incitatus
Posts: 2691
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Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:40 am

According to www.airlinepilotcentral.com, the hourly rates for captains with 12 years of seniority in narrow bodies of the US airlines are as follows:

Southwest 737 $190
Frontier A319 $157
Alaska 737 $154
American MD-80 $154
AirTran 737 $153
Continental 737-300 $144
JetBlue A320 $139
Northwest A320 $137
USAirways A320 $130
United A320 $129

Delta is working towards placing their rate at about $140.

Can Southwest stay competitive if they pay their 737 pilots so much more than any other airline?

The gap with Jet Blue's E-190 is remarkable. Jet Blue is hiring new pilots for the type and a captain and first officer with two year seniority rates add up to $112. Meanwhile, a 7-year captain and a 2-year first officer at Southwest have a total rate of $265. E-190s have 100 seats and 737-700s have 137 seats. So the pilot cost per seat is almost half at Jet Blue. Resistance is futile...?
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FlyingTexan
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:49 am

Quoting Incitatus (Thread starter):
Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Not your decision.


Like it or not - SWA makes money.

 Yeah sure
"Wouldn't your boss like to fly home nonstop at 4:30 on a Friday afternoon?" -Airline Exec to Congressional Staffer
 
crogalski
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:50 am

Quoting FlyingTexan (Reply 1):
Like it or not - SWA makes money.

and just for example, if they hadn't of hedged fuel?
A319 A320 A321 A330 B717 B727 B737 B747 B757 B767 CRJ200 CRJ700 CRJ900 DC9 E145 E190 MD88 Q400 | AA AB B6 CO DL EI FL NK
 
FlyingTexan
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:53 am

Quoting Crogalski (Reply 2):
and just for example, if they hadn't of hedged fuel?

'What if' scenarios are not always the best route for a discussion.

More importantly, they had money to hedge fuel.
"Wouldn't your boss like to fly home nonstop at 4:30 on a Friday afternoon?" -Airline Exec to Congressional Staffer
 
SonOfACaptain
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:54 am

As long as any airline is healthy, you will not see pay cuts. Also, I wouldn't compare 190's with 737's.

On a side note, US captains make $125 an hour on their 12th year.

-SOAC
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DfwRevolution
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 9:55 am

Quoting Incitatus (Thread starter):
Can Southwest stay competitive if they pay their 737 pilots so much more than any other airline?

Yes WN can remain competitive. WN employees are across the board more productive than their counterparts; they may shell out the big bucks, but their labor works their tails off.

The last few years have seen aggressive cost reduction at WN, but one key decision was to focus on productivity and efficency rather than forcing labor into concessions. Since 2002, WN has increased capacity, routes, and stations without hiring a hoard of employees. The employee:asset ratio at WN is the lowest in the U.S. market.

For the time being, WN doesn't need to slash pilot salaries.

Quoting Incitatus (Thread starter):
So the pilot cost per seat is almost half at Jet Blue. Resistance is futile...?

It obviously wouldn't hurt to lower pilot compensation, but WN isn't at quite the disadvantage a flat dollar sign would suggest. So long as productivity and labor-management relations stay positive, they should be able to negotiate whatever comes their way.
 
FlyingTexan
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:01 am

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 5):
WN employees are across the board more productive than their counterparts

Thank you for mentioning that. I was going to put something along those lines but then I’d have to fight the *but a pilot is a pilot* argument.
"Wouldn't your boss like to fly home nonstop at 4:30 on a Friday afternoon?" -Airline Exec to Congressional Staffer
 
N1120A
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:01 am

Quoting SonOfACaptain (Reply 4):
On a side note, US captains make $125 an hour on their 12th year.

One should also note that the most junior US captain (not HP) was hired in 1987, which means they don't have any 12 year captains.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 5):
The last few years have seen aggressive cost reduction at WN, but one key decision was to focus on productivity and efficency rather than forcing labor into concessions. Since 2002, WN has increased capacity, routes, and stations without hiring a hoard of employees. The employee:asset ratio at WN is the lowest in the U.S. market.

Additionally, WN has gradually increased their average stage length significantly, which only serves to further lower costs.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 5):
Quoting Incitatus (Thread starter):
So the pilot cost per seat is almost half at Jet Blue. Resistance is futile...?

