View Full Version : Air Canada to Ek
I am currently with AC but with everything going on here and the risk of seeing 1000+ pilot jobs cut I am seriously considering applying.
My concern is this: I am 38, have been with AC for 13 years but all of it FO time on CRJ, A320 (6000+ hours) and B767.
I decided to stay senior FO for lifestyle but now find myself late thirties, 12 000 hours of mostly FO time , other than PIC on turboprops, and wondering if EK would frown on a guy my age with very little PIC time?
Lastly most of my time is on the 320 so I guess that means I would go directly to the 330?
For a guy with my profile would you recommend other airlines?
25th May 2012, 19:41
To me your profile looks very good. The lack of command time should not be a factor. I would definitely apply if I were you. Then take it from there, whether it is the right move for you or not.
25th May 2012, 20:35
1000+ pilot jobs cut at AC? What's that based on?
And as for your question, yes of course you'd be suitable for EK with those qualifications. As for the 330? Probably but not for sure, depends on company needs.
I met an A330/340 FO recently who only had 7,000 hours when hired - mostly A320 and all FO time. Despite what people say about that fleet, he is quite happy. True he will sit on those airplanes for awhile before joining the A380, but he is enjoying the newer A340 destinations (for him since he primarily flew A330) and checking-off the variety of destinations and layovers. He enjoys his fleets and the flying - others may not as much for reasons already discussed.
You never know, with your 767 time, maybe you will get assigned the 777. You could stress your Boeing time and always request the 777 if you really want it - although that might fall on deaf ears depending upon staffing needs at the time. Look at it from a training risk perspective. Doesn't hurt to ask for it if you get hired (but that might not work in the end).
Qatar is also hiring quite a bit. Depending upon your timing, your 767 experience could qualify you for the 787 as that fleet starts to ramp-up. The 777 fleet is also a good possibility given your widebody Boeing experience.
26th May 2012, 01:37
PM Me. I know a little of the company you speak of and the one you may seek. I can offer some perspective.
26th May 2012, 06:34
Many ex-AC at EK, none regrets his move. Make sure you bring your hockey gear with you.
26th May 2012, 07:08
my advice, ride out air canada all the way to the end. You seem senior at AC and might make the cut.
No hurry coming to EK, seniority doesn't mean anything here anyway. Emirates will be hiring indefinitely, just don't jump ship early and regret it.
26th May 2012, 09:09
contact some ex AC guys and ask if they would do it again, I am sure they wouldn't
Dropp the Pilot
26th May 2012, 09:27
Two former AC pilots have left EK within the last few months, sufficiently jaundiced by the EK experience that they have gone to non-flying jobs.....
I think they lasted about 6 or 7 years each.
26th May 2012, 09:52
I think the biggest hurdle is for your family to get used to Dubai. You'll only spend half your time here anyway but your wife (that is if you have one) will spend ALL her time here. Take the family here for a couple of weeks vacation. I've met at least a couple of canucks who lost their wives back to Canada.
The miserable pilots I've met here at EK are the ones with unhappy wives. It's what they tell you here the first day, "Happy wife, happy life" There's the big secret to why some here thinks this is the worst airline in the industry and why some, like me, enjoy, not every moment, but most of this experience.
26th May 2012, 10:35
Its not the worst airline in the world, its just an awful country. Only if Emirates was based in Miami, owned and operated by normal people....drool
Only complaint is the training is crap...i mean, training is non-exsistent. New hires say they are not adequately being prepared for their job and if they didn't have cheat sheets and study guides produced by pilots themselves, it would be impossible to pass the checking process.
The real learning process starts when flying with normal regular captains on the line who know what's important and what's not.
26th May 2012, 10:38
Pilots get numb to Dubai, wives build up pressure until they blow. Couldn't believe one story about an English captain that retired and CHOSE to STAY living in dubai because all his friends were here. Not sure if its true, but talk about Stockholm Syndrome...
We are just highly paid prisoners.
Has a pilot ever gone on annual leave and no showed back for duty? Did EK ever seek action, even if they had a bond?
26th May 2012, 11:57
They would hire you in a heartbeat. Several months back they were interviewing pilots with 2500 hours total time. PIC time is not a big issue with EK. They are more interested in the size of aircraft you have flown.
But you need to be aware of the fact that your roster at EK will probably be much more like a JAZZ CRJ roster than an AC 330/777 roster. Plan on 10-13 days off per month with lots of very fatiguing duties. If it were me I would ride out AC as long as possible. You will not get a quick command at EK and once you have made the move to the middle east your options will have dwindled. EK will always be there as an escape route for you. Whether or not you can handle Dubai long enough to get the upgrade and build some PIC time will be the big question. Good luck
26th May 2012, 13:18
A rare sensible post from sittingidly. You see, he can do it if he tries.
3 points. Firstly, pilotday's comment regarding training is definately a personal view and one which I do not subscribe to. It is intensive and it is very dependent on the instructor. 50% are very good, 20% are good enough, 25% try while the other 5% shouldn't be there at all. Furthermore, you will not be spoonfed as you are Stateside, hence pilotday's dislike of the system, assuming he/she's from Miami. If you're used to putting in home study you'll be fine. .
