Pilot hiring levels sank to the lowest level since 9/11/2001 in
July as the airline industry dealt with the soft travel market and
economic uncertainties. A total of 268 pilots were hired in July.
AIR, Inc. projects the industry will hire around 5,000 new pilots
in 2003. [In February, that projection was for 7075; by May, it had
slipped to, "up to 6000." 5845 pilots were hired in 2002, a year
without the Iraq "war" and SARS --ed.]
In July, 45 of the 194
total (23%) airlines/operators reporting to AIR, Inc. hired pilots.
The major airlines hired 24 pilots with three of the 14 carriers
expected to hire over the next several months. In the national
airlines, the most active segment, 6 of 32 hired a total of 89 new
pilots. The jet operators hired 63; non-jet companies hired 48. As
of July 31, the total number of pilots on furlough increased to
9,517 compared to 9,174 (9.41%) out of the total of 94,571 U.S.
The summer travel season could not save the domestic major
airlines from their economic slide downward. Though several of the
carriers posted profits for the second quarter, the bottom line on
their profit sheets included one-time payments, from the
Transportation Security Administrations cash payments granted under
the 21003 Emergency Wartime Supplemental Appropriations Act.
Low-fare carriers performed much better. Southwest, JetBlue and
AirTran all posted second quarter profits. AirTran received the
one-time government payment, but would have posted a profit
regardless. The U.S. Labor Daly holiday in September may only be a
temporary band-aid for the majors. Executives at several airlines
have said they are concerned that travel demands will taper off
after the holiday. As the airline industry heads into the fall and
winter months, it looks like low-fare carriers may have an easier
time posting profits than the larger major airlines.
Still hope: Job Fairs coming up in September, at DCA; November,
The Northeastern region
Airline Pilot Career Seminar, Airline Forum, and Job Fair will be
held in Washington, D.C. (DCA), at the Hilton Alexandria Mark
Centre Hotel Saturday, September 20. Airlines scheduled to attend
include Alaska Airlines, Atlantic Trans Air, Southwest Airlines,
AirTran, AirNet, Comair, Horizon, JetBlue, TAB Express, and USA
3000 Airlines. Airlines invited to attend include Mesa, Pinnacle
Airlines/ NW Airlink, World and many others. The seminar will
feature topics on the pilot hiring market, job search planning,
pre-employment medical exams, interviewing, written testing, and
Seven Career Workshops will also be conducted. The first four
workshops will be held Friday afternoon and evening, September 19,
featuring Furlough Survival-a new workshop, CRM, Military/Airline
Transition, and Resumes/Cover Letters/Applications. Covered on
Sunday, September 21 will be Interview Survival, Airline
Testing/Simulator Checks, Civilian/Airline Transition The next
seminar is planned for Atlanta, GA (ATL) on November 22, 2003.