It obviously wouldn't hurt to lower pilot compensation, but WN isn't at quite the disadvantage a flat dollar sign would suggest. So long as productivity and labor-management relations stay positive, they should be able to negotiate whatever comes their way.

WN is also FAR more efficient than B6. Take a look at turn around times some times, particularly the B6 A320s, and see who is keeping their planes up.
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flyf15
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:01 am

Frontier, Alaska, and AirTran are all smaller carriers. Not key players in the nation's airspace system compared with the likes of WN, UA, or AA. You'd expect them to have lower rates than these, and smaller airlines still (such as Allegiant), will have even lower rates, its how things work. But look, they're actually the highest in the list aside from WN. These airlines (WN, F9, ...) are profitable with working business models. They can pay their pilots appropriate wages. Look for these to go up over time to match inflation and the company's success.

The other majors once had wages on the same level. But, they are for the most part operating with failed business models, and use the tool of Chapter 11 bankrupcy to reduce their pay for all employees below that of industry standard, negotiated, etc.

So, no, it is not time for Southwest pilot pay cuts. It is time for the government to stop giving companies with failed business plans the ability to unfairly continue to operate and compete without the obligations that healthy companies have. It is time for those who can operate successfully to take over.
 
N1120A
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:05 am

Quoting Flyf15 (Reply 8):
Frontier, Alaska, and AirTran are all smaller carriers. Not key players in the nation's airspace system compared with the likes of WN, UA, or AA.

Alaska and AirTran are both major carriers. F9 will likely be there soon

Quoting Flyf15 (Reply 8):
It is time for the government to stop giving companies with failed business plans the ability to unfairly continue to operate and compete without the obligations that healthy companies have. It is time for those who can operate successfully to take over.

Well that kind of rewriting of the bankruptcy code will never happen
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
greenguy01
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:15 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 7):
WN is also FAR more efficient than B6. Take a look at turn around times some times, particularly the B6 A320s, and see who is keeping their planes up.

But does WN fly any redeyes? B6 has one of the highest a/c utilization in the industry. Higher than WN!
Never argue with an idiot. They drag you to their level and beat you with experience.
 
luv2fly
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:22 am

Quoting Greenguy01 (Reply 10):
But does WN fly any redeyes? B6 has one of the highest a/c utilization in the industry. Higher than WN!

NO redeyes for WN, at some point they need to do work on the planes, as about the only time they are not flying is at night.
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thegreatchecko
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:39 am

Quoting Luv2fly (Reply 11):
NO redeyes for WN, at some point they need to do work on the planes, as about the only time they are not flying is at night.

Well...not exactly true. The airline does a few charters at night, mostly for the military. Also, their latest flights also get in at about the 1-2am CST timeframe on the west coast, so thats kinda late for everyone back in Dallas.

However, yes you are right in saying that they don't have any scheduled redeyes.

I believe they do this because they don't see the need (their utilization is pretty high as it is) and it would cause them to need another crew, a third shift per se, to run the redeyes.

GreatChecko

PS Damn, what am I trying to do, take this thread off topic....

I agree, no pay cuts right now, but I also don't see any reason for any exorbitant raises either when the contract comes up for renegotiation. They don't need labor costs to go up anymore.

[Edited 2005-12-02 02:41:59]
"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"
 
goingboeing
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 10:46 am

Quoting Crogalski (Reply 2):

and just for example, if they hadn't of hedged fuel?

The problem with that argument is this...last quarter would have been profitable even without the hedges.
 
mtnwest1979
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:25 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 7):
Quoting SonOfACaptain (Reply 4):
On a side note, US captains make $125 an hour on their 12th year.

One should also note that the most junior US captain (not HP) was hired in 1987, which means they don't have any 12 year captains.

Unless my math is off, if one was hired as a captain in 1987 and is still one now, that would be 18 years a captain.
"If it ain't broke, don't fix it!"
 
N200WN
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:46 am

Quoting Greenguy01 (Reply 10):
But does WN fly any redeyes? B6 has one of the highest a/c utilization in the industry. Higher than WN!

But aren't there only so many markets that can support redeye flights? I would tend to think that as B6 grows its ratio of redeyes to non redeyes will go down.

