Bearskin vs Georgian

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RoundEngineRumble
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Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by RoundEngineRumble » Fri Apr 13, 2012 12:37 pm

Luckily with the movement these days I have interview coming up with both-

What are the outlooks/ opinions on each company as mid term stepping stones to places like WJ or Transat?

Any mid term risks with Georgian regarding the Air Canada fiascos?

Any distinct benefits being on a machine with glass in the panel vs steam guages when it comes time to take the next step?

I've heard Georgian is a direct step to the majors... is Bearskin similar or do a majority of pilots at the top go to additional 'intermediate' steps like Porter etc?

The biggest challenge at Georgian seems trying to live in Toronto on 27k a year. Anybody know what a Starbucks coffee jockey make per year for comparison?
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Doc
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by Doc » Fri Apr 13, 2012 1:55 pm

Assistant Store Managers at Starbuck's make 32,318$ a year. And the coffee's FREE.
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fish4life
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by fish4life » Fri Apr 13, 2012 2:01 pm

well I know a few Bearskin guys and they are all happy, in fact a few lifer's there seems like a great company
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petey
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by petey » Fri Apr 13, 2012 11:51 pm

Fly the Metro; unless you want to take your girlfriend for a spin in the 1900, she would find that easier to handle. But seriously, go where you want to be if WJ or Transat doesn't call. (not to sound negative, but music can stop)
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cdnpilot77
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by cdnpilot77 » Sat Apr 14, 2012 8:12 am

petey wrote:But seriously, go where you want to be if WJ or Transat doesn't call. (not to sound negative, but music can stop)
Very wise words. Advice I was given was to go where you would be fine and happy spending 4-5 extra years after your planned move if the music stopped just months before you were set to leave.
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Maynard
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by Maynard » Sun Apr 15, 2012 8:17 pm

Bearskin....making 38k a year (start) in tbay is like making 60k in TO....Just sayin....
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Doc
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by Doc » Mon Apr 16, 2012 2:19 pm

Maynard wrote:Bearskin....making 38k a year (start) in tbay is like making 60k in TO....Just sayin....
Not quite. But you do get the drift. Thunder Bay ain't all that cheap. More like 50K in YYZ?
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by skybaron » Mon Apr 16, 2012 3:07 pm

Bearskin. Hands down.

Pay, lifestyle, and morale trumps Georgian.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by Doc » Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:05 pm

skybaron wrote:Bearskin. Hands down.

Pay, lifestyle, and morale trumps Georgian.
My wee pet peeve aside, I've never spoken to a Bearskin pilot who speaks anything but positively about the company. I can't say that about the preponderance of companies out there.

Bottom line? You could do a Hell of a lot worse than The Bear
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Tue Apr 17, 2012 6:54 pm

RoundEngineRumble wrote:I've heard Georgian is a direct step to the majors... is Bearskin similar or do a majority of pilots at the top go to additional 'intermediate' steps like Porter etc?
I left the Bear for Jazz back in January, and in my 2 years at the Bear, at least 4 left to go directly to AC, 4 to Jazz, 1 to Porter, 1 to Sunwing and 1 to the MNR. There might be more that I missed. And, some of those were F/O at the time. Hope that gives you an idea of what the progression is when leaving the Bear.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by BWL » Fri Apr 20, 2012 2:23 pm

Tbay is a great town, went for 24 mths, ended up being there for 5 years and miss it
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flying4dollars
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by flying4dollars » Sat Apr 21, 2012 7:01 pm

skybaron wrote:Bearskin. Hands down.

Pay, lifestyle, and morale trumps Georgian.
Hmm. Have you worked for Georgian? Not sure you'd be able to make that statement unless you have. Ps, Georgian has 3 bases. All very different from each other. Fyi
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skybaron
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by skybaron » Sat Apr 21, 2012 9:57 pm

flying4dollars wrote:
skybaron wrote:Bearskin. Hands down.

