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Happy at Emirates?

Middle East Many expats still flying in Knoteetingham. Regional issues can be discussed here.

Happy at Emirates?

Old 21st Mar 2008, 06:46
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Cloud 9
Posts: 149
Happy at Emirates?

You guys on here are starting to frighten me!

I have an interview next month but I'm begining to wonder if I'm wasting my/their time.

Every time I look on here there's someone complaining about the rosters/routes/accommodation/pay...........etc. etc.

So I'd just like to hear from anyone who's happy at EK please....there must be somebody surely!

Thank you,

skysod is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 07:23
  #2 (permalink)  
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Toronto
Posts: 129
(this should b interesting)
dubble_dubble is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 07:31
  #3 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: UAE
Age: 56
Posts: 18
Now why would you think that there are any "happy" pilots out of the 2000 that are here?

I'm not unhappy here and as I have said before the correspondents on prune are not necessarily a scientific sampling but most of them do have real concerns.

The positives as I see them (in no specific order & not an exhaustive list) are as follows:
Job security, upgrade possibilities, medical coverage, good equipment, chauffeur driven to and from work, the housing, schooling, the awesome view while crossing the Himalayas, and the money is ok (unless you have Euro expenses) but maybe not reflective of the market.

The negatives are well known to anyone who reads prune regularly. The biggest problem is also the biggest advantage. Growth and the management thereof. Due to the exponential growth the company has a policy of doing more with less because they can't hire people quickly enough. In my opinion a short/medium/long/ultra-long haul carrier has no business trying to get it's crews (cockpit & cabin) to fly to/and beyond the legal limit (and actively trying to increase that limit) and this is why a job that used to be a 10 or 15 year commitment might only be a 5 or 10 year commitment now.


scaglietti is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 07:39
  #4 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2006
Location: A land far, far away
Posts: 100
You're going to hear lots of opinions, as have been stated many times on this site. I'd say way over 50% of the guys here are quite unhappy as "the package" keeps deteriorating. A lot of it depends on where you come from too. If you have a command in the near future and you like your home country, you'd be a fool to come here in my opinion. But for some, this place is a huge step ahead.

I think it comes down to money and conditions and neither are on the up and up. To be paid less today as a captain than being an FO 5 years ago is a farce. That is in most currencies outside the Dirham of course. Plus, no one is holding out much hope for any big improvement with the upcoming pay review.

I guess to put it fairly, it's not all bad but I'd say at least 75% are counting the days to get outta here, myself being one of them. If you think you're coming for a 15+ year career, to be honest, you'll be kidding yourself.

Good luck with your choice.

Craic Ore is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 07:46
  #5 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 1998
Posts: 137
skysod, I've enjoyed my time with EK, but I'm afraid I'm very much on the countdown. A new joiner asked me a month or two ago what I did on my days off and I surprised myself with my answer. Whereas a few years ago, I could have rattled off any number of things I did with my family, after pausing and considering what I now do on my days off, I replied "I sleep."

The company has grown hugely in the last few years, to the point where you can go for some time without crossing paths with another pilot you know. However, when you do, for me at least, it's usually a surprise to find how old and haggard everyone is looking. People 10 years younger than I am have grey hair and look exhausted.

I don't know how anyone in his early 40s could even fleetingly think he could maintain the current level of work we do for another 20 years and maintain is health.
410 is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 08:32
  #6 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: sandy place
Posts: 8

new aircrafts
great network
good career prospects
free pick up and drop off from work
medical coverage (free for you, small charge for family)
poor pension/provident fund
school partially paid (max 3 childs and up to 80ish%)

package gets lower and lower by 2digit's inflation in Dubai
if you need to send money home (mortgage, etc.) (pay is pegged to us dollar)
very hot 4 months out of the year
you need to plan to put money aside for your pension (personally 5% salary)
bonus average 4-5 weeks pay

It is always good to see it for yourself.
Good luck for the interview.

onglide is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 09:26
  #7 (permalink)  
Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: uae
Posts: 2,438
I heard someone the other day use the term, Most Captains are 'planning thier exit strategy'. Think that about sums it up.Its a job not a career.The bucket plan seems to be most guys plan and the non money one is filling fast, dont think the money bucket is going to change much come mid Apr ( bonus? pay raise? ). It has been good up to now for me, but living in DXB has become hard. As a pilot all you are is a skilled labourer and as such treated so. We use to be treated a bit better. Dont leave a good job to come or you will regret it, if you need a job than consider it.
fatbus is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 09:38
  #8 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2002
Location: On the beach with a cerveza.
Posts: 1,183
Bear in mind that the type of person who is going to spend time on an internet forum commenting on their T&C's are more than likely those who are unhappy with the job.
Jet II is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 10:03
  #9 (permalink)  
Join Date: Sep 2005
Location: Europe
Posts: 256
Don't forget to involve your family, if you have one. For many wives it's a big challenge to adapt to the insane Dubai day-to-day living. Some wives never like it and leave after a while. No doubt everyone is putting his health at risk with all the dust and toxic fumes around here...
To be honest living here is the hardest part of the job for me and my family.

If you're single and you like partying: different story...