Quoting TheGreatChecko (Reply 12):
I believe they do this because they don't see the need (their utilization is pretty high as it is) and it would cause them to need another crew, a third shift per se, to run the redeyes.

You're right on the money. As WN becomes more of a 24 hour operation (I think Dispatch is staffed 24/7 now) redeyes may be added. But only if it keeps the operation simple and more importantly is cost effective and profitable.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 5):
The employee:asset ratio at WN is the lowest in the U.S. market.

And the company is working to lower it still. For an example, in my Ops office last year we worked 45 departures a day with 21 agents. By this coming February we will work 49 departures with 16 agents. Ramp and Customer Service are doing the same thing.

Quoting FlyingTexan (Reply 6):
WN employees are across the board more productive than their counterparts

Thank you for mentioning that. I was going to put something along those lines but then I’d have to fight the *but a pilot is a pilot* argument.

You two are some of the few who ever tie productivity to compensation. I wonder why so many leave out this other part of the equation?
 
JBirdAV8r
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 11:53 am

Quoting MtnWest1979 (Reply 14):
Unless my math is off, if one was hired as a captain in 1987 and is still one now, that would be 18 years a captain.

You're not hired as a captain, you're hired as a first officer...and that takes a good deal of years to attain, generally.
I got my head checked--by a jumbo jet
 
supa7E7
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 1:20 pm

It's ridiculous, the model by which pilots can choose their own pay. Southwest has plenty of money, so its pilots (not investors so much) have enjoyed a real windfall.

Anti-trust law should be applied to ALPA as individuals colluding to bilk the public above the market rate for pilot labor. I am in a small minority who remains annoyed at ALPA's improper use of the labor market. Labor unions protecting luxurious wages are indistinguishable from the mafia in my opinion. The point of this message is, I don't see why we must negotiate with the mafia to conduct business in this country.
"Who's to say spaceships aren't fine art?" - Phil Lesh
 
SonOfACaptain
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 2:08 pm

Quoting N1120A (Reply 7):
One should also note that the most junior US captain (not HP) was hired in 1987, which means they don't have any 12 year captains.

Haha, very true, but 87' is actually the most junior pilot. The most junior capt. was hired in either late 85', or very early 86'.

Quoting MtnWest1979 (Reply 14):
that would be 18 years a captain.

After 12 years, it doesn't matter how long you have been their pay-wise. 12th year pay is the max. pilots go to.

-SOAC
Non Illegitimi Carborundum
 
barney captain
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 2:34 pm

Quoting N1120A (Reply 7):
One should also note that the most junior US captain (not HP) was hired in 1987, which means they don't have any 12 year captains.

I might be misinterpreting what you are writing but;

According to

http://www.airlinepilotcentral.com/content/view/10/16/

UsAir tops out at the 12 year point @ $125/hr (narrow body) with the most junior Capt. hired in 1987. That means that ALL of their Captains are 12 year Captains and therefore maxed out on pay.
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ual777
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 3:29 pm

Quoting Supa7E7 (Reply 17):
Labor unions protecting luxurious wages are indistinguishable from the mafia in my opinion. The point of this message is, I don't see why we must negotiate with the mafia to conduct business in this country.

Are you a pilot? Do you know what it takes? Have you ever had an uncontained engine failure at max take-off weight in a thunderstorm? Judging by your ignorance, I would say no. Go look at what this "mafia" has to make at a regional airline for at least 6 or 7 years before they even make it to a major. Then look at the year 1 pay for a first officer.

To be a pilot, you must SERIOUSLY pay your dues. Their salary is in my opinion on-target or slightly under-rated.
It is always darkest before the sun comes up.
 
N1120A
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 02, 2005 3:48 pm

Quoting MtnWest1979 (Reply 14):
Unless my math is off, if one was hired as a captain in 1987 and is still one now, that would be 18 years a captain.

Yep, pretty much. Actually, every USAirways pilot was a captain at some point

Quoting Supa7E7 (Reply 17):
Anti-trust law should be applied to ALPA as individuals colluding to bilk the public above the market rate for pilot labor.

ALPA is 1) not a business and 2) not a monopoly, so there is no way to apply anti-trust.

Quoting Supa7E7 (Reply 17):
I am in a small minority who remains annoyed at ALPA's improper use of the labor market.