Pay, lifestyle, and morale trumps Georgian.
Hmm. Have you worked for Georgian? Not sure you'd be able to make that statement unless you have. Ps, Georgian has 3 bases. All very different from each other. Fyi

Nope. I'd rant the same if the topic involved PAL, CMA, Carson, or x-company that seems take advantage of their pilots by feeding them a dog's breakfast for a pay cheque.

This willingness to accept a poverty wage scale is not doing the pilot group any favours. Glorifying a dream that is inevitably an nightmare.

While I agree that pay is well below what it should be, especially for f/o's, lifestyle and opportunity is still there. The Calgary base averages maybe 60 hours a month. There is a reason turnover is high. All of the guys leaving here end up at an airline. Nobody moves sideways here, and the few, if at all that do, are f/o's with no PIC time to upgrade. I do not condone the pay, but I'd rather make less and retain job satisfaction, than make more and hate where I live/work. Again, I speak only of life in the Calgary base. I have never been based in Toronto outside of LID nore Halifax.

Listen, like every other operator in this world, Georgian isn't perfect and it sure isn't for everyone. But those that want things like good training, good airline oriented experience, good schedules and a relaxed working environment (at least here in YYC), this place has it. Before coming here, I heard enough negativity about this company to prevent me from ever applying. Time passed, and so did my priorities. I eventually applied, and now I'm here and I wish I'd come sooner. Let me put it this way, if the music stopped tomorrow and the big players removed hiring ads, I would rather not be anywhere else, as far as 704 operators go.

Don't discount all the things you hear about Georgian, good or bad, or any other company for that matter, but take what we all tell you with a grain of salt and make your own decision.
Agreed.

IMO, Morale and Lifestyle are directly influenced by Pay.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by flying4dollars » Sun Apr 22, 2012 12:05 am

skybaron wrote:
flying4dollars wrote:
skybaron wrote:


Nope. I'd rant the same if the topic involved PAL, CMA, Carson, or x-company that seems take advantage of their pilots by feeding them a dog's breakfast for a pay cheque.

This willingness to accept a poverty wage scale is not doing the pilot group any favours. Glorifying a dream that is inevitably an nightmare.



Agreed.

IMO, Morale and Lifestyle are directly influenced by Pay.
I work enough to build time, and have enough time off to enjoy life and go away. I'm never overworked, and I'm never in financial difficulty. Remember, we all spend our money differently and define lifestyle in different ways. When I'm not flying my 40-60 hours a month, I play hockey, snowboard, and use my travel benefits to go wherever I want. At the end of the day, I have more than enough money to spend AND save, while steadily reducing whatever debt I incurred when I got into this life. Some days I actually wish I flew more. Again, each base is different. I don't think Toronto is as relaxed, but this is how life is in Calgary and Halifax. So, lack of morale and lifestyle isn't a factor. At least, not here and not for me.
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~Hollywood~
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by ~Hollywood~ » Sun Apr 22, 2012 6:20 am

Nope. I'd rant the same if the topic involved PAL, CMA, Carson, or x-company that seems take advantage of their pilots by feeding them a dog's breakfast for a pay cheque.

This willingness to accept a poverty wage scale is not doing the pilot group any favours. Glorifying a dream that is inevitably an nightmare.
Oh, but paying $10,000 up front is doing the pilot group a favour??

So what's better, making $38,000yr after paying $10,000 up front, or $28,000yr with no bond?? Don't think one is any more justifiable than the other......
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CS01
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by CS01 » Sun Apr 22, 2012 2:54 pm

FYIW, my time with GGN has been quite positive. Halifax is a great place to live and relatively inexpensive. The schedule and job itself is quite easy. I prefer the morning pairings, start around 0700-0800 and done by 1430. 11 GDOs a month. Perdiems are about $500-600 per month. The company is very safety conscious. Training is very intensive and the SOPs quite strict, as well as a fatigue policy that you are encouraged to use. You're told from day 1, if you don't like it, you're free to leave. There is no bond. Management will help where they can if your goal is AC (letters of references etc). About 27 out of 120 GGN pilots went to AC in 2011 alone- captains are leaving before they're even done their upgrade training. Some YYZ pilots like to complain about having to position the plane to the hangar at the end of their pairing, and having to deal with customs. YHZ and YYC crews seem to quite enjoy the job.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Mon Apr 23, 2012 12:10 pm

~Hollywood~ wrote:
Oh, but paying $10,000 up front is doing the pilot group a favour??

