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Advice from JET 2 pilots please

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Advice from JET 2 pilots please

Old 18th Jul 2018, 15:49
  #1 (permalink)  
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Join Date: Jul 2018
Location: Belfast
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Advice from JET 2 pilots please

Hi guys/ girls

just wanted to pick the brains of any Jet2 pilots and especially those at Belfast base.

Im currently with BA as a SFO on the 787. ( Previous types 737, 767) . I commute to LHR, live in Belfast and Iím getting fed up with long haul commuting life. I could get a SH command at BA but that would only make the commute harder.

Jet2 seems to be one option at Belfast. Any info anyone can give?

Bits Iím interested in are

rosters- ( amount of days off per month, chance of weekends off and roster stability etc )

Chance of getting a Belfast base- initially in the rhs but also time to command and would you be expected to move base to get it. Iíve got 7000+ hours if thatís relevant. Thereís no point in me leaving BA to avoid a commute but end up commuting somewhere else so I would need to be confident of getting Belfast. (I wouldnít mind a short term stint somewhere else )

General happiness in company etc

type rating costs- last flew the 737 over 5 years ago so not sure where I stand there but in general do you pay for a rating yourself or is it a loan / bond?

Thanks in advance! Scott

ps Iím not a regular forum user so sorry if Iíve done something daft !
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 23:14
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Minimum of 9 days of a month. 122 a year not including leave. 3 RDOs a month and you normally get what you ask for. Weekends off less likely in the summer but Iíve had 2 3 day weekends off in the last month but that was more luck than anything else.

Probably a fairly high chance of a Belfast base initially as it never seems to be a hugely popular choice unless you live there. You may well end up somewhere else to start with but you can put your name on the base transfer list (I think as soon as you start) and you will be at your preferred base within a year maximum. The company makes a point of basing people where they want to be.

Pretty good moral usually although this summer roster disruption is pretty bad for various reasons so thereíre more moans than normal.

I think these days everyone is bonded but hopefully more recent joiners will be able to confirm that either way.

With your hours you could have a command within a year. All you need would be 6 months, 300 hours in the company and two decent sims.
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Old 18th Jul 2018, 23:22
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Chance of getting BFS base straight away is slimish, however Jet2 get their crews to where they want to be ASAP. Same with Command, the likelihood would be that you would move away, but again you would get back to BFS quickly.

The type-rating is bonded. If your 737 rating is more than 5 years out of date you will need to redo your B737 rating.

Rosters, usually 10-12 days off per month. Stability was a struggle earlier this year but it is settling back down now as more of the recruits come on line.

General happiness - well you could ask 100 different people and get 100 different answers. Itís not perfect, but where is? The good thing is that it is doing very well, expanding steadily and making money.

we have had quite a few join/apply to join this last few months, all citing the same reason as you, lifestyle- live where you work.
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Old 19th Jul 2018, 16:14
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Thanks guys, thatís pretty much what I had heard elsewhere. Gives me something to weigh up !

Thanks
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Old 19th Jul 2018, 16:39
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Hi, Generally its a happy place to be. BFS based pilots seem to be a happy bunch with a good lifestyle / work balance.

If I were you I would take the BA short haul command, get 500 hours under your belt and then apply for a direct entry captain position. Chances of getting BFS initially as a base would be slim, however as others have stated the company try hard to get people where they want to be. By joining as a DEC you would save having to move twice!

Good Luck!
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Old 19th Jul 2018, 19:07
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I am considering that option bluepilot but by the time I applied, waited for the course then got the hours I would probably be quicker going RHS in Jet2 and going from there. Ba is a big machine and it moves slowly. Plus a SH command would be on an airbus and I donít know how they work ��

Good to hear that people are generally happy tho. Thatís my main motivation. On paper you could argue I would be giving a lot stuff up leaving BA but I think other airlines have a lot to offer too

Cheers
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Old 19th Jul 2018, 20:31
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Originally Posted by bluepilot View Post
If I were you I would take the BA short haul command, get 500 hours under your belt and then apply for a direct entry captain position. Chances of getting BFS initially as a base would be slim, however as others have stated the company try hard to get people where they want to be. By joining as a DEC you would save having to move twice!
Leaving as an FO wouldn't be a smart choice. Get command hours before moving to the "free market" outside the flag carriers.
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Old 19th Jul 2018, 23:40
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To join in the right hand seat would mean churning through the quite lengthy upgrade process from scratch
It can all be done pretty quickly if you want to crack on with it.

reputedly claims a quite a few victims
80odd percent pass rate is pretty good I'd say.
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Old 20th Jul 2018, 07:12
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I can’t comment on the Belfast base aspect. Type rating is an old fashioned bond for 3 years. Expect to fly 700 hours a year, maxed out in summer and quiet in winter, but you will still be on min days off over winter as they’ll stick you on standby everyday.

