Pilot Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s)

Voyageur Operations

What regulatory body governs Voyageur?

We operate out of domestic and international locations, and are regulated in accordance with Transport Canada.

What types of aircrafts would I be flying?

  • CRJ 200
  • DHC-8-300
  • DHC-8-100
  • DHC-8-400
  • Air Ambulance King Air B-200

Where will I be located?

We presently have bases in:

  • Kinshasa, Democratic Republic of the Congo
  • El Fashir, Sudan
  • Khartoum, Sudan
  • Entebbe, Uganda
  • Tunis, Tunisia
  • Amman, Jordan
  • Bamako, Mali
  • Niamey, Niger
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba
  • La Grande, Quebec
  • Moncton, New Brunswick

NOTE: Base locations can change on short notice.

What is a rotational schedule?

A rotational schedule, or a deployment, is a planned period at a specified location, with a planned period out for your time off.

Time off, or days off, are provided while on deployment to meet the Canada Labour Code and Transport Canada requirements.

Typical rotations or deployments are:

  • 8 weeks in and 8 weeks out
  • 8 weeks in and 4 weeks out
  • Variations of these are often used dependent on location and operational needs.

What do you mean by minimum experience requirements?

Minimum experience requirements are set out by many of our customers. Examples of these can include time on Type, PIC time, geographical experience and low-level flying experience. As an example, the United Nations (UN) and World Food Program (WFP) has prescribed experience requirements listed below:

Position CL65 Captain CL65 First Officer DH8 Captain DH8 First Officer
Total Time 4000 2000 3000 1500
Total PIC 2000 750 1500 500
Total Time on Type 1250 300 500 250

What if I don’t meet those experience requirements?

There may be some limitations involved, however, we have several options available to us including flying that does not require specific experience, or an exemption may be provided through risk analysis.

It is our intent to have all our pilots working towards meeting every customer requirement. This ensures full flexibility on all fronts.

What is the flying like, and how much do we fly?

This is dependent on the customer. Normally plan for 5 flying days per week.

The UN and WFP flying are typically scheduled a few days a week.

  • A callout capability on some of the days we are not planned to fly.
  • There are adhoc flights such as an occasional VIP movement, medevac or casevac, or an aircraft repositioning.
  • Flying is normally a few hours a day. Some short days, some longer days.
  • Typically, we do not do a lot of night flying but on occasion we may operate to an airport that has night capability.

We have airline customers that fly passengers and/or freight, so these locations and times are quite variable. The locations include vacation spots, smaller towns, fishing lodges, etc.

Seems like a lot of time off. What if I want to work more?

No problem! It is very common for our rotational staff to request more time in the field. We have the flexibility to allow for this to happen.

Life On-Rotation

What will life be like On-Rotation?

Days off while at a specific work location comply with all Canadian Labour Code and Canadian Aviation Regulations requirements to be free from duty or work. Dependent on the location, time off in base can be spent doing some local sightseeing.

What will my accommodations be like?

Our accommodations are typically multi-bedroom condo or townhouse style complexes. Hotel rooms are used on occasion. You will have your own secure bedroom, with shared bathrooms at some locations. There will be common areas such as a living room and kitchen. This accommodation arrangement requires the utmost cooperation and respect between the staff on site.

What about meals when I am working?

There is a daily per diem for every day you are on rotation; the rate is representative of the location.

Per diem calculation factors include:

  • local currency
  • the price/availability of groceries
  • the price and availability of restaurants

What and how you eat can be influenced by the accommodation arrangements.

Employees can enjoy shared groceries and access to cooking facilities.

Suitable restaurant choices are also an option.

You will receive per diems in cash or direct deposit while deployed – dependent on location.

What are some of the risks?

This depends on the location, but for all our operations we and our customers are very experienced and well informed. At some locations we admit there are some risks, malaria being the most common. These risks are quite manageable and mitigated. Political considerations are monitored and addressed proactively.

We have detailed documents (Personal Reference Guides and Travel Guide) for all our locations.


What kind of training will I need and how long will it take?

We will fly you to North Bay for company and technical training that will take approximately two weeks. Depending on your qualifications, we will then head to Toronto and do a full initial type rating or a recurrent trainer and PPC.

What about accommodations, transportation and expenses during training?

All of these are covered during training.

What shots do I need?

We are an international operator, so we prepare for everything.

Required vaccinations:

  • Hepatitis A & B
  • Yellow Fever
  • Typhoid
  • Meningitis
  • Cholera
  • Flu shots

Malaria medication is taken orally as recommended by your physician.

Are there other costs like medicals, visas, or immunizations?

We cover expenses for all the above.

We will let you know which immunizations you need and how to obtain them.

  • A note: some immunizations have multiple doses with varying lengths of time between doses

You are required to have and maintain a passport with a minimum 6-month validity.

We will help you obtain the appropriate visas for deployment.

What do I wear at work?

  • A normal white uniform shirt
  • Epaulettes (company provided)
  • Sometimes a tie is required
  • Black uniform style pants
  • Black dress/work type shoes

How is compensation paid?

Voyageur uses a salary compensation method – a daily rate for every day on location, including days-off at work location. There is no hourly or mileage pay component and overtime is not utilized in a rotational schedule system. Extended rotations beyond a planned schedule may include an additional premium or incentive renumeration.

No matter the location, compensation is paid in Canadian dollars. You will be taxed as a Canadian employee except those who have special arrangements through Revenue Canada. Your pay cheque is direct deposited every 2 weeks. Vacation and statutory pay are paid out after the scheduled deployment is complete.

As a note, there is no longer an overseas tax exemption credit for UN work.

What are benefits like?

Voyageur offers employees and their families a comprehensive benefit program including:

  • Company subsidized benefits including:
    • extended health care benefits for dental and vision care
    • prescription medication
    • out-of-country insurance
    • and more
  • Life and disability insurance
  • Employee Share Ownership Plan (TSX: CHR)
  • Retirement pension plan
  • Employee assistance program

Final Thoughts

You need to be flexible, tolerant, and tolerable.

Determine if you are suited for this type of work. You owe that to yourself, and your co-workers.

And of huge importance – Respect the culture and laws of where you are!

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