AirTran New-Hire Question

Zephyrhills

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This topic was covered several months ago, but I wanted to revisit the subject to see if there have been any changes...

I start class soon and am wondering which plane to bid. I have a lot of -800 time so the B737 class would be easier but, as of several months ago, the B717 has better QOL once you are online. It seems to me sacrificing a couple of months of more intense studying for the bigger pot of gold at the end of the rainbow makes more sense than coasting through B737 school and paying the price on the line with Red-eyes, more commutes, and less days off.

What say you AirTran folks? Are the B737 lines any better?

Thanks for the advice...I am very excited about AirTran and I am really looking forward to meeting you all soon! ...well, except for that Ty dude
 

EMBATP

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my 2 cents

i believe the majority of growth will be on the 737 at least this year. you may not have a choice in class since i believe most of the deliveries for the 737 are fall/winter deliveries. i expect sometime in the not too distant future you will see 737 schedules get a lot better..
 

CatfishVT9

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Depends on the total picture........


737 skeds are getting good as far as I'm concerned. Granted, I've been here a year so I get the lines I want. However, my 717 class mates are getting their top choices too. My point? Look at what you want to fly in a year vice just for the first few months.

Yeah, 737 has red-eyes, but we have very few 4 and 5 leg days that the 717 guys have. It's all a trade off. 717 will still be the largest share of class seats for the near future, since all Captain upgrades are 717 FOs right now.

Just pick one and enjoy the ride........

Good luck,
Catfish
 

717capt

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Also something to think about is that the 737 will be the "primary growth vehicle" as our executives love to say. Well since they stoped making the 717..... no sh!t... We are all of the mindset here that eventually we will be an all 737 airline... rumor is that the 717's will go away at some point, but everyones guess is that we are talking in the 5-7 maybe even 7-10 years down the road period... I am a 717 Captain and have been flying the 717 for six years.. since the first day we got em... I like the 717, have never flown any variant of the 737 but I understand it's a great airplane.. The lines should get better as more and more a/c come on line... welcome aboard.. se you around campus..
 

Critter717

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What a great choice to be faced with.
An item to consider is that many of the 737 crews are Junior less the intial instructors that went over to that airplane. I don't think you will find anyone who denies the 717 lines are better right now.
My concern would be the shift that will occur similar to what took place when the DC-9 lines became equal in quality or less than the 717. The exodus off the 9 was fast and furious. My point being that the 18 month upgrades on the then new 717 began a backslide into almost 3 years of reserve.
The new pilots going on to the 737 are not on solid footing. The vast majority of the senority list, particularly the quick upgrades, are going to be pushed back down.

If you have time on the 737 what's the rush? The 717 is a wonderful airplane. Should you decide to upgrade on the 737 no big deal, but if You choose the 717 it will be easier if you have flown it.

Good luck either way
 

CBob

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It's a hard choice because there is no wrong answer. I had a similar situation (lots of -700 time) and ended up in the 717.

1. The 717 is a great airplane systems wise, and is easy to fly even though it has a somewhat suspect FMS (more Airbus than Boeing).
2. The lines are better. If you don't mind stand-ups, you probably won't sit reserve. Otherwise its about 2-3 months before you get a line.
3. I've discovered I only have about a 2 hour bladder and a 3 hour butt.
4. Either way you go with upgrade from the 717, it should be lower threat. Like any airline, this one looks pretty hard at initial captain checkouts. For FO's its mostly an attitude check.

Having said all that I probably would have taken the 737 if I would have had a choice -- just because I was comfortable and happy with it at the time. Only about half the classes have a choice. We've been running 717-only classes for the last 6 weeks.

In short, I feel strongly both ways.

Have fun!
 

Phaedrus

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Take the 717. Another move up the scale for me:) Our class had no choice...all 717s. They will be taking delivery of some more 737s and thus begin assigning new hires based on seniority (you get your line number first day of class based on age). All depends on who wants what and who gets to pick first.
You really can't go wrong either way.
 

Zephyrhills

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Thanks for all of the insightful replies. It seems the B717 is still, and for the foreseeable future, the plane to be on for better QOL. I think I'd rather suck it up and endure a little more studying during training for the B717 so that I can enjoy better QOL after the 6 weeks are up. Ms. C said the class is a 717/737 mix, so hopefully everyone senior to me bids the 73!

See you all in ATL, and thanks again for the help!
 

XGmaninGA

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Hey, watch what you say about my airplane! I like the 73. Besides, they give me free coffee on those redeyes!
 

