Category Archives: Sun Country Airlines

Sun Country Airlines’ owner Marty Davis threatens to downsize and eventually close the airline

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Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) Chairman Marty Davis has threatened to downsize and eventually shut down the airline if a new agreement with the pilots cannot be reached. In a letter sent to the pilots this past week, the owner threatened this drastic course of action. The pilots are locked in negotiations with management on a new contract. Davis has stated the latest management offer is the “last and best offer” according to this report by the Duluth News Tribune. The National Mediation Board (NMB) has scheduled another negotiating session in late May.

Captain Brian Roseen, Chairman of the Sun Country Master Executive Council, Air Line Pilots Association, International (ALPA), representing the pilots, issued this response to the threat:

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“The Sun Country Master Executive Council (SCA MEC) of the Air Line Pilots Association, International, the collective bargaining representative of SCA pilots, has received media inquiries related to reports about a communication from SCA management threatening a wind down of Sun Country Airlines.

“Yesterday, the SCA MEC received a letter from Mr. Marty Davis, Chairman and owner of Sun Country. Mr. Davis’ letter asserts that after five years of negotiations, the first comprehensive economic proposal presented by the company is also its ‘last, best and final’ proposal. In essence, it’s a take-it or leave-it offer. He claims that he has begun the process of downsizing the airline, although we have seen no evidence of this. In the interest of full disclosure to our members, we forwarded Mr. Davis’ communication to the pilot group last night.

“Mediation required under the provisions of the Railway Labor Act is now being conducted by the National Mediation Board in Washington, DC. The Association has made clear its willingness to meet anytime and anywhere to continue mediation. The NMB has tentatively set May 27-29 in Washington, DC as the scheduled next date for meetings. ALPA believes the Company was unwilling to meet sooner. At that meeting, ALPA will provide a counter-proposal to the Company’s offer that seeks to narrow the remaining gaps between the parties’ positions.

“We are disappointed Mr. Davis has chosen to respond to us with the threat of a shutdown even as the Association is prepared to present its counter-proposal. We appreciate the NMB’s tireless efforts to conduct mediation, and reiterate that our pilots are determined to rise above their current status as the lowest-paid B-737 scheduled service pilots in the country.

“Sun Country pilots intend to show up for work tomorrow and continue to do our jobs the way we always have — safely, professionally and courteously. The Association looks forward to opportunities later this month to continue our good-faith efforts to reach a comprehensive agreement that reflects established pay and benefit patterns, and trusts that Company executives will participate with the same intention.”

In February CEO Stan Gadek, who lead the airline in its last recovery, abruptly resigned and left the company.

Read the full report from the Duluth News Tribune: CLICK HERE

Copyright Photo Below: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-73V N711SY (msn 30245) lands in Las Vegas.

Sun Country Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

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Sun Country’s pilots picket at Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport

Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) could be facing a strike by its pilots represented by the Air Line Pilots Association (ALPA). The pilots of the airline yesterday (April 24) picketed for higher wages outside of the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport. ALPA states they are the lowest Boeing 737 scheduled airline pilots in the country. The pilots have authorized a strike if necessary.

The union issued this statement:

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Sun Country Airlines Pilots, represented by the Air Line Pilots Association Int’l (ALPA), conducted informational picketing Friday at Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, saying the company’s current pay proposal would keep SCA pilot wages near the bottom of the industry for another five years.

Already the nation’s lowest-paid scheduled service airline pilots for their aircraft type, management’s recent proposal would provide only minimal increases. Sun Country pilots last received a pay rate increase in 2005.

“Our current pay is 30 percent below the midpoint for our peers. We’re seeking a contract that gradually gets us closer to the industry average. The company offer keeps us from realizing that goal throughout the life of a new contract,” said Capt. Brian Roseen, chairman of Sun Country’s ALPA Master Executive Council.

Virtually all of Sun Country’s 247 active ALPA pilots not flying or in training marched in shifts outside MSP’s Terminal 2, joined by supporters from United, Delta, FedEx Express, Compass, Endeavor Air, and other ALPA pilot groups.

ALPA and Sun Country have been in negotiations for five years, and in federal mediation since 2012. In February pilots voted 100 percent to authorize ALPA to declare a legal strike if later allowed to do so by the federal government. Before any strike could occur, the National Mediation Board would have to release the pilot group from mediation and the group would have to complete a 30-day cooling off period.

“Under our new ownership Sun Country has been profitable and more than doubled in size. It’s time for them to invest in people the same way they’ve invested in airplanes and facilities,” Roseen said. “We want to negotiate. We’re 100 percent ready to do everything the law allows to lift ourselves up from the bottom of the industry.”

