Troubles at Brussels Airlines ? Part II

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Flybe
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Post by Flybe »

I m flying July 23rd, don t strike then please!!
don't worry, man!
If it happens, it would be way sooner than july
Yeah, but they might be still striking :?
I fly on 06 july, I chose to fly with Bru.Air instead of Wizz Air because I need to be certain that I am at my destination at latest on 07/07 early morning (wedding to attend to). Now it seems that it would have been better that I booked Wizz Air. Fly from Charleroi instead of BRU, fly Wizz Air instead Bru.Air...
and consider selling a few old planes in order to have fresh capital
If they still own planes... And that, I don't think so. In the beginning, they owned the older BAE's (about 5 of them, no?). But didn't I read some while ago that they also did a sale and lease back operation with those airplanes? So they did that already.
For instance: what is a 5 daily service to Geneva good for?
That s bullshit!!
Operate 2 daily fully booked flights at decent prices instead of 5 half-full flights at give-away rates!!
FYI, my girlfriend works in the EU Commission, and every time she needs to book flights to Geneva (read: constantly), she says the prices are outrageously high. It's probably one of the best earning routes of the whole network! You should get your facts straight.

You know, I read here so many thing about the management (mostly of Bru.Air, but sometimes also about the management of other companies). They don't know what they are doing, they don't do anything, they constantly take the worst decisions, etc.

I'm not saying here that the management is of good quality at Bru.Air, I don't know, I don't work there. BUT... it's a free world. You think you can do better? You have so much good advice for them at this forum? Guess what? You can apply for the job of manager! If you all think you are so good in it, and all want to earn their wage, then apply! If you are so good, you'll find work as a manager somewhere! Ah, let me guess, you all think you can do better, but you don't want the responsibility, the long hours (of doing nothing :roll: ), etc.

It's a free world, you're free to apply for a managerial position, or if you don't want to, you're free to go to your boss and tell them about your ideas. Your boss is an ass that doesn't listen? Your free to go to his boss too!

Much blablabla, little boemboemboem :roll:

Greets,

Pieter

Charlie Roy
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Post by Charlie Roy »

foxtrot_lima_yankee wrote:Strikes?
I m flying July 23rd, don t strike then please!!
I would think that they might be targeting one of the busiest days of the year: Tuesday May 1st. Hopefully I'm wrong and/or the strike will be averted before then. (Especially since I'm due to fly LIS-BRU with them on that day).

JOVAN
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Post by JOVAN »

Cagliari, Palermo, Catania, Faro,... this are purely touristic destinations where an airline like SN does not belong. There are so many business centers where they should concentrate on.

I never understood how they started and soon stopped again Glasgow. Are there no preliminary studies done ?

Then look at BD: Aberdeen, Edinburgh, East Midlands, Leeds Bradford ...all 3 times a day.

How can you NOT fly to Cairo, Istanbul..??? this is business+touristic.

There is no line, no plan, no vision, no system.. Can somebody confirm there is a sales and a marketing team at SN ???

Anyway, even this thus not justify a strike.

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TWA
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Post by TWA »

Indeed CAI.....KL serves CAI with B772, AF with B772/A332, BA with B772, LX with A343, LH with A333 and SN..........The biggest city in Africa could be a nice "next" A333 destination for Brussels Airlines.

foxtrot_lima_yankee
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Post by foxtrot_lima_yankee »

I totally agree on this one.

I know about Geneva being important but since we went from SN to bru.air, the prices on these routes have dropped, easy jet taking a share on it, so not the ideal route.
Germany is already operated by Lufthansa.
France and Holland are too close and easily reachable by train.
Little transit is done in Brussels due to the poor long-haul routes.

Cairo is indeed a great desination they have to put their hands on.
The middle-east as well as Lebanon and Israel should be served.



They should concentrate on business+tourism indeed.

