Mesa Airlines is increasing pilot starting pay: Travel Weekly

Pilots at Mesa Airlines, which operates regional flights for the United Express and American Eagle brands, will soon have the highest starting pay in the U.S. regional airline industry.

Under a Letter of Agreement negotiated between Mesa management and the Air Line Pilots Association union, Mesa first officers will receive starting pay of $100 per hour beginning Sept. 15. First-year Mesa captains will earn $150 per hour. 


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Those rates are higher than starting pay at American’s three regional subsidiaries, PSA, Envoy and Piedmont, which currently lead the industry. In June, those carriers raised starting first officer pay from $51 per hour to $90 per hour and upped first-year captain pay to $146 per hour. 

The sizeable jump placed pilot pay at PSA, Envoy and Piedmont 50% to 70% higher than wages paid by the previous highest-paid U.S. regional airline, Delta subsidiary Endeavor, Piedmont said at the time. 

The raise for Mesa pilots is the latest effort by a regional airline to become more competitive as the U.S. pilot shortage forces service cuts in regional markets. 

Under the agreement, five-year to 10-year Mesa first officers will be paid $110 per hour. Twenty-year Mesa captains will be paid $215 per hour. 

Mesa operates a fleet of 70-seat and 76-seat regional jets.

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