Secondly, if you do come for interview, please bring the family and allow an extra day or two to see the place. Don't see all the glitzy tourist traps, spend a day or two living with friends who live and work here. Schools start early here and may be full up, summers are hot and the driving is crazy. Supermarkets are generally good but may not offer what you'd normally buy and imported items can be very expensive. Petrol on the other hand isn't. Great range of restaurants and good deals with loyalty cards. Banks are useless as are most government run organisations. It may work for a holiday, but if the wife can't work with what's offered, don't come!
Finally, if you do like it and you're selected, you tell them what fleet you want. We are more desperate for quality pilots than quality pilots want Emirates so the ball is still very much in your court. If they make you an offer, insist that it's only being accepted subject to your specified a/c type.... and get it in writing!
Hope it works out well for you. Good lick.... as they say in Bangkok!
26th May 2012, 15:40
26th May 2012, 17:01
in spoon feeding, you must mean "training" Maybe if there was more "spoon feeding" there wouldn't be so many different interpretations of SOP
You take 50+ nationalities and throw a bunch of manuals at them for home study , you're going to have 50 different interpretations.
thank god for the study guide which is really good at organizing everything
okay okay, I understand that EK couldn't train 500+ year with traditional ground schools...halas
Thanks for all the good feedback guys, it's really appreciated.
Air Canada wants to go the Jetstar-Qantas route, our CEO has even told us that is the model he admires and wants to emulate.We are in nasty contract talks now but what is being offered by the company is essentially the end of AC as we know it as well as the bottom 1000-1500 jobs.
I have been to Dubai on vacation before with my wife and I believe we could make a go of it.(we liked it for 10 days as tourists....I know it's not the same as living there...)
I look forward to command but a 330 command at AC is still 15 years away (30 years seniority) so even 10 years at EK will still be a step up.
I have read the many threads and basically I just want to do another 10-15 years and retire around 55 hopefully still married and my health intact.
Of all the overseas jobs, Emirates seems to be the one where a foreigner is not that foreign...because of all the expats and the closest to my current lifestyle.
I will ride it out a bit but AC seems headed the way of our Qantas friends.
Again thanks for all the replies!
28th May 2012, 16:53
contact some ex AC guys and ask if they would do it again, I am sure they wouldn't
Hey GoreTex, in a NY minute as they say! Happiest day of my life was when I handed in my resignation to AC. I've had happier days since, but not one single ounce of regret for making the move to EK.
Two former AC pilots have left EK within the last few months
Oh no, 2 pilots quit?!?! Seriously Dropp, does being former AC have anything to do with why they left EK? After 6 or 7 years, any association to their previous employer is a red herring and would have no bearing on why they resigned EK.
Meaw, as others have said, it's Dubai that will make it or break it for you, not EK. Talk to other ex-AC or at the very least other Canadians that have made the jump, and take their advice (plus the advice on this forum) with a grain of salt. Bottom line, you gotta make the leap so educate yourself and do what's best for you and your family.
Feel free to PM me.
29th May 2012, 03:30
One thing to consider and it is a BIG one that most don't is once you are out, you cannot get back in easily(to Canadian aviation that is). As a requirement of employment with EK, you must surrender that almightily seniority number. That may well be worth shit with the way things are going at AC but EK is not a forever job. Dubai is fine, for awhile but you do need to have some ideas of what if it doesn't work out, how do I get back to my home country once my family says enough is enough? Be it five or ten years, one day you will likely want to head back and with price inflation in the Middle East and likely being on an FO salary for the better part of five years, maybe more, you won't be getting wealthy in a hurry. What then? Like earlier posts said, I would wait it out at AC and see what happens. The Middle Eastern airlines are always looking for fresh meat to abuse, so I wouldn't rush to sign up if I were you.
29th May 2012, 05:41
I am in the middle of the same decision making process as the individual who started this thread. I am also 38 and have 15 years with AC but have been on two LOA's totally almost 8 years, fortunately I have built several thousand command hours on narrow and wide body Boeing aircraft in different parts of the world. I've been offered a DEC interview with Emirates and I am seriously considering not returning to AC. It's a tough call either way just depends on your priorities I guess. I am hoping someone may be able to answer a question regarding giving up my AC seniority number. If offered the position with EK would I only be required to resign my present contract position as I have been away from AC for almost 4 years or would they dig deeper and want proof of my resignation from both companies? Any thoughts or comments would be appreciated.
29th May 2012, 11:06
It's interesting to read this thread as I'm thinking of leaving my A320 job in the States to go to AC... I live in Toronto and the company I fly for also is at a boiling point labour wise; we've had some high profile pilot and flight attendant meltdowns.
I wish I hadn't blown off my Emirates class in 2006... :ugh:
Best of luck in your decisions. I wish I were in your shoes.
edit: Bad spilling
29th May 2012, 11:25
Any AC guys looking to go to EK feel free to PM me for a fireside chat with Mayor Tommy Shanks.
30th May 2012, 02:40
If you got hired as a DEC and didn't divulge the fact you're on a LOA with AC and they later found out, it would have some pretty negative consequences, at the very least demotion to FO.
I know a capt that it happened to and he even divulged it at the beginning, he's from a scandinavian country. He is back as a capt now.