So what's better, making $38,000yr after paying $10,000 up front, or $28,000yr with no bond?? Don't think one is any more justifiable than the other......
There is a difference. At GGN, you make $28,000 and that's it. At Bearskin, you make $38,000 and that $10,000 bond is paid back over 2 years, with interest. Maybe not justifiable, but in the end, you'll make more at Bearskin (if your concern is about pay and pay alone).
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~Hollywood~
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by ~Hollywood~ » Mon Apr 23, 2012 5:28 pm

There is a difference. At GGN, you make $28,000 and that's it. At Bearskin, you make $38,000 and that $10,000 bond is paid back over 2 years, with interest. Maybe not justifiable, but in the end, you'll make more at Bearskin (if your concern is about pay and pay alone).
I never said there wasn't a difference. If paying up front $10k but making $38k/yr makes you sleep better at night then go for it. You can also argue upgrades are a lot quicker at GGN then also. When I was there almost 2 yrs ago I got upgraded in 8 months making more than double of what I was making as an f/o. And that's what the majority of guys go there for, quick upgrades (as long as you meet the min req's), sit there logging multi turbine pic making cptn wages until one of the majors call. You won't see too many people there for more than 2 yrs these days.

We can sit here and argue points all day, if your goal is to make it to AC or WJ or wherever, then both options are good, you can get your shot at either one. Each one will have it's pros and cons, and with GGN, being based in YYZ is completely different than YYC or YHZ.
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BlueSkies1
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by BlueSkies1 » Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:08 am

I know this has already been stated but I would appreciate if someone at the Bear could verify that the starting salary is in fact 38K. I'm looking to make the move into flying full-time while the hiring is good and I've heard great things about the company. Unfortunately for me the salary is a determining factor, not because I want to get rich, but because I need to make sure I can pay the bills. I'm getting into the game a bit late at 31 yrs so life can kinda get in the way of your plans. That's the reason I haven't pursued GGN and don't want to waste anyone's time if it is the case at the Bear as well. I looked on Airline Pilot Central but it's hard to tell if those numbers are accurate or dated. Does the 38K include per diems? And if not what can you reasonably expect to make per month.

Sorry guys I realize this stuff has already been discussed but it's hard to tell sometimes what's true and what's hearsay on this forum.... Thanks
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by rooster » Thu Aug 23, 2012 9:58 am

BlueSkies1 wrote:I know this has already been stated but I would appreciate if someone at the Bear could verify that the starting salary is in fact 38K. I'm looking to make the move into flying full-time while the hiring is good and I've heard great things about the company. Unfortunately for me the salary is a determining factor, not because I want to get rich, but because I need to make sure I can pay the bills. I'm getting into the game a bit late at 31 yrs so life can kinda get in the way of your plans. That's the reason I haven't pursued GGN and don't want to waste anyone's time if it is the case at the Bear as well. I looked on Airline Pilot Central but it's hard to tell if those numbers are accurate or dated. Does the 38K include per diems? And if not what can you reasonably expect to make per month.

Sorry guys I realize this stuff has already been discussed but it's hard to tell sometimes what's true and what's hearsay on this forum.... Thanks
Bearskin:

Image

Georgian:

