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Cathay Pacific Cadet Pilot Programme

South Asia and Far East Wannabes A 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.

Cathay Pacific Cadet Pilot Programme

Old 5th Sep 2010, 13:42
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monkeybiz

Firstly, congratulations on making it into the programme! Well done and all the best with your upcoming training.

I have only two questions to ask you. I have asked something similar in a previous post but did not get a response, so here goes. During advanced flight grading, you mentioned that candidates do simulator sessions on the DA42 sim. I was just wondering what arrangements there will be for those with no prior multi-engine/CSU experience? I know it's a bit premature to worry about this with my Stage 2/3 just two days away, but I guess it would put my mind at ease if I know what might be coming up.

Thanks!

Last edited by holdmetight; 5th Sep 2010 at 13:56.
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Old 5th Sep 2010, 13:58
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Monkeybiz, well done mate you should feel proud of yourself. A lot of hard work ahead as you know, but look how far you've come and that will prove how much further you can go.

My earlier posts do reflect some concerns with this cadet programme, but nonetheless it is probably a good option for many who would otherwise struggle to finance their goals.

My question to you would be this; I pretty much recall all the questions from my stage 1. I managed most, but not all - some I worked out, one I did not.

Is it fair to say they may focus on these areas in any subsequent interviews to gauge whether you've "improved" on the 'weaker' links?

Was this your experience? Don't tell me you answered everything perfectly !

Thanks mate.
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 02:27
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holdmetight -

Prior to my DA42 sim, I had no multi, CSU, or G1000 time. The learning curve was steep, and they dont expect you to be perfect, they just want to gauge your ability to take instruction. You need to have an understanding of general instrument flight such as NDB/VOR intercepts using the RMI before going in. This will make all the rest a lot easier. I used this great link to practice. Its really basic, but I found it was by far the most useful -

Tim's Air Navigation Simulator


Smell the Coffee -

I certainly stuffed up a few questions along the way. My first interview was by far my worst performance. The questions I struggled with in stage one were not particularly focal in the rest of my interviews. There is such a broad range of questions, and the interviewers dont have a list in front of them, they simply think of them as they go, with most questions leading onto another. I cant guarantee that they dont consider your past interviews, but I didnt feel like they were.

ANT
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 05:43
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Flight Grading

Hi holdmetight - if you do the advanced flight grading you don't need to worry about CSU's as you will do three flights in a Grob G115 which is a low wing, 110 hp light trainer with fixed pitch. You will then do three sim sessions, presently these are done on the DA42 simulator, the instructors will give you the info you need to fly.


My flight grading experience:

Cathay Pacific opened up the Cadet Pilot Program to international applicants last year as they were not receiving a sufficient number of applicants within Hong Kong that fulfilled the minimum requirements. Since then there has likely been tens of thousands of applicants of which I was one.

I applied in 2009, was invited to attend the first stage interview end 2009, second and third stages in Feb 10, and final and fourth stage in June 10.

My experience. When I applied I had completed my CPL and Instructor Rating and was working as an instructor. Total flight time was around 300 hours.

Cathay Pacific have recognized the diverse experience of potential cadets and are willing to cater for this to a certain extent. Depending upon your experience, and of course making to flight grading, you will be invited to one of four flight grading processes.

Basic Flight Grading - for applicants with less than 15 hours previous experience, seven flights in the Grob G115 basic trainer.

Intermediate Flight Grading - for applicants with more than 30 hours experience, as above with an additional three flights in the Mudry CAP10 aerobatic aircraft.

Advanced Flight Grading - for applicants with an ICAO CPL, three flights in the Grob G115 and three sessions in the IGATE G602 flight simulator. (Presently this simulator is unserviceable and candidates are assessed in the Diamond DA42 simulator).

Advanced Entry Cadet Flight Grading - for applicants with an ICAO CPL and more than 220 hours (I think) total flight time, seven flights in a Socata Tobago TB10 focusing on general flying, instrument flying, and navigation.

I was invited to attend the Advanced Entry Cadet Flight Grading. My experience prior to flight grading. Total time around 350 hours. Obviously, this means I am only able to comment on the Advanced Entry Cadet Flight Grading, however my room-mate did the Advanced Flight Grading.

Advanced Flight Grading - my room-mate seemed to have much more time than I to enjoy the hospitality of Flight Training Adelaide. His flights were on basic aircraft handling and then basic instrument flying on the sim. Can't comment any more on this.

Advanced Entry Cadet Flight Grading - 7 flights TB10. I was given a folder of information to study which included:

- 1:250,000 and 1:500,000 VFR map of the area
- CR-3 nav computer (E6B users should learn how to use the computer to apply W/V for VFR X-country Nav tracks - I had plenty of time at FTA to sort this out, although in my experience if you hold your heading accurately on short legs at low level the W/V doesn't make much difference)
- Aerodrome plates for Parafield, Adelaide, Kadina, and Strathalbyn
- Handling notes for Tobago TB10
- Parafield Visual Pilot Guide - available online at - http://www.casa.gov.au/wcmswr/_asset.../parafield.pdf
- Radio procedures
- CTAF procedures (Common Traffic Aerodrome Frequency)
- Precautionary Search and Landing procedures
- Australian Day VFR syllabus

Flight one covered basic handling – S & L, C & D, turns, stalling, unusual attitudes, and a forced landing.