Meanwhile the pilots of Southwest Airlines (Dallas) came to the aid of its fellow pilots at Sun Country. SWAPA issued this statement:

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As the pilots of Sun Country (SCA) picket on Friday outside of Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, the Southwest Airlines Pilots’ Association (SWAPA) announces support of the SCA pilots’ efforts to obtain an improved contract. Sun Country Airlines pilots are the lowest-paid Part 121 B-737 pilots in the country and have been in contract negotiations for more than five years. In February, the SCA pilots voted nearly unanimously to authorize ALPA to call a legal strike if necessary, upon a release from mediation by the National Mediation Board and the expiration of a cooling-off period.

“Sun Country pilots have the lowest 737 pay rates for scheduled carriers and are about 30 percent below the industry average pay for this equipment,” said SWAPA President Capt. Paul Jackson. “Low fares do not have to equal low wages in our industry and we fully support our friends at Sun Country in seeking a fair agreement.”

Sun Country management has failed to offer industry-standard fair compensation to pilots despite doubling the number of aircraft and profitability in recent years under new ownership. The company’s most recent contract offer would still leave the SCA pilots at the bottom of 737 pilot pay rates for another five years. The SCA pilots’ union leadership is proposing gradual increases toward the industry average, with the goal of reaching middle ground by the end of the contract term.

Top Copyright Photo: Ken Petersen/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8Q8 N804SY (msn 30689) prepares to touch down at Las Vegas McCarran International Airport.

Sun Country Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

AG A team of photographers

Sun Country announces new service to Gulfport/Biloxi and Savannah/Hilton Head Island

Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) has announced new seasonal service from its Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP) base to coastal destinations Savannah/Hilton Head (SAV) and Gulfport/Biloxi (GPT).

Gulfport/Biloxi seasonal service will run August 27-November 22, 2015 and Savannah/Hilton Head service will run August 27-December 13, 2015.

With the addition of these two destinations, Sun Country Airlines will service a total of 37 destinations throughout the year.

Copyright Photo: Chris Sands/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-7Q8 N713SY (msn 30635) arrives at Miami International Airport.

Sun Country Airlines aircraft slide show: AG Airline Slide Show

Route Map:

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Sun County 3.2015 Route Map

 

 

 

Sun Country to fly twice-weekly Fort Myers-San Juan flights next summer

Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) will operate twice-weekly flights between Fort Myers, Florida and San Juan, Puerto Rico from May 3 through August 23, 2015. The seasonal non-hub route will be operated with Boeing 737-700 aircraft per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: James Helbock/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-73V N711SY (msn 30245) completes the final approach to the runway at Las Vegas.

Sun Country Airlines aircraft slide show:

Current Route Map:

Sun Country 11.2014 Route Map

Sun Country to add three seasonal destinations this winter

Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) is expanding in the Caribbean, Mexico and Central America this coming winter with new seasonal service. The airline will start weekly service from MSP to St. Maarten (December 20 through April 4), Manzanillo (January 8 through April 2) and Rio Hato (near Panama City) December 26 through April 3 per Airline Route.

Copyright Photo: Ton Jochems/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-752 N714SY (msn 33786) taxies at Los Angeles.

Sun Country Airlines: AG Slide Show

Route Map:

Sun Country 7.2014 Route Map

Sun Country Airlines to add new winter season service to Nassau, Bahamas

Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) starting on January 16, 2015 will add a new seasonal route to Nassau in the Bahamas from Minneapolis/St. Paul (MSP). The new route will initially operate weekly and then increase to three roundtrips a week starting on February 12, 2015.

Copyright Photo: Michael B. Ing/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-7Q8 N712SY (msn 28219) approaches the runway at Los Angeles International Airport.

Sun Country Airlines: AG Slide Show

 

Cuba Travel Services announces Miami-Holquin charter flights

Cuba Travel Services is now offering nonstop flights from Miami to Holguin, Cuba. Cuba Travel Services arranges flights operated by American Airlines (Dallas/Fort Worth) and Sun Country Airlines (Minneapolis/St. Paul) to popular destinations including Havana, Cienfuegos, Camaguey, Santa Clara and Santiago de Cuba.

Cuba Travel Services believes that expanding its network will provide its clients with a high quality of service at a more competitive price. The new flights to Holguin will utilize next generation Boeing 737-800 aircraft, which include both first and coach class configuration.

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Cuba Travel Services Inc. arranges weekly, nonstop public charter flights between the United States and Cuba and is licensed by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) as an authorized Carrier Service Provider specializing in travel to Cuba. They offer full service travel arrangements to individuals, groups, families, educators, students, professionals and organizations, under Specific or General Licenses issued by the Office of Foreign Assets Control.

Copyright Photo: Tony Storck/AirlinersGallery.com. Boeing 737-8BK WL N814SY (msn 30620) of Sun Country Airlines lands in Las Vegas.

Sun Country Airlines: AG Slide Show