68 pilots choose to retire from American Airlines this month

Discussion in 'American Airlines | AAdvantage' started by tom911, Oct 31, 2011.  |  Print Topic

  1. tom911
    Original Member

    tom911 Gold Member

    Messages:
    2,005
    Likes Received:
    3,183
    Status Points:
    2,070
     
    ceieoc, zpaul, jbcarioca and 3 others like this.
  2. JohnDeere19
    Original Member

    JohnDeere19 Gold Member

    Messages:
    3,392
    Likes Received:
    6,892
    Status Points:
    4,625
    Yikes, still not great.
     
    zpaul, jbcarioca and rwoman like this.
  3. Dovster
    Original Member

    Dovster Gold Member

    Messages:
    907
    Likes Received:
    3,527
    Status Points:
    1,870
    You know it is bad when the GA offers an upgrade to the cockpit to anyone who has spent some time using the Microsoft Flight Simulator program.
     
    _kurt, zpaul, jbcarioca and 3 others like this.
  4. rwoman
    Original Member

    rwoman Gold Member

    Messages:
    5,617
    Likes Received:
    13,489
    Status Points:
    11,070
    Wasn't that in some "B" movie once or twice?? :)
     
    zpaul, jbcarioca and Lighthouse like this.
  5. Lighthouse
    Original Member

    Lighthouse Gold Member

    Messages:
    3,292
    Likes Received:
    12,395
    Status Points:
    10,620
    Just made lifetime gold status in an airline with no pilots....
     
  6. RestlessLocationSyndrome
    Original Member

    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    Likes Received:
    1,356
    Status Points:
    925
    I don't see why people look at a whole bunch of pilots retiring as a bad thing. The simple fact is that most of these pilots are not hurting for money and can live pretty well for the remainder of their years. It's a good thing that the next generation of airline pilots (either direct from flight school or military service) will have a chance to earn a good living as well.
     
    HaveMilesWillTravel and zpaul like this.
  7. jbcarioca
    Original Member

    jbcarioca Gold Member

    Messages:
    17,507
    Likes Received:
    57,455
    Status Points:
    20,020
    Bad? Why? They know how to reboot the airplane if they make a mistake; they might lose some passengers data but so what, they are only stray bits, after all.
     
    Dovster and zpaul like this.
  8. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    It's a bad thing when pilots retire in such large numbers that AA can no longer sustain its service schedule. This is a smaller number but the 100+ the last two months didn't come without heartburn for AA and its customers.

    Considering the disruption people have had by aircraft switches and canceled flights,there certainly is some customer "vinegar" compared to the junior pilot "sweet".
     
    Dovster and zpaul like this.
  9. PHCaswell

    PHCaswell Silver Member

    Messages:
    58
    Likes Received:
    122
    Status Points:
    325
    I think the golden years of aviation for the airline pilots ended around the turn of the century.

    I had owned and operated a 135 (charter) operation and my chief pilot/check pilot works for United. When United was going through their troubled years he and his associates had their pension practically eliminated followed by 50% pay reductions. He is about to retire in the next few years and I'm not sure his remaining years will be all that well off.

    I don't have many pilot friends within the AA pool, however, with AA's current situation I could imagine they are headed in the same direction of reduced retirement benefits.
     
  10. RestlessLocationSyndrome
    Original Member

    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    Likes Received:
    1,356
    Status Points:
    925
    Agreed that there was some short term pain and of course if this was phased in smoothly, it would have been better for customers... but this is just short term and I highly doubt AA has much control over when and whether their pilots retire.

    In the long run, it's good because there clearly were a large number of pilots who were eligible for retirement and could move on to another phase in their life but previously chose not to. The retirements were inevitable and I don't think we want pilots flying up to the point where are dying mid-flight.
     
  11. RestlessLocationSyndrome
    Original Member

    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    Likes Received:
    1,356
    Status Points:
    925
    I'm not trying to say that retiring pilots have it on easy street and can live the life of the rich and famous. I'm also not going to pretend that I know the exact retirement packages for these airline captains but my guess is that the average captain from a large legacy carrier like AA retiring today is probably better off than a majority of others (say like 70%) who are trying to retire today from the private sector.

    If you make >$75k/yr, you're probably in the top 30% of US wage earners, > $100K is probably top 20%. I assume that a retiring captain from AA was earning at least somewhere in this range and that retirement packages for most retirees are sized relative to wage. I don't know if there is a lot of sympathy that their fellow more junior pilots who are trying to get up there let alone the general public would have about these captains who can retire in the top 30%.
     
  12. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    I don't think anyone indicated this was long term or that AA should have done anything about this? :confused:

    I don't think pilot retirements are inherently good or bad. It's the normal course of things, people come and go. As long as AA has qualified, safe pilots to steer the birds I'm a happy customer. I'm not in the business of evaluating pilot competancy and aptitude, there are other much more qualified people to judge that for AA.

    If I'm rerouted or have my flight to NRT in 2 weeks canceled like many other FFers have reported since the scheduling issues have surfaced, I won't be as happy though.
     
