Effective 4 July 2016
Original content by: John Valencia and Kenric Smith
Revised by: Patrick Koro and Rick Martin
This document provides all pilots with information about how American Flight Airways (AFA) runs its day to day operations as well as procedures, specific rules and guidelines. This document will be revised as needed, whenever new developments or changes arise. The Handbook should be read and followed by all AFA pilots. For new pilots recently hired by AFA, this Handbook provides a wealth of information that will help those pilots acclimate quickly to their time with AFA. Refer to this document, however if you have any questions or require further information about AFA operations, contact your fellow pilots, airline staff, or post a question on the AFA Forums
This manual supersedes all previous AFA pilot Handbooks. While every effort is made to keep the contents of this document current, American Flight Airways reserves the right to modify, suspend, or terminate any of the policies, procedures, and/or benefits described in the manual with or without prior notice to pilots.
American Flight Airways is one of the oldest virtual airlines in the world, with a rich history spanning back to 1996 when we were founded in the south of Michigan, USA. Today we are one of the most successful non-real world mirrored virtual airlines on the web! Our aim is for “relaxed realism” What we mean by this is we like to keep the flying as real as it can get, keep the fleet and flights realistic or reasonably realistic for the market, however we are not going to bury our pilots in rules and regulations and restrict when a pilot would like to fly. Even our ACARS is optional, provided for your convenience but not required for fun. We view flight simulation as a serious hobby, we try to keep the feeling of the airline real, but at the end of the day this isn’t anyone’s job, it is just a fun collective community of enthusiasts. We ask everyone to respect each other within our community, not only within AFA but within the entire world of flight simmers. So I’d like to welcome you all to the history, the community and the fun that is American Flight Airways.
John Valencia and Enrique Garcia-Sayan established American Flight Airways Virtual Airlines (AFA) in November 1996. Originally AFA only had 2 hubs which were located at Pontiac, MI and Lima, Peru. During the early years of AFA from November 1996 and throughout 1997 AFA primarily flew commuter flights and a few domestic and international flights. In September 1997 AFA decided to expand its services and established new superhubs in Detroit, MI and Atlanta, GA, which resulted in substantial growth for AFA. AFA was accepted onto virtualairlines.com in May 1998 which made AFA a truly global virtual airline. American Flight Airways Virtual Airlines began codesharing with Pacific Airways (PAY) in 2000 and in 2001 we co-founded the major alliance "The American Pacific Group" or in short "APG". The alliance helped to carry both airlines 15 years down the road and into 2016. AFA added a Low Cost Carrier Alpha Jet to its operations at the end of 2004. In early 2005 the Sydney hub was successfully enlarged to AFA Australia and the San Juan operations were merged into AFA Latin America. In 2015 AFA expanded operations again, this time into the Canadian market under the brand of AFEh with its own unique fleet options that caters to the Canadian market. Currently AFA has 6 US hubs and 1 International Division which a pilot may join; these include respectively Atlanta (ATL), Dallas (DFW), Detroit (DTW), Phoenix (PHX), San Francisco (SFO), Washington D.C (IAD) and AFA Australia (main office in Sydney, Australia (YSSY)).
Anyone over the age of thirteen (13) can become a member of AFA and it's free. Flight Simulator versions 2004, FSX, FSX:SE X-Plane and P3D are supported. While you should preferably have some basic piloting skills (i.e.: takeoff, landing, etc.), we will gladly help you to advance your flying skills. To join, click the "join" button on the top of our page and complete the application form. During this stage you will be able to select your starting hub as well. Once you’ve received a confirmation email, and have read our operations manual (this document) you are ready to start flying!
An active email is required for membership with AFA. Failure to have an active email will result in your account being placed on the inactive list. Pilots emails should not bounce or reject AFA emails to ensure you stay up to date with the latest information fro AFA.
We welcome anyone with past experience with another virtual airline to join our ranks! We will transfer up to fifty (50) hours from one (1) virtual airline or VATSIM account to help jumpstart your career here with us at American Flight Airways. With these hours, you will gain access to a majority of our fleet and get you off and running towards your next promotion quickly.
To have your hours transferred, a URL must be provided to your previous logbook or a valid VATSIM ID so we can verify your hours. You must declare your wish to transfer hours within a week of application to HR or your hub staff in order to receive credit. Allow one week for hours to be added to your account.
At American Flight Airways, we offer a large collection of aircraft to choose from. These aircraft are available in freeware format for your convenience on our website. Additionally, select payware aircraft textures will also be available for use with your add-on software. All of these are provided in a zip file to you for installation into their appropriate folders. Available aircraft and repaints can be downloaded from our site under the “Dispatch” then “Downloads” dropdowns. If you have questions about the procedures with installing an aircraft, please contact a staff member for assistance.
At American Flight Airways we do not assign flights to our pilots, pilots have the freedom to choose what flights they wish to fly and when they want to fly them. We keep the rule simple for our pilots. Your first flight should originate from your home hub (The one you selected when you registered with the airline). Your flight line should maintain a logical format; this is to say your next departure should be from the same airport you arrived with your last flight.
The exception to maintaining a logical flight line is the “reasonable commute” rule; if you would be easily be able to commute to the nearby airport via means of public transit, you can land at one airport and leave from a different airport that is within the same city scape. Examples of the reasonable commute would be SFO to OAK or JFK to EWR. Please add into the comments of your next report that you took the commute to the other airport.
In the 'Pilot Center" click on 'View Flight Schedules' . When you have decided which flight you want you can either click on "Pilot Brief" or 'Add to Bid'
The recommended method is to 'Add to Bid'. This serves two purposes, one to set the flight for loading automatically into the ACARS and 2nd your flight plan to load in your sim. By selecting 'Pilot Brief' the following screen will be shown.