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Virgin recruiting soon...

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Virgin recruiting soon...

Old 23rd Oct 2010, 09:22
  #161 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 18

Time to command seems to be an issue for most and That is understandable.

However, Virgin Atlantic is a long haul only airline. I'm sure it would take just as long, if not longer to get a long haul command with any other uk longhaul operator such as BA, Thomas Cook, etc. I believe the BA wait for a long haul command is currently 15-20 years at the moment.

What is the culture like in Virgin between Capt and F/O?

As Virgin is increasing it's fleet by 18-25 aircraft in the next 5 years, won't that improve command prospects, of course depending on the Market and if the orders aren't cancelled?
C172s is offline  
Old 23rd Oct 2010, 09:33
  #162 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: UK
Posts: 2
None of those aircraft are necessarily additions but may be replacements

true but BA have the option of shorthaul to change life style

agreed about time to command elsewhere- just a consideration if you've already done 5 odd years already on your seniority list
Thosearentpillowz is offline  
Old 23rd Oct 2010, 09:56
  #163 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: UK
Posts: 18
Absolutely right about replacements there, I agree.
C172s is offline  
Old 24th Oct 2010, 23:31
  #164 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2010
Location: London
Posts: 20
Life style

Guys et Gals

I have read all the posts here and I only really have one thing to say. You may hear VS pilots moaning but thats because we can. The pilot group have many issues with the erosion of T&C's and grumbles with the management. This should only be encouraging to you as we are very capable of voicing our opinions and making ourselves heard through a strong union.

All airlines are going through tough times and command times becoming longer. I would echo the thoughts of my colleagues about time away from home, but must admit I still enjoy 95% of my trips. Some are full on with lots of the crew and some (east coast) are not. Trust me, you don't want full on all the time.

If you are lucky enough to be on the A340 then you'll get min 12 days off a month, especially if you are willing to do a HKG/SYD/HKG pattern out of London. 9 days away for 5 days off afterwards. You don't get something for nothing anywhere.

It's still a good company to work for if you want long haul flying. If you believe that employed VS pilots think otherwise and haven't left to go elsewhere then work it out for yourselves.

Hope this helps, it's only meant to be constructive. Good luck to those of you who apply and get an interview. I hear that there will be a simple sim ride on a basic 737 sim for handling skills only

Byobeer is offline  
Old 27th Oct 2010, 14:28
  #165 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: A town called malice
Posts: 27
I have a few questions regarding Virgin,

1. Are Virgin pilots going to be flying both the A330 and A340 or will both fleets be kept separate?
2. As a junior F/O is the bidding system fair or do you end up acquiring enough knowledge to write your own edition of lonely planet Lagos.
3. Are flights from Manchester(my home base) difficult to get your hands on through the bidding system.
4. Could somebody post a typical monthly roster on the Airbus fleet.

Also don't waste your energy replying if all your going to say is "use the search function"!
Captain Galactic is offline  
Old 27th Oct 2010, 16:14
  #166 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: A bus in the sky!
Age: 32
Posts: 92
I know it's a long shot, but do you VS guys reckon there is any realistic chance for a 2500hr A320 FO...?

RoyBoy20 is offline  
Old 27th Oct 2010, 16:38
  #167 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: UK
Posts: 1,114
Good questions Captain G.

The thought of back to back MCO's from MAN or LGW isn't exactly inspiring. A MCO wouldn't generate more than 2-3 days off meaning that you could be there twice in the one week. Also do they really want to go mixed fleet flying with newbies. A lot of airlines have moved away from mixed fleet flying even with experienced crews due to spikes in incident rates.
potkettleblack is offline  
Old 27th Oct 2010, 17:48
  #168 (permalink)  
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: A town called malice
Posts: 27
Thanks for the helpful info busta!
Captain Galactic is offline  
Old 29th Oct 2010, 21:53
  #169 (permalink)  
Join Date: May 2002
Location: Courchevel
Posts: 756
Does anybody know how many A330s VA are getting now?
Count von Altibar is offline  
Old 29th Oct 2010, 22:44
  #170 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: UK
Posts: 17
Its quite a while in the danger zone at Virgin. Its quite a regularly exploding bomb..
conerted_lurker is offline  
Old 29th Oct 2010, 23:18
  #171 (permalink)  

Ut Sementem Feeceris
Join Date: Jul 1999
Location: UK
Posts: 2,608
I heard they are only getting two A330's next year and they are duty bound to offer positions to pilots laid off last year ........ So no recruitment likely /required.

Could be BS, who knows.

A4 is offline  
Old 30th Oct 2010, 07:27
  #172 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2005
Location: uk
Posts: 515
Duty bound?

I think any redundees will have to re-apply, in fact I know they will.

What kind of process they then go through is anyone's guess however.

For sure though, Virgin will comply with UK law when employing/re-employing people.

I would caution against anyone thinking this is the beginning of some huge expansion.
stansdead is offline  
Old 30th Oct 2010, 09:53
  #173 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Manchester,uk
Posts: 283
Last time around (post 9/11) it was (if memory serves)

1:Those on unpaid leave
2:Those made compulsorily redundant
3:Those who took voluntary severance
4:New entrants as needed

They had however got hold of several 744's from an Alitalia order and kept a couple of the classics on. A number of those who left never came back, this was the start of the low cost boom. There was much expansion from 2003 until around the start of 2008.

