Furloughed AirNet Pilot looking for work

dcramer16

New Member
First off, I loved working for AirNet. It was so far the best job I've had. The aircraft were top of the line, the pilots were great, and the pay was good too. So I'm worried that the jobs I have competitive times for still won't be as good as my job at AirNet (I'll explain in a minute). I had a day to search the job boards, and spent a good 10 hours looking though job postings and sending out resumes and I didn't find anything that was at all interesting. So I feel like I've hit the bottom of the darkest, deepest well of depression.

Here's my problem. I need something that is going to take me to the next level, and something I can afford. There are two problems, financial, and future.

Let me talk about the financial part of my problem. I was making about 38K/year here, and that was just barely enough for me to feed my wife and kids. I can't find anything near that range. So yes, the airlines are pretty much out of the question. I need something that has bases with a lower cost of living that pays at least this much. I can't afford anything less. I'm sorry if it sounds like I'm being picky. Just with loans to pay back, and a family to support, I can't take anything less.

The other problem is finding something that is going to take me to the next level. Right now I sit at 2400TT and 800ME. During my day of searching all I found was either Part 135 that offered me Multi time for about 20K a year less that AirNet was paying me, single engine turbine time that paid about 10K a year less that AirNet, or jet/turbine time jobs that paid about what AirNet was paying me that already required you to have turbine time. This is where the depression set in. I really thought with my time and experience I could do better than a shady 135 operation.

So let me ask you, with my times, what kind of job should I expect. I need the pay to be at least what AirNet was paying. I also need something with a future. Is working for another 135 operation building ME time going to help me? Is working for another 135 operation building Caravan single engine turbine time going to help me? Are there actually jobs out there for a FO in a jet, that doesn't require jet time, that has reasonable upgrade times and that pays decent.

I am really really stuck. During the course of my career, I first did what I had to do to get 500TT. Then I did what I had to do to get 135 Minimums. Now what do I do? I am really stuck. It seems I don't quite have enough time to get some sort of a turbine job that pays decent (the only turbine jobs I could find that didn't require prior turbine time was the airlines). It also seems that as far as 135 jobs out there, the pay is much lower than what AirNet was paying. And before someone accuses me of being "anti-airline", if I could afford to "pay my dues" at an airline, I would have no problem with that. But right now I can just barely afford to live off my AirNet salary. Cut that in half, and I'm screwed.

So any advice would be greatly appriciated. I had high hopes of flying the Lears for AirNet. Now I don't know what the F I should do! What can I do to either work towards the next level, or get to the next level, while being able to afford to "exist" with my family?

I'm not looking for someone to "solve my problem". I'm also not looking for pity. I know (especially with the state of the economy) that there are pilots out there that are doing worse than me. Furloughs happen, and I am extremely grateful for my time at AirNet. I just really, honestly don't know where to go from here to keep my career on track. As I see it, my options so far are these:

1. Wait for call backs.
I can't afford to sit here unemployed for even a month
2. Get a 135 job and keep building my ME time for almost half the pay
Again, I was just making ends meet with my current salary
3. Go to the airlines to get my turbine/jet time
Can't afford it
4. Find a job that pays at least what I was making at AirNet, that has a future with turbine time.
Ideal, but so far, from what I have seen, unlikely

I'm not trying to sound whiny. Again, I'm sure there are alot of pilots out there that have it worse than me. I just don't know where to go from here. What is a smart decision? Again, my times are about 2400TT and 800ME, so any advice is appreicated. Even if all the advice you have to offer me is to stop bitching!

Thanks
 

Bwatz

Well-Known Member
Sorry to hear about your situation. I am a former freight guy who bailed for the regionals. I am single and I barely make it.. I would look into Cape Air. You would be a captain and get your ATP during training. I think the pay is pretty good. I talked to a guy recently that said he made in the mid 40s. Those guys have a great reputation. It would require a move to the Caribbean for the winter though. Just a thought. I am actually trying to take a LOA and work there... Like I said, sorry to hear about your situation. Good luck.
 

dcramer16

New Member
It would require a move to the Caribbean for the winter though.
That would be terrible! :sarcasm: Actually, that would be kinda nice.

Cape Air is actually one of my top choices. They do have a good reputation. I have a buddy in San Juan that says the cost of living is extremely cheap. So if I could make about the same salary, have cheap cost of living, and live in the Caribbean, I would love that.
 

ppragman

FLIPY FLAPS!
Come to alaska, work for grant aviation, they'd almost certainly pick you up. The pay is competitive too, my buddy who worked for them said it was 150/day + 35 per flight hour. 20 days on, 10 days off.
 

USMC-SSGT

Well-Known Member
Another option is Wiggins airways in Manchester NH. The cost of living directly in the area is not cheap but if you go around 30 minutes out it is reasonable. They fly vans and 99s and pay in the high 30s.

