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Wednesday, October 4, 2023

American Airlines offer pilots a 17% pay increase amidst an industry staffing shortage

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A new pay proposal from American Airlines (A1G) (AAL) for its pilots includes a base pay rise of 17% as well as various improved payments.

CEO Robert Isom of American Airlines (A1G) (AAL) revealed that the US-based company submitted a fresh complete proposal to the Allied Pilots Association in an internal video directed at the airline’s pilots (APA).

Isom detailed the proposal which includes “substantially better pay.”

“We’ve offered base pay increases of 16.9% through 2024, as well as increases to many other pay components such as per diem and training pay, and a 50% premium on all reassignments, which would now include Reserves,” stated Isom in the video transcript.

The idea is being made as airports and airlines in the United States struggle to fill positions because to the COVID-19 pandemic’s surge in demand. Airlines are raising pilot pay in an effort to maintain and attract crews as carriers across the continent have been forced to cut schedules as a result of a staffing shortage.

The first big airline to reach an agreement with pilots was United Airlines, which promised its pilot’s salary raises of more than 14%.

“To put that into real dollars, by the end of the agreement, factoring in only base salary, a narrowbody captain at the top of the scale would earn about $340,000 a year – $45,000 more each year than they earn today,” explained Isom.

“A widebody captain at top of the scale would earn about $425,000 a year, or $64,000 more annually. If you add in any current or proposed premiums, and the company’s 16% 401(k) contribution, the increases become even greater.”

Isom added that check pilots, who instruct other pilots, would also receive greater compensation, premiums, and more consistent schedules.

“We all know the criticality of increasing our pilot training throughput so we can continue to grow the airline. Check Pilots are essential to that mission,” added Isom.

American Airlines (A1G) (AAL) also informed the APA that it would offer extra incentives, such as “retro pay” and a “substantial signing bonus,” if the plan, which is now being considered by the APA, was approved by September 30, 2022.

Isom stated that the airline was eager to execute the contract “soon” in order to support the expansion of its training program.

“That will allow us to hire more pilots, take deliveries of narrowbody and widebody aircraft, and most importantly, create many more captain positions,” said Isom.

“Contract aside, the best way to increase a pilot’s compensation is to move from First Officer to Captain, and from narrowbody to wide. This proposal will allow us to do a lot more of that.! And right now!”

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