USA vs Canadian Airline Career

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172ReliefPilot
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USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by 172ReliefPilot »

I will save the guff and just get to the point. my gf is american, I am canadian. We have both expressed more interest in working and living in the states. I had a regional job lined up before COVID. Anyone personally gone through this? Pros v Cons? Long term goal would be a legacy carrier, Delta, American etc.. but even Alaska, Southwest, Spirit, JetBlue have peaked interest. What have you say? GO!
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pualani-mapleleaf
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by pualani-mapleleaf »

Just a FYI, Alaska IS a legacy airline. There are pros and cons to both (working in the US vs Canada). The pay is significantly more at all of the US airlines, legacy, national, and LCC compared to Canada. That could easily change with the COVID 19 pandemic if chapter 11 is filed at respective airlines. Work rules are unique to each airline. Always look for an airline that has a high min day pay and credit guarantee and a pay/credit rig of at least 1/3.5. Other than the pay issue, most of it will come down to where you guys decide to live. If at all possible, live in base and avoid commuting. That will drastically improve your lifestyle no matter where you work. Best of luck.
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GoHomeLeg
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by GoHomeLeg »

I've done both. Currently living and working in Canada and loving my job and where life took me. Go with where life take you try living in a base. Commuting sucks and can do damage to a relationship since you're always spending your free time looking up flights and sitting
around at airportss on your time off.

Being from somewhere in Canada and being based somewhere else in Canada is no different than being from Canada and being based in the US. It's all North America. Unless you're from some town that's hard to get to.
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GoHomeLeg
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by GoHomeLeg »

I've done both. Currently living and working in Canada and loving my job and where life took me. Go with where life take you try living in a base. Commuting sucks and can do damage to a relationship since you're always spending your free time looking up flights and sitting
around at airportss on your time off.

Being from somewhere in Canada and being based somewhere else in Canada is no different than being from Canada and being based in the US. It's all North America. Unless you're from some town that's hard to get to.
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MrAviator19
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by MrAviator19 »

172ReliefPilot wrote: Tue May 19, 2020 11:02 am I will save the guff and just get to the point. my gf is american, I am canadian. We have both expressed more interest in working and living in the states. I had a regional job lined up before COVID. Anyone personally gone through this? Pros v Cons? Long term goal would be a legacy carrier, Delta, American etc.. but even Alaska, Southwest, Spirit, JetBlue have peaked interest. What have you say? GO!
Somewhat similar situation here - wife and I are both Canadian and the recent turn of events in the world has caused us to look for opportunities that primarily pay us both significantly more. And that has led to a piqued interest south of the border and I've been doing extensive research over my last 2 months at home. When aviation picks up again, and I'm sure it will in time, my plan is to convert my license to FAA and move to a place where I wouldn't have to worry about de-icing for the rest of my flying career. I'm in 703 right now and like you, had an offer to join regional 705 this summer pre-Corona. But since things won't be improving on that front anytime soon, I'm open to 703/704-equivalent down south as well for better pay.

So according to my research so far:

Pros: Better pay (even in a smaller operation), weather (considering I choose to move to a hotter climate), overall better standard of living (for qualified professionals anyway).
Cons: Living away from home (but that's just like living in a city in Canada other than your hometown), American politics (if it bothers you?), less safe than Canada (depending on where you move).

For me, the pros far outweigh the cons.

MrA
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jpilot77
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by jpilot77 »

MrAviator19 wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 10:13 am
172ReliefPilot wrote: Tue May 19, 2020 11:02 am I will save the guff and just get to the point. my gf is american, I am canadian. We have both expressed more interest in working and living in the states. I had a regional job lined up before COVID. Anyone personally gone through this? Pros v Cons? Long term goal would be a legacy carrier, Delta, American etc.. but even Alaska, Southwest, Spirit, JetBlue have peaked interest. What have you say? GO!
Somewhat similar situation here - wife and I are both Canadian and the recent turn of events in the world has caused us to look for opportunities that primarily pay us both significantly more. And that has led to a piqued interest south of the border and I've been doing extensive research over my last 2 months at home. When aviation picks up again, and I'm sure it will in time, my plan is to convert my license to FAA and move to a place where I wouldn't have to worry about de-icing for the rest of my flying career. I'm in 703 right now and like you, had an offer to join regional 705 this summer pre-Corona. But since things won't be improving on that front anytime soon, I'm open to 703/704-equivalent down south as well for better pay.