I know it ain t easy to be a manager but if you see what they are risking now to economise little bucks, I think anyone on this forum can do better.

Qwerty
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Post by Qwerty »

Yeah; I fly in June. Definitely can't have a strike; just too important...

foxtrot_lima_yankee
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Post by foxtrot_lima_yankee »

Sometimes I think they have a lack of imagination.

They don t know where to send their planes to. So they send them 3 times per day or 5 times per day on the same routes.

A 737 has enough range to serve destinations like Cairo and the middle-east without problems.

If they sell tickets for a bit less and fill the 737s, they will be way more efficient than a A330, A340 or T7 flying loaded at 70%.

They can lease some A320' s and A321's and drop some Avro's, aircraft with little efficiency, capacity and range. Perhaps they can keep those for the very-short haul destinations in the neighbouring countries.

It is difficult to make an airline profitable. But when you manage to do it, the profits are big.

jan_olieslagers
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Post by jan_olieslagers »

foxtrot_lima_yankee wrote:They are right to have a strike.
There are many more ways to improve, than to cut personnel costs!!
Perhaps they should consider dropping some unimportant routes and consider selling a few old planes in order to have fresh capital and start efficient operations on the key routes.
For instance: what is a 5 daily service to Geneva good for?
That s bullshit!!
Operate 2 daily fully booked flights at decent prices instead of 5 half-full flights at give-away rates!!

What is a daily flight to Cagliari good for?
Bullshit, do that in the summer, not in the winter!!
The same for Palermo.

The keyword for a low-cost carrier is: efficiency, efficiency, efficiency.
A strike is not efficient!!!
On one day of strikings you loose more capital than you can economise in 3 years of cut-backed salaries.

Look for investors.

Instead of hiring absent-minded human ressources staff, hire some cargo operations specialist and make sure those A330's always fly full.

Make-up some deals and buy kerosene at better prices!!

The marketing is very good now!! I see posters everywhere!!
CONGRATULATIONS TO THE MARKETING TEAM!!
Maybe some easy marketing (leaflets,...) at the destinations might increase your popularity!!
Dear co-member FLY,
You are obviously the missing person at Brussels Airlines! You must have a very good view of the tariff structure and the rates applied for high-yield destinations such as Geneva. You have perhaps a bit to learn about the number of Belgians of Italian origin, whose parents or grandparents mostly moved into Belgium from Southern Italy to work as coalminers, though themselves rather operate pizzeria's and/or garages. But they do travel "home" quite frequently; just like their more recent case-likes from Morocco, Turkey and Poland. But then again, you clearly are well acquainted with the volatile market of petrol fuels and know well where to obtain better rates than those Brussels Airlines is paying today. Not to forget your diligence in the delicate matter of human resouces. In short, if things go less than perfect today, it is just because they want a manager like yourself. Do apply as a manager without delay, I'll be glad to give you every possible support!

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Atlantis
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Post by Atlantis »

TWA wrote:Indeed CAI.....KL serves CAI with B772, AF with B772/A332, BA with B772, LX with A343, LH with A333 and SN..........The biggest city in Africa could be a nice "next" A333 destination for Brussels Airlines.
And you forgot Egyptair who is flying two times a week from CAI to BRU with an A332.

I think that, in this case, SN lost its clients to JAF and TCA. They fly several times a week to CAI. Don't forget that those two charter companies made scheduled flights to a lot of destinations.

Istanbul was also served by SN, but they dropped this destination. TCA is going to pick up this destination a from 28 April.