AFcitrus

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I think your best bet is the 717 if you get the chance. Here is why. As previously mentioned, the QOL is a little better on the 717. Some 73 drivers I know say they have to work an extra day or two per month (more than 717 guys)to get the same pay. (reason - 24 hour layovers)


Secondly, when the QOL at on the 73 does go up, rest assured the Captain slots will be filled by current senior 717 captains who are just biding their time waiting for the QOL factor to rise. When that happens those 737 FO's time to ugrade will get pushed back and back and back. Meanwhile the 717 upgrade time will shorten as the seats vacated by the 737 bound 717 captains become available. Additionally we are still getting more 717.

This theory assumes one wants to upgrade as soon as possible. If you are the type that wants to hang out in the right seat and fly trips with long layovers, then the 737 may be for you.
 

Zephyrhills

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those 737 FO's time to ugrade will get pushed back and back and back. Meanwhile the 717 upgrade time will shorten as the seats vacated by the 737 bound 717 captains become available.

Now I am a bit confused...even if I get B737 FO, I can upgrade to the B717 in the exact same amount of time as if I were a B717FO, correct? Your statement assumes that the 737 FO's will hold out for 737 CA, and bypass the 717 CA slots.

I'll take the upgrade as quick as I can get it...but right now, simply working for a nice, stable, and growing airline (that actually turns a profit, to boot!) is good enough for me.
 

IAHERJ

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hmmm?
You are exactly correct Zephyrills. You can upgrade on anything you like and or transfer as an FO to the other aircraft should you desire.

IAHERJ
 

tubelcane

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Zephyr,

Your profile is a little lacking in detail. Mind sharing your experience and total time? And how did you dad-gum do it? Did you go to job fairs, did you have an internal recom. ? Just curious Im doing whatever I can to get away from the fractionals and it isn't working yet.
Good luck and congrats. The 717 initial at TWA was a breeze and it was a piece o cake to fly, don't know nothing about the 73.
 

Zephyrhills

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Your profile is a little lacking in detail. Mind sharing your experience and total time? And how did you dad-gum do it? Did you go to job fairs, did you have an internal recom. ? Just curious Im doing whatever I can to get away from the fractionals and it isn't working yet.
Good luck and congrats. The 717 initial at TWA was a breeze and it was a piece o cake to fly, don't know nothing about the 73.

Sorry for the lacking profile...I only signed up for this website to get some AirTran info prior to my interview.


From my resume:

Total Flight Time 6,787
Pilot-In-Command 3,010
Turbo-Prop 2,564
Turbine Pilot-In-Command §121 1,459
Multi-Engine 5,602
Turbo-Jet 2,561
Actual Instrument 662

Captain on B727, B737-800, BA32, BA41

How did I "dad-gum do it"?

Not sure, really....probably a combination of things...
  1. Originally applied in 1998, but got hired by ATA before AirTran would interview me
  2. Met Ms. G (Pilot Recruiter) at a meet-and-greet for ATA folks
  3. Went to the job fair in ATL
  4. Went to the training center tour at the job fair
  5. A college bud of mine who happens to help with Pilot Recruitment kept bugging Ms. G until she would finally call me for an interview
  6. I had 2 other internal recommendations who talked to Ms. G, as well as outside recs (Chief Pilot, Check Airmen, etc)
That's about it. It does stink, but you really do have to know someone to get the job. I know, I know...there are always a couple of guys who get on knowing nobody, but it is rare. I know I would not be going to class if it weren't for the generous help of my 3 buds at AT.

Do everything you can to find someone at AT that knows you, and get them to bug Ms. G until she is sick of talking to them!

The 500 FAR121 PIC is a bummer, as well. I know a lot of corporate guys who fly a hell of a lot better than me, and have twice the personality. So AT really needs to re-visit this rule.

If you have any other questions, feel free to PM me.
 

Pickle

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Is that you Bert??

BERT!!!!!!

You couldn't hack the night freight, you are WORTHLESS after 9 pm. I should know!!!

Love,
Pickle

ps, if this isn't BERT!!! then never mind.
 

Ty Webb

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Zephyrhills said:
Met Ms. G (Pilot Recruiter) at a meet-and-greet for ATA folks


Hey, welcome aboard. Sorry about the way things worked out at ATA, but we're happy to have you. Here's to a quick return to the left seat.
 
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Thunderchief

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Welcome to AirTran!


Good to see another ATA guy make it here! I am on the 717 and am enjoying it, just finished training!

PM if you have any other questions and congrats!

-TC
 
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