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About converted_lurker

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  1. Bristow rates of pay are entirely commensurate, alas, with the package you get as an RAF Flt/Lt flying a Sea King. Its diced up a little differently, more wage less pension and different hours but overall its neither significantly better or worse than being in the Navy or RAF. There is no intention to move to an insurance based model of rescue as you might find in the Alps for off piste skiing. UK helicopter rescue is a free at the point of use service and there has been nobody anywhere who has suggested that should change. Hence the awarding of a billion pound long term contract. The winchmen are in a similar position to the pilots and most will be ex-services. In the longer term they will have to be trained in the civilian world but this has already happened without too much of a problem in the world of basic helicopter flying instruction at Shawbury. The new airframes and the new locations do mean that the UK can enjoy a faster and more capable SAR service in the years ahead. The Sea Kings were getting fairly knackered and their capabilities fairly old school in technology terms. The new kit is faster, stronger, safer, cheaper and far less likely to be unserviceable than the ageing SK fleet which is ten years past the point at which it should have retired at least.
  2. Bristow are only paying equivent pay to what the pilots earned in Service. The new helicopters actually enhance the rescue service capability as do the new more sensible locations. Other countries have commercially operated SAR. SAR in the military context is in decline as the aerial battlefield becomes unmanned. This is a sensie move for the taxpayer and the sailor/mountaineer.
  3. Aviation fuel isnt taxed by national governments. If they did then this would damage the environment. This would occur because different rates of tax would result in some of the worlds airliners 'tankering' fuel so as to avoid buying the more expensive taxed fuel. At the moment, with fuel prices being broadly the same aircraft carry just enough fuel to get from A to B and no more. If B starts taxing aviation fuel then the aircraft will fly from A to B but carry enough fuel to fly back to A without buying fuel at B. Typically you burn about 4% of the fuel tankered per hour. So a typical London to Barcelona flight would need 4 tonnes of tankered fuel over two hours of flight time to Bacelona which would mean burning 80kg of fuel to avoid the higher fuel tax in Barcelona. If burning the extra £50 of kerosene means avoiding £51 of tax then that is exactly what airlines will do. The net result will be more fuel burnt than would otherwise be the case. A bad result for everyone and eveything. Of course if you got every government to agree to impose exactly the same tax rate then it would work. But that's never ever going to happen. So instead, quite wisely, they tax the passenger heads and not the fuel literage. They can't lie about how many passengers they carried, it's easy to calculate and it avoids putting additional commercial pressure on airline captains to fly with less fuel than they would really like. The drawback is that the tax does not punish airlines which fly around half empty aircraft. So easyJet pays more tax to fly its 88% full aircraft to Barcelona than Vueling does to fly its 68% full aircraft to Barcelona. Which the environment probably thinks is pretty stupid. But hey, nothing's perfect. Road fuel taxation makes sense because there is no way of knowing how many people are travelling in every vehicle and people find it hard to avoid. In aviation you do know how many people are travelling in every vehicle and airlines would find it easy to avoid. Claiming that is a tax subsidy to airlines is idiotic. A commonly held opinion but one held by the ignorant. The airline industry is the only public transport industry in the UK that pays a net profit to the Exchequer and a very hefty profit it is.
  4. Airlines haven't offered 'fully sponsored' pilot training since Sept11th. Instead wannabe pilots were offered training courses by third party suppliers which 'promised' employment with large airlines if you did OK in training. Every year the costs escalated and the job contract terms deteriorated. Today you need £110k minimum, 18 months non-paid training time, then you get two years working on agency worker terms or some 'contractor' contract with Ryanair with questionable taxation status. There are long queues of applicants surprisingly.
  5. Those figures are missing the 14 aircraft registered to easyJet Switzerland. Easyjet will have more aircraft than BA by 2014. They are also sitting on 15 months worth of cash and are ranked only 14 places from entering the FTSE100.
  6. Oils been expensive for 5 years now. easyJets making record profits. Square them apples.
  7. SMAC67 has had all his dire predictions proven to be unfounded so now is too busy to frequent this thread. I see. He spent £110k jumping ahead of other wannabe airline pilots on a scheme to fast track him to the cockpit of a 180 seat jet airliner in less than 18 months. Sweet. But the contract was always that you would be the company's bitch, paid by the hour where and when needed. He knew that - he took it. It saves easyjet having more pilots than it needs on the books during the quieter winter months, this drives down costs, this is why they are successful. If Diddums didn't want to work on such a precarious contract he needn't of signed up for the £110,000 course. Oh. If you have the UK's second largest (by a margin of 800%) airline posting record profits and record share prices and expanding and hiring then surely - despite some patches of dead wood - that does not suggest an industry in cataclysmic decline? As predicted by people who got it wrong on this thread many years ago.. Given the scale of destruction in the financial sector and the general recession the airline industry has actually been robust on historical norms.
  8. http://www.cityam.com/latest-news/easyjet-boosts-traffic-and-passenger-load So here's an airline in the UK that's seeing growth of around 8% per year whilst in the middle of a double dip recession and ongoing financial crisis and high unemployment. Not exactly an industry on its knees. Monarch airlines is also expanding in the UK adding new crew bases and buying additional new Airbus aircraft and hiring more crews. Its certainly a mixed picture and its certainly not a rosy one but neither has the total collapse of the air transport industry, as predicted by some on this thread, come to pass. Indeed Peter Skellan was totally correct to point out that the cost of the flight is trivial in the over expenditure of a foreign travel excursion particularly with the strength of the Euro. However, yet again, the airline industry shows its adapatability and suddenly there were new routes springing up all over the place to places outside of the Eurozone. Turkey being the main benefactor. Try doing that with your HS2 - the airline business adapts to new market conditions very quickly. It has had to learn to do so. There's never been more retired people with decent pensions looking for something to spend their money on..