As to EK :
More than half of your check-ins will be around 1am. It messes up your body clock. I'm struggling more than in my previous airliner to stay fit. If you like hand flying don't even think of coming here. I miss that aspect of flying a lot though they restricted this some time ago with a good reason: most of us are sleeping dummies on arrival.....
And money wise... With the current dollar woes this must now be one of the worst paid heavy jobs in the industry. Might be temporary....donno.
3yrs to 4yrs to Command depending on the fleet. You'll need the captains pay to save some money....
5star is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 10:29
  #10 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2001
Location: In the State of Perpetual Confusion
Posts: 185
Don't confine yourself to just the "happy chappies" but when you do listen to those more negative, get past the emotions and look closely at why. Some are happy because:
  • The job is better than what they came from.
  • The equipment is big and new.
  • The flying is interesting - you will see more of the world than at most other jobs.
  • Company provided accommodation.
Some reasons why others aren't happy:
  • The high rate of inflation vs. the declining value of the dirham/dollar.
  • Poor consultation by our management in taking decisions that directly affect our quality of life and working conditions.
  • Complete disregard by our management of serious fatigue issues. This includes poor rest facilities on the aircraft and trip schedules and layovers that violate some of the most basic tenets of fatigue management and safety.
  • To expand on the previous point - 24 hour layovers after flights exceeding 17 hours in length. Most appalling about this is that their own "approved" ULR FTL document prohibits this, yet they do it anyway. It says a lot about the quality of regulation here.
  • Flight Time Factoring. Again, a roster and fatigue issue whereby, your time spent in the bunk on a long haul flight does not count towards Flight Time Limitations. The result being that you could be rostered well in excess of 120 hours per month. My understanding is that it is not being used in a big way right now but expect it to be employed more and more in the coming months as the company reduces its recruitment targets for budgetary reasons.
I'm sure other can add a lot to either list. The point is that you need to do your homework on the specific issues and decide if it makes sense. I've flown with quite a few new FO's coming from smaller (RJ's) equipment who looked across the table at me with their jaws agape as I recounted specific rostering practices. They too only wanted to talk to the "happy pilots" before coming here. Come out for your interview, get as much information as you can and compare it with your current situation. If you make an informed decision to come, you will most likely count yourself among the happy. If you allow yourself to only consider the positives, you will find the negative issues looming larger in your psyche once you have been here a while.
Gillegan is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 13:37
  #11 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Europe
Posts: 1,484
Two questions for EK pilots please:

1. If you go to EK and get 777 type and flight time and then want to leave, where do you go then with that great type and flight experience? Direct entry at another ME 777 operator or maybe Singapore? Isn't it same type of flying but now you are junior? Would you go back to Europe on Easyjet or Ryanair after flying 777?

2. Will EK get new cargo 747-800s and will EK or Atlas pilots fly them?

Thank you for responses.
Iver is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 13:54
  #12 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2003
Location: Sandy beach
Posts: 430
I'm happy but my bbq runs every night and I always have a rum and coke nearby.
Saltaire is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 17:09
  #13 (permalink)  
Join Date: Nov 2002
Location: Middle East
Posts: 129
sorry not an EK pilot but depending on your life style, with B777 time you could try PARC and Vietnam Airlines (6 weeks on 2 weeks off), not sure now but used to be good some years ago? That's some pretty long term planning maybe I should try it some day!!!

Question to EK First officers:

I am thinking about joining EK soon as the company I fly for do not upgrade expat F/Os and I want to fly new equipment, averaging 10.5USD (Wide body med Haul) no tax. I am happy with my life now (except life long f/o)
So i am thinking not to join EK now because their money not good and work to hard? I might wait a little longer? maybe conditions improve no?
Wings Of Fury is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 17:23
  #14 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2002
Location: The Sandpit
Posts: 127
jumbo1 is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 18:18
  #15 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Europe
Posts: 1,484
Will EK get 747-800s and will EK pilots fly them or will Atlas fly aircraft? When will arrive?
Iver is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 19:35
  #16 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jun 2001
Posts: 1,451
When I saw this thread, I thought I'd add some witty, oh so clever remark to the debate.

... but I'm just too tired (constanty, truth be told, over the last year or so) to come up with one.
Wiley is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 20:32
  #17 (permalink)  
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: sandy place
Posts: 8
most probably, Atlas pilot will fly the 747-800.
But you never know in Ek ... things changes by the minute ... see LCC and use of the mobile phone in flights ...
onglide is offline  
Old 21st Mar 2008, 21:46
  #18 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
Join Date: May 2003
Location: Cloud 9
Posts: 149
Thanks to all of you who have taken the time and trouble to reply.


skysod is offline  
Old 22nd Mar 2008, 00:44
  #19 (permalink)  
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: 3rd Rock from the Sun
Posts: 302
I was at the EK roadshow at LGW, and i think they mentioned.... but not 100% sure, that the 747-8F will be crewed by EK drivers.
Easy Ryder is offline  
Old 22nd Mar 2008, 01:42
  #20 (permalink)  
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Behind you
Age: 72
Posts: 227
The 747/8 will be crewed by EK drivers.
Still deciding if CCQ's from the 777.
my salami is offline  

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