$30 for me. I get to jump my own canopy. I don't have to haul meat and I get to choose the pace at which we meet loads. Good deal for good pay.
Funny, I take the opposite conclusion for doing PFF. I get to wear out my own canopy and I get to stress between manifest pushing me to get going and the student learning at his/her pace. I believe that PFF pays the same as tandem for more of my time and more wear on my gear.
We have a winner! Good for you. I get from $20 to $30. I think we should all get at least $30 for either side and split responsibilities. Many times I have started out "secondary" and found myself taking care of business on the main side shortly after exit. If the student needs two highly trained skydivers with him in the air, he should pay for it.
I have a choice between two DZ's. One pays $30 for main side or single JM and $25 for reserve side, the other pays $25 and only offers single JM jumps. Neither throws in a packjob.
At the same time, I can get $25 to do tandems at one dz or $45 at the other.
Tandem................................AFF Easy rating to get..................Tougher rating to get Fairly easy jump.....................More challenging jump 0.5-1 hour of time..................1-1.5 hours of time Not my gear wear...................My gear wear No packing............................Packing $25-$45...............................$25-$30
I'll continue doing AFF, because I need/want more experience and I like making skydivers more than I like entertaining tourists, but I wish the fees were adjusted to a more appropriate level.
I think tandems should pay more than AFF for 2 reasons.
1. Carrying that big ass rig around all day sucks. 2. Hazard pay. If my student (tourist) isn't behaving I can't just let him go at 2K.
I do Tandems but not AFF so my opinion is obviously biased, but I've done alot of AFF video and most of the time it doesn't look that challenging.
Don't get me worng, I have a lot of respect for the AFF guys at my DZ because of the "instructor skills" they have to have and because of what they went through to get the rating, but from what I've seen Tandems are alot harder work and therefore should pay more.
Plus, at least you AFF guys get to jump your own canopies. Flying the SET 400 is alot less fun than my stiletto.
I'll agree that in general, tandems beat up the body more, but I'm not sure how significant it is because I can do either for 10 hours a day. As for hazard pay, I'd say they're probably about equal. However, it's been awhile since I've had a tandem student do anything that I considered hazardous to my health. It was only last fall that I had an AFF student nearly knock me unconscious in freefall.
The AFF rating was a lot tougher to get and cost a lot more. I can't fit nearly as many AFF jumps into a day as I can tandems. Although jumping my own rig is nice, it's also wear & tear that I have to bear the cost of instead of someone else. Also, I haven't even tried to do the math, but I'd wager that an average AFF student, over the life of his jumping career, generates more profit for the DZ than an average tandem student. Tandems as a whole are definitely more profitable for the DZ than AFF jumps, but not on a per jumper basis.