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AviatorInsight

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How old is the youngest Captain at your airlines in say the 737?
Mid to Late 30s/early 40s maybe?

When Virgin Blue was going through the massive expansion phase some years back I think there was one Capt who got his command just before 30?
 

Vic

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Yes, surprisingly easy questions I thought. I read the book several years ago and the only questions I got wrong was identifying the part that failed and the name of the crew who was multilingual. Same 2 as the contestant I think.
Technically wasn't it the language spoken other than english, rather than the name of the crew?

I think easy for someone with an interest in these things. I also got the cricket questions pretty easily - even vigoro
 

jb747

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How old is the youngest Captain at your airlines in say the 737?
The majority of new Captains at QF would be in their late 40s. It becomes difficult to do the training once in your 50s, and the opporunity doesn’t come up all that often for those in their 30s. There are exceptions both ways though, and I know of a couple who gained 747 Classic commands whillst 29.…but they had to join the airline whilst still in primary school.
Yes, at all Richard's talks he brings along a cache of books, which he happily signs :D
He needs to move on.
 

flyer89

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The majority of new Captains at QF would be in their late 40s. It becomes difficult to do the training once in your 50s, and the opporunity doesn’t come up all that often for those in their 30s. There are exceptions both ways though, and I know of a couple who gained 747 Classic commands whillst 29.…but they had to join the airline whilst still in primary school.

Youngest I know got a 747 command at 33. But I guess that will happen when you have a seniority number from 1980.....
 

Saab34

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Will they still give you a command upgrade opportunity even if your say, too old ? Talking late 50s?

Seems many FOs will get burnt with delayed upgrades in this environment, I’d imagine most will be in the 50s when the day comes.
 

AviatorInsight

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Will they still give you a command upgrade opportunity even if your say, too old ? Talking late 50s?

Seems many FOs will get burnt with delayed upgrades in this environment, I’d imagine most will be in the 50s when the day comes.
If you’ve bid for it and are of a particular standard with seniority then they can’t knock you back for it.
 

harvyk

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My understanding is that you don't manually code in routes into the FMC before flights, instead you'd use a pre-loaded template (I believe they are called company routes) and modify it if required.

If that's the case, does the FMC of all company owned aircraft already have all the routes which the company does (or can) fly already loaded into it, or is it only the routes which that aircraft type typically flies, and in the event that the aircraft needs to fly a route which that aircraft doesn't normally do (eg last minute a/c substitutions) how does the route get loaded into the aircraft?
 

AviatorInsight

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My understanding is that you don't manually code in routes into the FMC before flights, instead you'd use a pre-loaded template (I believe they are called company routes) and modify it if required.

If that's the case, does the FMC of all company owned aircraft already have all the routes which the company does (or can) fly already loaded into it, or is it only the routes which that aircraft type typically flies, and in the event that the aircraft needs to fly a route which that aircraft doesn't normally do (eg last minute a/c substitutions) how does the route get loaded into the aircraft?
That’s right. Unless you’ve got ACARS and the flight planned route gets downloaded into the FMC when you request it.

If non ACARS then yes there’s a number of company routes in the data base. Ours are preloaded as SYDMEL1 SYDMEL2 etc.

There are only certain airways that IFR aircraft can fly. Kind of like flying on a highway. If restricted areas are active (such as WLM airspace and we’re flying north) then the company route to fly will take us out over Richmond, Mudgee and up the spine of the Great Diving Range to our destination.

Where it gets good is flying Transcon and airlines can fly user preferred routes (the most cost efficient route). These can change daily according to what is put out by the flight planning software.

On our paper flight plan it’ll come up as say SYDPER13. But I’ll put that into the FMC and no route will exist in the database. In that case I’ll need to manually load the airway and waypoints myself along with the forecast wind at each waypoint. It makes me appreciate ACARS more. Thankfully there’s only a handful of non ACARS equipped aircraft floating around these days.
 

AviatorInsight

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Not YSSYYMML1 / YSSYYMML2?

When are ICAO codes used vs the IATA codes?
ICAO is used on route page 1 for the Departure and Destination. But for preloaded routes, which is on the same page just half way down, it’s the IATA code. There’s actually not enough room for ICAO codes on the Co Route line.

ICAO codes are used everywhere else. So the Depart/Arrivals page, the fix pages (unless you want the navaid), and alternate airports page.
 
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jb747

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Will they still give you a command upgrade opportunity even if your say, too old ? Talking late 50s?

Seems many FOs will get burnt with delayed upgrades in this environment, I’d imagine most will be in the 50s when the day comes.
In the current environment it's difficult to predict anything. Prior to CV, Qantas was hitting a point at which retirement were increasing quite dramatically (the very large recruitment that happened from 83 to 90 or so), and that would have had the effect of opening up many more slots. They've never had even annual recruitment; it's always been nothing or huge. They'd have been far better off taking the 'average' requirement, every year.

