Author Topic: Who's going to fly the plane? Pilot shortage could get worse for regionals - CBC  (Read 2931 times)

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Offline Dimsum

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The shortage isn't from the 250-hour Commercial Pilot License holders (of which I'm one) but the 1500-3000 hour Airline Transport Pilot License holders who aren't already in the major airlines.  This isn't anything new - baby-boomers retiring, more airlines (and routes) opening means more demand for pilots.  However, the pay scale for anyone who isn't in the major airlines or an Aircraft Captain on a big Regional like Air North is pretty abysmal, especially when the cost of getting up to ATPL is probably equivalent to the cost of an MBA.

In other aviation forums, it seems like the "old days" of getting licenses, then going somewhere up north (or rural) to build hours for a few years* doesn't appeal to the current generation just leaving flight school. 

*It's a little simplified and yes, some of those people will never make it to the major airlines, so they end up in those small airlines or in Regionals until retirement, making 35-45k a year.

Quote
A pilot shortage across Canada is causing some regional carriers to cancel flights, put less experienced pilots in the cockpit and has even had an impact on some air ambulance services.

A combination of factors is causing the shortage — ever-increasing air travel by Canadians, a shortage around the world and a large number of pilots reaching retirement.

A soon-to-be released report by the Canadian Council for Aviation and Aerospace says Canada should be producing an extra 300 pilots a year to meet demand of a growing air travel industry.

Furthermore, the report warns demand for new hires for expansion and replacement of retirees could mean a shortfall of 6,000 pilots by 2036.

"Having fewer and fewer pilots to draw from, sooner or later the operators are going to have to start cutting routes," said Mike Doiron, an aviation consultant and CCAA representative.

(More on link)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/business/pilot-shortage-bearskin-air-georgian-super-t-1.4451976
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

angus555

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What else can the "200 hour wonder" do if they don't want to instruct? There's really not much.

Even if they're fortunate to afford the cost of a CPL MIFR program upfront, that's still $60-70k of eggs in one basket, which could easily cover a tradeschool program or university up to the graduate level. And with any luck and connections to get on with the regionals, they'll be paid on par with school bus drivers for years to come.

It's a very high cost/underpaid profession with many pitfalls.


Offline Downhiller229

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Don't forget we have a loyalty problem, not a retention problem for military pilots

Offline Dimsum

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What else can the "200 hour wonder" do if they don't want to instruct? There's really not much.

Even if they're fortunate to afford the cost of a CPL MIFR program upfront, that's still $60-70k of eggs in one basket, which could easily cover a tradeschool program or university up to the graduate level. And with any luck and connections to get on with the regionals, they'll be paid on par with school bus drivers for years to come.

It's a very high cost/underpaid profession with many pitfalls.

The blog below has been really interesting to read for anyone looking to get into the industry (maybe military pilots excluded).

http://thetruthabouttheprofession.weebly.com/
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

angus555

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The blog below has been really interesting to read for anyone looking to get into the industry (maybe military pilots excluded).

http://thetruthabouttheprofession.weebly.com/

I like it. The myth section sums up my opinion on this: "There is a shortage of pilots willing to work for low wages."

Sully's speech to congress still resonates with me. I don't think much has changed since then.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kePiiZ8_YA
« Last Edit: January 08, 2018, 21:27:38 by Til Valhall »

Offline runormal

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I like it. The myth section sums up my opinion on this: "There is a shortage of pilots willing to work for low wages."

Sully's speech to congress still resonates with me. I don't think much has changed since then.
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8kePiiZ8_YA

This is why I feel like the economy will sort itself out naturally overtime. There very well may be a shortage for say ~5 years, but if and when wages increased due to lack of pilots then you'll likely see an increase in new pilots. Or like that blog suggests you might see the gap filled by 2nd and 3rd world pilots.

Unfortunately there will be a bit of delay for the "flash to bang", so that'll mean a combination of higher prices and/or less flights in the interim for the consumer.

Online Dolphin_Hunter

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I know who is going to fly the damn plane.

A newly retired LRP pilot.

We are hurting and I assume it’s the same across all RCAF fleets.


Online Colin P

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I think they tire quickly of working for crappy pay and no glory, with crappy bosses and annoyed customers.

Offline dapaterson

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I think they tire quickly of working for crappy pay and no glory, with crappy bosses and annoyed customers.

Are we talking regional airline pilots, or LRP pilots?
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Offline Dimsum

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I know who is going to fly the damn plane.

A newly retired LRP pilot.

We are hurting and I assume it’s the same across all RCAF fleets.

I know at least 2 younger Transport folks who've left and joined Big Teal, so I'm going to assume all fleets. 

I'm suspecting more and more aren't waiting for the "retired" part - just jumping ship.
Philip II of Macedon to Spartans (346 BC):  "You are advised to submit without further delay, for if I bring my army into your land, I will destroy your farms, slay your people, and raze your city."

Reply:  "If."

Online Colin P

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Reserve Air Force so pilots can still fly on both sides.

Offline SeaKingTacco

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Some do.

Offline SupersonicMax

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I'm suspecting more and more aren't waiting for the "retired" part - just jumping ship.

Well, considering that obligatory service ends 7 years after Wing, it means that even RMC grads are free to go after 14ish years if service.  Back when you could get an immediate annuity after 20 years of service, most would "suck it up" for 6ish years and get the 40% for life. Now, people have to wait another 11ish years before they can get that immediate annuity.  They are in their early 30s and you better cut lose earlier rather than later and start on a new pension right now at an airline and still be able to retire (likely making a lot more money than you could hope for in the military) before 60.  It is a no-brainer for the undecided.

If only the quality of life was better or at least comparable to the airlines, we could keep more people because in the end, it is a more stable job.  When, however, you are forced to work 10+ hrs days (every day) just to make ends meet and keep your head above the water, and you can get 12 days off a month guaranteed at the airlines, it is sometimes tempting to jump ship.

The fact people are leaving just exarcerbate the problem: less and less people to do the same job...

Offline Good2Golf

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The system is doing exactly what it was built years ago to do..."Son of FRP'...entice people to leave the CAF prior to becoming a long-term financial encumbrance. The 25-year immediate annuity date reset from 20 years was absolutely deliberate and the only problem is the smart folks back in the day didn't foresee that the system might need more flexibility than an entire reset of the defined benefits annuity structure. 

Big game of crack-the-whip, only the whip is made out of an organization comprised of living, breathing people.

Regards
G2G

Offline SupersonicMax

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While the impact of a 25 year pension on people's bottom line is unfortunate for some, it is not my gripe.  There is still a generous package offered after you get out, even before the 25 year mark.  My gripe is about the impact these policies created on our capabilities.  Furthermore, what is worst:  pay $50,000 a year for 50 years to someone ($2.5M) or lose the $5-10M investment in training that could have gone another 6-7 years?  In essence, we could benefit from people's training and experience more than twice as long as someone who gets out after their obligatory service.  And we all know that your prime time tactically and when you give the mkst back isn't when you get on Squadron; it's when you have 3-5 years experience, are an AC/4-Ship lead standard pilot.  People reach that level pretty much when their contract is up. 

Just by the virtue of keeping someone with that kind of experience to 20 years of service would recoup the cost of an immediate annuity starting after 20 years for 50 years!

Offline SeaKingTacco

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Max, you are absolutely correct in everything you just wrote and I agree with it all.

Unfortunately for us, the people who made the decision to reset the pension from 20 to 25 years do not care one whit about operational impact. It is all about pension costs.  Training and losing pilots is also costly, but that cost is largely invisible to corporate Ottawa.