Kalitta Air and its Kalitta Air Pilot Union, Kalitta Air Master Executive Council (MEC) have reached a settlement agreement over new-hire pay and significantly increased retirement plan contributions for all pilots.

Kalitta Air will increase its crew member nonelective contribution to the 401(k) plan (a company-sponsored retirement account in the US, which employees can contribute income to) from 7 percent to 12 percent, the company announced.

Kalitta Air will also compensate new pilots at the full First Officer rate as soon as the pilot begins Kalitta Air training.

In addition, while its agreement with the MEC does not expire until March of 2025, the company will open Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) negotiations on September 1, 2023, 18 months ahead of the CBA expiration date.

Kalitta Air pilot pay

“This announcement is huge news for both Kalitta Air and its pilots,” Kalitta Air founder and owner Conrad “Connie” Kalitta said.

“Our pilots are incredibly important to the entire Kalitta Air operation for obvious reasons. This agreement is a major upgrade for our airline that enhances our pilots qualify of life, and we thank our MEC for working with us to get it done.”

Earlier this week, Kalitta Air announced a major initiative in partnership with Kalitta Motorsports, also owned by drag racing legend Connie Kalitta, to recruit pilots and mechanics.

Kalitta Air Careers, a multifaceted effort to tell the Kalitta Air story and enhance the airline’s recruiting efforts, includes a significant social media presence and livery on one of the team’s Top Fuel dragsters. The team competes in the National Hot Rod Association’s Camping World Drag Racing series and will share the Kalitta Air Careers message through its NHRA on FOX television broadcasts.

“Today’s news should show pilots that Kalitta Air is a great place to work and a company that values its employees,” Kalitta Air senior vice president and deputy chief operating officer Heath Nicholl said. “Our company is growing, we’re enhancing and modernizing our fleet, and we’re looking for the best pilots in the sky and mechanics on the ground and inviting them to consider Kalitta Air.”
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