So, this is all clear to me.

foxtrot_lima_yankee
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Post by foxtrot_lima_yankee »

[Dear co-member FLY,
You have perhaps a bit to learn about the number of Belgians of Italian origin, whose parents or grandparents mostly moved into Belgium from Southern Italy to work as coalminers, though themselves rather operate pizzeria's and/or garages. But they do travel "home" quite frequently]

I m one of thoses cases buddy, my father worked in a coalmine too.
I know better what I m talking about, we have been seeking the BRU-Cagliari route for years without success, and were the first informed about Bru.AIR operating it and are now trying to promote it daily (mouth-to-ear).
In the summer it is great to have daily flights, but in te winter no one stays in southern Italy, they all come back to the north. So 3 times weekly should be more than enough.
Many italians are in Limburg and they are used to taking TUIfly/ex-HLX from KOLN/BONN to Alghero.
Concerning the Sardinian market, people prefer Alghero/Fertilia as it is closer to the Costa Smeralda and Alghero, the hit destinations of the last years.
So it is difficult to convince them to go to Brussels.
But sure enough bru.air will have enough pax for Cagliari in the summer.


P.s.
It is easy to get kero at better prices.[/quote]

JOVAN
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Post by JOVAN »

tolipanebas wrote:
FlightMate wrote:My mistake... 200h per year of course

An average pilot will lose from 200 to 400€ a month with the merge, so Management proposed to increase the perdiems with 1€ / hour

An average pilot who was flying 60h a month will have to fly at least 75h to get the same amount
Well NOT even!

We will indeed loose about 200 to 400 euro a month because we will loose some extra legal remunerations linked to our stays in outstation which have been cut short (the main reason is to save on hotel accomodation, which is a good thing to do really, but NOT without compensating US for the loss of income because of it)

The proposal is to increase our hourly pay by 1 euro and they say we will have to fly around 75 hrs a month (yep, only our FLYING time will be taken into account, even though there is MUCH more in short haul than just flying like I have said above and our WORKING hours are more than DOUBLE the FLYING hours), so a quick calculation still shows that the ballance is NEGATIVE.

They should UP the proposal to at least 2 euro an hour AND pay us for WORKING hours, not FLYING hours, and then MAYBE, just MAYBE we won't be LOOSING money... yet still be working 15% harder!
Dear Sabenapilot,

Your postings really show that the "Sabena" spirit is still alive.

Short sighted own-interest.

Now the share holders are private companies, who will not gently treat you as victims or heroes anymore.

This shareholders have put millions of euros in a business they do not like, that gives only head-aches. They did this under heavy political pressure.

I still remember this 4 (FOUR) DAYS of strike by the pilots, in 2001.

One of the most disgusting periods in our social history.

Now most of them have to do with a lot less, they became alcoholics, left this world, went to Papeete, Doha, Taipei for exciting adventures.
Or Easyjet, Ryanair...

A new strike, especially by pilots, will be nefast for this company.

Keep what you have, do not kill the chicken with the...silver egg.

After Sabena2 there will be nothing...

foxtrot_lima_yankee
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Post by foxtrot_lima_yankee »

Yeah one week of strikes is about enough to pull the company down.

Company has no money, so pays pilots less, pilots don t wanna fly for little so strikes, so company looses even more money and has to save even more on salaries and other costs...
Looks pretty much like Alitalia, except for the fact that there is no government support...

Perhaps SN can pay their pilots in shares for the extra they work??
Let s cross our fingers and hope they come to an agreement.

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tolipanebas
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Post by tolipanebas »

JOVAN wrote: Just short sighted own-interest.
Well excuse me for working JUST for a living, NOT for (your) pleasure...
JOVAN wrote: The shareholders have put millions of euros in a business they do not like, that gives only head-aches. They did this under heavy political pressure.
OMG... Another 'believer' :roll:

As has been explained 'ad infinitum' many times before, all SN shareholders have been given the exceptional right to deduct the full amount of their investment (given as a loan actually) through their income taxes of 2001 and thus have seen their 'investment' repaid entirely by the Belgian government. As only half of the loan has been taken up by SN, yet the entire sum was allowed to be deducted, they managed to get the full 100% back indeed.

