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Air Choice One Pilot Interview Profiles

Date Interviewed: December 2013
Summary of Qualifications: Commercial: ASEL
Instrument Airplane
Private: AMEL
Restricted Radiotelephone Operator Permit
First Class Medical (no limitations)
(Current: Single, Instrument, Day, Night)
Total time: 320
Current airline experience: 6.5 years; ramp and customer service
Were you offered the job? No
Pilot Interview Profile:
Not much has changed at Air Choice One since the previous gouges. This gouge comes five months after the interview.

I walked in to Air Choice One 15 minutes early at 8:45am. I was greeted by the front desk clerk and waited till 9:10am to be seen for my 9:00am interview. I was greeted by the CEO and lead to a back office where they took copies of my licenses and certificates while I took my 25 question written test. The written was simple, basically a private pilot written and you are given 25 minutes to take the test. I passed the test and continued the interview with the CEO and the CAO.

During the face-to-face interview they asked a number of question about my background, what I do for work, if I like my job, what I don't like about my job, what I like to do for fun, the scariest thing I've ever done, something that I've failed at, who the most inspirational person in my life is and then the CEO pulled out flash cards and quizzed me on emergency procedures (involving the aircraft I am most familiar with). We went on to talk about what would take place should I be offered a position. Here are the conditions of employment with Air Choice One:

-Prior to commencing training, you sign a one year $10,000 training contract (First Officer). The contract is NOT pro-rated*
-Training is one month long
-You are REQUIRED to live in St. Louis for the duration of your training contract
-If you fail your checkride post ground school, you are given one more chance but you have to pay for the second ride out of pocket
-When minimums are met and a position is available, they upgrade you and send you to Flight Safety for formal C208 training but not until you sign your 2 year, $24,000 training contract (Captain), also not pro-rated

Pay is $18 per flight hour, minimum 70hrs per month, per diem on overnights only. Captains make $35 per flight hour, minimum 70hrs per month, per diem on overnights only. Medical insurance available 90 days after employment and you pay around $50/mo, any additional insurance is purchased privately by you. No flight benefits (but pilots are in CASS and have access to most major carriers except American).

*TRAINING CONTRACTS: prior to the interview I was not aware of training contracts or how they worked. The training contract is designed to protect the companies investment in you. If at any time during the duration of the contract you violate any of the terms, get terminated, quit, or fail training, you are required to pay the respective company the amount outlined in the contract (in this case $10,000 for First Officers and $24,000 for Captains)

Air Choice One stands by their contracts and they seemed very concerned about prospective employees wanting to jump ship, hence signing a non pro-rated contract. They sent me home with drug testing paperwork so they didn't have to pay postage fees to mail them too me. When the interview was complete I was walked to the entrance, they told me to expect a letter before the end of the following week stating whether I was offered the position OR NOT.

Phone calls and emails were exchanged. Three weeks after my interview I had not received a letter (despite the fact they told me I would receive one telling me yes or no). They said they were still conducting interviews and that I was still in the running for the position and to expect an answer by the end of the month (which was then 4 weeks post interview, 01/30/14). After that time frame expired, I still had not heard anything, I called again and never got a response. At that point I got the hint and dropped it. Fast forward to May (5 months post interview). I received a thick envelope in the mail with my name and address on it, but no return address, I turned the letter over and written on the back in ink was "I thought you'd like to have this back". Inside were all my resume packets with cover letters and recommendation letters that I had presented in the interview. I guess I got my answer.

Would I recommend interviewing with Air Choice One? No. You have to pay for everything to get out there, durning your stay and your return trip. I am fortunate enough to already work in the industry and had access to discounted tickets. But, I bought a brand new suit, flew to St. Louis from Oregon, spent all night flying to get to the interview, arrived to STL at 4am before a 9am interview, rented a car, spent a few hours freshening up in a hotel and flew home all on my own dime. I spent over $1,000 on this trip and they didn't even have the decency to give me a call back and tell me no. I busted my butt for a company I didn't even work for, flew 2,500 miles for a shot at my dream job and I didn't even get a phone call. Glass half full: maybe it's a good thing I wasn't offered the position.
Date Interviewed: February 2012
Summary of Qualifications: 1100TT, CFI, COMM, INS, ME, ATP Written
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:
Typical interview for this type of Airline and similar to Pacific Wings; you fly to St. Louis out of your own pocket, interview with the Chief Pilot, relaxed atmosphere. There is a 25 question written exam taken from the Gleim Instrument book, all weather, instrument, and preflight information. $18 per hour for first officers and $25-$30 per hour for Captains, the catch is there is a $5000/1yr training contract for first officers and $10,000 training contract for Captains. Seems like a good place to work although the contract equals six months of wages. The pay is very low even compared to Pacific Wings standards and the contract is a killer, be prepared to starve for a year. If you can survive on roman as a First Officer, you might make it up to cup-of-noodle as a Captain.
Date Interviewed: December 2011
Summary of Qualifications: 1090TT 200ME ATP Written
Were you offered the job? Don't Know
Pilot Interview Profile:
Meet With the Chief Pilot off airport HQ. All expenses are covered by you. St Louis. 25 Questions taken out of the gleim instrument. weather. preflight checks and some instrument deflection questions.

Much better outfit than PW
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