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Fedex Contractors

weekendwarrior

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I've heard that the smaller pistons and turboprops that fedex operate are not actually Fedex airplanes or employees. Is this true? If so, who is the company (ies) that actually operate them and what are their hiring requirements?
 

skydiverdriver

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Yup,
They belong to Fedex who leases them to the contractors. I guess that gives them control without having to pay the pilots a descent wage. Sound familiar?
 

photopilot

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If you go to a feeder and fly, where can you go next. I have seen some Caravan operators ( not FedEx feeders) that only require 135 mins. My question is, can you go to a regional after that or is multi set in stone with single engine turbine not counting for anything?
 

skydiverdriver

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Photopilot,
Could you please explain what you are trying to say? Perhaps you are asking if Caravan pilots can get other jobs, and yes, of course they can. Mountain Air Cargo has Caravans and FK-27's. I'm sure you could get a job at many different places after transferring to the Fokker and gaining some experience in it. Is that what you are asking?
 

photopilot

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Skydiverdriver,
Thanks for responding. A few companies I have seen operate Caravans only. They hire at 135 mins. and seem to pay decent. I would like to fly a Caravan but I do not want to be stuck. So basically, I am wondering if I were to go to a Caravan only operator, with only 100 hours of multi, where would I stand a coule of years down the road with for example: 3000 total, 100 multi, and 1600 single engine turbine. Once things pick up, would I be hireable with mostly caravan time.
 

skydiverdriver

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Sure, and if it's the best job you can find, take it. The general rule is that you want to get the heaviest and dirtiest time you can, and a Caravan is certainly heavier than a 172, if that's the choice. You will also get a lot of good weather time, lots of approaches and PIC time. It's true that Caravan time doesn't count as much as multi, but you will get excellent experience, and should be able to go to a good regional after that. Good luck.
 

weekendwarrior

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anyone know what the requirements are for these contracted companies for Fedex? There are alot of those smaller Fedex planes here in Arizona going to the smaller remote cities that are too far for ground couriers. Also, what are the 135 minimums that are spoken about? 1500 TT or something similar?
 

Unchilled

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Most of the minimums at these places are well beyond 135 minimums. Somewhere around 2000-2500TT. There's a ton of info available about these companies here on the board. Just do a search for "FedEx" or "Caravan".
 

weekendwarrior

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Isnt' that a little backwards than it should be? If one could get a job with a commuter building twin turbo prop time at 1000 TT/100 Multi, then why would someone with 2000 hours go fly a caravan? Excuse my ignorance, but am I missing something?
 

Unchilled

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weekendwarrior said:
Isnt' that a little backwards than it should be? If one could get a job with a commuter building twin turbo prop time at 1000 TT/100 Multi, then why would someone with 2000 hours go fly a caravan? Excuse my ignorance, but am I missing something?

Well, don't take my word for it. Take a look around at the different compnay websites and see for yourself.
 

weekendwarrior

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I don't doubt your claims. It's just that sometimes I hear some really crazy things about how these 135 operators want time. It's almost like they are higher than the airlines. I spoke to one last year and he said in a snotty voice, "We don't hire anyone with less than 2000 hours, period." So I was thinking that if I had 2000 hours (and say 200 hours Multi) this guy would be the last person that I would approach when I could be on my way to the majors.

Anyway, excuse my ignorance. I'm only a 200 hour instrument student that is a ways away from getting a job flying anything, so I don't really have that much insight on how this whole industry works. I'm just trying to educate myself now, so I can build the "right" kind of time and no what to shoot for.
 

Snakum

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WW - Maybe I can help a little.

When I first started flying again two years ago it wasn't uncommon to meet guys who were hired at COEX, Chatauqua, Corpex, etc. at 500+ hours. At the same time Mountain Air Cargo, Mid-Atlantic Freight, and Ram Air wanted 135 mins for an interview. Mountain Air Cargo and Mid-Atlantic paid quite a bit more for new FOs though (Ram Air maxed at $95 per day/run then, I think). Some guys I talked to said they were going to these companies instead of the regionals because of the starting pay, because of the locations (local), and because some couldn't get an interview with COEX, ACA, etc. Mid-Atlantic and MAC also had quite a few 'lifers' who were never gonna' move on. Some guys just don't aspire to spiffy airline uniforms and much higher pay potential, willing to trade off for better quality of life and a known quantity.

On the other side ... the management types at Ram Air and MAC told me they were lucky to get eight or nine months out of a pilot before they were off to a regional with their new 200 hours of multi. It was a horror story according to the ADO at Ram Air. So today though, most of those 500-hour regional pilots are furloughed (or terminated at Chatauqua), so I'm not sure what the smarter move would have been if I had been ready then.

Minh
 

metrofo

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The reason for the 2000 hour minimum for the Fedex Caravan job has to do with Fedex. That is thier minimum for insurance purposes. This is a single pilot job and they are looking for a person with solid IFR skills and experience. As all of you know, Fedex owns all of the Caravans and just gives them to the 135 operators for pilot staffing and maintainance purposes. They are not really looking for time builders and they wind up spending quite a bit of money on you when they hire you. All of the pilots go to Flight Safety for the initial in the Caravan and go there once a year for a checkride. I flew the Fedex caravan for three years and had 800 hrs in the caravan before I got there and still had to go to flight safety for an initial when they hired me. It is actually one of the best fr8 jobs you can get if that is what you are looking to do. Fedex is a class operation and the Caravans are treated just as well. The pay is not bad to start and when I was there you could go up to about 50k a year after a few years flying the caravan. I worked for Wiggins Airways. They operate about 30 caravans for Fedex in the Northeast. Wiggins was a great company and treated thier people well. Any other questions about this job, please post them and I will be happy to answer
 

Fr8Dog

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Hey Weekendwarrior, You ask why you could get hired at a regional with 1000/100 and at the caravan operators you need around 2000 hrs. The simple reason is that it is an insurance requirement, but you also have to look at the conditions and you are flying in and the fact you are by yourself in the Caravan. I don't fly the Caravan, but I do fly for a freight company that flies on a UPS contract with 402's and Beech99's. All of these runs are flown single pilot mostly at night in some of the worst weather out there. Its one thing to sit in a nice new RJ with EFIS and great weather radar with someone else with a lot more expierence then your 1000/100 and make decisions together about what to do then it is to be in a old unpressurized Piston or Turboprop without radar or stormscope and if your lucky a VFR GPS in thunderstorms or severe icing and have to make all the decisions by yourself. Some guys aren't intrested in the night freight thing and others don't want to go to a regional and love the freight thing. You basically have to decide what is best for you and do that. Pearsonally I love the freight thing and kinda like when we have $hitty weahther, kinda like a challenge for me I guess. If you have any other questions just let me know and I will do my best to answer them.
 

weekendwarrior

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Ok..now that is making more sense! Sounds like a type of flying I could get into if I were single (and had the skills, of course.) Being married with 2 young children, I don't know if nights (at least for a permanant career position) would be to condusive to family life.

However, during my train up time and building hours, I'll take any time I can get. So, if there were some night freight type jobs that don't require the 2000 hours, I'd take that too. First of all, I have to get my 1000 before I do much about that. Time is coming quick for me since I own my own airplane, which is nice.

Thanks for all the helpful education. It's great to have some kind of knowledge base to pick from other than employer's websites!
 
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