So according to my research so far:

Pros: Better pay (even in a smaller operation), weather (considering I choose to move to a hotter climate), overall better standard of living (for qualified professionals anyway).
Cons: Living away from home (but that's just like living in a city in Canada other than your hometown), American politics (if it bothers you?), less safe than Canada (depending on where you move).

For me, the pros far outweigh the cons.

MrA
Do you have a green card or the right to work in the US? Cause you’ll definitely need those to work down there.
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MrAviator19
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by MrAviator19 »

jpilot77 wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 1:50 pm
MrAviator19 wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 10:13 am
172ReliefPilot wrote: Tue May 19, 2020 11:02 am I will save the guff and just get to the point. my gf is american, I am canadian. We have both expressed more interest in working and living in the states. I had a regional job lined up before COVID. Anyone personally gone through this? Pros v Cons? Long term goal would be a legacy carrier, Delta, American etc.. but even Alaska, Southwest, Spirit, JetBlue have peaked interest. What have you say? GO!
Somewhat similar situation here - wife and I are both Canadian and the recent turn of events in the world has caused us to look for opportunities that primarily pay us both significantly more. And that has led to a piqued interest south of the border and I've been doing extensive research over my last 2 months at home. When aviation picks up again, and I'm sure it will in time, my plan is to convert my license to FAA and move to a place where I wouldn't have to worry about de-icing for the rest of my flying career. I'm in 703 right now and like you, had an offer to join regional 705 this summer pre-Corona. But since things won't be improving on that front anytime soon, I'm open to 703/704-equivalent down south as well for better pay.

So according to my research so far:

Pros: Better pay (even in a smaller operation), weather (considering I choose to move to a hotter climate), overall better standard of living (for qualified professionals anyway).
Cons: Living away from home (but that's just like living in a city in Canada other than your hometown), American politics (if it bothers you?), less safe than Canada (depending on where you move).

For me, the pros far outweigh the cons.

MrA
Do you have a green card or the right to work in the US? Cause you’ll definitely need those to work down there.
Not at the moment. I'm not looking to move down there in the near future, still might take a couple of years if an opportunity presents itself. So that's something I'll be looking at more seriously when the time comes. For now, I've only been researching the different categories of work visas, both sponsored and non-sponsored. I remember seeing a thread here some time ago about Air Wisconsin sponsoring H1B visas for Canadian pilots, so there's definitely a possibility even if it's slim. Would love to hear other pilots' feedback here that have gone through the process, though.

MrA
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by Stinky »

Have you looked at the Air Canada payscales? You’ll make more at a low cost carrier in the US. Second year in the right seat at Spirit would pay better than a junior AC captain.
Tons of great places to live. Plenty of low or no tax states.

No contest in my opinion. I live in the US and won’t be moving back to Canada.
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by lee123 »

Stinky wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 3:38 pm Second year in the right seat at Spirit would pay better than a junior AC captain.
Yeah, no.
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by RRJetPilot »

Not that far off...

2nd year spirit FO 152k CAN
1st year AC A220 captain at 80hrs 174k

This is before taxes..... dollar goes A LOT further in the states with much lower taxes in MOST states.
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by altiplano »

I think it's pretty difficult to just move down there and get a Green Card because you want to live there.

Good luck though, I would have if I could have.
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MrAviator19
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by MrAviator19 »

altiplano wrote: Thu May 21, 2020 7:26 am I think it's pretty difficult to just move down there and get a Green Card because you want to live there.

Good luck though, I would have if I could have.
That is true. Employer-sponsored visas seem to be the only way for us Canadian pilots. And there are virtually no US airlines that sponsor Canadians. What's really needed is the addition of the word "Pilot" in the list of occupations under their "TN Visa" requirements. If dietitians & nutritionists can make it on the list, we definitely deserve a shot! :roll:

I believe Australian pilots can find a way into US through some E3 visa that their respective governments cooked up. So unless our governments work something out under NAFTA, chances are slim. And I doubt letting Canadian pilots work in the US is on anyone's agenda during their meetings.

