DD I have said it once and I will say it again, utter rubbish. I don't have to spend hours scouring the web to try and build a picture of what's happening in Monarch, I see it every day. Your posting is wrong in many areas which tells me you obviously don't work for us thank god. I will not go into all points as I have a life, a girl, and too little time for self abuse. A few points to think about, we are not opening a base at BHX this year I think you will find we have been there for a while. But if you pull it up on one of your searches on a cold lonely night then please let us know. The best one though is your monkey maths regarding crewing levels. What was it again, 400+ pilots / 32 aircraft(WRONG 34) = how many hours per pilot. Our cc spends hundreds of hours of their time trying to work out and negotiate with ops our crewing levels on a daily basis as the goalposts are constantly changing. I will give you a hint, what about pilots who train on the ground, what about pilots who spend time out of the cockpit in Luton on cc business, safety officers, medical advisors......how about female pilots on maternity, long term sick........and so on. But oh no, you spend a few minutes on google and hey presto a bloody expert is born. Our reasons for moving into Leeds and East Mids are what again? What, we are going to try and get extra pax to fly with us, how dare us. I'm not going to slag Jet 2 off but some of their pax will try us and if we get it right they will fly with us again and the same goes for Jet 2. Neither of us can tell what will happen......hold on, sorry I forgot my place...I can't tell what will happen but it sure feels good to be part of a company that's taking a shot at the title...
A few more lonely hours needed on the Internet for these guys me thinks....
Monarch deserves better management than they have at present and they deserve to be profitable and thrive but the business can never thrive on losses, refinancing and reckless expansion into the unknown.
I believe it has very good management now.
All this sounds very FR like in it's bashing. Smells of an O'Leary stitch up to me!
I've worked for a couple of none aviation employers in the past that underwent expansion on a similar scale to Monarch. They just didn't have the resources to manage the expansion in enough detail and expanded into markets that were not profitable. When economic circumstances caused those markets to reduce in size they downsized, reducing staff on a grand scale.
If, I was offered the job, I'd probably take it. However I'd do it on the basis that I'd have a 50/50 chance of being fired within 2 years and wouldn't pin a mortage or anything like that around a job at Monarch. If it worked out though, it could be nice, but to start thinking about time to command and that kind of stuff is premature.
My gut feeling about Monarch is that they need to downsize and concentrate on improving margins, not expanding to increase revenue. So, good luck to those that get the jobs, but for goodness sake, go in with your eyes open, understand how risky the expansion is and have a plan B if it goes pear shaped.
Having retired from the airline scene in 1997 I no longer have any contacts in Monarch and no axe to grind, but I can see a worrying similarity with the failure of Air Europe in 1991. AE focussed on extending their short haul scheduled network during a recession and expanded when everyone else was cutting back. To the very end new pilots were being recruited to crew the shiny new aircraft on order. Then along came the long run up to Gulf War One, passengers stopped flying, the money ran out and the rest is history. Anyone with a full time contract working for a successful LCC, however dissatisfied, should think very carefully about the consequences of being unemployed in these troubled times.
I hope I'm wrong and Monarch's shift to scheduled services is successful.
Last edited by brakedwell; 16th Jul 2012 at 13:24.
Whilst we are looking at posting histories consider that those who are so offended by people having an opinion other than their own have a combined posting history of about 10, we're all registered in June/July 2012 and offer very little signal and a great deal of noise. Interesting.
Monarch has been a more than 50% scheduled airline for over a decade now and is currently more like 80% scheduled, with more scheduled routes, including winter ski, being added all the time. The idea that we have "just" decided to go scheduled is thus rather wide of the mark. A charter flight is by definition profitable (as long as you can add up) as you sell the aircraft for a fixed price when it is hired which covers your costs (including fuel price increases between signing the contract and flying the sectors) - it is then up to the charterer to recover its costs. However, over the last 10 years there has been less charter business around - from the tour operators' point of view, why take the risk chartering a whole aeroplane when you can just buy a block of scheduled seats?
As has been said the numbers of pilots an airline employs is rather meaningless as it is "Full Time Equivalents" that is the important number - many of our pilots are either 75% or 50% of full time or employed on part-year working with some of the winter months off, which other than for a limited quota of new joiners is at the pilot's own choice. If you look at the CAA produced figures Monarch compares pretty favourably with the rest in terms of crew efficiency. 700 to 800 hours a year is typical on the SH FBW fleet, and pilots regularly choose to breach the 90 hours a month contractual limit in return for overtime payments. Given that we are not the worst payers in the industry, this must mean that they like coming to work!
In terms of Shareholder investment, why would a private business be afforded a cash injection of any amount if there was not a vision that there was money to be made in the longer term? No company can rest on its laurels and assume that because it has been around for 45 years it will always be there - the airline business, of all businesses, has no respect for past heritage and it is the hard numbers that count. Nevertheless, over that 45 years Monarch has quietly adapted to change, usually under other airlines' radars, the transition to scheduled flights being a prime example where most observers simply haven't noticed. All this whilst quietly pioneering new technology such as the B757 to cite an old example and fitting Class 2 EFBs to its aircraft as a more recent one.
Monarch is not afraid to take on the competition, and where it does it usually wins market share until it is the most popular airline on that route. We have moved to take over some of the Baby routes from EMA, but notice that this is a small fraction of the total routes that Baby flew. Our operations in the Baby/Jet2 part of the UK in Birmingham and Manchester (where we are the largest operator bar none) have been very successful, and we look forward to growing those businesses in a measured way and taking on new bases where this is prudent. Far from being a "reckless" expansion it is simply taking advantage of the market as it presents itself, leaving other airlines trailing in its wake, and incidentally those airlines have made no secret that they are pretty hacked off about it, as has been evidenced in part here I suspect.
