South Asia and Far East WannabesA forum for those applying to Cathay Pacific, Dragonair or any other Hong Kong-based airline or operator. Use this area for both Direct Entry Pilot and Cadet-scheme queries.
It was CX CoS08 (Conditions of Service, effective 2008). In short, the housing allowance after just 3 years is what an iCadet will eventually get only when they become Capt (after 15 to even 22 years, as per the AOA published figures). Under CoS08 after approx 5 years the housing will be around $60k HKD, and grows to around $80k+ as seniority & time in company grows. (Someone like DB could give the precise numbers and time scales). The CoS08 housing is factored to CPI so it is "net gain neutral", ie it does not erode.
To quote the exact words told to us when we arrived in the board room for the introductory speech when referring to the housing allowance:
"CX believe we should pay you the housing allowance that we do so you do not suffer a loss of lifestyle by moving to HK to work for us"
Obviously they do not believe that anymore. So, an iCadet housing allowance topping out at $36k NOT factored to CPI vs $80k+ that IS factored to CPI?? Multiply that over a career = a damn insult.
If your goal is to invest in real estate then you will need to have approx. a 30% deposit for a property in HK (part of it can be as low as 10%). I used a 550-600 sq ft apartment to base my calculations on that will cost around $5 million HKD. (Ball park figures used, but relatively accurate). Do the maths based on incomings, outgoings, tax, cost of living, an eroding base salary due part of your HKPLA not factored to CPI, etc.... Again, LONG TERM the deal is a pitfall & and an insult. Your monthly salary & therefore your capacity to save erodes & is not recoverable as per the terms of the contract.
Too many or most wannabes posting here do not consider any of these "details".
@CB, I've followed this thread for some time and for some reason your comment about housing not linked to CPI really hit home (like a light bulb moment), I've just realised how difficult it would be in future to save and to potentially raise a family. It's really has given me some perspective and laid to rest some of my lingering doubts about the program.
Also out of curiosity, because of the way CX like to change CoS and not adhering to contract agreements, wouldn't that mean any future potential cadets could have their contracts mix and matched as they please? e.g. housing allowance removed from their current contract?
Thierry: as per DB's post: YES. Your contract is a loose "guide" at best & is treated with the same respect they respect their pilots with - disposable & replaceable at a whim. Toilet paper has more use & purpose in their eyes. Not my words, but proven facts.
Just as Davis' "Handling the Big Jets" & "How to Pass the CX Interview" by Capts X, Y & Z are considered but two compulsory reading & study materials for the CX interview, John Warham has written a book of equal if not of greater importance that must be considered compulsory reading: "The 49ers - The True Story".
One's past behaviour is the strongest indictor of one's future behaviour. Why do you think CX ask you questions like, "Tell us about a time when....."? CX have on more than one occasion forced pilots onto a new CoS contract of lesser terms and conditions with a "SIGN OR BE FIRED" approach. At the very least those who refused to sign lost positions such as training Capts, or basings, or basing opportunities, etc.
So what if you can recite the name of the step-son's nephew who once had a beer with Frank Whittle or the mathematical theorem from first principles the obstacle clearance calculations in your CX interview? If you don't know how the company you seek to work for treats its employees & the true value of your contract then what's the point?
But then consider what these management types (pilots and others) have received... Nothing but massive pay rises and bonuses at the expense & slaughter of the pilots (& FA's, etc) remuneration packages.
This iCadet program is set up as a money grab: nothing more, nothing less. Those who see it as a "great opportunity" refuse to see or appreciate these FACTS, let alone read the truths that cannot of been written or published if they were not 100% true for fear of legal action.
READ WARHAM'S BOOK, "THE 49ers - THE TRUE STORY"!
People do more reading & research before buying a plasma vs LCD flatscreen than they do about a company, a company culture & contract that they are considering giving their next 30-40 years to. Ask yourself, has the company over time everincreased pilots T&C's or actively pursued by bullying & immoral means & methods to successfully reduce them?
Last edited by ChinaBeached; 30th Oct 2011 at 03:24.
Go and get a job - any job. Dig holes as a labourer or work behind a bar, or do whatever to save a few dollars. The best job you could possibly land would be working in a hanger or at an airline Ops dept or for a flying school in any capacity so you're at least in the right environment. Aviation is your best field - naturally. Take out a loan to finish your training or to use to hit the road to look for a flying job. Do not quit and do not give up. All the while STUDY, STUDY, STUDY. That costs nothing. That's why I said in the short term it is damn hard but in the long term you are miles ahead professionally & financially.
That is your answer.
The jobs WILL NOT come to you and there will be more than a few knock-backs. Too many sit on their keyboard & moan about being unemployed but don't hit the road and knock on doors. Emails are but one impersonal and static means. A face to face introduction, CV in hand accompanied by handshake seems to work wonders, for any job.... Go figure.
You may have to leave home or leave your immediate country. So? You want to be an "international" airline pilot so what if you have to pack your bags & live elsewhere for a period of time to make your dream a reality?? I did it as have 1000's of pilots before me. No big deal if it is where your heart is or this "passion" so many iCadet wannabes speak about yet don't show or back it up.
Pilots did this for decades prior to soul-selling "iCadetships" being introduced. But now such a thing is deemed "too hard" by too many when there is a cheaper, nastier and "easier" way. We've all repeated the saying "If it looks too good to be true" or "Nothing in this world is free" yet those same people advocate this CEP.
Last edited by ChinaBeached; 30th Oct 2011 at 09:37.
I put a post on page 168 about my thoughts as an ex CX kid working for the airline.
Many others have taken the time to help those interested. To have a tag "CXA330" or whatever shows you are determined to work for CX but not do any favors for your industry.
Not to pick on that guy but take your integrity before anything else, listen to those that work there and have a greater understanding then anyone with SJS.
Make an informed decision based of what information you can find, not what information you prefer to choose.
REMEMBER - The old "CX are the best of the best" line doesn't work when they take anyone willing to sign a piece of paper.
What CX was in 1985, 1995, 2000 - 2005 (Buy "The 49ers") - must read, 2012 are completely separate places.
If your sole goal in life is to fly a widebody with no take offs of landings and wear a nice uniform then you are in the wrong industry and will not get any respect out of those that you will share a career with (have fun trying to find someone to have a beer with).
End Rant, AGAIN (Shit someone think about it please!).
If you found this too long and didn't read it - find another career
Just another kid of a CX captain that took the iCadet option.
Now I understand I really, really should have listened to those that know better.
Lots of guys have parents who are ex CX and they shake their heads in disgust at our terms and honestly, I think rightly so.
Though being trapped in a 5+ year cycle as a second officer (which no one will recognise time) is a horrid thing.
When I was a child I grew up in a nice house and my parents did not have to worry about education, medical etc.
Now is NOT the case.
When my father joined CX they had about a dozen aircraft. A different system of management and a different culture. What I have is good, but not great, and I certainly wish I put the hard yards in charter and if I really had SJS bough a 320 or 737ng rating or work to be a PIC of a KingAir and worked contract.
HK is expensive and if your going for a job that you will struggle to own a car then it doesn't take an idiot to think twice...
Does anyone know of any ab initio cadets who have successfully made it onto this program (who are not HK nationals/residents)? I've been told it is mainly FI's, ex-RAF redundancies, low-hour prop guys and girls making it. Are any/many purely rookie 'international cadets' joining this scheme? Thanks