MrA
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by jpilot77 »

Not to mention there are now thousands of unemployed pilots in the US, no company is going to try to sponsor a Canadian pilot while they can hire a US pilot without going through hoops.
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by 172ReliefPilot »

MrAviator19 wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 10:13 am
172ReliefPilot wrote: Tue May 19, 2020 11:02 am I will save the guff and just get to the point. my gf is american, I am canadian. We have both expressed more interest in working and living in the states. I had a regional job lined up before COVID. Anyone personally gone through this? Pros v Cons? Long term goal would be a legacy carrier, Delta, American etc.. but even Alaska, Southwest, Spirit, JetBlue have peaked interest. What have you say? GO!
Somewhat similar situation here - wife and I are both Canadian and the recent turn of events in the world has caused us to look for opportunities that primarily pay us both significantly more. And that has led to a piqued interest south of the border and I've been doing extensive research over my last 2 months at home. When aviation picks up again, and I'm sure it will in time, my plan is to convert my license to FAA and move to a place where I wouldn't have to worry about de-icing for the rest of my flying career. I'm in 703 right now and like you, had an offer to join regional 705 this summer pre-Corona. But since things won't be improving on that front anytime soon, I'm open to 703/704-equivalent down south as well for better pay.

So according to my research so far:

Pros: Better pay (even in a smaller operation), weather (considering I choose to move to a hotter climate), overall better standard of living (for qualified professionals anyway).
Cons: Living away from home (but that's just like living in a city in Canada other than your hometown), American politics (if it bothers you?), less safe than Canada (depending on where you move).

For me, the pros far outweigh the cons.

MrA
Can agree to the points you brought up. Being further away from my family in Canada is not something that I have thought about so I am not sure how it would effect me. But nontheless, air travel exists so it wouldnt be impossible. Safety is a bit of a concern, but life is unpredictable anyways so I I wont dwell on it too much. I dont think many airlines sponsor canadian pilots...maybe thatll in time..change who knows? I consider myself lucky that I may be able to get the green card through marriage. It has not been easy being long distance with my partner for nearly 6 years, but hoping for things to change soon!
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by 172ReliefPilot »

Stinky wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 3:38 pm Have you looked at the Air Canada payscales? You’ll make more at a low cost carrier in the US. Second year in the right seat at Spirit would pay better than a junior AC captain.
Tons of great places to live. Plenty of low or no tax states.

No contest in my opinion. I live in the US and won’t be moving back to Canada.
+1 Michigan, Arizona, Texas I have been pretty keen on.
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172ReliefPilot
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by 172ReliefPilot »

Thanks for the insight. Definitely a bit of a road to travel on before any before I can reasonably make any altering decisions. Hope you all keep safe and get back to flying soon.
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by JohnnyHotRocks »

You won’t find an American airline to sponsor you any time this decade.
I have heard of a few corporate pilots being sponsored but those were for management type positions, not line pilot jobs.
Good luck and if it works out for you let me know!
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by MrAviator19 »

172ReliefPilot wrote: Thu May 21, 2020 9:07 am I consider myself lucky that I may be able to get the green card through marriage.
She's a keeper! Don't @#$! it up! :D

I think Canadian pilots have a better shot at finding employment elsewhere - UK, EU, Aus/NZ, Asia, Middle East.

MrA
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by hawker driver »

RRJetPilot wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 9:55 pm Not that far off...

2nd year spirit FO 152k CAN
1st year AC A220 captain at 80hrs 174k

This is before taxes..... dollar goes A LOT further in the states with much lower taxes in MOST states.
Look to some of the Fractionals flying the biz jets.

At Flexjet Phenom 300 FO are making around 100k US first year which is 135K Canadian
If you are on some of the bigger equipment you are around 180K US ( 240K Canadian)
A lot of the guys doing OT (18 days per month) are hitting $300K US
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Re: USA vs Canadian Airline Career

Post by gtappl »

hawker driver wrote: Tue May 26, 2020 7:12 pm
RRJetPilot wrote: Wed May 20, 2020 9:55 pm Not that far off...

2nd year spirit FO 152k CAN
1st year AC A220 captain at 80hrs 174k

This is before taxes..... dollar goes A LOT further in the states with much lower taxes in MOST states.
Look to some of the Fractionals flying the biz jets.

At Flexjet Phenom 300 FO are making around 100k US first year which is 135K Canadian
If you are on some of the bigger equipment you are around 180K US ( 240K Canadian)
A lot of the guys doing OT (18 days per month) are hitting $300K US
Didn't Jazz pay go down a few years ago? Kind of saw the government's solution is to bring in TFW's (I say this as an immigrant)
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