Fragrant Harbour A forum for the large number of pilots (expats and locals) based with the various airlines in Hong Kong. Air Traffic Controllers are also warmly welcomed into the forum.

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Old 7th Aug 2021, 06:59
  #201 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: The Back of Beyond
Posts: 93
Rubbish. In the UK for instance there's a shortage of 100,000 HGV drivers. The super market shelves are half empty. Great pay, far better lifestyle and flexibility than flying. And a similar skill set needed.

Unless it's your fragile ego preventing you leaving this now toxic aviation industry, I don't really understand why anyone would keep chasing the bottom of the barrel. Especially with Cathay, which has gone from being one of the best paid and rewarding airlines to work for 10-20 years ago to quite possibly the absolute worst (taking into account the quality of life vis a vis renumeration and the truly dreadful dystopian life in Hong Kong).

But I take your point - if you are at CX, approaching 55, worked here for a decade or two, and not able to jack it all in with a fair amount of savings you have gone severely off piste at some point, and frankly, it would be hopeless whatever or wherever you chose to go. So then yes, you might be stuck working for these mill owners.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 08:07
  #202 (permalink)  
Join Date: Apr 2002
Location: HK
Posts: 40
Average HGV pay in UK is 32,100 gross, average starting salaries is 21,000. Decent pay (a bit higher than overall average) but I wouldn’t say great. If you get a job driving fuel trucks for Shell or someone like that, with plenty of antisocial hours, can probably get up to mid 40’s. Need to pay for own training

And with average UK house price now over 250,000, that salary won’t buy you a decent place to live…
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 08:53
  #203 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2020
Location: Sydney
Posts: 47
Err, "buzzbox" I was not trying to slur anyone making the choice to return to HK it is a personal choice. I also was not wishing to criticise the government on either side or accuse anyone of being a terrorist, so chill. I do know for a fact however, (as I now work in this area, post CX) that many senior government staffers and several Ministers are very much of the opinion that anyone choosing to leave Australia at this point should not be permitted to return for the foreseeable future, nominally for twelve months (this is the purpose of the bill as existing legislation more than covers those posing a security risk). So my comment is simply a caution to those who may not realise it could be a one way ticket for quite a long time. A problem back home with a loved one will likely be met with a "we told you so".
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 09:08
  #204 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Australia
Posts: 931
No need to get uppity and tell me to 'chill', I was merely pointing out that the article you linked referred to the Counter Terrorism Bill that seeks to stop certain people ENTERING Australia. It is NOT the same as the Biosecurity Determination that restricts people LEAVING Australia. You no doubt meant to refer to that second piece of legislation.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 09:12
  #205 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2002
Location: Australia
Posts: 931
Flying Clog

You might find that kind of work appealing; many others don't. As I said, there are options out there for younger pilots who want to make a career change and many have done exactly that. However, older pilots have a different set of circumstances, especially those who might only be a few years from retirement. It's often a case of 'better the devil you know'. BTW, not everyone approaching 55 has a bucket full of money, especially those based in high tax areas who can't access their retirement savings (eg Australian superannuation) until around 60 years of age.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 09:50
  #206 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: one country, one system
Age: 53
Posts: 372
Flying Clog, I am curious. What are you doing right now?
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 10:01
  #207 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: HK
Posts: 83
I totally understand why some would rather relocate to HK than start a new career at home, but how many, if any of the non PR holding Base pilots been given a work visa to enable their transfer to so far?
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 16:16
  #208 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2013
Location: here
Posts: 189
Flying Clog

You sir, have no idea. What a foolish comment.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 17:53
  #209 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Australia
Posts: 323
Flying Clog

Because seniority is awesome, employees with decades of skill and experience can have the opportunity to move to the bottom of of the next company when ever they wish. Just like the rest of the world… Not!

Seniority protecting the lowest common denominator since - Fate is the Hunter.

This is why, he/she must return. The option of starting again is financially unpalatable.

I literally explained seniority to a guy tonight and he looked at me like why?, with each new company and job he just moved into more and more responsibility and financial benefit.

Last edited by Avinthenews; 7th Aug 2021 at 18:07.
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 21:36
  #210 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: The Back of Beyond
Posts: 93
Sam Ting Wong

Packing my bags, fixing to leave the hong kong cesspit, as it happens
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Old 7th Aug 2021, 23:10
  #211 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: UK
Posts: 80
Are you leaving the airlines to be a tramper/ HGV driver in the UK?

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Old 8th Aug 2021, 00:31
  #212 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 251

Yes because the next company doesn't already have an F/O patiently waiting for an upgrade with decades of skill and experience. He/she is there willing to forego an upgrade solely to be impressed and enlightened by your abilities.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 01:25
  #213 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Asia
Posts: 1,374
An approval to leave can be appplied for before travelling to Australia and simply requires some supporting documentation. IMHO slightly safer to have a pre approval than having to convince Border Security on your way out.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 01:52
  #214 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: Australia
Posts: 323

And said FO with experience you think should be an SO if he moves to another job or should he/she be able to slot in where his/her experience dictates and even god forbid be offered a command course for that experience.