Image

Found this on ..com

Looks like an FO at Bearskin makes $2560 vs an FO at Georgian Air makes $2400. $160 difference is hardly the big split people are talking about. I think the $38K a year at Bearskin is including per diems, which would mean Georgian Air guys make $34k a year. I see the Bearskin guys get jumpseat agreements, but Georgian Air guys get jump AND full travel benefits with all the majors. I think benefits would be better at GGN in that regard. Plus the bases of Toronto, Calgary and Halifax are better than TBay, Winterpeg and Red Lake. On the other hand, why are per diems so low at GGGN though? $1.70 hardly seems attractive. Either way, I think pilots from both airlines would do just fine moving on to other opportunities. Funny how people mention how good life is in cities outside of the Centre of the Universe, but those in the YYZ are 'miserable' :roll:
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fish4life
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by fish4life » Thu Aug 23, 2012 10:09 am

how far is the georgian salary going to go in Toronto? vs how far the bearskin salary will go in t-bay or red lake. Also a minimum guarantee of 100 credit hours at Georgian? thats insane most company's start paying OT over 80-85 credits so keep that in mind as well your wage per hours worked would be much lower at Georgian than at the Bear.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by pilotman15 » Thu Aug 23, 2012 12:12 pm

Ill clear things up here.

Firstly, Bearskin bases are Winnipeg, Thunder Bay, Waterloo, and a small base in Sioux Lookout (no Red Lake base).

Bearskin Travel Benefits for Pilots: Full Jump seat program with a load of airlines (including porter, WJ, AC, Sunwing, Transat, etc etc) and the full ZED fare program for family.

Pay: New year 1 FO pay is just over 30/credit I believe with a roughly $4.00 a credit increase for year 2 FO wage. Based on minimum monthly guarantee of 80 with most pilots going over that in the winter and right around the 80 in the summer.

Per Diems: Now $2.25 per hour away from base on pairings with yearly increases to that number over the course of the new contract and a single day pairing per diem cap of $20.00.

The majority of the overnights are done by Thunder Bay crews and therefore more per diems for those crews.

My understanding is that with the per diems included most year 1 FO's come in right around the 40k mark and therefore year 2 FO's come in in the low 40s.

New contract sees a lot of people getting a few days extra off above the guaranteed 12 off per month. Any other questions feel free to PM.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by flying4dollars » Thu Aug 23, 2012 12:24 pm

fish4life wrote:how far is the georgian salary going to go in Toronto? vs how far the bearskin salary will go in t-bay or red lake. Also a minimum guarantee of 100 credit hours at Georgian? thats insane most company's start paying OT over 80-85 credits so keep that in mind as well your wage per hours worked would be much lower at Georgian than at the Bear.
While this is a good point, I'm averaging 50 hours a month. I still get paid for 100. I would imagine at Bearskin you're probably flying close to the 80 or more. Just a guess. Point is, I work half the amount I get paid for. I'd much rather work the schedule I have, than do 90 just to bank 10 hours OT pay. I'm also not in it for the hours anymore. Again, to each their own. The pay here isn't worth bragging about, and I won't argue to defend it. But Georgian offers as close to an airline lifestyle and system as you will get in this country short of going to Jazz, AC, WJ, Porter etc. So I guess it depends on what you're after. If it's pay, you may want to look elsewhere. If it's lifestyle and benefits, you'll do just fine here.

One more note, people wonder how it's possible to live in Toronto on $28,800 year. Well, just ask the 50+ F/O's we have here. Hell, I did it on $28,600 in Vancouver when I was working my last job. You just have to make some short term sacrifices in spending habits (unless you're already thrifty). Either way, you can't go wrong with either or. I'm sure Bearskin is a great place to work, just like Georgian is. It just depends on what you're after.
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by CS01 » Thu Aug 23, 2012 12:27 pm

The perdiems are based on time away from base (not duty hours). Ends up being about 600 a month (in YHZ). Halifax and Calgary guys work MUCH less than YYZ, still payed 100 credits. There is also not much, if any, wait for upgrade at Georgian. Once you have the required hours, you'll be captain. Meaning more money sooner.
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ikarus
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Re: Bearskin vs Georgian

Post by ikarus » Tue Sep 04, 2012 4:32 pm

flying4dollars,

you should ask the guys based in YYZ what they think about pay, schedule, stress on the job and how much downtime they have.

Very big difference between YYC/YHZ and YYZ bases.....but you had to work in Toronto to realize that, so I don't blame you for being ill informed.

Regrads
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