I would say the rostering practices will be a shock to the system coming from BA. They basically don’t have any. We were always told that the Belfast base was hard to get onto as few people leave it and it isn’t expanding. I think you’re in a difficult position, but feel if you join here as an FO with a view of getting command quickly but then can’t get a command quickly onto the BFS base then you’ll be in a worse position than you are now and wonder why you left.
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Old 20th Jul 2018, 08:41
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How many sim checks shall I expect per year?
2, unless you get called upon to stand in for somebody.
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Old 20th Jul 2018, 09:52
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Thanks guys. In regards to the command thing Iím not in that big a rush, ive done p2 for 11 years so a few more wouldnít bother me if it meant I was in a base near home. Even though Iím technically senior enough for command in BA it could still be a couple of years before it actually happened just because itís a huge company and thatís how the system works

The roster issues people mention above are more of a concern as I would be taking a backward step there. Roster stability and weekends etc are def better in BA. But then it took me 8 hours to get home yesterday after a long haul because of disruption. But thatís only an issue as Iíve chosen to commute, itís not BAs fault.

Its swings and roundabouts! All the info helps though, so thanks !
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Old 20th Jul 2018, 12:30
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Originally Posted by Razor88 View Post
Thank you. Let me ask again, how often it happens to get called upon to stand in for somebody?

Thanks everybody.
For me, zero. For others, more than zero.

There isn't a one size fits all answer.
Chesty Morgan is offline  
Old 20th Jul 2018, 17:20
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As a commuter, remember there is no staff travel at Jet2, well nothing even remotely useful, and if you resign from BA, you'll lose your staff travel. That makes a BIG difference to commuting on short haul UK domestic flights. MAN is your logical place to bid for, and you'll be wanting to get friendly with someone at Flybe pronto...
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Old 20th Jul 2018, 19:24
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Would not going part time be an option until you can get a SH command at BA and again after a decent interval thereafter? I know the grass is always greener, but having done the low cost thing, I would think carefully about where you might be in ten years time.
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 15:07
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With your hours you could have a command within a year. All you need would be 6 months, 300 hours in the company and two decent sims.
Have you looked at the latest version of the upgrade process? 3 years from joining is probably more realistic , you join as an FO, then min 6 months after final line check you apply for SFO and you can apply for command at the same time, however, see above- the process is long and getting longer.

Im currently with BA as a SFO on the 787
- If you join as an FO that could be a considerable disadvantage, the powers that be do not seem terribly keen on FOs with extensive widebody time. God knows why but there you are. Different if you join as a Captain for some reason.

ive done p2 for 11 years
- can also cause a sharp intake of breath from the grown ups, you may be seen as far too useful in the RHS flying with all the newly promoted captains, who will likely have far less experience than you.

Even though I’m technically senior enough for command in BA it could still be a couple of years before it actually happened just because it’s a huge company and that’s how the system works
Then for heavens sake get your commnad at BA and then if you still want to come to J2 come as a Captain. You will get the base you want and you will not put yourself through the frankly daft hoop jumping exercise that the upgrade process has become. Its a pretty good company in many ways but you need to be in the LHS at your chosen base to get the full benefit.
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 16:56
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Why not get your command, do some time in the left seat, and then consider joining easyJet .Do they not have a Belfast base?
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 20:12
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Join Date: Jan 2010
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I know of at least 2 BA pilots who went for J2 assessment, 1 is on the second heaviest aircraft fed up with LH and long wait for command and just wants more time at home.
When I was training everyone wanted to work for BA now it’s not seen in the same light it used to be.
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Old 21st Jul 2018, 21:52
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Originally Posted by Speedbrakes Up View Post
Why not get your command, do some time in the left seat, and then consider joining easyJet .Do they not have a Belfast base?
It would take years to get Belfast base on the lhs in easyJet.
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Old 22nd Jul 2018, 10:12
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Originally Posted by zeddb View Post
Have you looked at the latest version of the upgrade process? 3 years from joining is probably more realistic , you join as an FO, then min 6 months after final line check you apply for SFO and you can apply for command at the same time, however, see above- the process is long and getting longer.
No. I knew it was changing (again!). But if 3 years is the case for experienced people then frankly thatís a bit ridiculous.
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Old 22nd Jul 2018, 10:37
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Do not leave BA before you get a command. All you’ll be doing is joining the bottom of somebody else’s list and anything can happen while you’re waiting. Jet2 love DEC’s so you run the risk of becoming seriously miffed if they keep flooding in while you’re waiting. I know a few guys who are or have been Jet2 in BFS. It’s pretty lucrative and they get left alone but last I hear there was a queue now although near a big as the one at Easyjet. DEC transfers have taken 1-2 years and FO’s transfer out for command unless you’re really lucky..but I’m not J2 so let them confirm the detail. Seriously though..do not leave BA without a short haul command. You could end up in the wrong place in the wrong seat in the event of a downturn and then your current job will look like utopia.
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