Council 123 Message - 2/9/17
Council 123 Message - 2/9/17


Recently, there has been a change in the flying allocation in the EMEA. In the February and March Bid Packs, Captain lines have been transferred to the MEM 757 Bid Packs. Please find a discussion of this issue written by the Scheduling Improvement Group (SIG).

I specifically asked Marty Harrington, SIG Chairman, to provide the information below because the communication as to the "why" and "how" needed to be addressed.

Can this happen to future EMEA bid packs? Yes.
Can it happen to either seat? Yes.
Any idea when? No.

Should you have any further questions, please contact either me at or our local SIG Committee Members: or or

Captain Erin McCoy
LEC 123 Chair

Base Credit Hour Allocation

Objective: To articulate the timing of the events and process used to allocate flight hours on the same aircraft between different bases.

Facts: The timing of the process is interesting because decisions have to be made prior to having all of the concrete information. Therefore, this process (while certainly much more than a guess) does involve the expertise of Company personnel who have a long history of estimating these allocations. 

Timing: As soon as the bid-packs are published (on Thursday of Build Week), the Company immediately begins looking toward the next bid period to determine how many credit hours needs to be allocated to the different bases. This process includes looking at the number of pilots forecast to be available, vacations scheduled, and an estimate of the number of pilots who will be in pay-only status/MLA/SCK. Therefore, on Friday after bid pack publication, MEM MD11 numbers (flight & credit hours) are evaluated and that result determines how many hours need to be distributed to LAX and ANC. 

The following week, the determination is made and given to the specific MD11 planner who evaluates the proposed flying and decides which types of trips would best achieve the allocated credit hours. During this same week, numbers are evaluated for the B757/B767. Again, the numbers are then given to the planner to decide how best to shift flying in order to comply with the targets. 

During the following weeks, the shift in flying is finalized as the preliminary pairing (PRELIMS) construction process is completed. The Prelims are then provided by the Company to the PSIT, which is the first time the PSIT is made aware of the shift in flying. During the Prelim scrub process and week just prior to build week, tweaks are made and sometimes flying is shifted to accommodate specific concerns.

The Final pairings are then generated and the credit hours are allocated to specific bases. However, it is not until the Wednesday of build week that the Company selects, and knows definitely, the number of vacation buybacks that will occur. In addition, the Company doesn’t know until about the same time the number of pilots that will be Pay-Only (LCA/Flex/TAA/etc.). Thus, the Company has to assume numbers that will protect the flying. At times the estimated numbers will be off somewhat given the approximation that occurs as a result of the timeline.

Summary: The allocation of credit hours between bases is a process that aims to equalize aircraft, pilots and flight hours. It involves many assumptions and tends to follow historical selections for types of flying.

Matt Gandy                Memphis 757/767 Pilot Improvement Team
Marty Harrington      Scheduling Improvement Group Chairman

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