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North American Airlines.. JFK

RJPilott

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anyone with info, company morale, the general dirt on NAA? also the positives? anything would be appreciated, thanks!
 

bigsky

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Dont have much for you. I have talked with quite a few of their employees and have ridden on them several times--seem like a pretty happy bunch but thats just my impression! They seem to mostly do AMC charters.
 

ACWild

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North American has been in business since '89 and has only had one quarter where they didn't make a profit. It's a pretty stable airline.
They do scheduled runs, charters, Club Med, military, and anything else that you could think of. They are currently experiencing some expansion out in Oakland, Ca with routes to Puerto Villarta, Cancun, and Denver, althought they are also talking about more growth out of that base (possibly to Hawaii).
I think there's four 757s and two 767s on the way with an option for an additional 767.
Pay starts at 55.35 an hour with a 67 hour guarantee. After 67 hours, it's time and a half.
If you sit as an IRP, add an additional 10 and change on top of that.
The people here are absolutely great. The big factors you have to consider about NA are these... No pension and some extremely long hours. Otherwise, there's great equipment, decent pay, good people, and some really great flying.
Hope this answers your question.
 

CCDiscoB

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I wish I learned that they had no pension plan before I fired off an application this morning.

What's up with that?

I guess I'll apply with ATA. 5k other applicants can't be wrong.

What's the number to Truck Masters again?
 

ACWild

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The interview process is very painless (except for the medical, that was painful).
I sent this to the willflyforfood site, but they didn't seem to print it, so here it is again.
You start off talking to Joan Kraft (HR). She basically goes over your application with you and comes up with questions.
Then you go off to your first pilot board interview. This consists of three pilots (including Paul Miller, the VP of Ops). The questions they ask you are situational, much like the jetBlue interview. The general attitude they have is that they already know that you can fly, so they just want to see if they can stand sitting with you on some very long flights. Questions such as, "Did you ever fly with somebody that you didn't get along with and what did you do?".
The interview after that is the technical interview with another three pilots (one is Dean Moxness, Chief pilot). The only real technical question that they asked was to brief an approach plate. No tricks, just a straightforward brief. In general, there's nothing tough and no tricks. They also want to know you as a person.
Everybody that you meet during the interview is really laid back.
Although I didn't get any questions on the Saab, I heard that there are alot of guys there who flew it and know it very well.
If everybody likes you, you will get called back for a final interview with Dan McKinnon, the president of the company. He basically interviews everybody who comes to the company. Dan will ask you to tell your life story. Really.
If Dan likes you, then you get sent to medical at JFK. This is where the pain comes. At this point, you have the job, but there's a pretty thorough medical exam. Thank God there wasn't a prostate exam! You have to give blood and get vaccinated for yellow fever and tetanus (is that spelled right?).
No written exams or sim rides.
Reserve callout is four hours and there are no airport readies.
I think I covered everything, but if I forgot something, feel free to ask.
Good luck.
 
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ACWild

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Oh yeah, future plans.
This is what I heard from various people in management, so it's not necessarily rumors, but they might as well be as they might not happen either.
The big growth plans are for the Oakland base. They have a contract with Sun Vacations. If all goes well, there's talk of exercising an option for an extra 767-300 ER, bringing the total to 3. My previous post describes what's going on there.
There's also talk of a BOS base, but that's not really solid. The BOS base would do resort flying on the weekends.
This is a very conservative company, so this is considered an aggressive growth stage.
There's also supposed to be plenty of retirements in the next three years, but don't ask me the numbers.
4 757 200s.
2 767 300 ERs.
Option for an additional 767 300 ER.
2 737 800s retiring.
 
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loNslo

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Thank ACWild for taking the time to respond with all that info. Sounds like it's awful hard to get an interview with all the resumes they must get vs. only a few openings. I sent my stuff to them yesterday. I don't know if I will hear from them. I like the fact of being within 4 hours of JFK. I wouldn't have to move.
 

ACWild

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No problem Jack. Glad I could help.
As far as lots of resumes goes, I don't know if they really get that many. Nobody seems to have heard of them. It helps a great deal if you can get a personal reference, so if you know anybody there, make sure you ask.
I've been told that the four hour callouts are rare. Reserves usually know days in advance of their assignments. Still, it sure is nice to have so long of a callout.
 

loNslo

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ACWild,

Thanks again. Yeah, I agree with the long callout. I had a similar situation at an outfit I flew for a couple of years ago and it was basically an eight hour response time. That since has changed though. Don't know anyone at NAA but I'm hoping for the best. By the way, I changed my username. Take it easy.

Jack
 

Dpilot

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Got some additional questions. What's a typical schedule like, i.e. days off, hard lines, reserves, etc. And regarding the expansion out of Oakland, are pilots based there? Or is everyone out of JFK only?
 

reepicheep

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They must all be out of JFk as their website says you must live within four hours of JFK to qualify for the position.
 

ACWild

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Lines, including reserve lines will have no less than 12 days off. I didn't get this months bid packet, but the previous months bid had 17 days off as the junior line and 23 days off as the senior line. I understand that this changes alot depending on the time of year. The lines in general will be built with alot of days off due to the nature of their business. They do alot of adhoc flying so they need the flexibility. When you get called on days off for those flights, you get special callout pay.
The Oakland base will be a crew base. So far, there's only one plane based there, but there's planning going on for crossing the Pacific.
I asked about picking up open time out of Oakland (when/if Hawaii service starts) as a JFK crewmember and was told that we would be responsible for getting ourselves out there as we are not based there.
 

reepicheep

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If OAK will be a crew base I guess you might not have to live within 4 hours of JFK after all; I just sent them a resume.
 

crjcap

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Great news

Just got the offer for the job at NAA starting July 29th. I interviewed on June 5th. . I live 3 hours from JFK, so that works out good. Im very excited about getting this job given current hiring climate out there. Im looking for a place to settle down and it sure seems like this should definitely be some exciting flying.
 

reepicheep

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Crjcap, what's the deal with OAK? Pilot domicile or not? Will they consider you if you don't live in the NYC area?
 

