What is the pay for a part-time job on call?
The other day, booking a flight, I was browsing a bit, also looking at the options of seat-reservation. Another time that I was thinking about this strange construct of today’s economy, reading
The passenger named above has chosen a seat in an emergency exit row. In the unlikely event of an evacuation they will be expected to assist in the opening of the emergency door.
One interpretation is that one pays for some extra space – for more comfort, for medical reasons – or perhaps even to force oneself to store the hand-luggage properly in the overhead bin.
Another interpretation: I see myself as part-time casual worker, serving the airline on demand (sure, in the unlikely event they stress), actually even giving up the extra comfort) … – and I pay for it.
Now, a silly remark you may say – but is it really silly? As far as it is known some airlines “offer the opportunity to fly as co-pilot”, the payment being the hours needed to secure the validity of the license.
This “pay-to-fly” principle is sometimes applied at the Irish low-cost airline Ryanair too, according to insiders. Young pilots are not paid for flying, but have to pay for the pleasure of sitting in the cockpit, making flying one of the only jobs you actually have to buy.
To which extent is all this part of a wider move towards something new, i.e. a new capitalism? Surely this will also come up as part of the presentations I had been asked to give in the near future, the first of them next Wednesday.