Improper? They protect people and negotiate for them as a collective, that's it.

Quoting Barney Captain (Reply 19):
UsAir tops out at the 12 year point @ $125/hr (narrow body) with the most junior Capt. hired in 1987. That means that ALL of their Captains are 12 year Captains and therefore maxed out on pay.

Yep, you are absolutely correct. Also, all their F.Os are likely topped out as well
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thegreatchecko
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sat Dec 03, 2005 2:42 am

Quoting N200WN (Reply 15):
As WN becomes more of a 24 hour operation (I think Dispatch is staffed 24/7 now) redeyes may be added.

Its very minimal though, only a few people to put the West coast "to sleep" and "wake up" the east coast in the morning.

As for more redeyes, its a possibility, but the whole third shift problem would be a major hurdle to overcome.

GreatChecko
"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"
 
bucky707
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sat Dec 03, 2005 2:54 am

Quoting Supa7E7 (Reply 17):
It's ridiculous, the model by which pilots can choose their own pay

Pilots don't choose thier pay. Its negotiated. And in the case of SW its not even that their pilots negotiated top of the industry pay. In the time since they last negotiated a contract, everyone else has moved down, they did not move up.

Quoting Supa7E7 (Reply 17):
I am in a small minority who remains annoyed at ALPA's improper use of the labor market.

Interesting that you say that, given that right now the lowest paid pilots are all pretty much ALPA pilots. Jetblue is non union and makes pretty good money. Airtran, an independent union and doing pretty well. Southwest, the top paid pilots in the passenger business, is an independent union. If ALPA is misusing the labor market, why are ALPA pilots paid predominantly below market wages these days?
 
jetdeltamsy
Posts: 2688
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sat Dec 03, 2005 3:27 am

As as Southwest is genuinely profitable, they aren't going to cut pilot pay.

But as they become more and more exposed to high fuel costs, it is definitely something that may occur.

But for immediate future, with their hedging in place and profitability pretty much assured, they're not going to ask their pilots for givebacks.
Tired of airline bankruptcies....EA/PA/TW and finally DL.
 
MD88Captain
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sat Dec 03, 2005 5:53 am

Why do just the pilots have to take a paycut? I'm thinking what's good for the pilots will be good for eveyone else there. Of course everyone there is unionized so you'll have to negotiate.
 
BoomBoom
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sat Dec 03, 2005 6:15 am

There was an article in Tuesdays Wall Street Journal:
Move to Denver Signals Threat
To Southwest's Low-Cost Model


Quote:
Southwest's operating cost, as measured by each seat flown one mile, is a low 7.85 cents. That compares with 8.68 cents per seat mile for Frontier and 10.43 cents for United, in the most recent quarter. But if fuel prices come down, that advantage could shrink. Excluding fuel, Southwest's cost is 6.31 cents per seat mile, compared with Frontier's 5.86 cents and United's 7.11 cents.

Southwest still has the lowest costs of any major airline. But Mr. Donohue notes that other airlines have been bringing costs down, reducing Southwest's advantage.
Our eyes are open, our eyes are open--wide, wide, wide...
 
SWAbubba
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 2:54 am

Most of the important points in this discussion have already been brought up, but one that hasn't is the issue of total labor costs including benefits. Comparing hourly rates on airlinepilotcentral.com doesn't even come close to telling you what the actual labor cost for pilots is. Pensions in particular have become an extremely expensive part of the overall compensation package, which is why so many airlines are looking for ways to get rid of them.

Retiree benefits, disability insurance, health care benefits, vacation, training pay, A & B fund, 401K match, and profit sharing all cost different amounts at different airlines but are a large part of overall pilot costs. You need to include all these things as well as the productivity issues for any comparison of pilot costs to be valid.
 
incitatus
Posts: 2691
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 3:03 am

Quoting SWAbubba (Reply 27):
Comparing hourly rates on airlinepilotcentral.com doesn't even come close to telling you what the actual labor cost for pilots is.

One can't make an exact comparison using hourly rates only but...
When Southwest's stands out as much higher than anybody else's, its productivity has to be much greater than ALL airlines and benefits have to be much lower than ALL airlines, and those differences have to be sustainable. That is impossible, especially going against new entrants and airlines that have shed most of their benefit obligations in court.

