American Airlines regional flight attendants will also be increased
American Airlines has now increased the pay of its flight attendants at its regional subsidiaries Envoy, Piedmont and PSA. Envoy and Piedmont increased base flight attendant pay to $27+/hour for new hires and current employees, according to a June 16 statement. It comes just days after regional pilots flying for the airlines won pay rises.
summer in the head
American Airlines is offering summer reliability incentives of up to $4,500 for flight attendants to work this summer. With summer expected to see high demand, airlines are doing everything they can to ensure they can operate as many of their scheduled services as possible.
In a statement, Association of Flight Attendants-CWA (AFA) International President Sara Nelson said of the agreement;
It’s going to be a tough summer, and we’re glad that American and its wholly-owned airlines have decided to work with us to provide incentives, make getting to work more manageable, and get new hires in the air. What’s good for the crew is good for the airline and the passengers who expect a safe and reliable travel experience.
The AFA statement explains that the Summer Reliability Incentive has three phases. However, flight attendants can still take vacations and some unscheduled absences and still be eligible to earn all summer reliability incentives.
Envoy is happy to invest in employee growth and quality
For regional airlines, having dedicated and enthusiastic team members working in the cabin is as important as having people to fly the aircraft up front. Linda Kunz, Vice President of Flight Service, Envoy Air, noted:
Envoy has continued to grow and we are committed to recruiting and retaining the best flight attendants in our industry. The job of a flight attendant is rewarding and Envoy offers great benefits, privileges and career opportunities, but we want to make sure we continue to take care of our teams who provide top-notch service in the air. .
But possible unintended consequences
American Airlines Embraer ERJ-145 regional jet aircraft seen while landing on final approach at New York JFK International Airport in New York, United States, on February 13, 2020. The flight is operated by American Eagle, a regional branch of American Airlines (Envoy Air). The commercial aircraft is registered N605KS. American Airlines is a major American carrier headquartered in Fort Worth. AA AAL is the world’s largest airline by fleet and passengers and a member of the Oneworld airline alliance. (Photo by Nicolas Economou/NurPhoto via Getty Images)
While the pay increase that also applies to flight attendants is also good news, a report from Skift.com points out that it also carries a risk. He says the high salaries of front-line workers at regional airlines can put air service to smaller markets at risk. As the cost per passenger increases, higher compensation rates for regional airlines may induce a shift to larger regional aircraft.
For example, Alaska Airlines is shifting to regional jets in an effort to reduce the seat-mile cost. This should help control airfares, as long as they can fill seats, creating a virtuous financial cycle for all travelers and financiers.
But as Skift.com reports,
“A higher salary could have unintended consequences. It could accelerate the phasing out of smaller, typically 50-seat, regional jets at airlines in favor of larger, often 76-seat models.”
Envoy operates the Embraer 145 (50 seats) and Embraer 140 (44 seats) plus flies new Embraer 175 (76 seats) regional jets.
Rising costs per passenger due to airline labor costs should be a concern for small market communities that depend on essential air services or a U.S. government subsidy to a regional carrier. This year, SkyWest Airlines tried to stop serving many cities, but was blocked by the US Department of Transportation.
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