Tuesday, March 7, 2023
April 2023 Staffing and Allocations
We had our call with the company this week to discuss the trips for April. We are beginning the uptick in flying hours as we move into the summer schedule. Our monthly hours will increase to 158,891. The slow increases we have seen in the last few months have produced a gradual increase in flying rather than one big jump as we had last May.
IPD flying starts the spring season with the addition of Madrid on the 15th. The positioning trip for Madrid is a deadhead out of PHL on the 14th. Rome begins on the 3rd. The positioning trip for Rome is a deadhead out of PHL on the 2nd. We will have 3 LHR flights, Munich and Frankfurt, daily. This brings our total to 7 IPD flights and the LHR out of RDU. If you want to bid on the RDU-LHR, ensure you intend to fly it. We have had several sick calls in RDU, jeopardizing the satellite base, as we have no Reserves to cover this. Creating open time in a satellite can affect the future of the satellite. RDU-LHR is a nice IPD trip, and Raleigh is only a few hours from Charlotte by car. If you want to try out an RDU trip, especially if you are purser qualified, give it a try, you may have found a new home.
Our trips look much the same as they have all winter. The construction parameters have not been altered. We continue to see minor improvements in many categories month after month, with a gradual increase in flying rather than a big jump. We are hoping the improvements will continue. The line average will be 77.1. This should allow more flexibility in PBS, but with more increases in time planned, we expect the line average will also increase as we get closer to summer.
Our Reserve percentage has decreased slightly, but this number will include new hires joining us after PBS has closed. This means the reserve percentage is lower than 22.2%. Our Reserve numbers remain higher than the system average of 19.4% because our Reserves are being utilized. Even with the higher numbers, our Reserves are working, which is good news as it allows our people to break guarantee, significantly improving their ability to make money. Keeping more Reserves than we need is expensive for the Company. We need to find a balance that allows for adequate coverage but is not overreactive. The Reserve cut-off will be November 4, 2013.
- 1-Days will make up 24% of our trips (March had 22%)
- 2-Days will make up 30% of our trips (March had 32%)
- 2/3-Days will make up 10% of our trips (March had 9%)
- 3-Days will make up 18% of our trips (March had 20%)
- 3/4-Days will make up 3% of our trips (March had 2%)
- 4-Days will make up 4% of our trips (March had 4%)
- Red eyes will come in at 2% of our trips with the same west coast cities we usually have.
- Bullets and pink eyes are consistent with the same trips we have had for several months.
ODANs will make up 7% of our trips. While this is an increase, our ODANs are not being bid on in PBS and are accounting for the majority of open time. This has become a problem since the inception of the new rest requirement of 10 hours. This puts the future of ODANs in jeopardy for our base. When bidding in PBS for ODANs, remember to allow 11+45 BLOCK to BLOCK. You can hit the waiver and allow this to go down to 11+30. Below is a rest chart for reference when bidding. You must hit the allow multiple pairings property if you want to fly multiple pairings in a single day. These apply to any multiple pairings such as red eyes, pink eyes, and bullets.
The 1-Days will see the same Island turns we have had for the winter and still include the 4-Leg 1-Days. Keep in mind the rest rules apply when bidding back-to-back 1-Days. Please refer to the chart when bidding and remember that NIPD requires the normal 11+45 (Waive down to 11+30).
The 2-Days make up the largest percentage of our trips. A mix of departure and arrival times makes it realistic to fly back-to-back trips or even bid double-ups.
The 2/3-Days and 3/4-Days will include long layovers in TPA, MKE, GRR, BUF, CHS, MKE, CMH, PDX, BNA, PIT, RIC, DAB, and PWM. These trips remain popular for those who just want some rest and commuters alike. We are still keeping an eye on these as you are working more calendar days for less money, and scheduling has been grabbing these crews for rescheduling purposes when the system gets messed up due to weather events. The 3/4-Days are commuter friendly. There is a Hawaii layover built into a 4-Day trip.
The 3-Days and 4-Days remain consistent. There are some good ones, and there are some high-fatigue ones. Take a look through these in the bid package before bidding generic. The overall number of 3-Days went down, but there are slightly more positions on 3-Days because of the new IPD flying that is starting. The 4-Days still have commuting issues on one end or another.
April 2023 Bidding Timelines
Our hotel department has been working overtime to secure rooms for the upcoming summer flying. Hotels will be in high demand with the anticipated load factors this summer. Getting airline contracts for discounted rooms has been something our people have been working on in hopes of getting ahead of any problems.
The flying time is evenly spread out, with a few schedule changes throughout the month. April 1st is stacked with trips and has the best chance of becoming a coverage-needed day. The weekends have more trips as they have extra flying for special events around the country such as a NASCAR, the Masters Golf Tournament, and Easter on the 9th. We will have nine (9) banks of flying except Tuesdays, where the last bank will be cut out. Charlotte continues to produce strong numbers, and we should be getting more new hires as the company continues its robust hiring. AA continues to get deliveries of wide-body aircraft. When each new aircraft comes online, another IPD destination can be served. We would like for any new service to find a home in Charlotte, as we are still lagging behind our pre-pandemic fleet numbers.
Overall, April will see the continuation of the ramp-up of flying, leading to the full summer schedule in June. The overall trip construction model remains the same, and the trips will look like the same trips we have had for a while. We would like a private discussion with the staffing and planning department to discuss the future of trips in Charlotte. We will keep you posted on any developments.
Take care of yourselves and each other,
The Charlotte APFA Team
APFA CLT Base President