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Aviation Industry Updates: January 11, 2022

By January 10, 2022January 17th, 2022Industry News

American Seeks Quick Pilot Contract | Using ‘Super Negotiation’ Strategy

  • American Airlines Group Inc. and its pilots will seek to reach a short-term contract agreement through a “super negotiations” strategy of accelerated talks starting this month.

  • The two sides will meet five days a week for one month starting Jan. 17, the Allied Pilots Association union told its members. The negotiations will focus on scheduling and compensation in hopes of quickly reaching a contract of two years or less duration, Dennis Tajer, a union spokesman, said Friday.
  • American on Friday confirmed the decision to accelerate talks, saying its negotiating team will work full-time toward a contract.
  • “We have made meaningful progress recently and are discussing proposals that would deliver pay raises, enhanced profit sharing and benefits, and significant quality of life improvements to the pilots of American Airlines,” the carrier said in a note to pilots last month.
  • The new negotiating strategy is being used, in part, because compensation for American pilots lags that of competitors, the union said. The organization also hopes to reach agreement on new rules for work scheduling.

Bloomberg

Breeze Turns To Australia To Hire Pilots

KEY POINTS:

  • About 280 pilot spots need to be filled for Breeze’s Embraer E190, Embraer E195, and Airbus A220 aircraft, and the airline is pulling out all the stops to attract talent.
  • Breeze is raising pilot pay with new pay scales for pilots taking effect in January.
  • Pay scales on each aircraft are different with Airbus pilots earning slightly more than their Embraer counterparts given the “additional revenue-generating capability” of the aircraft, Christopher Owens, Breeze’s vice president of flight operations, told Insider.
  • First-year pay for A220 first officers is $68 per flight hour, up by $13, while first-year pay for Embraer first officers is $61, up by $6.
  • Australian pilots will be able to work as Breeze pilots under the E-3 work visa program in a little-used but not unprecedented solution to the pilot shortage. Skilled Australian nationals can apply to legally work in the US and regional airlines including CommutAir and ExpressJet Airlines have used the program to recruit pilots from the country.
  • Breeze already has around 120 applicants for the program, with the majority of pilots living in Australia and some who are already in the US. Pilots from Down Under will, however, incur travel and visa costs before being able to fly for Breeze.

Business Insider

Allegiant Orders Up to 100 737 MAX Jets

KEY POINTS:

  • Boeing and Allegiant Air today announced an order for 50 737 MAX jets, with options for 50 additional airplanes. In Boeing’s first U.S. ultra-low cost carrier (ULCC) deal, Allegiant selected two models – the 737-7 and 737-8-200 – in the 737 MAX family, which provide the lowest seat-mile costs for a single-aisle airplane and high-dispatch reliability.
  • “Our approach to fleet has always been opportunistic, and this exciting transaction with Boeing is no exception,” said Maurice J. Gallagher, Jr., Allegiant chairman and CEO. “While the heart of our strategy continues to center on previously-owned aircraft, the infusion of up to 100 direct-from-the-manufacturer 737s will bring numerous benefits for the future – including flexibility for capacity growth and aircraft retirements, significant environmental benefits, and modern configuration and cabin features our customers will appreciate.”
  • With commonality and improved fuel efficiency, the 737 MAX family enables airlines to optimize their fleets across a broad range of missions. The 737-7 provides low-operating costs that enable carriers to open new routes with less economic risk, and the larger 737-8-200 offers added revenue potential and is right-sized for ULCC market expansion. Compared to Allegiant’s current fleet, the new 737 models will reduce fuel use and carbon emissions by 20%.
  • “We are thrilled that Allegiant has selected Boeing and the 737 MAX as they position themselves for future growth, improved efficiency and operational cost performance.” said Stan Deal, Boeing Commercial Airplanes president and CEO. “This deal further validates the economics of the 737 MAX family in the ULCC market and we’re excited to stand alongside Allegiant as they integrate these new airplanes into their fleet.”
  • Boeing and Allegiant will partner on entry-into-service support, enabling a smooth transition as the carrier adds the 737 into its operation. Allegiant will also utilize a suite of Boeing Global Services digital tools to further enhance operational efficiency. Allegiant currently operates a fleet of 108 Airbus A319 and A320 airplanes.

PR Newswire

28,000 Canceled Flights Later | Omicron + Weather = Challenges

KEY POINTS:

  • Like thousands of passengers who planned holiday trips, Leonard became caught in an epic travel meltdown in its third week that has forced the cancellation of more than 28,000 flights since the first signs of trouble on Christmas Eve, according to flight-tracking website FlightAware. What began as a pandemic-related challenge quickly snowballed into a multitiered test — coupling the uncertainties of omicron with the more familiar headache of winter weather.
  • The disruption for airlines and travelers is on track to become the most severe since more than 56,000 flights were canceled in a single week at the outset of the pandemic, when people didn’t want to fly. A triple whammy of robust demand for holiday travel, staffing shortages triggered by a surge in coronavirus cases and bouts of wintry weather at airline hubs has ushered in one of the worst periods for air travelers in years.
  • More than two weeks later, the surge in daily flight cancellations has shown no signs of abating: Some airlines have announced schedule cuts through the end of the month as they fight to recover.
  • While the number of scrubbed flights has been the biggest obstacle for travelers, it’s not the only disruption. About one-third of flights nationwide that have taken off in the past two weeks have been late, with the average delay topping 50 minutes on some days, according to FlightAware.
  • Then there are the hundreds of suitcases and bags still to be claimed at airports — some that didn’t follow passengers onto connecting flights; others that were lost when passengers were rerouted through different airports after their original flights were canceled. At Reagan National Airport, an American Airlines hub where more than 85 percent of flights were canceled Monday, baggage claim was filled with unclaimed bags.
  • Despite the protracted spell of chaos, industry watchers say a meltdown that left fuming travelers stranded at airports is unlikely to have a lasting effect on airlines’ recovery from the pandemic. They say the same dynamics that have pushed demand for travel to near pre-pandemic levels in recent months will continue well into the new year.
  • Since the start of the pandemic, about 50,000 airline employees have left the industry through retirements or voluntary buyouts. When passenger demand began ramping up last spring, airlines scrambled to bring back workers. But a tight job market made recruiting more difficult, and gaps remain even as thousands of new employees have been hired.

Washington Post

Weekly TSA Numbers

01042021 TSA Numbers

United & Delta New Hire Aircraft Assignments

DELTA UNITED
Atlanta B757/767 Chicago B737
Atlanta B737 Chicago A320
Atlanta A320 Chicago B757/767
Atlanta B717 Cleveland B737
Detroit B737 D.C. B737
Detroit A320 D.C. A320
Detroit B717 D.C. B757/767
Los Angeles B757/767 D.C. B777
Los Angeles B737 D.C. B787
Minneapolis A320 Denver A320
New York City B757/767 Houston B737
Salt Lake City A220 Houston A320
Seattle B737 Los Angeles B737
Seattle A220 Los Angeles A320
Los Angeles B757/767
Newark B737
Newark A320
Newark B757/767
Newark B777
Newark B787
San Francisco B737
San Francisco A320
San Francisco B757/767
San Francisco B777
San Francisco B787