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Network Aircraft Schedule Changes impact August

Date: July 8, 2022

Over the past several months, we all well understand the impact late adjustments to our network aircraft schedule, made in response to demand for air travel, have had on our flying schedules.  These last-minute changes have resulted in a large number of pairing modifications with the end result being long wait times when trying to contact Crew Scheduling to resolve these modifications.

While at this point the company has responded favorably to many of the Union’s recommendations on variable staffing and hotel issues which have contributed to reducing call wait times, there was still considerable work to be done on the more than 10,000 pairings that needed repair.  All of us have been impacted by this over the course of this month.

Shortly after we received initial information on the proposed August aircraft schedule, we began to hear that substantial changes to the aircraft schedule were in the works and these changes would negatively impact the pairings that were proposed to be flown in August. In discussions with management at that time, we expressed our firmly held view that Flight Attendants simply cannot be subjected to a repeat of that which we are experiencing during July.

In response to our advocacy, and to lessen the impact on both Flight Attendants and Crew Scheduling, a decision was made to re-build the planned August pairings incorporating the most current revisions to the aircraft schedule.

As a direct consequence of that decision, the schedule development process will start later than normal and August bid packets will be finalized a bit later in the process than is optimal in order to get the scheduling information completed and to the printers.

With the concurrence of AFA, the opening of the August primary bid period will be delayed. Bid packets will be uploaded to CCS on July 13, 2022.  The revised Bidding timeline is:

Bidding Opens

By 5:00 PM CT on July 13, 2022

Bidding Closes

At 8:00 AM HDT on July 17, 2022

Bids Awarded

By 8:00 AM HDT on July 18, 2022 (typically earlier)

The only change to the process is a delay to the opening of bids. Bidding for all bases will open by 5:00 PM CT on Wednesday, July 13,2022. All downline processes to include adjustments, VRL bidding, and awards and open time trading will remain unchanged from the contractually required timelines.

While there is no question that the opening of bids on a delayed schedule creates a level of inconvenience, it should be understood that this decision was made in order to ensure Flight Attendants are provided the opportunity to bid on pairings constructed using the most up to date aircraft schedule.  The end result is expected to be a reduction in the need for pairing modifications after the fact and a schedule that more accurately reflects what you can expect to fly during August producing a better outcome overall.

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