United Airlines is offering pilots triple pay to pick up more trips in January, as it struggles with a staffing shortage it blames on the omicron variant.
Triple Pay For United Airlines Pilots Who Fly More Hours In January
While the Thanksgiving holiday was mild in terms of delays and cancellations, the holiday seasons has been a whole different story’s with U.S. carriers including United cancelling over 10,000 flights over the last 10 days alone.
Yesterday, United cancelled 221 flights and has already cancelled 139 flights this morning according to FlightAware.
United blames this on the omicron variant in a memo to pilots:
“Due to the rapid spread of the COVID Omicron variant, we are currently seeing record levels of pilot sick calls. The impact on the operation is clear and United has experienced a correspondingly large number of cancellations over the past week.”
To help minimize operational interruptions, United is offering pilots a generous bonus over the next month to encourage more pilots to step up and put in additional time:
- 250% bonus – December 30 – January 3
- 200% bonus – January 4 -29
(this bonus applies to hours beyond minimum monthly flight hours)
Pilots will also be offered positive space travel if they commute from their home to their base.
While this bonus policy gives pilots a financial incentive to come to work sick, a detailed memo reviewed by Live and Let’s Fly makes clear that United pilots are strictly ordered not to come to work if symptomatic, particularly for COVID-19.
“The bottom line – if you are healthy and able to report to work, please do so. If you are not well and need to call in sick, please take care of yourself and return when able.”
United flights attendants are also receiving bonus pay to operate more trips during the month of January.
United Airlines is pushing pilots to take on extra duty time in the month of January, as it struggles to avoid cancellations in light of a more robust flight schedule and an increase in the number of sick pilots.
image: United Airlines