RJPilott

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Thanks for all the responses. I ran into a buddy of mine that works for the company. Im reluctant to send them a resume. No union, huge battles between pilot group and management, management lies post Sept 11. about revenue (its a private company). All cutbacks after Sept 11 are not re-established to the pilot group yet they announce unheard of growth for this type of company. Horrible treatment of crews overseas in less than 3rd world countries (bring your own water to shave and bathe). Head banging between Cockpit crew and Cabin crews. Supplemental rules enable Deadheading as rest. Deadheads are multiple legs on second rate carriers to save a few pennies. No pay for cancellation. You can DH all around the world for hours, then your live legs cancel and you dont get paid. If the pilot group b!tches your job is in jeopardy. Private owner has ability to close shop, sell for millions and retire in a matter of days. Seems very unstable. Definitely not a career choice. Morale is at all time low for an expanding company. Junior manning (you are planning a wedding, honeymoon on days off, the company calls, you have to work.) Anyone that can confirm or deny this would be helpful. My source is pretty reliable though.
 

ACWild

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Hi RJPilott,
I'd have to agree that this company is not perfect. You certainly can't compare it to AA, UAL, DAL, etc.
No union, huge battles between pilot group and management
You have to understand that my background is from the regionals, so here's my take on this...
NA is a small carrier. My experience with ALPA is that they only favor the big contributers. In fact, from talks I've had with other national carrier MECs, they also felt that ALPA national was trying to control them for fear of the nationals growing strong and thus weakening prospects of more major jobs.
Also, unless you work for jetBlue, I'm not aware of any carrier that doesn't have battles with management.
management lies post Sept 11. about revenue (its a private company).
Maybe I'm cynical, but I think this applies to most airline management.
All cutbacks after Sept 11 are not re-established to the pilot group yet they announce unheard of growth for this type of company.

The airline's fleet is tiny, so getting an extra aircraft is huge growth. If you specify what cutbacks (I'm sure there's plenty, but I honestly don't know enough yet), I'll try to verify them.
Horrible treatment of crews overseas in less than 3rd world countries (bring your own water to shave and bathe).
Well, I don't know if anyone gets 5 star treatment in 3rd world countries (or any star treatment), but you are supposed to get water bottles from the airplane.
Head banging between Cockpit crew and Cabin crews.
I honestly haven't heard that one and I have asked other pilots about the FAs. It could be certain people. The flight attendants definitely aren't TWA quality though, (TWAs FAs were the nastiest).
Supplemental rules enable Deadheading as rest. Deadheads are multiple legs on second rate carriers to save a few pennies.
True, can't argue that, but you don't always go on 2nd rate carriers (British Airways is pretty good).
I've heard of people getting assigned a deadhead on some real crappy airlines and refusing to go. Our scheduler said that they will work with you if there are other options. If it's the only carrier that will get you there, then you're out of luck. Deadheading sux!
No pay for cancellation. You can DH all around the world for hours, then your live legs cancel and you dont get paid.
I'm too lazy to check my handbook for sure, but I believe that's half true. You do get half pay for deadheading. You may be right though...
If the pilot group b!tches your job is in jeopardy.
All pilots complain, but there's ways to do it without getting canned. You do move up in seniority if a senior guy gets loud;) (just kidding).
Private owner has ability to close shop, sell for millions and retire in a matter of days. Seems very unstable.
Dan McKinnon is very conservative. From what I understand, he wouldn't have ordered the 767s unless he has solid contracts to fly them. There are talks of him possibly retiring within two years, but he is grooming someone to take over. There's always the rumor of a buyout too.
This company makes alot of money in it's little niche. I really don't think it's gonna just disappear, but that's my opinion.

Definitely not a career choice.
Depends on your goals and age.
Morale is at all time low for an expanding company.
This is just one viewpoint, but from what I understand, part of the moral problem is that there's no pay difference between the 757 and the 767. Of course there's the constant deadheading too, and all the other stuff you mentioned.

Junior manning (you are planning a wedding, honeymoon on days off, the company calls, you have to work.) Anyone that can confirm or deny this would be helpful.
If the company calls, you don't have to work. If the company calls and you answer your phone... (I'm not saying anything or implying anything)
;)
I'm not trying to convince you to work here, it certainly doesn't sound like a place that you would be happy at, but this is just from my point of view.
I'm extremely happy that I left my previous carrier to come here. Things aren't so great at my past compnay, so maybe that's why I'm defending NA.
Sorry for the long post.
I hope this helps.
 
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reepicheep

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Everybody I know has "Ident-A-Ring" or some such device whereby they know when the phone rings that it's scheduling calling. If you get caught on your day off it's your own fault.
 

RJPilott

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ok, first question, how do you do those cool quote thingys?



only HALF PAY for DH? what kind of BS is that? after DHing all over the world for 14 hours then expected to fly for 8 and only getting paid for 7 cause your live legs cancelled really blows. Not to mention the fatigue and safety issues involved for being up that long if you have to fly those legs.

From what i understand, junior manning doesnt have to be a phone call on your day off. They can get you while you're on duty to assign work for your days off.

i agree it depends on your current position having a major influence on the decision to go to NAA. The safety issues with countless hours of non-rest alone are enough to make me want to hold on to my resume. Especially if im not going to get paid for being awake all that time when it cancels. NAA not for me at this time. Again, thanks for the all the input fellas. Happy flying!
 
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