There has been talk from time to time of a second pilot base- last year, the rumor was PIT, this year it is (was?) BWI. If we continue to pick up a bunch of USAirways routes (Metrojet) we very well may end up with an East Coast base.
I would count on ATL, though. ATL is considered the base- so count on a crashpad during training and reserve duty. Due to the recent hiring, reserve looks to be very short- maybe a month or two.
I sent (e-mailed) my stuff to AirTran and am hoping for an interview. I was wondering if you could tell me what reserve rules are, about any commuting policy they may have, general working conditions, etc. Also any idea what most new hires are going to A/C wise. What is the background of most new-hires? What are your trips like, i.e. # of legs per day, etc. and quality of life, such as trip/duty rigs, long-ass unproductive layovers, and quality of the hotels the company uses.
In general, do you like it and would you leave a RJ Captain slot at a top regional to go there?
Likewise, I'm interested to hear was 'Citrus' ppl have to say about life there. I too was hoping to get on there, unfortunately I would have been borderline competitive with last years minimums but now that there's so much competition I'll probably be at the bottom of the stack. Air Tran stays at the same hotel as us in PHF and I've talked to their crewmembers a # of times; all seem real cool ppl.
Personally, I think places like Air Tran, Frontier & JetBlue are the future of commercial aviation; much nimbler, quicker than the 'brand name' majors and they're starting to become a real pain in the a#^ to companies like DAL, UAL...
Also, re Air Tran bases. I understand in the old days before ValuJet bought Air Tran, AT had an MCO base; must've been closed. Anyways thats about it - I'd be interested to hear what Air Tran ppl have to say about life there...
I am currently sitting reserve on the DC-9.. Life is pretty good here. I should be able to hold a buildup line sometime in February or March--although at this time, buildup lines seem to have a lot of reserve days on them. Reserve is guaranteed 10 days off/month and buildups 12 days. Reserve periods are 4am-6pm, 10am-12am, and 6pm-8am (I didn't see any of these lines for January). There is a 2 hour callout for reserve. Recently, scheduling has become fond of Ready Reserve where you sit at the airport for 6 hours in case they need you right away. On the last day of a reserve period you can be released 4 hours early if they don't anticipate needing you. I flew one turn during the last 4 days on reserve. I suspect that will be normal as we retire more DC-9's.
I think most new hires are trained in the 717 and I "heard" the last class had average experience of around 6000 hours.
Like all places, rumors are fast and furious. Everything from 757's to bases out west to acquisitions have been talked about, but until it's in a press release, I wouldn't believe it.
Life is pretty good here, other than reserve, the hard lines have between 14 and 18 days off per month (varying betweent the -9 and the 717). We are getting 24 717's in 2002 and last I heard hiring will be brisk (around 470 for the year). There are a few -9 slots open in the next few months, and senioriy will not move all that fast in that plane, however, if you get the 717 (which is likely) you will not be on reserve long.
As for bases, new planes and mergers there are lots of rumors. But if our higher-ups follow the business plan I don't see us going west of the Mississippi all that much. There is too much to be made on the east coast, short flights and heavy loads vs long flights and minimal loads (basically more RPM's by staying close to home). And a new base is always the hot topic, but until a focus city proves it's profitable we wont see a base there.
All in all its a great place to be, there are some problems and they are mostly associated with "growing pains", and in today's climate those are wonderful problems to have.
I agree with the above posts regarding reserve on 717.
Finished training in November, had a build up line waiting for me to the end of month. In December got a hard line and now back to a build-up ( due to the last 737 Fo's transitioning to 717) not a single reserve day so far. The movement is quick on 717, and would probably get better next year. Newly introduced cities go to new airplanes to attract the public. DC-9, on the other hand....I hear the schedule is not quite that good on retiring equipment (expect a few month reserve.)