United indicators pilots a four-year, short-term employment contract with pay will increase of as much as 40%

United Airlines pilots enter the airport while participating in an informational demonstration at Newark Liberty International Airport in Newark, New Jersey May 12, 2023.

Eduardo Munoz | Reuters

United Airlines and his pilots’ union have agreed to an interim labor agreement that includes wage increases of up to 40.2% over four years, ending months of tense negotiations and picketing at the airport. The deal makes United’s pilots the youngest pilots from a major airline to agree to higher wages amid the post-pandemic travel boom.

The tentative deal, which the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA) announced on Saturday, comes months later Delta Airlines The pilots ratified a new deal that would see a 34% increase over four years, becoming the first of the four largest airlines to reach a new deal. American Airlines and his pilots’ union reached a new collective bargaining agreement with wage increases of 40% over four years, although it still has to be voted on by members to ratify it.

The pandemic has disrupted collective bargaining across the industry, but workers have been pushing for higher wages and better working conditions since travel demand has returned and talks have resumed.

According to ALPA, the preliminary deal is valued at about $10 billion. It includes a host of other improvements, including overtime pay, vacation pay, and scheduling. Cumulative pay increases range from 34.5% to 40.2% depending on the type of aircraft a pilot flies.

The agreement in principle will not be finalized until ratified by the company’s 16,000 pilots.

“We promised our world-class pilots the industry-leading contract they deserve, and we’re pleased to have reached an agreement with ALPA,” United CEO Scott Kirby said in a LinkedIn post. “Once ratified, the four-year agreement will deliver a significant pay increase and quality of life improvement for our pilots, while putting the airline on the right track to realize the incredible potential of our United Next strategy.”

The pilots overwhelmingly rejected an 18-month interim contract last year.

United is expected to report second-quarter results after the market close on Wednesday, and executives are likely to face questions about the cost of the deal during a conference call next day.

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