Recently I also came across the contract between ramp personnel and Southwest and the pay raises Southwest gave in were quite impressive.
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SWAbubba
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 3:23 am

Quoting Incitatus (Reply 28):
When Southwest's stands out as much higher than anybody else's, its productivity has to be much greater than ALL airlines and benefits have to be much lower than ALL airlines, and those differences have to be sustainable. That is impossible, especially going against new entrants and airlines that have shed most of their benefit obligations in court.

You're assuming that other costs for all airlines are also the same. That is not the case because SWA has efficiencies of scale that no one else can currently match (that can always change, but it holds for the moment). Another way of putting it is that the non-fuel non-labor component of CASM is significantly lower than all other airlines. Therefore labor costs can be higher without forcing the total CASM to be higher.

A different way of looking at it is that other airlines are forced to pay their employees less than SWA in order to make up for the inefficiencies in other parts of their operation.
 
incitatus
Posts: 2691
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 3:48 am

Quoting SWAbubba (Reply 29):
A different way of looking at it is that other airlines are forced to pay their employees less than SWA in order to make up for the inefficiencies in other parts of their operation.

Yes, and it's much easier for other airlines to work on reducing those inefficiencies than it is for Southwest to reduce compensation.

Quoting SWAbubba (Reply 29):
That is not the case because SWA has efficiencies of scale that no one else can currently match

When the pay differential is upwards of 25%, the efficiencies of scale can't erase the pay disadvantage in a sustainable way. In the case of JetBlue the hourly pay in the cockpit per seat can be almost half of Southwest's. Can Southwest be twice as productive?
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txagkuwait
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RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 4:09 am

Incitatus writes in, and I quote: >> "Yes, and it's much easier for other airlines to work on reducing those inefficiencies than it is for Southwest to reduce compensation. "<<

If it is so much easier for other carriers to rid themselves of those inefficiencies, why haven't they done so?

What we have seen is carrier after carrier parading thu bankruptcy courts to slash their employees' wages and dispose of the burden of paying defined-benefit pensions they (the airlines) had previously agreed to.

If it was simple, why did those other airlines not reduce the inefficiency before the bankruptcy court trip became a necessity?

I will tell you this - slashing employee wages is probably the easiest way to reduce costs.

And most of the so-called major airlines have done it.

And having made the trip to the bankruptcy court well to reduce costs once or twice, they are much less likely to succeed in doing it again. (Unless of course you work for what used to be USAirways, in which case the units may agree to any concession until their pilots are earning something in the range of a buck sixty an hour)

Where do Southwest's savings come from? It isn't just fuel hedges.

The single fleet type means a lot. Probably means more than any other single item.

The lesser emphasis on congested, crowded airports helps also.

Their point-to-point network. You can say they have hubs, but any airline that publishes a timetable with connections at Tulsa or Midland/Odessa is far removed from the typical hub-n-spoke carrier model.

Quick turns help.

Not relying on Orbitz, Travelocity, et al to sell seats helps.

The real bottom line is this: The other airlines have slashed employee wages which has enabled them to get closer to Southwest's low costs, but they have not gotten there yet.

They aren;t going to be able to eviscerate wages much, if any, more. Thus they have wrung about all the cost savings they can out of their employees. Labor costs will start to go up once again. Do you think American or United or Northwest pilots are going to sit idly by, once their companies return to profitability, and be happy with wages "less" than the pilots over at Southwest? Of course they won't. And do you think the management at those companies will take a strike? Nope, they will cave in and give back some of the concessions and before you know it, UAL pilots will have an "industry leading" contract again and everyone will be surprised when the next economic downturn hits and the airline is hemorrhaging money again.

Look at it this way ---> if cost savings were that simple for the other carriers, they would have done it long before they shook down their employees. You remove fuel cost from the equation, and I believe it is what--- 4 consecutive quarters now ----- that Southwest has had labor costs creep up but overall reduced their CASM.

I look at Southwest about the same way Churchill looked at democracy. "The worst form of government, except for all the others." Southwest is the worst airline out there, except for all the others.
 