You appear to be saying that without seniority no one ever gets promoted because of external hiring yet the entire world functions without it perfectly well.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 02:13
  #215 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Hong kong
Posts: 26
Sam Ting Wong

I have been given to understand that he is going for a gig with the Daily Fail. The writing style of invention, distortion and exaggeration is a perfect fit.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 02:48
  #216 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 251
Sorry but if you liken this industry to other industries then you obviously don't get it.

Firstly, your financial mate will have literally more than 500 different financial institutions he can apply to across the country, How many reputable airlines can you apply to in OZ, two, maximum three? This is the main difference. The aviation industry has very few employers that employ several thousand employees, where as other industries have thousand of employers that employ very few employees.

Secondly, what metric do you use to gauge ones skill experience? Flying hours? Type rating? Number of sectors flown? We are ALL checked to the same standard and go through the same annual recurrent training, line checks, proficiency checks, etc, etc...Is a 10,000 hour pilot automatically a more skilled pilot than one who has 8,000 hours. Is a long haul pilot worse than a short haul pilot? not necessarily.

Thirdly, you think airlines are out there looking for test pilots? haven't you learnt anything by now? Airlines are run by accountants and without seniority they would be looking for the cheapest pilot that meets the companies minimum requirements, end of story. They could care less if you're Yeager's offspring with 25,000 hours. And as we've already seen so far, there is ALWAYS going to be someone out there that would be willing to do the same job for a lesser salary, who do you think they will hire?

Seniority system may not be perfect, but it is the better option in this industry. It's somewhat ironic that you criticize a system that has afforded you an upgrade whilst keeping your CoS.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 05:58
  #217 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2015
Location: HKG
Posts: 332
Economists talk about the 'mobility of labour' - workers will move to better jobs. With seniority we loose that. Once you reach a point where you can't afford to start again at the bottom, you are stuck where you are, even though each contract is another kick in the nuts, as the new contract is better than what else is on offer when starting at the bottom. CX has decided to use the wuhan virus to force us on to POS18 (a collection of conditions of service OK for someone with no airline experience), where as others I know at airlines which respect their staff have followed the contracts, made surplus staff redundant, reached agreements on reduced pay, but expect to return to previous conditions and reemploy when thing improve.

Due to wuhan there is currently no where better to go to. Due to seniority that will continue to be the case. So my plan is to keep current and watch the market. To avoid seniority I will move sideways to a contract airline job or corporate pilot.

Seniority is a bitch which keeps us down.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 08:10
  #218 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2013
Location: one country, one system
Age: 53
Posts: 372
Seniority is good for some, bad for others. Rarely First or Second Officers complain, but usually senior Captains do ....

I find it rather pointless to discuss the merits of the system, we will not change it. There will never be true mobility of labour anyway, mainly because of having the right passport is more important than anything else.

Controlled Rest, I would argue that no company on the planet truly "respects" their employees. None.

Every company simply acts in the environment they compete in. They follow local legislation, or they don't if it's worth the penalty. Which is the same, and that for some reason is surprisingly difficult to understand by many in here.

Companies might appear to act more labour-friendly, but in reality this is just the display of the respective strategy. If the management of a company believes it is either beneficial or necessary, because legislation, union laws etc are forcing them to do so, then they will role-play to "respect" their employees, and only then. No company has a soul or a conscience, it is not a living thing. Hence no company has the capacity to "respect" anything, it is an artificial legal entity driven by market forces, shareholder and stake holder demands. That's all there is. Cathay is not an evil employer, that also does not exist. Cathay simply does whatever is possible within the Hong Kong market and legal environment.

Last edited by Sam Ting Wong; 8th Aug 2021 at 08:50.
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 10:32
  #219 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2016
Location: space
Posts: 5
I had a thread on seniority lists ( search - seniority lists discussion..... Again! ). I would like to see the industry get rid of them. Last post on there was in Nov 2020. I wonder if the chat landscape has changed for some of the people who were pro seniority lists?
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Old 8th Aug 2021, 10:33
  #220 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: The Back of Beyond
Posts: 93

I am doing my wagon drivers licence as we speak. It's one of the many options I am looking at, along with flying jobs in Europe that are cropping up. There ARE jobs out there. If nothing else than a stop gap to keep me current until better paying flying jobs come along.

HGV driving would be better in the UK financially (for now), whereas the flying jobs are in Europe, which is a bit of a conundrum.

I've already had an offer, before even finishing my licence, for 50 quid an hour, or 8000 pounds per month for a cushy HGV driving job (that won't last forever, but who knows), which is more than I get as a 747 captain with cx incidentally on a 60% forever pay cut. I would be home every night, living in a 'normal' country, not the ridiculous loony bin that hong kong has become, and wouldn't have to deal with the and swire psychos we work for.

ANYTHING is better than working for crappy pathetic. Even sitting on one's arse burning into savings, which we're doing anyway working on COS18 to a certain extent.

Evidenced by the number of 747 pilots resigning from CX with no job to go to, or packing in aviation altogether.

Sadly, the keen 777 retreads coming across like rats off a sinking ship aren't helping the cause, but that's their problem and good luck to them.

Best to leave them to stew in their own , and before long they'll be squealing like stuck pigs when all the rest of us have moved on to better gigs!

Last edited by Flying Clog; 8th Aug 2021 at 10:58.
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