Real Answers from Real Pilots

Selecting a regional

(Andrew Shay) #1

First off. Thank you guys for your contributions to this site. It has been a phenomenal tool for someone like me, looking to get into the industry.

My question is regarding the characteristics desired when selecting a regional airline to begin your career with. I live in Dallas so I’m initially attracted to the regionals associated with American, especially Envoy since they have a direct flow through to AA. However, the pay is sub-par compared to GoJet.

Looking back on your career now. How would you rank the characteristics of pay, domiciles, and “post-regional” opportunities?

I hope that question made sense! Thanks again!

(Eric) #2

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Hey Andrew,

As Eric said there are pros and cons to all. What it comes down to is what’s important to you? Personally Base is a biggy. Commuting SUCKS and I maintain that the guys that commute have a completely different job and life then those who don’t. That said money’s obviously important so that’s a factor. Flow thru’s are nice too but in today’s environment, where everyone’s hiring you should be able to get to the Major of your choice without one. Also there’s usually fine print so nothing is guaranteed.

One factor that’s REALLY important but also difficult to gauge is contract. You won’t be able to find most pilot contracts online and even if you could they’re fat with LOTS of legalese, but it’s the contract that in many ways determines your quality of life and also effects your pay in many ways (it’s not just about hourly wage). So what do you do? You talk to pilots, LOTS of pilots. Any chance you get to grab one and simply ask if they’re happy where they’re at and why. Most pilots love to complain and will tell you the good and the bad. At least that’s what I did and it’s worked for me.


(Chris Hawthorne) #4

What’s a good way to encounter different pilots if you’re not already in the industry?


This forum and others for one (they’re actually quite a few pilot forums). There’s also this area in many cities that’s called an airport. For some reason it seems to attract ALOT of pilots (not sure why?). They’re pretty easy to pick out. They’re the nerdy looking guys wearing RayBans indoors with the TopGun theme as their ringtone desperately trying to look cool:grin:

Seriously anytime you find yourself at an airport if you see a pilot say hi and ask a few questions you may have. Most are pretty cordial.


(Chris Hawthorne) #6

That makes sense. I’ll look for other chat sites as well.

(Carlos Diaz) #7

As far as regionals go, Im still very far from this point just curious, if you work for a regional that has multiple codeshares(United, AA, Delta) do you always fly for a certain one? Or does it vary by domicile? is it possible to fly a leg or 3 day trip on different codeshare partners? Also, when it come to the flight benefits for commuting and leisure travel do you get benefits on all the different airlines that your company contracts with? i.e. Skywest who flies for all 3

(Eric) #8

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(Carlos Diaz) #9

Thanks Eric!

(Carlos Diaz) #10

I tried looking for a map for airline domiciles like the one on any ideas where I can find one like that? That map was great, doesnt seem to work now on my laptop(s)

(Danielle Calnin) #11

We have a ticket submitted to the web developer of Pilot Jobs to look at
the domicile page. Thanks for bringing this to our attention.

Danielle Calnin

Director Airline Business Development
Airline Transport Professionals - ATP
Office 904-595-7989

(Carlos Diaz) #12

Thanks Danielle, im sure im not the only aspiring one who misses it.

(Danielle Calnin) #13

The bug is fixed.

Danielle Calnin

Director Airline Business Development
Airline Transport Professionals - ATP
Office 904-595-7989

(Andrew Shay) #14


When you are speaking about looking for contracts; do you mean contracts between the major and the regional? or the contracts between the regional and the pilot union?


Pilot union contracts. Most everyone focuses on hourly wage but there are many other (often more important) factors that will affect your pay and your quality of life. If a trip cancels will you still get paid for it? If you’re on a layover that is over a day or more is there a min pay for that day away from home?

The list goes on. As I said chances are you won’t be able to actually get your hands on a contract but when you do have occasion or opportunity to talk to pilots ask.