Their sole interest now is to sell off their 'free' shares in the company and to book a nice profit on the deal. This is why they categorically refuse to invest a single euro in Brussels Airlines (nor why the airline may even think about taking up the rest of the outstanding loan) and why they are so obsessed with this integration, despite the original SN management being categorically against it (and Rob Kuypers had to leave).
JOVAN wrote: The share holders are private companies, who will not gently treat you as victims or heroes anymore.
Knowing the mentality of our shareholders better than you, I can assure you they will simply make a cool harted calculation and if the cost of giving in to our demands will be lower than the cost of facing day long strikes, the choice will be quickly made... we nor you should make any illusions about their 'goodwill'...
JOVAN wrote: I still remember this 4 (FOUR) DAYS of strike by the pilots, in 2001.
One of the most disgusting periods in our social history.
Now most of them have to do with a lot less, they became alcoholics, left this world, went to Papeete, Doha, Taipei for exciting adventures.
Or Easyjet, Ryanair...
Earning less at Ryanair, Easyjet or other airlines abroad??? :lol:

Even checked the websites for pilot recruitement at these airlines???

Why do you think SN needs to make use of personal intimidation tactics to scare off its qualified pilots from leaving the company you think?

Don't forget that contrary to 2001 when aviation wordwide was in a slump and pilots were not in high demand (quite on the contrary), 2007 sees aviation BOOMING like crazy and pilots are much needed...

JOVAN
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Post by JOVAN »

tolipanebas wrote:Don't forget that contrary to 2001 when aviation wordwide was in a slump and pilots were not in high demand (quite on the contrary), 2007 sees aviation BOOMING like crazy and pilots are much needed...
If the grass is so green on the other side, what are you waiting for to go ??

Go quickly, and stop playing the victim here.

airazurxtror
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Post by airazurxtror »

tolipanebas wrote:
Knowing the mentality of our shareholders better than you, I can assure you they will simply make a cool harted calculation and if the cost of giving in to our demands will be lower than the cost of facing day long strikes, the choice will be quickly made... we nor you should make any illusions about their 'goodwill'...
The companies who have put money into the then SN Brussels Airlines did it under "political" or "amical" pressure, to keep a Belgian flag carrier flying, being well understood they would remain shareholders just long enough to get it on the right track.
At least one of these, that I know rather well, has a stringent rule, it does never put money outside its field of business, and even then only if it is reasonably sure to get at least a 15% annual return on investment.
The money they put in SNBA, they would like to get it back as soon as possible to use it more profitably elsewhere.

FlightMate
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Post by FlightMate »

Jovan, maybe you should be aware that SN is losing 10% of its pilots every year, since 3 years. It becomes harder and harder to replace them, and it costs a lot of money. (more money than some people "playing the victim" as you call)
So my advice would be, don't encourage people from leaving, it will hurt the company furthermore.

Concerning the Geneva routes. I think the main problem of the company is their unclear choice of either be a low cost, or a business oriented company.

Too much flights a day is unuseful for low cost passengers. But too few frequencies on these route would mean no business (or flex) passengers anymore.

And when you guys talk about the Sabena's bankrupcy caused by the pilots, I think you haven't heard about swissair, have you?

fcw
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Post by fcw »

JOVAN wrote: Now most of them have to do with a lot less, they became alcoholics, left this world, went to Papeete, Doha, Taipei for exciting adventures.
Or Easyjet, Ryanair...


How much do you think a former Sabena pilot earned if you call monthly salaries in the vicinity of 10.000€ A LOT LESS???
The Sabena pilots accepted numerous salary-cuts during the previous aviation boom. That was the mistake they made. In the mean time the management prepared their own little extras...

The BruAir guys are the worst paid pilots in western europe. Although they have the power to ask for a significant increase, they are only refusing a salary cut. A very mild request imho. The pilots don't have anything to loose. If BruAir goes down, they will have a better paid job, in Brussels, within days. Brussels is attractive to foreign companies, but BruAir isn't. Who would be intrested in a company with four aircraft types, a heavy management, an aging fleet and two AOC's???

foxtrot_lima_yankee
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Post by foxtrot_lima_yankee »

I totally agree with the last post.