If your number comes up, you've bid for it, AND you can get a recommendation from the training board, then you can start the training. Any FO who has a go past 55 is an idiot. Many older FOs simply won't bid, so the age drifts lower.
 

jb747

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My understanding is that you don't manually code in routes into the FMC before flights, instead you'd use a pre-loaded template (I believe they are called company routes) and modify it if required.

If that's the case, does the FMC of all company owned aircraft already have all the routes which the company does (or can) fly already loaded into it, or is it only the routes which that aircraft type typically flies, and in the event that the aircraft needs to fly a route which that aircraft doesn't normally do (eg last minute a/c substitutions) how does the route get loaded into the aircraft?
It was very rare for us to load company routes after the early 2000s. They do come up in diversions though. Virtually all route loads were via an ACARs uplink. Rerouting in flight could also be done that way.

Manual route loads (i.e. waypoint by waypoint) were extremely rare, and when they did happen (due ACARs being unexpectedly unavailable), they could take substantial time to be loaded and then checked. Having said that, even FMS and ACARs routes are line by line checked. Errors were rare, but you'd find one every now and then.
Post automatically merged:

Why are airline HR people disliked by Pilots so much?
Because they're basically an internal Gestapo, with the name simply being camouflage.
 

Saab34

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Any FO who has a go past 55 is an idiot. Many older FOs simply won't bid, so the age drifts lower.
Interesting how come? Big pay jump of 6 figures I assume many would be lured. If your planning on retiring 65-70 that’s still a little while in the left seat.
 

jb747

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Interesting how come? Big pay jump of 6 figures I assume many would be lured. If your planning on retiring 65-70 that’s still a little while in the left seat.
What 6 figure pay rise would that be? I lost money in going from 744 FO to 767 Captain.

An FO will almost certainly have to bid back to a lower aircraft to get a command. Very few will be in a position to put their hands up for the aircraft that they are on. If they are, they’ve either forgone opportunities for the larger aircraft as an FO, or they’re so old that they’ve been around forever, and could have had command years ago. Both cases carry huge financial penalties.

Going back to that lower aircraft will almost always mean that you’d get less $ as a Captain (on your new type) than as FO on the old. You may be on a higher hourly rate, but you simply won’t have the rosters to make the most of it. It will balance out eventually, but whether you ever fill in the amount ‘under the curve’ will be arguable. I also gave up a huge amount of time off.…measured in years.

But, the biggest issue is nothing to do with money, bidding systems, or time off. It’s simply that the job of Captain is NOT some sort of super FO. Basically the Captain’s job is to be big picture, whilst the FO will look after the housekeeping. I’ve seen any number of long term FOs who are great inside the coughpit, but have no idea of the world beyond the window, and because that’s been their playbook for a long time, it’s very difficult for them to change. A high percentage of them fail to get past the assessment sims required to even start the training.

If they get to start, their odds of actually passing aren’t all that wonderful. And then, if they miss out, they don’t just get to go back to their old (higher paying) seat, as that slot will have been allocated elsewhere. Now they get to be FOs on their new aircraft, at an even lower rate of pay.

All of this is an incentive not to delay. Yes, for many, slots may not have been available, but they’d still need to think long and hard about putting up their hands. If they’ve chosen to delay, enjoyed being senior, and ended up in this position, it’s an own goal.

And if you’re planning on going to 65 or 70…then you really should have kept that first wife.
 

Saab34

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JB thanks for that, very interesting to see how QF operates compared to say Jetstar. I guess if you want a fast upgrade, well then apply to the star, albeit on less dollars in both seats compared to the roo.

Are the Check and Training standards, assessments etc much the same at Jetstar?
 

AviatorInsight

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Not YSSYYMML1 / YSSYYMML2?

When are ICAO codes used vs the IATA codes?
When ACARS decides to not work this morning so I had to load it manually.

You can tell I’ve requested the plan to come through by the highlight of the word REQUEST, and I can’t request it again when it has “frozen” like that, so it was a manual entry.

1FA69D87-C56D-4F5B-818D-80423FF33957.jpeg
 

jb747

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Are the Check and Training standards, assessments etc much the same at Jetstar?
Who knows? It isn't something that I have first hand knowledge of. There is no overlap of the training or management systems.
When ACARS decides to not work this morning so I had to load it manually.

You can tell I’ve requested the plan to come through by the highlight of the word REQUEST, and I can’t request it again when it has “frozen” like that, so it was a manual entry.
Pulling the CDU (or FMC) CB to force a reset doesn't help?
 

Hvr

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And if you’re planning on going to 65 or 70…then you really should have kept that first wife.


Or another way to look at it: If you'd kept that first wife you wouldn't need to go to 65 or 70. ;)
 

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