SWAbubba
Posts: 154
Joined: Fri Mar 15, 2002 2:15 am

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 4:31 am

Quoting Incitatus (Reply 30):
When the pay differential is upwards of 25%, the efficiencies of scale can't erase the pay disadvantage in a sustainable way. In the case of JetBlue the hourly pay in the cockpit per seat can be almost half of Southwest's. Can Southwest be twice as productive?

Several airlines could have their pilots work for free and they still wouldn't be able to match SWA's CASM. But that doesn't stop them from telling the employees that their pay cuts are vital to their success or failure. The fact of the matter is that employee pay cuts are simply the easiest place to look for cost cuts. But no matter how much they cut employee costs they still have to find other ways to run their companies more efficiently if they want to survive. All airlines must continually look for ways to be more efficient if they want to survive long term.

JetBlue is extremely productive and a tough competitor, but their costs will continue to rise as employees go up the payscale and maintenance costs go up. I would also look for their E190 pay to go up significantly once the aircraft has proven its profitability. Over the long term I expect them to be very successful, but for now their stage-length adjusted CASM continues to be higher than SWA (and lower than most of the rest).

Quoting Incitatus (Reply 30):
Yes, and it's much easier for other airlines to work on reducing those inefficiencies than it is for Southwest to reduce compensation.

I guess my argument is that SWA doesn't need to reduce compensation as long as they continue becoming more efficient and stay competitive on a stage-length adjusted CASM basis.

SWA can reduce compensation when it needs to. The current pilot contract is a two year extension of a 10 year concessionary contract. That's right, the current contract was a giveback with a five year pay freeze in exchange for stock options. So don't assume that concessions aren't possible, they're just not likely when the company is still extremely competitive.

One other point- all the labor cost savings at the major airlines over the last three years don't even make up for the fuel cost increases this year alone! Fuel prices will continue to be the deciding factor in most airlines profitability (or lack thereof) for the immediate future.

OK, that was too much typing so I'm off to enjoy the rest of my day off. Great debate!  Smile
 
dalneighbor
Posts: 589
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2005 12:04 pm

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 5:39 am

The WN haters love to point out that WN does not have assigned seating, first class, premium lounges, extensive codeshare reach and serve every city in the Country with at least two stop lights. They say this shows the WN product is inferior. They never seem to bring these product attributes up when talking about CASM. All these really drive up costs and so long has the legacy airlines continue with this type of business model, I suspect they will always have a higher CASM than WN all the while WN employees will be paid twice the rate of legacy employees.

Chasing market share without regard to profitablilty, will really drive up costs as well. Prime example is AA going to DAL with mainline and no hope of making any profit.
Wright Amendment = Federally Engineered AA Price Gouging
 
pilotpip
Posts: 2820
Joined: Fri Sep 19, 2003 3:26 pm

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 8:16 pm

Add to the above the fact that the ineffiencies hub and spoke add HUGE costs and drive the CASM up. And many airlines use more than one type aircraft on the same route, causing an increase in training and equipment costs.
DMI
 
cjpark
Posts: 1194
Joined: Sat Feb 12, 2005 1:46 am

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sun Dec 04, 2005 9:14 pm

Quoting UAL777 (Reply 20):
Are you a pilot? Do you know what it takes? Have you ever had an uncontained engine failure at max take-off weight in a thunderstorm? Judging by your ignorance, I would say no. Go look at what this "mafia" has to make at a regional airline for at least 6 or 7 years before they even make it to a major. Then look at the year 1 pay for a first officer.

To be a pilot, you must SERIOUSLY pay your dues. Their salary is in my opinion on-target or slightly under-rated.

NO offense intended here but every professional must pay their dues and demonstrate competency. I am sure that you are proud your accomplishments and you should be but not to the point to insinuate the other people in other professions do not deserve the same respect that you do. And by the way I am not a pilot either.

I assure you that those of us who have had to wait at a gate for a pilot to show up that has not flown the maximum hours allowed by law or by union contract who have spent the last few days working 16 to 18 hours days away from home to get the job done so they go back home have no sympathy for you and yours for the amount of money you may or may not make.
"Any airline that wants to serve the [region] can go to DFW today and fly anywhere they want," WN spokesman Ed Stewart
 
ual777
Posts: 1491
Joined: Thu Aug 14, 2003 6:18 am

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Mon Dec 05, 2005 4:12 pm

I didnt say that other professions were sub-par, and I think that the salaried worker who works more than 9-10 hours a day more than 1 time a month is being abused.

