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System Schedule Report

Dan Boone, Chairman 

The Leading Edge, March 2000

 

MANPOWER ISSUES
Awarding of Unadvertised Vacancies to New-Hires.
Company continues to award vacancies to new-hires that were never bulletined. These are unadvertised "backfills" that go unfilled. SSC requested that only advertised bids that go unfilled should be awarded to new-hires.

Flying, Training and Vacation
The SSC questioned whether the Company is on track for 4,500 seat changes this year. Bid levers for the spring have been suppressed somewhat by the requirement to liquidate vacation. SSc questioned whether training levers could be increased during the summer and still protect summer flying. SSc questioned the lack of SFO B-400 Captain bids. The company had excess B-400 training capacity until recently but did not train additional B-400 captains required. B-400 training capacity is now full. Company is conformable with B-400 manpower level. SSC questions A-320 and B-400 staffing levers for summer flying.

Modest Domestic Pulldowns
UAL will modestly pull down domestic flying this spring to accomplish training needed for increased international flying (particularly B-400 SFO summer flying). The pulldown will result in a 3,500 hour decrease (40-50 lines) in domestic operations. Domestic growth is relatively flat for 2000, while International growth is large. UAL hopes to position itself to participate in the Asian economic recovery.

Vacation Deferral
The Company deferred 500 man-months (500 potential seat changes) into this year. It originally planned on deferring 750-800 man months (800 potential seat changes) into vacation year 2000. Company revised the required vacation deferral requirement to 350-450 man-months.

Vacation Liquidation
It is not appropriate for a pilot changing fleets/seats/domiciles to retain his vacation from his previous status as that would permit him to enjoy a vacation that might not be consistent with his new relative seniority. Loss of annual vacation assignments due to change in fleet/seat/domicile without any requirement to restore those vacations to the fleet/seat/domicile monthly allocation where the vacations were lost by rebidding effectively nullifies the contractual monthly percentages specified for the domiciles. MEC DIRECTION REQUESTED.

HNL B-400 Vacation Bidding
HNL requesting that B-400 pilots be allowed to bid vacation for next year (base opens too late for normal vacation bidding process). MEC ACTION REQUESTED.

LAX DC-10/HNL B-400 BASE CLOSING
SSC disagrees with Company's position regarding base closures (pilots are reserves until sent to training unless the Company needs them TDY). This limits the pilot's ability to exercise his seniority and restricts him to 78 hours pay. SSC position is that once a base is closed the Company may offer voluntary TDY or the Company may involuntarily TDY a pilot for up to 30 days. The SSC position is that the Company may not place a pilot on reserve for 8-L-5 assignments in a domicile that does not exist. The incentive for Company to quickly get pilots into training is the 30 day TDY limit. MEC REVIEW REQUESTED.

NPDMs (NOTICE OF PROPOSED DECISION MAKING)
ORD Freighter Domicile
NPDM process was waived by MEC. The Company qualified all ORD DC-10 pilots for domestic freighter operations. ORD DC-10 pilots will receive 2 hour credit time (similar to TCAS and FANS training as discussed in Letter 95-16) for any required viewing of the DC-10-30F Differences and Hazardous Cargo tapes as part of their qualification. As part of the understanding the SSC reached with the Company associated with qualifying ORD DC-10 pilots for domestic Freighter operations the Company was to commit to a Side Letter prohibiting the involuntary 8-L-5 from non-freighter domiciles to do freighter flying. This was to fix a continuing problem that had resulted in pilots being illegally assigned (by the contract) to do ANC freighter flying. The Company has not honored their verbal agreement to a side letter.

Base Closure/Opening Process
The Company has a difficult time committing to a firm base closure/opening time schedule more than a few months out. While most of this is attributable to inappropriate manpower planning, some of it can be attributed to the lack of sufficient contractual language balancing the needs of the Company to have a definite mechanism for a "phased" base closing/opening process while protecting pilots from potentially onerous working conditions. This creates hardship and uncertainty for those who are trying to make numerous personal or family decisions normally associated with a domicile/seat change. Issues that need to be addressed include: timing of the base opening/closing in relation to the start/finish of assigned flying; training dated in relation to timing and seniority; and the current 90-day limit to put out "bump" letters. MEC ACTION REQUESTED.

