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American Airlines Pilot Scheduling Error Estimated to Cost $10M

A JPMorgan report estimates the price of an American Airlines scheduling glitch at $10 million. The airlines had a computer error that awarded Christmas off to too many pilots and left many flights without adequate staffing.

To fix the problem, American Airlines initially offered 150% of normal pay for pilots to pick up the available flights. The Allied Pilots Association (APA), which represents American Airlines pilots, reached an agreement with airline managers to increase pay to 200% of normal wages.

“We’ve reached an agreement that we believe will ensure that our customers’ holiday travel plans are not disrupted while also recognizing our pilots’ extra efforts to help resolve this challenge,” the APA said.

The estimate was reached by estimating pilot pay in December as a percentage of American’s quarterly wages and estimating that 1,500 flights will need to be staffed by pilots at the 200% pay.

Greg started his professional pilot journey in 2002 after graduating from Embry Riddle. Since that time he has accumulated close to 8,000 hours working as a pilot. Greg’s professional experience includes flight instructing, animal tracking, backcountry flying, forest firefighting, passenger charter, part 135 cargo, flying for a regional airline, and working as a manager in charge of a part 135 and part 121 training programs. Greg took a 5 year hiatus from flying and worked in software development and marketing. He has returned to flying and works for a major airline. Greg enjoys educating and helping pilots improve their professional lives and is passionate about applying technology and new methods to help with traditional challenges.

Greg Thomson