  9. Sorry, one billion not two and I was thinking about 2008. The point was that the business is one where profits plunge and it all seems like a complete wreck but then they also soar and it seems like a runaway success. Most other businesses are not like this. You cannot put antifreeze through a jet turbine. Kerosene is going to remain the principal fuel for aircraft forever. Most everything else has an alternative but not aviation. The airline business has always faced challenges and crisis and has always overcome them and continued to grow. It might 'be different this time' but I doubt it. House prices are going to go up again on day you know..
  10. Kerosene will always have to be by far te biggest part of the blend due to its unique properties - like not freezing despite being at at -46C in the wing tanks.
  11. Extracting hydrocarbons from 2 miles under the sea bed ain't exactly convenient but we still do it. If JetA1 was really going to run out anytime soon would Mr Boeing really be spending billions designing the next generation of jets to burn it over their 30 year service lives? No. Military consumption is already plummeting as they go over to cheap and economical UAV's. There's plenty left for a good while yet. Five years ago we were running out of gas. Now we have millions of tons of the stuff just waiting to be fracked up.. Anyway. The UK commercial air transport industry is BIGGER now than in 2008 when this thread of nonsense started so that's the way it went.
  12. Not particularly. In the West we will have the baby boomer retirement which is really what is screwing up the economy. This is offset by the BRIC countries and their Westernisation. Oil continues not to run out despite constant forecasts of it doing so. It will probably get more expensive but then gas is getting cheaper, Thorium looks good and new tech is impressively frugal. I've got a Ford Mondeo in the yard with 163bhp 5 seats and it returns a real 53 mpg - that sort of car equivalent just ten years ago would have been. BMW 525d which would barely crack 40mpg. Mathusians always fail to allow for the inventiveness of man. The time is in sight when land based vehicles are hydrogen powered and tht leaves even more oil for jet aircraft to burn. For people whose career is an international one or who can largely work electronically the expansion of world markets offers great potential. 20 years ago we were languishing in the Major years, crashing out of ERM and house prices collapsed. Things looked dire. They weren't that bad. They aren't this time. Not really. Air travel has never been so popular, the products offered never more diverse and the customer base never more diverse. This is not an industry that is dying. Far from it.
  13. So half the world is OK then. Which is why there are so many contracting jobs in the Far East and why all the Middle East carrries are recruiting like crazy. Ryanair is seeing a slight reduction to its immense, world beating profit record, Easyjet are about to post record profits and their shareprice is up 91% in a year. There will be further consoldation in Europe but that's normal for the industry and healthy. Thomson are starting their new 787 Dreamliner flying next year and despite 4 years of recession and crisis there are still lots of Brits going on lots of holidays. There is also a growing market for package holidays aimed at the SAGA crowd. BA made a small profit this year despite the difficulties. They will be raking in the cash when then economic cycle come around again – this is a company which has made £2bn profit in a single year in recent times. Well most of BMI which has been struggling since well before this thread started is being absorbed into BA to increase their capacity and offer new routes. The aircraft and staff. The only ones going to the scrapheap are the BMI Baby boys and that was a piddly little 13 aircraft operation. EasyJet are buying more new aircraft than that this year. BA's pension is a poison pill – it means they can't be taken over. Its really not something to worry about. No they don't they compete like hell to sell aircraft and there are deals to be had. BA are recruiting pilots and cabin crew this year. The offspring of the wealthy are just replacing those who were willing to sign for massive loans or re-mortgage their parents house. There is no shortage and compared to getting a career started in law or medicine its actually still quite cheap and quick to become a pilot (18 months and £115,000). This of course is no reason for the consumer to cry. I don't complain when Ford find ways of making their car workers screw together cars more cheaply. Evidence? Maintenance requirements are just as well regulated now as ever and the equipment is more reliable as well. If that's what the market demands then that's what it gets. Face it – a lot of the real premium passengers have wandered off to the private jet/fractional jet market and they aren't going to come back. That sector barely existed 20 years ago. Things change. Try designing testing and delivering a new drug to market or opening a new oilfield in Alaska and then come and talk to me about the most expensive business on the planet. The Olmpics are neglible to UK aviation, some extra traffic but then a lot of people avoided London/UK for the duration. Its net neutral. No. The accident stats in Western countries are brilliant and never been better. World wide they are getting worse because Africa and Asia are getting their first taste of widescale domestic air travel and they are crashing a lot. Avoid flying Bongo Air and you'll be just fine. As I said originally, you were predicting thousands of job losses and masses of bankrupt airlines back in 2007/8 and it just hasn't really happened. Things have not been great but in the UK both Ryanair and Easyjet have added dozens of aircraft to their fleets. The airlines with the right business model are doing OK and the ones with the wrong one are struggling. This is fine. This is how it is suppose to be. The industry keeps on trucking. Passenger numbers only dipped by a couple of percent in the UK and for those working in the industry its lucky that its so international. There are plenty of well paid, tax free jobs in Doha, Dubai, Beijing etc etc. It might not be everyones cup of tea but I know plenty who are quite happy in the sun and the jungle earning loads and well away from rainy old Britain. This thread has shown that Skellan made more accurate predictions than others in the early days of this thread. Fact.
  14. This thread has been going since 2008 and not much has actually happened when you stand back. Yes a few sickly airlines have deceased but then the stronger ones like Ryanair and easyJet have added over 100 new aircraft to their fleet over the same period. No real carnage as predicted by some.
  15. Well that is bizarre because Ryanairs 31 inch seat pitch is exactly the same as Flybe.
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