United Airlines Pilot Scope

United Airlines Pilot Scope

Synopsis of United Airlines Pilot Scope - Current TA

United Airlines Pilot Scope

By Gordon Werner of "Flickr"

Exemptions to the following Scope for United Airlines Pilots-

  • 37 seat turbo-props that are certified for less than 37,000 lbs.

Baseline Scope- Contract signed but no “triggers” tripped.

  1. Number of 50 seat aircraft must remain below 90% of the Mainline Narrow-Body fleet (currently 548 mainline narrow-body aircraft).
  2. Allowed to have up to 255 regional aircraft in the (51-76) seat range.
  3. Aircraft must be certified below 86,000 lb max gross limit.
  4. 130 of those aircraft can be (71-76) seat aircraft without restriction.
  5. 80 % of Regional flights must be below 900 SM.
  6. 5% of flights between Hubs may be Regional flights.

Block hour restriction in place limiting Regional flying to 120% of Mainline block hours. For example if mainline flies 1000 hours, Regional aircraft are allowed to fly 1200 block hours.


(TRIGGER) January 2016

  1. The limit on the number of (71-76) seat aircraft now goes up to 153, while the maximum number of 51-76 seat aircraft remains at 255. This limits the 70 seat aircraft to 102 aircraft.
  2. Block hour restriction remains at 120% of Mainline block hours.

(TRIGGER) After January 1st, 2016 AND United has a new Small Narrow-body Aircraft (E190, E195, Cseries, 717).

  1. Number of (71-76) seat aircraft can now pass 153 up to 223 aircraft. The rate of climb beyond 153 aircraft is 1 additional (71-76) seat regional jet for every 1.25 new mainline small narrow-body.
  2. Max number of (51-76) seat aircraft can climb to 325.
  3. 50 Seat Aircraft no longer unrestricted, the following restrictions begin to take effect.

United must begin its 50 seat reduction plan, based upon the number of 71-76 aircraft on the property. (the following has been copied from Delta's but is very similar to United's)

 

For the first 10 aircraft above 153 (71-76) seat aircraft United must reduce by 27 (50) seat aircraft.
For the next 10 (71-76) aircraft above 163 United must reduce by an additional 28 (50) seat aircraft.
For the next 10 (71-76) aircraft above 173 United must reduce by an additional 29 (50) seat aircraft.
For the next 10 (71-76) aircraft above 183 United must reduce by an additional 30 (50) seat aircraft.
For the next 20 (71-76) aircraft above 193 United must reduce by an additional 62 (50) seat aircraft.
For the next 10 (71-76) aircraft above 213 United must reduce by an additional 46 (50) seat aircraft.

Once the maximum number of (71-76) seat regional aircraft is reached (223) the maximum limit of 50 seat regional jets will have been capped down to 125. This is what would provide the Hard-Cap of 450 Regional Aircraft.


Block hour Restrictions continue, depending upon how many (71-76) regional jets are in service.

Between 154-163 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 11 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.
Between 164-173 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 12.5 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.
Between 174-183 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 13 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.
Between 184-193 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 13.5 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.
Between 194-203 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 14 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.
Between 204-213 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 14.7 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.
Between 214-223 large regional jets United Mainline must fly 15.6 hours of block for every 10 hours of Regional block.

Summary-

I was not able to obtain all of United's TA, the previous is a compilation of the best information I was able to get. Some of the sliding block hour and 50 seat reduction rates might be slightly different. My understanding is they are almost identical to Delta's.

What does all this mean?

According to this websites numbers(which are subject to flux, and update lag)  United has 618 Regional aircraft in operation for them. Currently the website is 151 70 seat aircraft currently in service. United is in the process of transferring the Q400's to Republic but when that is finished that will represent 36 (76) seat aircraft on the property. The total number of (51-76) seat aircraft on the property will be 187.

If the TA passes, United will be able to retain up to 90% of their Mainline Narrow-body fleet. With 548 aircraft in the MNB fleet that would allow 493 (50) seat aircraft. Currently this website shows 377 (50) seat aircraft in the Regional fleet. That would allow an increase of 116 50 seat jets, if United wanted them. Their current regional fleet size could grow to 748 Aircraft. United currently has 549 Regional aircraft that fall under this scope. (note- The difference between 618 and 549 are the small turbo-props that would be excluded from the count).

However, one protection for United Pilots that comes into effect immediately is the 120% Block hour restriction. Unlike Delta where this type of restriction is contingent upon going above 153 (71-76) seat jets, United's goes into effect without the 154th 76 seat jet. Currently estimates are showing current regional block hour to mainline is at 110-115%. I will delve into a comparison in a later post.

How will these two limitations effect each other? So even though United could increase their fleet by an additional 200 aircraft, the block hour limitation would make that very impractical. United would likely be able to increase total regional capacity by a small amount, but then after that it would become a one for one swap of 50 seat aircraft for larger capacity 51-76 seat jets.

This would be the Scope at United for the foreseable future, at least until 2016 where the number of 71-76 seat jets would be allowed to increase up to 153.

The previously mentioned SCOPE would be statusquo, unless United chooses to purchase a new narrow-body mainline aircraft. If that happens then United will be able to

  • boost their (51-76) seat aircraft numbers up to 325 aircraft, and increase 76 seat aircraft up to 223.
  • With this comes a whole new set of restrictions. At this point United would begin to see a two for one reduction in 50 seat aircraft, and a ratcheting down on block hour percentages very similar to Delta's.
  • The end number is the same as Deltas with a hard-cap of 450 aircraft. This particular part of their Scope may or may not happen depending on whether United chooses to bring additional small Narrow Body aircraft onto the property.

If this special Scenario plays out (which is the one that is happening at Delta now) then United Pilots do have a Scope policy to cover it.

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