What to expect as a new hire

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andrewhartjr
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What to expect as a new hire

Post by andrewhartjr » Wed Aug 15, 2018 6:33 am

Hello,

Can anyone please describe what life would look like for a new hire (FO) at the YUL Base ?

- I have been talking to a few ex-sunwing guys and I am receiving different information: Some tell me it is mostly turns at Sunwing, but others say that as a Junior I will go on long pairings often. What would the schedule look like for the first 6 month?
- How many off days on average per month? How many grey days?

Thanks!
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DHC-1 Jockey
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:29 am

Your schedule really depends on the time of year. Winter is the busy season so you're doing a lot more flying. Summer is more relaxed.

For example, the most junior F/O in YUL in March had 4 days of turns, a 4 day pairing, 6 Reserve Days, 5 grey days and 11 GDO's.

The most junior F/O in YUL in August had 2 days of turns, 2 short pairings, 9 Reserve Days, 2 grey days and 11 GDO's.

Getting called in on Reserve is hit and miss. Some people get called often, others can go for days without being called. Then it switches around. It's just luck of the draw.

We always get 11 GDO's per month, and any other days not assigned as flying, Reserve, SIM, groundschool, etc are assigned as grey days. Grey days can be assigned up until you checkout after your last flight preceding the grey days. For example, you can fly today, have 3 GDO's and then 2 grey days. They can assign a flight on those grey days up until you check out at the end of your flight today. Once you're checked out, those grey days essentially become GDO's. So, now you have 5 consecutive days off (3 GDO's plus 2 grey days that are now "off"). I never schedule anything really important on grey days just in case I'm assigned flying on those days.

As a junior F/O, I would plan to work 14-15 days per month over the busy winter season, and 8-10 in the summer.

Long story short, with some seniority, you can have whatever type of flying you like. There are some pilots who haven't done an overnight in years and come to work with just a small flight bag. Others prefer the long 6 or 7 day pairings because the per-diems are much better or they enjoy the overnights down south.

Some choose to deploy to Europe for the summer and bring their family with them (paid for by the company!) while others choose to stay in Canada. The variety at this company is great and gives you flexibility to really do what you like best.

Any other questions, just let me know.
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andrewhartjr
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by andrewhartjr » Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:27 am

DHC-1 Jockey wrote:
Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:29 am
Any other questions, just let me know.
Thank you so much for your post! I am sure everybody interested in joining Sunwing will appreciate your help. The last question I'd like to ask is if you can give us 5 pros and 5 cons of working there?

Thanks a lot!
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:37 am

andrewhartjr wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:27 am
The last question I'd like to ask is if you can give us 5 pros and 5 cons of working there?
Pros:
1. Great people to work with.
2. Lots of variety in where you fly (short turns, long pairings, Europe, etc.)
3. Working high credit turns or pairings have you work 8-10 days per month, even in the busy winter season. But, you need decent seniority for that.
4. You know your base before you're hired. I wanted YYZ, and they offered me a G/S with a YUL spot. I declined, and they said they would call me for the next course with a YYZ spot. A week later, they called with YYZ. The company doesn't want to hire people and make them move or commute to a place that they don't want to be.
5. European deployments are very popular, and the company provides you with a furnished apartment, rental car and will even fly your family over to be with you, or pay for your flight to come home during deployment if you have a decent stretch of time off or vacation. Lots of people bring their spouse and kids over and essentially get a paid working-vacation to Europe for 3 or 6 months. Bases this summer were Belfast, Dublin, Leeds, Norwich, Amsterdam, Warsaw and Katowice (Poland). Past bases have included Edinburgh, Nice (France) and some others I'm forgetting, but they can change from year to year.

Cons:
1. The 737 is cramped, and can get uncomfortable on a day of 10 or 11 hours of flying.
2. Grey days: You can't schedule anything important on them since you might be assigned to fly, and you only know if they are "off" once you're done your last flight before the grey days. So while they may become a day off, it limits your ability to schedule personal plans since you're "hostage" until you check-out.
3. We don't get per-diems while in the aircraft (since we have hot crew meals) or on southern overnights at all-inclusives (since they provide food and drink).
4. There is the possibility of being forced to deploy to Europe if you are junior, but there are provisions in the contract to limit the time that they can send you (Maximum 30 days if I recall). It's been a few years since anyone has been forced to deploy since the company tries to keep everyone happy.
5. Decent benefits but no pension.. only RRSP matching plan that takes a while to reach the top-tier.
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andrewhartjr
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by andrewhartjr » Thu Aug 16, 2018 11:19 am

You're the man! Thanks so much and I owe you a few drinks once I start :)
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by Inverted2 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:59 pm

