that it is the passengers flying behind them that pay their salaries......and with yields in long term decline, this can only put downward pressure on pilot salaries.

Airlines that are losing money (the 6 US majors for instance) are reasonably overpaying their pilots while they continue to lose money AND their LCC equivalents make far less money doing the same job.

I dumped at the gybe mark in strong winds when I looked up at a Porter Q400 on finals. Can't stop spotting.
 
fspilot747
Posts: 3455
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RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 12:35 am

727LOVER: You can't expect ANYONE to take a 30% paycut quietly. Who the hell wouldn't "bitch" about it? You wouldn't know because you haven't been in that position.

Unless you're a pilot or on your way up the ladder, you can't really give that sort of advice to other pilots, especially the "not to 'bitch' about pay cuts..." nonsense.


FSP
 
JBirdAV8r
Posts: 3454
Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2001 4:44 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 12:46 am

727LOVER: You can't expect ANYONE to take a 30% paycut quietly. Who the hell wouldn't "bitch" about it? You wouldn't know because you haven't been in that position.

Darn right. My sentiments exactly.

I love how some of the people on this board think they are all "high and mighty" and all-knowing....I guarantee if we took a third of 727LOVER's salary he'd be whining over it within two seconds in the Non-Av forum  Insane

727LOVER: Grow up, man. Some of the comments you've made make me laugh...and NOT in a good way.
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
pilotpip
Posts: 2821
Joined: Fri Sep 19, 2003 3:26 pm

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:15 am

I'm working my way through my ratings right now. That means I:

Have another year or two of paying $25,000 at my college.
Have to work part time while going to school and getting my ratings.
Will have a few years at minimum wage while building my time as an instructor.
Will have a few years at minimum wage while working for some 135 or
commuter operation.
Will have the day to day expenses of living while paying back $70,000 or so
in student loans.

Am I a bus driver? No. I'll be controlling a multi-million dollar machine with hundreds of priceless human lives in the back. I will be better trained than a doctor when all is said and done and I'll still have to be retrained every six months. Should I make a high salary? YES!

(this is where some may not like what I say) That said, I don't see the reason that it should be as high as what I've heard. And if I had a choice between a 30% pay cut and a pink slip I think I'd take the cut. I can't see how bag handlers can make $25 an hour and pilots be making $300,000 per year at some of the majors and scream about not making enough. I throw bags and dump lavs right now for less than that and I'm fine. I also am not surprised that some airlines are in dire straits right now because of the idiots running them taking huge pay raises at the expense of the company (Don Carty).

Saying this, I have always been opposed to companies that want you to pay to work for them and build time. I don't really agree with airlines wanting the pilot to pay for their initial type rating unless there is some sort of reembursment. I think it's an insult that airlines would expect me to pay for these after all of the money and time I've spent working to get to that point. There has to be a middle ground and nobody will swallow their pride and try to find it.
DMI
 
wingman
Posts: 2897
Joined: Thu May 27, 1999 4:25 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 1:27 am

Well, I'll say at least one thing on this topic, your typical bus driver is more challenged in getting passengers safely to their destination than any airline pilot. The bus driver actually drives the bus and keeps it from hitting obstacles along the way. Most airplanes we all fyl do 99.99% of this work. The bus driver must also be attentive during his entire 8-14 hour day and do all of this without the pay, benefits, rest or "free" lifetime travel for him and his family. Trust me, I flew in the jumpseat of a KLM MD11 from AMS to SFO last year and as much as I respect pilots and admire their skills, they really don't do much for the money they make. 15 minutes of hands-on flying during an 11 hour trip followed by three days hanging out in California before heading back is pretty damn cushy IMO. These guys spend 90% of their time reading magazines and farting in their seats. Don't get me wrong, my tendency towards laziness makes me extremely envious.
 
JBirdAV8r
Posts: 3454
Joined: Sun Jun 24, 2001 4:44 am

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 4:59 am

Most airplanes we all fyl do 99.99% of this work.

And how much flying do YOU do? PLEASE, since you apparently know SO much more about airplanes than all of us pilots, enlighten us. Tell us what all that airplane does.  Yeah sure

These guys spend 90% of their time reading magazines and farting in their seats.

Oh, is THAT what they've been doing for their entire airline career? I guess I have the wrong idea...Give me a freaking break.  Insane

Ahh...and we see another completely uneducated statement...and another one makes a jerk out of himself.  Big grin
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
SQ325
Posts: 1274
Joined: Wed Jul 18, 2001 7:54 pm

RE: Pilots - Overpaid "Bus Drivers" Of The Sky?

Sun Sep 21, 2003 5:05 am

Lately I had a very difficult inflight situation where our immediate reaction was needed. After that it was the first time I really realized that we as pilots are worth the money they pay us. I never experienced such a stress situation in my whole live. Together with the Cpt we made decisions which could to a crash or at least a major incindent. You are fully responsible for that there is no phone to call your boss and asking what to do.

Like B747 Skipper said there is no other job where your skills are checked every six month!
There are not a lot of jobs in which little problems can cause a huge tragedy and where you as emplee need to take full responsibility for what is happening.

But getting 200.000$ per year for 100hours flight time is to much but these day such wages are impossible (speaking of Europe )

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