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What Would You Do…

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Here’s a scenario that I find myself in. I fly as a contract pilot for a company that, like many, do not pay for non-revenue flying for trips under five hours. I was sent out on a job for four weeks that was supposed to be 1-2 hrs/day of flying. There was a 5.2 hr ferry flight to position the A/C for the job and the same to return at the end of the job. Upon my arrival the client informs me that my company had agreed not to charge for the ferry trips. We so far we’ve averaged 0.6 flight hours/day. Including the ferry trips and two hours of training for the job it could easily amount to over 40% non-rev! Am I being unreasonable in feeling like I’m getting ripped off?


What is the industry standard for this kind of thing? I know most companies say they don’t pay for non-rev but do they make exceptions? How much non-rev flying do you do and not get paid for? Are there any of you out there who have been able to get paid for all the hours you fly regardless of company policy?


I have not yet made the return ferry trip.

I would like to know how you guys might react/deal with this type of situation.



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I have worked for very few company's which paided non-rev. The norm is if the aircraft is not being paid then the crew is not being paid. (yet you still have to do a DI, file a plan ,fly and still have the responsibilities that go with the million dollar aircraft, don't forget the engineer still has to do his work - revenue or not!) Believe me we have all been there! :huh: You can get fired or wreck a machine whether it is revenue or not...


Does not seem fair but remember summer is comming and the forestry minimums when you do nothing - you will be getting paid for. One company I know of allow there crews to choose between non rev or unused mins for the year. That is more than fair! I don't think anyone takes the non rev over the mins.


A few weeks on fires should more than make up for any free positioning flights. If it takes more than that, one should seriously consider having the marketing manager for your company replaced! :o


Like I said bear with it, summer is comming! ;)

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I agree with VR. It seems unfair, but it is rare to fly a long ferry and not fly enough to make it worthwhile. Its that time of year for most of us. It will pick up soon, as summer is just around the corner. The problem with slow jobs is that they give you too much time to think about what you could have on the other hand. I can relate, I'm sitting here on my second straight weather day.


Fly Safe


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if the machine is earning.....i'm earning........... :D


i usually factor minimums into my contract so that i know a "worst case" dollar that i will walk away with............ :mellow:


but non-rev flights? never been paid for 'em.............

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No-one enjoys trundling across the country knowing they're not going to make a buck for it - you just have to look ahead to the days you fly one and get paid for four (or more). Our company doesn't pay for non-rev but, as has been mentioned, unused mins usually more than make up for that. We also try to make sure the non-rev is as well spread around as possible. Not every company (probably not even the majority) is out there to do you. :D

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What a bunch of Goofs. The cost of those "Non-Rev" ferry flights is factored into the annual cost of doing business. One of the many expenses that falls under that "overhead costs" category when establishing tariff rates.


And aren't you the same people that slagged that poor young guy that "volunteered" to work for that operator out west? What was the prevaling wisdom on that thread? People that work for free don't deserve any respect.


Something else to think about. If you are not being paid while you are voluntarily repositioning an aircraft are you still covered by Workmans Comp, insurance and all that other stuff ?


Think about it!

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Fraid that the amount of non rev is generally included only in a per job basis and budgetted annually by approximation, thus is not accouted for that accurately. Non-rev flight pay is actually paid in jobs that require the a/c to reposition for the company's convenience such as heliskiing where the customer was too cheap to pay for refuelling flights. This eased the hassle of the customer going on about how many times you went for fuel in a day. I have been paid non rev on and off my whole carreer and seems like a company thing, not really something to worry about, the companies that don't pay non rev usually have a higher flight pay than the rest or make up for it somehow.


I would think that workers comp covers you as not many pilots are paid strictly by flight pay alone, DUH,you get daily and monthly pay means you are getting paid.



It is my opinion that you should know what the standard of pay is prior to signing on with the company, and take it or leave it. There are some pretty poor companies paying non-rev and some great ones not paying it, I would not be using that as a measuring stick as to whether or not you work there.


I think that pilots alot of time focus their attention too much on flight pay and have seen numerous fellas pad the books and get greedy, but they forget that even without hobbs meters that customers are not stupid and will come back and haunt them. What would be your attitude landing in Dryden after non reving out there without flight pay, bet it wouldn't be too rosy. Bet I'd get hired on before you.


just gooffing around, goof, goofing around!



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Its tough if your new to the industry to know how much to ask for...and to get a realistic view as to what your worth and to guage whether a situation like this would result in one asking to be paid, or demanding to be paid or else... It is a very small industry all things considered. (burning bridges...bad rep etc)


I would suggest that you consider swallowing this one as you are already in it. Treat it as a learning experience for next time to get firm guarantees and or mins.


My experiences have been that I have always worked as a contractor, and have always been paid for non rev flights. Met some resistance with a company lately but they seemed to see my view that a few bucks paid in non rev would more than pay off in company moral etc...and give them a leg to stand on when they ask you to work extended tours etc...


Another 2 cents for ya! :up:

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