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Cockpit jumpseat award - Date of Hire or Seniority List Number?


Well-known member
Nov 25, 2001
Total Time
Your example of two guys hired in the same class is correct. Under no circumstances will a guy with an earlier DOH be bumped by a pilot with a later DOH. CO does not have this policy I suspect because their seniority list was not in DOH order due to previous mergers.

As I said 2 different cultures....the policy will be worked out....I prefer DOH...again this coming from someone that would be more "senior" using the CO seniority system.

Stop trying to bring drama to a rather mundane topic.

The policy at UAL is seniority based, not DOH. Because there have been no mergers, DOH follows seniority order. But as I'm sure you are aware, that is no longer the case. DOH and seniority don't match up anymore.

UAL Council 52, though I think he's wrong about Delta. They just reserve it first come first serve a week out:

Dear Council 52 Pilots,

The ISL is out and emotions are running high from the top to the bottom of both legacy airlines. There are many issues that will arise from this new seniority list. At legacy United, we have been fortunate to have had a date of hire (DOH) seniority list. That is, our list has progressed with very few mergers; therefore it has been virtually a straight line from the time a pilot was hired to his/her current seniority. This is no longer the case. We now have pilots senior to other pilots on the list, but who have later pilot dates of hire. This is new territory for us.

Seniority is arguably the most important issue to an airline pilot. Now that our relative seniorities have changed, we have to deal with how that affects our lives at work. The first issue to emerge post-ISL is the jumpseat, which is vitally important to commuters. The question raised is, who rides first? Date of hire or by the new list?

The company asked the UAL MEC how we were going to treat the jumpseat because they needed to program the system. We decided that we would maintain the status quo-separate metal, separate procedures- until the new combined MEC could address the situation for all of us. That will occur in a few short weeks. At the UAL MEC we don¹t make decisions in a vacuum, and we will not start now when we become one MEC. We have always awarded the jumpseat at UAL by seniority. It just so happens that this also coincided with our pilot dates of hire. Our entire careers are played out according to seniority. Everything forward of the flight deck door is seniority based; the equipment we fly and the seat we sit in. Now that pilot date of hire and seniority are no longer a straight-line consideration, how do we decide it? Do we now want to make some decisions one way and some the other? That is, some things in seniority order, some things not? I feel this would be a bad way to conduct ourselves going forward. We must stay with both our past practices and issue jumpseats in seniority order. This will be a bitter pill to swallow for many on the legacy United side, but is the right way to go. It was the method of the past and how all other airlines including the new Delta handles the jumpseat issue.

I and many other MEC members wanted to seek our local Council¹s direction, seek and receive input from those we represent, then meet and discuss our ideas and thoughts with the CAL MEC. There is a lot of misinformation out there on this issue. People are jumping to incorrect conclusions and making snap decisions based on incorrect data. I thought it was important enough to communicate with Council 52 and reign in the rumors. As in the past, to verify a rumor or simply to become more informed please contact your Reps.

Now that the list is done, several areas of our UPA will begin to be implemented. Please read all ALPA communications to stay informed. Also as a reminder, the election process has begun for the new Council 5. Please participate and vote before September 20 at 10:00. Click here to go to the ALPA website. Once there, sign in with your id and password and look for the green ³Ballot Open!² box in the upper right corner.

Fraternally, Rob
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Are you awake? Good
Feb 18, 2006
Total Time
First come first serve. Reserve it and its yours.

Ralph Cramden

Took the Red Pill
May 7, 2005
Total Time
At Virgin America we set it up from the beginning to try to be fair to the junior guys while respecting seniority. For our own it is first guy to the gate gets the primary seat, senior guy at door close gets the second seat. No reservations for the front seats. In the back it is straight seniority (for us that equals DOH) for all employees and a company wide reservation system so you will know in advance the load and chances based on your DOH.

For OAL peeps, it is first come, first serve.


Well-known member
Apr 28, 2005
Total Time
Jetblue policy is...

Jumpseat, seniority

Cabin seat/non-rev, first come/first serve.

It should be reversed, here's why:

All employees can ride in the cabin and they should all be based on date of hire. There is something to be said for longevity and anyone who is more senior to me should be afforded the chance to ride based on the fact that they have been around longer than me. Whatever they do with the company; the longer you stick around the better benefits you enjoy.

As for the cockpit, a "window of opportunity" (read, like airways/fedex) should give in-house pilots the chance to book a flight to/from home. Some rely on very few flights to get where they need to go and it can be very competitive. That being said, there is piece-of-mind in knowing that you have a ride and cannot be bumped by someone who shows up at the last minute and tries to exercise his seniority (no, it hasn't happened to me). It does take care of that awkward last minute "what's your date-of-hire" q&a that occasionally happens as the station agent is trying to close the cabin door.

Will jB ever change these...probably never.

Agreed. Should be FCFS, with the ability to book 7 days out.


Douglas metal
Feb 27, 2003
Total Time
Don't think there is a perfect solution. If you are senior, you want it seniority based, if you are junior you want FCFS.