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Request for Flight Options LLC Update

ERJ - Jay

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Jan 23, 2002
Posts
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Dear All Flight Options Pilots,

I was just wondering if you could give a glimpse as to the status of operations at Flight Options LLC.? The Dec 20, 2001 press releases said that it was hoped the merger would be finalized by the end of the first quarter 2002. Well, it's march 14th, and was wondering how it was going? Have you guys been busy lately? Has there been "friction" with the merger of the RTA guys? Now that the post Sept 11th craze is dying down, have the customers continued to come? What rumors are there as to aircraft orders/deliveries? Raython recently acknoledged that they were shelving the Hawker 450 until an undiscosed time, does that effect you guys? With the Envoy 7 coming soon, what else is "one tap" as it were. 115 orders with Raython published in Air Inc., but Raython said its production will be down this year compared to last across the whole fleet. I realize that you may have a non-discosure clause, if so I understand. But, I keep submitting updates electranically about every six weeks, and no word yet, so I'm beginning to worry whether any hiring will hapen anytime soon. Thanks for any information that you would be at liberty to share.

Jason
CLE ERJ FO
Flight Option Hopeful.
:cool:
 
Last edited:

flydog

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Posts
542
Total Time
2500+
I have a couple of friends that work there and I have been trying to get on with them for quite a while now so Ill share what I learned from them

1. Merger closing date is supposedly now April 1st

2. Pilots have been very busy but mostly due to maintenance problems with the aircraft. Apparently out of 13 Citation IIIs, 5 are in maintenance so the other a/c have to take up the slack. They also lost a Diamond Jet in a runway over run a few weeks ago.

3. Envoy is a 2007 first delivery. Hopefully I will be at Southwest by then :)

4. Out of the next 50 Hawker Horizons to roll off the assembly line, RTA had only 5 and EJA gets the rest. Hawker 450 is history

5. FO did not take all of the RTA aircraft. RTA had a surplus of a/c for 135/backup. Over a dozen airplanes I believe. RTA also had more crews per airplane due to the 6/4 schedule. For this reason there is a tremendous surplus of Captains. Some RTA Captains have been put into the right seat at their left seat pay.

6. Flight Options is not even reviewing e-mailed resumes. Imagine having 5,000 e-mails in your inbox and youll understand why. Try faxing or mailing. Even better have an employee walk it in or show up at CVG and drop it off yourself. There are thousands of guys fighting for no openings right now. I Fedex updates once a month with my FO employee recomendations on the cover page.

7. Hiring is supposed to resume in April. No projections on hiring numbers but probably will pale in comparison to EJA

8. They are only hiring pilots with employee recomendations. My buddy flew with a guy hired in January that had 1800 hrs TT but a lot of jet time and recomendations. The typical new hire has around 2500 hrs and corporate jet experience.

9. Unlike EJA, Flight Options deals in used aircraft. This means they dont order new aircraft so its hard to tell future growth. They only purchase a used airplane for refurbishing once the shares have been sold. According to the weekly messages they have been selling an average of 2-3 airplanes a month and they run 5 pilots per aircraft. Attrition is nearly zero as they have a very young pilot group and no one is leaving to go to the airlines. They also employ contract pilots from time to time to take up the slack

10. One interesting note is that a lot of first officers are jumping to EJA. The upgrade times at Flight Options are over 1 1/2 yrs now and growing longer. Since most of the attrition is from the bottom of the list this will create job openings but little upward movement since Captains are staying put

Hope this helps. A lot of this is second hand info so it may not be 100% factually correct
 

RJL

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Feb 21, 2002
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7,400
Great Post Flydog- Thanks

I met a Travel Air pilot this week who told me that most Travel Air customers are really upset about Raytheon Travel Air being merged with Flight Options. It seems that Flight Options doesn't have the reputation that Travel Air did (from the customers point of view).

Do fractional owners of Travel Air aircraft HAVE TO go to Flight Options? Can they take their aircraft and go to another fractional or cancel the contract altogether? From what I am learning, Flight Options has used aircraft and Travel Air had new aircraft. People that paid $$$ for new aircraft don't want to fly on 20-year old Flight Options re-furbs. Anyone else hear or know anything about this?

Thanks-

RJ
 

EAP

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Jan 17, 2002
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"My buddy flew with a guy hired in January that had 1800 hrs TT but a lot of jet time and recomendations. "

Just a side note, how can you have a lot of jet time if you only have 1800 total time? ;)

I wish you guys the best, I've been through mergers before too, they can leave you sleepless at night sometimes.
 

atpcliff

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Joined
Nov 26, 2001
Posts
4,260
Total Time
6000
Hi!

In answer to the high jet-time guys:

I have about 1650, with about 550 Multi-engine jet, and about 400 of that is heavy (MGTOW of about 340,000 lbs.). (I also have about 1550 turbine.)

I saw a poster in the past year who had about 1000 with about 800 heavy jet. He had gotten on as an FO for a -135 jet operator because he knew someone.

I was military, and had about 400 hours as an FO on a KC-135R. The AF has guys who are FO's on a KC-10 (DC-10) after about 200 hours of total time. It's ab initio type training in the military.

I also have my ATP, but when bad hiring conditions appear (a la 1991 and 2001-2), my lack of total time makes it difficult to get hired.

Cliff
GB,WI
 

Joe Jet Pilot

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Dec 2, 2001
Posts
139
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5000+
EAP,

The first FO I had here at Options had around 1900 TT. Of that about 1700 or so was all jet. He was former Air Force and current reserves.

Peace
 

MIB

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Joined
Nov 27, 2001
Posts
5
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2k+
EAP,

Although I am not previous military, I am a low time pilot with a decent amount of jet time.

I have just under 2,100 TT with almost 1,100 in Learjets. Mine was all right place, right time. I had a background in dispatch and a 135 Lear operator needed someone with some flight ops experience. In about a year they were short pilots (remember the good ole days) and put me into a learjet and that is where I have been since.

Good luck to all and Options looks like a great place to be right now.

MIB
 

EAP

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Joined
Jan 17, 2002
Posts
141
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...easy now, boys! ;) = ha, ha.

"A lot" is always relative, obviously speaking. Good luck in the merger guys, hopefully it will stay smooth sailing for all.
 

flydog

Well-known member
Joined
Nov 28, 2001
Posts
542
Total Time
2500+
I think if you were to survey pilots with a total time of between 1500-2000 hrs TT you would find 95% have zero Jet time. Finding someone with even 500 hrs is considered a lot RELATIVE to the total time and hence more valuable than a guy with 3000 hrs and no jet time.
 
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