I second grant. My mothers ex husband (the guy who raised me from 1 to 15) is one of their most senior guys and instructor pilots. He has been there quite a while and really likes it.
 

dcramer16

New Member
Got my application into Wiggins. Still checking into Grant. There's two I haven't heard of. Thanks a lot.
 

dcramer16

New Member
Come to alaska, work for grant aviation, they'd almost certainly pick you up. The pay is competitive too, my buddy who worked for them said it was 150/day + 35 per flight hour. 20 days on, 10 days off.
I'm still trying to find out more about Grant, and I haven't found much. The pay sounds nice. Their website says they provide housing?? Would that also include your family? Also, are you home much on your 20 days on? Do they pay any kind of moving expenses? It's probably darn expensive moving to Alaska! Flying in Alaska during the winter would make me a bit nervous:), but other than that, it sounds like a great job. I really need winter experience. My first winter after I because a pilot was in Florida, the second winter was Texas. My third was suppost to be Ohio here with AirNet, which was going to be an actual "real" winter. I was kinda lookin forward to that.
 

spilot

Well-Known Member
Hey cramer, Also an Airnet furlough, I could have written every word in your post myself. I made $1500 per paycheck at Airnet, but with barely $100 in my bank account just a few days after each paycheck. Wife/food, bills, debt, gas, and wait two weeks and repeat the cycle.
There's nothing I can find out there that will pay Airnet/livable wages, comparable jobs I qualify for pay 27-31.000. I'm getting depressed. It will take lots of money just to go somewhere to interview, relocate or get a crashpad, or survive through unpaid training for 1-2 months. The effort (and cigarettes) put into getting through training at Airnet, makes it all the less attractive to repeat the process while taking a huge step back, flying something smaller at other 135 outfits.

Anyway, your good news is, you're way better off than I am. I've really got about the same hours as when I joined Airnet... >3000TT >500Multi >1000TPIC. Just over 135 pic minimums, with just over 100 multi and just over 100 tpic. Only qualification added to my resume is having been a 135 pilot. And drawbacks of that being, I now arranged my life around the prospects of a stable income.

Guess I don't need to bother sending an app to viggins, if you're applying there then :)

Its even worse for those that joined AirNet below us on the list, or as SICs (how will the SIC-in-single-pilot-airplane time look in the logbook when it isn't followed by a career of valueable flight time).

Anyone got a number for those bogota cartels? :)
 

USMC-SSGT

Well-Known Member
I know for the Kenai based guys at Grant they are home everynight. I think you do around a million runs to ANC and back everyday.
 

dcramer16

New Member
I know for the Kenai based guys at Grant they are home everynight. I think you do around a million runs to ANC and back everyday.
I was seriously considering it. I got on their website to see where they were located. I looked up what information I could about the town, Emmonak. There wasn't much. I also called a friend that has lived in Alaska for years, and she pretty much said this about Emmonak:
It's dark all winter
Cold as hell
It's a dry town (booze is illegal)
I would have to buy my groceries for months in advance
I would have to know how to hunt (carribeau, bears, etc) and fish, for when I wasn't able to have my groceries flown in for another month
It doesn't sound like any place I would want to live!

You mentioned Kenai. I saw on their website the bases are Kenai, St. Mary's, Emmonak, Bethel, Dillingham and Anchorage. A couple of those places are about the same as Emmonak. Unless there were good chances of being based in Anchorage or Kenai, I would have to pass. I'm do not have any experience roughing it!
 

dcramer16

New Member
Come to alaska, work for grant aviation, they'd almost certainly pick you up. The pay is competitive too, my buddy who worked for them said it was 150/day + 35 per flight hour. 20 days on, 10 days off.
Got my resume sent off. Thanks!
 

MSUDAWG

Well-Known Member
Got my resume out to them anyways. Thanks again.
We arent hiring right now for domestic stuff but if you are interested in flying in the sandbox for a 3 month tour making about 20k a month, send me a pm...There are postings on climbto350 about it but no mention of the name....let me know
 

ppragman

FLIPY FLAPS!
I'm still trying to find out more about Grant, and I haven't found much. The pay sounds nice. Their website says they provide housing?? Would that also include your family? Also, are you home much on your 20 days on? Do they pay any kind of moving expenses? It's probably darn expensive moving to Alaska! Flying in Alaska during the winter would make me a bit nervous:), but other than that, it sounds like a great job. I really need winter experience. My first winter after I because a pilot was in Florida, the second winter was Texas. My third was suppost to be Ohio here with AirNet, which was going to be an actual "real" winter. I was kinda lookin forward to that.
Yeah, the housing is pilot housing in Saint Maries or Bethel, when you're in town you'll need a place to live. As for the cost to move up here, its not really any different than the cost to move across country down there. Alaska in the winter will make you nervous, that's good, you'll be involved in stuff that will be kinda wierd, (e.g. VFR holds in Bethel, and sometimes flying essentially by reference to guages in a vfr airplane) but you'll see. Grant is a good place to be. If I wasn't going to school right now I'd be with them or Hageland, and I'm debating going that route when I finish my college.
 

dcramer16

New Member
We arent hiring right now for domestic stuff but if you are interested in flying in the sandbox for a 3 month tour making about 20k a month, send me a pm...There are postings on climbto350 about it but no mention of the name....let me know
PM sent
 
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