With regards to "grey days" I assume that's like reserve. What's the callout time? Do you usually get advance notice or is be here in 2 hours or less?
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by eyebrow737 » Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:18 pm

Inverted2 wrote:
Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:59 pm
With regards to "grey days" I assume that's like reserve. What's the callout time? Do you usually get advance notice or is be here in 2 hours or less?
Grey is different from reserve. All ye need to know is in the CBA

http://negotech.labour.gc.ca/cgi-bin/re ... &p25=&p34=
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Xavsm
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by Xavsm » Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:35 pm

Hey
Really nice post!
What would be the requirement for a F/O at Sunwing?
Thanks
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Speedalive
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by Speedalive » Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:18 am

Xavsm wrote:
Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:35 pm
Hey
Really nice post!
What would be the requirement for a F/O at Sunwing?
Thanks
https://jobs.jobvite.com/sunwing/job/oq3L7fw5
QUALIFICATIONS:

Must have Canadian Airline Transport Pilot License / Frozen ATPL or CPL with IATRA written
Must have a valid Category 1 Medical Certificate
Must be a Canadian Citizen or Permanent Resident of Canada
Minimum 2000 total pilot hours (Note: Pilots with lower than 3000 hours will be considered on a case by case basis considering flight experience and education)
Excellent interpersonal skills, positive work ethic and possess a safety above all attitude
No Accidents / Incidents / Violations in last 3 years
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bob99
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by bob99 » Sun Aug 26, 2018 9:43 am

Someone already touched on it but I just wanted to make sure. New hires can get YYZ base right away? If you did take a YUL spot, how long to transfer back? Also, how's the general moral? Is it somewhere that most people plan on staying?
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metalbusdriver
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by metalbusdriver » Wed Nov 07, 2018 5:58 am

Just curious as to which would be the most junior base? I am guessing YUL. Also if anyone knows what average upgrade times are at the different bases.
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Wed Nov 07, 2018 7:56 am

metalbusdriver wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 5:58 am
Just curious as to which would be the most junior base? I am guessing YUL. Also if anyone knows what average upgrade times are at the different bases.
Each base is just as junior, as the recent groundschools had positions for both YYZ and YUL. YVR is a "seasonal" base but it's much more senior.

Upgrades have been offered at both bases with as little as one year in the company, provided you meet the upgrade qualifications (5000 TT, 2000 Jet, etc.). There have also been a few Direct Entry captains hired recently as not enough F/O's either had the hour qualifications or chose not to upgrade.
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Yieldermatik
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by Yieldermatik » Thu Feb 28, 2019 7:01 pm

How many hours does a sunwing pilot fly per year?
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Fri Mar 01, 2019 1:03 pm

Yieldermatik wrote:
Thu Feb 28, 2019 7:01 pm
How many hours does a sunwing pilot fly per year?
I logged about 500 hours in the past 12 months, and I don't do any overtime.
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CharlieKilo
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by CharlieKilo » Sat Mar 16, 2019 7:00 pm

Great info, just curious if it’s an option to live and fly out of YWG for Sunwing?
They mention multiple bases, but is that referring to eastern Canada?
Thanks
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GoinVertical
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by GoinVertical » Sat Mar 16, 2019 7:40 pm

DHC-1 Jockey wrote:
Wed Nov 07, 2018 7:56 am
.
Upgrades have been offered at both bases with as little as one year in the company, provided you meet the upgrade qualifications (5000 TT, 2000 Jet, etc.). There have also been a few Direct Entry captains hired recently as not enough F/O's either had the hour qualifications or chose not to upgrade.
Has anyone upgraded with less than the time specified? I see in the CBA the wording says "should" and not "shall" have 2000 jet 100t+ or 1000 PIC jet 100t+. 500/hours a year makes for a four year wait for someone coming from a regional, and surprises me given all the claims I've heard of "quick upgrades" .
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Sun Mar 17, 2019 2:07 pm

CharlieKilo wrote:
Sat Mar 16, 2019 7:00 pm
Great info, just curious if it’s an option to live and fly out of YWG for Sunwing? They mention multiple bases, but is that referring to eastern Canada?
Yes there is a YWG base but it's only operational in the winter (Oct-Mar if I recall correctly). In the summer you'll have to work out of YYZ, YUL or one of the seasonal summer bases (YVR or Europe).
GoinVertical wrote:
Sat Mar 16, 2019 7:40 pm
Has anyone upgraded with less than the time specified? I see in the CBA the wording says "should" and not "shall" have 2000 jet 100t+ or 1000 PIC jet 100t+.
Yes there have been upgrades offered with less than the "should" requirement, but those I know who have been offered that had previous jet experience, training experience, ACP experience, etc.

