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(UAL) Work Positions - Bidding and in an Aircraft Substitution

Date: August 15, 2017

With the introduction of the 777-300 aircraft and the two-class 767C, we have received a number of questions from Members asking how they can bid to ‘avoid’ the premium galley positions on these aircraft.  While bidding is less complex when the lines of flying contain the same aircraft all month, it can become a bit more complex when there is a mix of equipment in a line of flying.  To assist with bidding, a concept used many years ago has been re-introduced to assist when bidding lines that contain mixed equipment.  This is the concept of the bidding matrix.  The matrix lists information on bid positions, FLTLOF positions and work positions.

Using the example of a LHR line of flying where there are five IDs in the line, all Chicago IDs with four (4) of the IDs operating round trip on the 767N (three class) and one ID operating round trip on the 767C (two class).  When bidding the line, those who wish to bid an economy (Y) position on both aircraft would bid the B & D (bid) positions because these are the positions that work Y on both aircraft.  The FLTLOF positions associated with these bid positions are M & O.   The specific cabin work position will be determined at briefing, based on seniority (and this might include working the economy galley) depending upon the seniority of others on the flight also in a “Y” position.  The bid process provides us with the opportunity to ‘select’ or ‘avoid’ a specific cabin assignment or premium position when bidding.

What, you may ask, happens in the case of an equipment substitution?  Using the same example above, let us assume there is an equipment substitution on one of the flights from LHR to ORD. Instead of operating a 767N, the company flies the segment with a 777-300W aircraft.

In this case, those who bid B & D will, as a result of the substitution, work “Y” and “G” instead of both working “Y”.  Regardless of how people may bid for their monthly schedule, in an equipment substitution, the positions for the aircraft to which substituted must be filled.  These premium work positions are filled based on the FLTLOF position.  In this case, those in the N & O positions (in the case of a substitution to a 777-300W aircraft) will fill the premium galley positions on the flight.  In the same way, if the aircraft were substituted to a 747 aircraft, in the absence of a second purser qualified Flight Attendant, the person in the M ‘FLTLOF’ position will work the “B” or aft purser position.

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