Decided to write a long post..
This is because I came on PPRuNe around a year and a half ago and that's where I found out about Xiamen.
But except the link to the Terms and Conditions there wasn't much info here so I just went and everything worked out great..
Now it's my time to pay back sharing some info!
About the city:
Pollution --> Look at the sky color in the pics.
Compared with the rest of Chinese cities it is very clean, not many factories in town.
(of course don't expect the same quality of air of EU/US, but compared to Beijing it's heaven.)
Ranked 2nd city for quality of life in China (look at wiki https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Xiamen
There are bike paths everywhere, very clean. Parks, you can take long walks... etc.
Expats: you can find them only in a couple of neighborhoods, it's not an international city like Shanghai or Beijing.
Cost of life:
Taxi -> 30min ride approx 5 USD
Mc Donald's meal approx 4 USD
Places to stay:
A) Straits international community (single bedroom around 800 usd/month, double bedroom 900 usd month)
Near the beach, lots of western restaurants (but price for a dinner would be around 15-20 usd), nice area, lots of expats
This is the view from an apt at 15th floor:
B) Marco polo (single bedroom around 600 usd/month, double bedroom 700 usd month)
Lots of expats, near the lake (which is not really a lake anyway), lots of western shops, more things to do compared to Straits
C) Near Tesco mall (single bedroom around 400 usd/month, double bedroom 550 usd month)
Newly built area, no expats, 5 mins from the airport, lots of western shops (mc donalds, starbucks, kfc, tesco, decathlon, everything basically)
there are 2 of them, there is a queue to get your kids in.. So you have to sign up early.
But not much info on that (don't have any kids)
About the company:
I haven't been here long yet, but treatment from the start has been always very good.
They value pilots, always available to solve problems.
Spoke with many expats and they are very happy with the working conditions. (around 60 expats here at the moment)
Never saw that kind of attitude/enthusiasm at my last airline.
Payscales are advertised everywhere, it's the most paying job on the 737 right now.
But there are a couple of things extra which are not advertised for some reason:
1) Profit share, about 10k USD/year
2) Overnight allowance (depends on contract, from 500 to 1500 usd depending if you commute or not)
3) Resident contract (which is what I am doing): overtime is counted monthly, so if you fly more than 75 hrs a month you earn 300 usd/hr.
Average is around 100 hrs/year of overtime (30k USD more)
The payscales that you read from the agencies are all net..
So for a resident contract you are looking at 30k USD/month.
Mainly domestic but also some International destinations (Thailand, Japan, Malaysia, Indonesia)
Hotels -> 5 stars everywhere, really good.
This is the hotel where you do all the groundschool in Xiamen (and also the assessment when you come over)
787 upgrade -> not advertised, nor offered at the moment.. but rumors that it will be in the future
5 free per year + 5 ID75.
This for you + wife + kids + parents.
Each of them gets 5+5 tickets
Other things to consider:
Roster 4 days ON, 2 days OFF.
Usually overnights are quite common, so expect to start on day 1 in Xiamen, then sleep 3 nights away.
Usually you will operate from a nearby airport (Fuzhou) which is a big base for them. (Hotel is really nice there)
Duty times: the really long slots that affected the operations until last year (1 hour each single and every domestic flight) are mostly gone (except Beijing and Shanghai which are overloaded).
However: it's not a walk in the park. Usually the flying days are long.
Also it takes some time to adapt, especially the first 2 weeks you will need to figure out how to use a VPN, their Uber-like taxi service app, the app to get food delivered to your door, the sim card, etc.. etc..
Anyway, for me it was a no brainer.
I was working a lot already at home.. Here I get paid the big bucks to do it!
Families: many capts choose to bring their wife here, if you are not married it's still doable but she will need to get a visa everytime.. So more complicated!
Ps: recruitment takes some time. Usually to get a response and to organize an assessment it's around 3 months.
I made some useful contacts here, so if interested in speeding up things or for first hand info on the assessment PM me!
Any additional info: kidnapper01 (at) gmail.com