I was only saying that the road to being a professional pilot is extremely difficult and that people dont understand when they talk about how much they are paid.

I dont think anyone who has experienced an un-contained engine failure on take-off in a thunderstorm and lived to tell about it would say that pilots are overpaid.
It is always darkest before the sun comes up.
 
iowaman
Posts: 3878
Joined: Thu May 20, 2004 2:29 am

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Mon Dec 05, 2005 4:24 pm

What's wrong if Southwest can afford to pay there pilots as much as they do? Good for them.

Quoting Incitatus (Reply 28):
benefits have to be much lower than ALL airlines,

Source?
 
dalneighbor
Posts: 589
Joined: Mon Oct 03, 2005 12:04 pm

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 09, 2005 1:58 am

I don't think there will be pay cuts anytime soon.

http://www.dallasnews.com/sharedcont.../120805dnbusswpilots.17a456e3.html

Pilots at Southwest Airlines Co., already the most productive in the industry, will be getting even more efficient.

The Dallas-based carrier has struck an agreement with the Southwest Airlines Pilots' Association to have each pilot fly 1 ½ additional hours each month.

That would save Southwest roughly $4 million annually, because the discounter won't need to hire as many pilots as it expands its schedule about 10 percent a year, the union said.

As other carriers seek to improve productivity, the move could enhance Southwest's already considerable advantage......
Wright Amendment = Federally Engineered AA Price Gouging
 
kappel
Posts: 1836
Joined: Thu Jul 14, 2005 6:48 pm

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Fri Dec 09, 2005 2:20 am

Quoting Incitatus (Thread starter):
Delta is working towards placing their rate at about $140.

What's Delta's rate now?

I really respect airlines like SWA , JetBlue, Frontier, who in a tough environment can keep profitability as it is. I rate them higher than the european LCC's with their tiny pitch seats and no IFE. At least the US LCC's offer more space and some offer IFE, and still are profitble.
L1011,733,734,73G,738,743,744,752,763,772,77W,DC855,DC863,DC930,DC950,MD11,MD88,306,319,320,321,343,346,ARJ85,CR7,E195
 
Jeremy
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed May 16, 2001 10:27 am

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Sat Dec 10, 2005 11:18 am

Quoting FlyingTexan (Reply 1):

Like it or not - SWA makes money.

So do drug dealers.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 5):
Yes WN can remain competitive. WN employees are across the board more productive than their counterparts; they may shell out the big bucks, but their labor works their tails off.

This is true, and it also causes a lot of OJIs, especially on the ramp.
I have been there and have seen it. At my station, it seemed that there was an OJI on a weekly basis.

Quoting MtnWest1979 (Reply 14):
And the company is working to lower it still. For an example, in my Ops office last year we worked 45 departures a day with 21 agents. By this coming February we will work 49 departures with 16 agents. Ramp and Customer Service are doing the same thing.

Yes, WN has fired management employees all over the system within the past year(I heard PHX was cleaned up real good). They are calling it "back to the basics" or something like that.
I know Southwest has never had a "traditional" layoff, but they are letting people go throughout the system, telling them they have to go Inflight or take a "buyout". Sounds like a layoff to me.

WN is not perfect, there is a reason it is heavily Unionized.
You are now free to be sexually harassed and then terminated for filing a complaint--Southwest Airlines to me.
 
Jeremy
Posts: 574
Joined: Wed May 16, 2001 10:27 am

RE: Time For Southwest Pilot Pay Cuts?

Tue Dec 13, 2005 9:50 am

Quoting N1120A (Reply 7):
WN is also FAR more efficient than B6. Take a look at turn around times some times, particularly the B6 A320s, and see who is keeping their planes up.

I agree, B6 turns are not quick.
As far as I have seen though, the B6 aircraft are cleaned well for every flight.
Southwest F/As do a quick tidy, which is more like cross seat belts and pick up any visible trash.
All the B6 flights I have flown on have had spotless cabins and on WN I always find nasty snot rags in the seatback pockets.
You are now free to be sexually harassed and then terminated for filing a complaint--Southwest Airlines to me.

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