Bru.air has nothing to attract people, only desperate pilots with low hours seeking a job would find it attractive.
Perhaps a new era has to come for Belgian aviation and the SN/VEX merging was only a discontinuity of the transitory period we are in.

I hope that by the time I finish my ATPL, Belgium will have a real carrier that offers real opportunities.

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tolipanebas
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Post by tolipanebas »

JOVAN wrote:
If the grass is so green on the other side, what are you waiting for to go ??
You seem to be forgetting fast... :roll:

Still remember what the real issue of this discsussion is?

NOT about how much more 'spoiled' pilots worldwide are in comparison to their colleagues in Belgium, but about how low SN has fallen in an effort to keep their pilots from leaving as you suggest...

From my first reply to this discussion:
tolipanebas wrote:I really fail to see how people on this site can still be so supportive of a company which is using all kind even illegal methods of intimidation like the ones Brussels Airlines is currently using against their Flight Crews...

Just a recap:

Last month, Brussels Airlines decided to say 'fuck the Belgian labour laws' by unilaterally renouncing all Collective Labour Agreements between them and their FLight Crews at former SN and imposed a set of new labour conditions the day after. The Belgian law explicitly forbids this, but hey.. Brussels Airlines thinks these laws are 'for sissies' and are just hindering them in their 'big plans'... :twisted:

Then people who are fed up with this (and all that comes before, because don't think for a second this is the first incident at Brussels Airlines) decide it is time to leave, but guess what? They are haunted by Brussels Airlines right up to their new employer and finished off cold blooded by sending out reference letters full of negative comments. :shock:

Just admit it: this is NOT done.
THIS IS INTIMIDATION IN ITS PUREST FORM! :evil:

Sure, a strike is not the best option, but open your eyes people:
Brussels Airlines has in the past few weeks shown beyond doubt to be a company where NO COLLECTIVE LABOUR AGREEMENT, NO RULE, NO LAW EVEN is a suitable tool to give pilots there the feeling they are protected from INDIVIDUAL or COLLECTIVE attacks on their working conditions, their salary, their professional carrier and even their personal live! Don't you think YOU might consider some kind of action when you'd be working for an employer who does all this?

And before you say: if you're not happy, why don't you just leave then iso going on strike??? Well, in the past, many pilots have decided to do exactly so, much to the dispair of the management who can hardly cope with the cost and efforts of all the trainings which need to be given to new entrants, while qualified pilots leave 'en masse', so now they have apparently decided to set up a new system to stop the outflow: NOT by tackling the problems inside, but by making sure nobody dares to resign!
If Brussels Airlines decided to put the doors open by saying, "not happy? please go!" like you suggest, I can safely say SN will need to cancel half of their summer program within weeks because of lack of pilots.... :lol:

teddybAIR
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Post by teddybAIR »

datpilot wrote: And don't start about investors and the poor passengers.... If the investors were that concerned they would have done something about the management long ago: they are throwing away millions of euros each week due to mismanagement: anyone want to find out how much our latest round of africa problems has cost? :oops:
and you passengers: thank you for flying with us but don't for a second think that we don't know that most of you anly fly with us because we're cheaper and more connected to brussels than all the rest. And the argument; I won't fly with you anymore because you're going on strike... We haven't had a real strike in 5 years and still our pax numbers are low. How many strikes have KLM, Air France and Lufthansa had????? nobody refusing to fly with them are they?
Wow, so much for being constructive! I'm not working for BruAir, not even working in aviation, but I am following this story from the outside. I hope you don't minde me saying that if every employee of BruAir had that attitude, I would not be supprised to see it close its doors once again in the near future. I sincerely hope there are more constructive people on board!

Best regards,
bAIR

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