Both of these questions you could bring up in the interview if you are offered one.
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maxflight636
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by maxflight636 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:32 am

This is awesome guys! Thanks a lot
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180
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by 180 » Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am

A few more questions...

What Union represents Sunwing pilots?

Does Sunwing have YOS?

Do you still get per diems on top of the European deployment living allowance?

Thanks.
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Sat Jul 06, 2019 12:38 pm

180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am
What Union represents Sunwing pilots?
UNIFOR
180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am
Does Sunwing have YOS?
For upgrades? Yes, however while you may upgrade as a 5 year F/O (for example), you will have year 5 Captain seniority but only year 2 Captain pay. All internal upgrades at SWG start at year 2 Captain pay, regardless how long you've been with the company.
180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am
Do you still get per diems on top of the European deployment living allowance?
I'm deploying for the first time this year, so I could be wrong, but I don't believe we get "double perdiems." You get paid a set amount of money per day regardless if you're on a day off, on reserve, actually flying or even home in Canada on a stretch of days off.
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by Handover » Mon Jul 08, 2019 11:03 am

180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am

Do you still get per diems on top of the European deployment living allowance?

Thanks.
FCMs shall receive per diems when they are on Company business away from their deployed base in accordance with Article 14.
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Pilot011524
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by Pilot011524 » Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:24 pm

Can someone clarify how the base structure at Sunwing works?
IE which bases are available during the winter ops and what's available for summer?

Currently in YVR and hoping to stay out here in the winter and go to Europe in the summer.
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Wed Jul 17, 2019 12:45 pm

Pilot011524 wrote:
Tue Jul 16, 2019 5:24 pm
Can someone clarify how the base structure at Sunwing works?
IE which bases are available during the winter ops and what's available for summer?
The permanent bases at Sunwing are YYZ and YUL. Everyone is assigned to one of these bases as their "permanent" base.

YVR is staffed year round, but is technically a "seasonal" base. That is, every 6 months, all pilots have the option to bid to YVR for either the summer or winter season. Although it is a seasonal base, there are pilots who have only been flying out of YVR for years. They just have to bid YVR as their seasonal base every 6 months.

I can't recall if seniority or residence status plays a role. For example, in the past, a junior pilot whose permanent home address is in the YVR area would get that base before a senior pilot who is based and lives in YYZ but wants to transfer to YVR. That may be changing to make it fair for anyone in the company to bid into YVR, regardless of where you currently live... Seniority may be the only deciding factor.

There are also rumours of making YVR an actual "permanent" base, but that has been talked about for years.

Other seasonal bases (in past winters) have been YYC, YEG (I think), YWG, YOW, YQB and YHZ. Last year it was YVR, YYC, YWG and YQB in addition to the permanent bases of YYZ and YUL.

Summer seasonal bases this year in Europe are Aberdeen, Belfast, Dublin, Norwich, Amsterdam, Katowice and Brno. Past summer bases have also included Edinburgh, Glasgow, Leeds, Nice (and some others in France I think), and some other eastern European countries which I can't remember. Again, it varies year to year based on what our European partners require.

Last year you had to be relatively senior to get a deployment overseas, and this year people were drafted to go overseas, and the draft list went almost to the top of seniority list. It all varies year to year.
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by ant_321 » Wed Jul 17, 2019 2:09 pm

DHC-1 Jockey wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 12:38 pm
180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am
What Union represents Sunwing pilots?
UNIFOR
180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am
Does Sunwing have YOS?
For upgrades? Yes, however while you may upgrade as a 5 year F/O (for example), you will have year 5 Captain seniority but only year 2 Captain pay. All internal upgrades at SWG start at year 2 Captain pay, regardless how long you've been with the company.
180 wrote:
Sat Jul 06, 2019 8:54 am
Do you still get per diems on top of the European deployment living allowance?
I'm deploying for the first time this year, so I could be wrong, but I don't believe we get "double perdiems." You get paid a set amount of money per day regardless if you're on a day off, on reserve, actually flying or even home in Canada on a stretch of days off.
Not all internal upgrades start at year 2. You only start at year 2 if you have more than 2 years at the company. And yes, you do get per diem on top of you deployment allocation.
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Re: What to expect as a new hire

Post by DHC-1 Jockey » Wed Jul 17, 2019 3:27 pm

ant_321 wrote:
Wed Jul 17, 2019 2:09 pm
Not all internal upgrades start at year 2. You only start at year 2 if you have more than 2 years at the company. And yes, you do get per diem on top of you deployment allocation.
Thanks for the info! Reading deeper into the CBA I see you're right about the Year 2 Captain pay. I was given some bad information verbally and took it as gospel.
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