  13. RestlessLocationSyndrome
    Original Member

    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    Likes Received:
    1,356
    Status Points:
    925
    Definitely it would be a hassle if you get rerouted or if they cancel your flight. Just curious, what does AA provide as compensation or how do they resolve the canceled flight problem?
     
  14. DestinationDavid
    Original Member

    DestinationDavid Milepoint Guide

    Messages:
    6,846
    Likes Received:
    12,715
    Status Points:
    11,770
    Rebooking most likely in original class of service, upgrade maintained if space is available.

    Option to refund, also.

    Not sure $$$ comp would come into play, but perhaps some miles for the inconvenience either proactively offered or by complaining to CS.

    I'm not much of a complainer though. :)

    I've only written CS twice, and the last time I asked them to clarify an issue (no complaint, no comp request) and instead of answering they just said "sorry" and deposited miles into my account.
     
  15. basiface

    basiface Silver Member

    Messages:
    228
    Likes Received:
    202
    Status Points:
    420
    The sad thing is that a lot of them probably don't want to retire, they have to in order to protect their pensions...can't blame them one bit.
     
  16. DeacFlyer1
    Original Member

    DeacFlyer1 Silver Member

    Messages:
    807
    Likes Received:
    718
    Status Points:
    675
    Snakes on a plane!
     
    rwoman likes this.
  17. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
    The article said "More pilots will have to retire starting in December 2012 because of federal requirements that increased the mandatory retirement age for pilots from 60 to 65 in 2007. The first group of pilots forced to retire under the new requirement will hit 65 at the end of next year."

    I wonder if the FAA will again consider increasing the mandatory retirement age for pilots from 65 to 67 to 70 years old next year.

    Read more: http://blogs.star-telegram.com/sky_talk/2011/10/68-pilots-choose-to-retire-from-american-airlines-this-month.html#ixzz1cjQfq970
     
  18. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
    The article said "More pilots will have to retire starting in December 2012 because of federal requirements that increased the mandatory retirement age for pilots from 60 to 65 in 2007. The first group of pilots forced to retire under the new requirement will hit 65 at the end of next year."

    I wonder if the FAA will again consider increasing the mandatory retirement age for pilots from 65 to 67 or even 70 years old next year.

    Read more: http://blogs.star-telegram.com/sky_talk/2011/10/68-pilots-choose-to-retire-from-american-airlines-this-month.html#ixzz1cjQfq970
     
  19. Pokemon

    Pokemon Active Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status Points:
    65
    Are ther any ratinale for AA pilots bihind this:confused:
    Suppose that AA will file Ch11 sometime in the near future,what is advantage for AA pilots to choose early retirement?
    I guess their pension will cut in some degree regardless of their employee status(current employee or retired ) if AA file Ch 11, so there looks no benefit for AA pilot to retire now. But I may miss something because so many AA pilot actually chose retirement now....
     
  20. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,507
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    I don't know all the details and I am not a retirement plan expert, but according to

    http://www.theairlinezone.com/2011/09/111-american-airlines-pilots-retire-on-sept-1/

    the plan (plan B) that is impacted by the stock price (and triggering the retirements) is a defined contribution plan, not a defined benefits plan (traditional pension?). Sounds to me they'd get to keep the value of the plan even if AA goes ch11.
     
  21. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
  22. HaveMilesWillTravel
    Original Member

    HaveMilesWillTravel Gold Member

    Messages:
    12,507
    Likes Received:
    20,199
    Status Points:
    16,520
    Why?
     
  23. Pokemon

    Pokemon Active Member

    Messages:
    10
    Likes Received:
    2
    Status Points:
    65
    Thanks. The article is very helpful to understand behind the scene. I knew a little about their benefits from Plan B but I totally underestimated their benefits from choosing early retirment.
    Anyway, best wishes to all AA pilots and their families regardless of their tough decision.
     
  24. RestlessLocationSyndrome
    Original Member

    RestlessLocationSyndrome Silver Member

    Messages:
    1,014
    Likes Received:
    1,356
    Status Points:
    925
    Wow, they get to fly a plane and get 11% of their salary contributed to their retirement by their employer? Not to mention having 60 days to see where the stock price goes before choosing to retire. Not a bad deal at all... and wait, the oldest person retiring was 63? Jeez, that life sure sounds pretty sweet to me.
     
    HaveMilesWillTravel likes this.
  25. ceieoc

    ceieoc Silver Member

    Messages:
    195
    Likes Received:
    210
    Status Points:
    420
    I prefer the more experienced professional flight attendants at American Airlines. In an emergency, I feel safer and more confident that the seasoned flight attendant could more successfully evacuate our aircraft than some of the newer flight attendants. Older FA's seem to also have less gripes with American Airlines management then the newer FA's.This helps them not take their out frustrations with management issues on the flying passengers. Maybe it is because they are planning on retiring in two years or less that they have given up complaining about their work conditions. Like "great cheese comes from happy cows. Happy cows come from California." Your great flying experience comes from happy flight attendants. Happy flight attendants come from being close to retirement.
     

Share This Page