A recession means you have to do what you have been doing well better, cut out the dead wood and become more efficient, advertise to keep your customers doing what they know they really want to, and treat your competitors with the utmost respect whilst trying to pinch their business!
I applaud any airline offering permanent contracts and not the morally bankrupt pay by the block hour contracts that seem to be the norm with low cost carriers! Faced with the choice of leaving my family and working hour to hour in a European base not of my choosing or a permanent contract at base I can request, the decision is an easy one to make! Good luck to all those in the running. What does p**s me off is that the overall winners will be CTC!
Really surprised that no-one has yet mentioned the pension deficit that they've run up , we're talking hundreds of millions of pounds here . And about ten million (?) a year from the company goes into attempting to reduce this for the next 20 years or so. Interesting times at ZB - this new commercial head (who doesnt seem to stick around long anywhere - source , LinkedIn) really isn't afraid to take risks with regard to new routes/bases , and so for the first time there is no "quietly adapting to change" , its a full on ZB assault , albeit about 10 years too late in my view. MON were losing money and it wasn't working . Long haul was pretty well non-existant (bar Hadj and MOD) , small tour ops charter was dying post XL and recession , so with this new found cash injection from Lugano , it had to be ZB and a complete change in company policy , or bust (excuse the pun) . However still in 2012 , the uk lo-co market is saturated , there's still a recession on , and there is literally nowhere else to go for MON's new aircraft, hence the almost desperate steps of announcing Ema and extra Bhx post the Baby shutdown. The subbing in of 4 737 aircraft , in what i can only think is an airport slot gaining exercise , is again risky in terms of pax perception , and financially hopeless! Don't get me wrong - this might work , and it needs to -and JS will be seen as the saviour of LU2 , it might however not , and then things get nasty. I agree with brakedwell when he notices the similarities between Air Europe and MON dramatically increasing their fleet size during a recesssion (note i've used that word 3 times now) , and whereas in 1991 MON survived cos of Euroberlin , now they've only got ZB. If you are a cadet or stuck on a TP (and they like Flybe!) then definitely go for it in order to get some jet hours . Otherwise , i would seriously heed the advice of some on here (i'm even agreeing with B+B!) and proceed with caution.....
the almost desperate steps of announcing Ema and extra Bhx post the Baby shutdown
It is by no means desperate.
Monarch are taking advantage of a few of the routes left open by BMI Baby and not the non profitable ones.
The subbing in of 4 737 aircraft , in what i can only think is an airport slot gaining exercise
We are not talking slots but taking up the slack left behind by BMI Baby and the need to move fast before other airlines moved in, which they tried to do but couldn't as we had done it already.
By your argument they must have been desperate too then!
On most of the routes we do we hold the highest market share and the ones where we don't we hold 2nd place.
Yes we did make a loss but it can't be compared to other airlines as the money set up is completely different. The shareholder takes money out so we don't have the cash in the bank that other airlines do, but when we need cash he lets us have some back.
Bear in mind also that in the loss we made quite a bit of that was money paid to the shareholder in lease costs for the aeroplanes. A bit of smoke and mirrors but things weren't as bad as the bottom line might make it seem.
There does seem to be sour grapes against Monarch and I would imagine that a lot of it is O'Leary stooges as he is upset that we beat him into EMA.
To that end I don't know why I am getting sucked in by the Trolls!
EDIT TO SAY:
Having read DjerbaDevil's posts in other threads he is obviously a Jet 2 man, one of the other airlines beaten to EMA and we are now launching from LBA this winter so no sour grapes there!!!
So with all this talk about great negativity from people designed to stir up anti-Monarch feelings, I'd like to ask the question, genuinely to those who are more in the know than us:
Do we know what the future plans of Monarch are?
From what I hear, the new routes out of BHX are doing excellently, and giving "the largest regional airline" a little bit of a pasting on the routes they are competing on. But this expansion out of BHX and EMA, is it going to be part of a continued expansion plan? Or is it just capitalising on the bmiBaby routes? Would there be further plans for expanding the airline and route network too?
All this talk about negativity and the airline not knowing what they are doing, is a bit insane. In my opinion, there's got to be a plan... BHX has always been an under-served airport in terms of many routes and I think that MON are filing the void very nicely at the moment.
The problem with EMA would be the direct competition against Jet2, who I believe could well be their largest competitor at the moment.
I'm sure the answers lie somewhere in the previous pages, but sifting through pages of people saying "You're all fools for applying" doesn't really appeal to me right now.
To correct some of the wrongly stated facts above:
Monarch have been at BHX for 15 plus years.
Hour wise I think most Monarch fbw full time captains are flying between 700 and 850 hours year - some are doing more. There is a shortage of crew at present otherwise we would not be wet leasing in additional capacity.
Of the employers/airlines I've worked for Monarch is not perfect (tell me an airline that is) but they are by far and away the best employer I've had.
There is a shortage of crew at present otherwise we would not be wet leasing in additional capacity
We are short of crew at the moment without taking into account the expansion but when the training program is complete hopefully we should be fully up to strength. We just couldn't get the airplanes or crews trained in time for the short lead time into these new routes, we would have had to wet lease anyway.
To answer an earlier question there was going to be an expansion anyway but the demise of BMI Baby has accelerated the plans.