Not the case this time. Jobs are much rarer and many are the preserve of 200hr "cadets" or those willing to pay so those who departed will probably return unless bonded on pain of death by stoning in the ME or something.At the end of the bond a lot may return and they will have positions reserved as they are effectively on unpaid leave.

Last time you didn't need a current type rating either. The world is once again a different and harsher place.
northern boy is offline  
Old 30th Oct 2010, 15:42
  #174 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Fragrant Harbour
Posts: 4,681
That's largely correct - that's the order of which people should be taken back. As for those made redundant - compulsarily or voluntarily - a 'reasonable' period of time is required to give them priority over others to be re-employed and UK law assumes this to be two years in most cases. And you can bet that VS will be sticking to the law - they had to be reminded of what the law requires the last time!

The short notice aquisition of those five Alitalia 744s actually precipitated VS's troubles prior to 9/11 - so when the market looked bleak after the twin towers came down, they were forced into drastic action.

And the recall happened very quickly when things picked up in 2003. In fact, the first course of new joiners started the day after I left on voluntary redundancy. And they were very suprised how many didn't want to come back - the gloss on the VS machine had gone dull by then You would think that after the way the company got caught out previously, they would have been a bit more cautious this time. But apparently not!
Dan Winterland is offline  
Old 1st Nov 2010, 00:31
  #175 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: UK
Posts: 397
Just a few points:

I believe that those made redundant will not necessarily be given the chance to rejoin. As I understand it once if they have taken severance pay their link to VAA is broken.

There are a number of pilots on unpaid leave who probably can't/won't return for another 2 years because of their bond.

Whether the company is good to work for may depend on which fleet you are on. At the moment there is a huge difference in lifestyle between the Airbus (probably ok-ish) and the Boeing (crap!!!).

The guys and gals on the line are excellent but consider this: BALPA had to threaten a strike just to get the company to stick to the agreed rostering agreement.

Time to command: if you need to ask then it probably isn't the company for you. A lot the Captains are in their 30s/40s so they ain't retiring anytime soon.

Lastly, why don't VS pilots leave? Is it any better elsewhere.....probably not. All the above purely a personal view but I have never known morale as low as it is now. Good luck all the same!!


BBK is offline  
Old 1st Nov 2010, 03:30
  #176 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: Fragrant Harbour
Posts: 4,681
BBK, that again is largely correct, but it's not quite as simple as that. The relevant laws are pretty vague - either to to give some lattitude or to keep high paid lawyers in claret. I (actually Mrs W) did quite a lot research when I left as I had a bit of a battle to leave while being considered redundant - as thay had already started recruiting again. What VS did last time was to pay everyone three months pay as redundancy and this was in lieu of the statutory three months consultation period. In 2002, everything was done in a panic and they needed people out immediately (Some of the 74C crews were gone in two weeks IIRC), but this payment doesn't release them from their obligations with regards to re-employment.

What they did in 2003 was cherry pick and only ask back the pilots they wanted to return. I know one who they didn't want back. I think he threatened legal action but he was advised to drop it. Last time, anyone returning after taking the redundancy package had to re-join and started again on the seniority list.
Dan Winterland is offline  
Old 1st Nov 2010, 11:41
  #177 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2000
Location: Manchester,uk
Posts: 283
Last time, anyone returning after taking the redundancy package had to re-join and started again on the seniority list.
True enough, loosing 3 years seniority pretty much finished off a few careers although it was not apparent at the time. The pill was sweetened somewhat by taking previous service into account, so someone with 2 years prior service came back into year 3 pay wise (Had to thank BALPA for that) although at the bottom of the seniority list.

No idea what the situation would be this time around.

If you do join, go on the Airbus, especially if you plan to commute. The Boeing only works if you live 5 minutes from LGW. And you will still be knackered. Long haul flying on a short haul roster was they way it felt to me. I don't believe it has changed all that much.
northern boy is offline  
Old 1st Nov 2010, 19:50
  #178 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2003
Location: Middle England
Posts: 110
I thought VS pilots were contracted to 750hrs per year. Roughly 64 hrs a month, or 3.4 trips to Orlando and back. Don't ask me how the 0.4 works!
I applied thinking I would only be going to work 3 or 4 times a month which would free up the time I need to do other things in the summer. Am I being unrealistic?
I've heard talk of two trips a week, how is that possible with the hours you're contracted to? Do they ignore the 750 and pay you more when you go over them?
Arrestahook is offline  
Old 1st Nov 2010, 20:06
  #179 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2010
Location: England, surrey, Walton-on-thames
Age: 24
Posts: 12
one of my instructors used to work for virgin atlantic, he used to et between 35k - 45K in the first 5 - 10 years. sorry to be so rough about it :L hope this helps, it's all i've got i'm afraid.
sir fizzy is offline  
Old 1st Nov 2010, 20:18
  #180 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2010
Location: England
Posts: 1,955
That wasn't the question fizzy. It's not a good idea to post when you don't know what you're talking about.
Lord Spandex Masher is offline  

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