Company's Position On Base Openings
The Company generally looks for three factors to justify a base opening:
(1). 30 lines of flying;
(2) schedule efficiencies;
(3) stability (flying committed to the base for at least 3-4 years)

DOMICILES
LAX Domicile Stability
System line levels have gone up, LAX departures have gone up, LAX line levels have decreased.  SSC is concerned that the hotel cost parameter in the manpower program is potentially shifting flying away from senior domiciles where hotel costs are cheaper to more junior domiciles where hotel costa are more expensive. The manpower program would shift flying to save a penny.

DEN B-777 Base
The Company would like to have a B-777 International Destination out of DEN before opening a base, DEN-LHR or DEN-FRA (more likely option). The Company presented a possible scenario for DEN to fly up to 36 lines of B-777 flying in DEN The scenario follows: 8 lines DEN-LHR, 8 lines DEN-FRA, 12 lines forced flying (assume 25% of the new Y2K domestic B-777 flying). Using this example, the SSC pointed out that 20 domestic lines in the later half of 2000 would justify an opening without International flying.

SSC position is that B-777 International destination is not a requirement and will continue to aggressively pursue a DEN B-777 base System B-777 flying will be increasing by 57 lines by later half of 2000. DEN will have the system seniority and B-777 departures to justify a B-777 base. Company needs to commit to opening a DEN B-777 base before misallocation of manpower becomes an issue. SSC requested a decision point from the Company as to when to open a base. MEC ACTION REQUIRED

ORD B-767 International Base
The ORD B-767 International Base is justified. ORD has 4 international B-767 departures. Marketing believes that the B-767 International flying will continue to be flown from ORD. The Company continues to refuse to consider a ORD B-767 International base. MEC ACTION REQUIRED.

ANC Freighter Operation
Company has considered adding a 5th Freighter but does not appear to favor that option currently. The Company is currently considering it's options in regards to a potential follow on freighter.

FLEET/ ROUTE PLANS
ORD High Density Rule
ORD is slot constrained. UAL would like to grow ORD. Congress allocates slots, but action got bogged down last session. UAL hopes to hear definitively within two years on any slot action. At present, we have the edge over AMR. Two carrier fortresses are not viable. The slot issue has delayed ORD from "shaking out" the economic competition. AMR & UAL will fight ORD out for prominence if the constriction is relaxed.

Hawaii
No real improvement seen yet. Advance bookings are still light.

B-747-400
Pacific market is rebounding. Company is redeploying most of B-400 flying back into the Pacific. The current plan is to use only two B-400 aircraft in European market for the summer of 2000. At the end of spring 2000, DEN-LAX remains the only domestic segment.

SFO B-400
The Company plans increase in SFO 400 flying (two China trips, SEL, and LHR).

HNL B-400
HNL-NRT begins March 2000. Two months later HNL-NRT with a tag.

B-777
Six two-class B-777s are scheduled for delivery in year 2000 (mostly in the second half). The Company is reviewing plans for 2 class, B-777 flying between SFO and OGG for March / April. Other potential routings of the two class B-777s are LAX-ORD, ORD-PHX (2), HNL-LAX, LAX-OGG, and IAD-SFO. Future options for increased LAX B-777 flying include LAX-AKL B-777 Nov 2000 (with bunk) and LAX-EZE.

B-777 Two Class
The present plan is to use this aircraft on the SFO to OGG (Maui) route. By June 2000, another two class will come on line destined for an unknown market.

EWR B-777 
EWR-LHR to stay in B-777 indefinitely (for now).

ORD B-777
ORD-GRU (Sao Paulo) downsized to B767-300 due to lack of B-777s (April 2000). Cargo limitation still a concern.

LAX B-777
LAX-Hawaii probably not until at least 3-4 two-class B-777s in fleet (Aug. 2000). Fourth quarter flying levels uncertain.

SFO B-777
Status of SFO-FRA still unknown due to lack of slot availability. 
Initial two-class B-777 service to Hawaii most likely to be routed through SFO due to maintenance requirements.

NRT-BKK
UAL will maintain only one access (SEA-NRT-BKK) using the B-777. The company will upgauge to the B-400 if loads warrant.