Flight two was circuits – normal, flapless, glide, and short-field.

Flight three was a repeat of flight one but under a hood, no stalling or forced landing.

Flight four was a basic VFR Nav with 3 legs, route roughly 180 nm.

Flight five, VFR Nav over 5 legs, included joining at an uncontrolled aerodrome and a diversion, route roughly 170 nm.

Flight six, VFR Nav over 7 leg, included joining at an uncontrolled aerodrome, diversion, arrival into and departure from an aerodrome in class C airspace, route roughly 200 nm.

Flight seven, VFR Nav – same route as flight five included joining at the same uncontrolled aerodrome, a diversion, on arriving back in the training area we then repeated everything from flight one and three, finally we repeated the circuits in flight two back at Parafield.

Candidates for the Advanced Entry Cadet Flight Grading are also expected to do the start-up, run-ups, radio calls, taxiing, departure, arrival into Parafield, and shutdown. They give you a checklist which you use as a 'to do' list. It is therefore important that you study the aerodrome plates and radio procedures.

Last edited by happyguy99; 26th Jan 2011 at 11:07.
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 06:05
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thank you very much HappyGuy,

judging by the TB10's V-NE at 165kts, your exercises 4 - 7 would take a fair bit over an hour. are all flight grading exercises more or less with such duration? I might add that if i'm going to be invited i'll only be there for basic, but it's good to know the whole picture. cheers and well done!
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 06:31
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according to my previous experience on the TB-10, they cruise at about 120kt; TB-10s are not much of a glider type, and yes im sure most people would agree with me that they sink like a brick with glide speed of 86kt. Think best rate of climb is about 75kt and best angle is 65kt. X-wind was 20kt??? (please correct me)

A nice plane to fly, yet the if you're flying it during Summer, the canopy will keep you warm inside the cabin.

good luck.

PA911
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 14:53
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wow, happyguy99, that's such a detailed account of the flight grading. thanks!

anyone is going to the stage 2 & 3 on oct 5 & 6 here?
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Old 6th Sep 2010, 16:10
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Whoop whoop have an interview in London patience is a virtue guys hang in there and all the best to everyone that's applied and waiting for a reply.

Would appreciate any useful info and a heads up on the tests... been informed to expect a Interview with both Personal and Technical questions, technical multiple-choice questionnaire, reasoning test, personality assessment.

Thanks guys and good luck to all that have been invited!
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Old 7th Sep 2010, 03:21
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Dazed and confused.

Hi to Nosegear, 404Titan, crwjerk and any other current Cathay pilots watching this forum... Thanks for your honesty.

I'm looking for a little guidance, I'm a C-cat with about 700 hours, possible full time charter job lined up for summer, but I stress possible. I've been reading through this for the last couple of days and I just had to ask you guys a few questions. I put my app in about 7 months ago and had forgotten about it, but I then got called up a few weeks ago for the stage 1 interview. I'm currently doing about 5 days a week instructing and maybe starting some part-time meatbombing as well.

With possible jobs in the pipeline and GA starting to rebound after the last few sh*tty years, is there any point me doing this cadetship? I mean, I understand that conditions are pretty crap when you're an SO, and going out isn't really an option, but let's face it, as a instructor I'm earning about $200NZD a week and spending more than that most of the time with absolutely no social life, my accounts just keep rebounding off of my maximum credit limit. So I'm no stranger to slumming it, and if the conditions are so bad for all SO's then surely you could flat with a few good lads, buy the beers at 711, and drown your sorrows in your tiny apartment with other guys who are in the same position as you. To be honest that sounds a bit better than living at home with the parents as I'm forced to do atm with my whopping instructors salary.

All that said, I'm not in a huge hurry to fly jets, kinda keen to enjoy some sweet GA first, trying to save for a float rating atm My only concern is that all the airlines seem like they're moving towards this cadetship scheme type of hiring structure. I understand Cathay have stopped hiring DESO, what about DEFO? Cos eventually I guess I'm going to have to get a jet job to pay off my student loan, and if I'm going to have to go through the cadetship type thing I would rather get it over and done with now and get the earliest seniority number I can. But if Cathay are still hiring DEFO I would rather screw around in lighties for a few more years, get some twin ATO time and then make the airline move further down the track.

If I had no experience and no options this would be a no-brainer, but I'm looking for advice based on the fact that I do have options in GA.

Help!

Please this is directed at actual Cathay pilots who know what they're talking about, thanks

ps I'm single and don't want to have to cut my man parts off, are there many expat females in HK?
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Old 7th Sep 2010, 06:27
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@Hold Me Tight

hi mate,and any other who are doing stage 2 and stage3 these days,...best of luck with the interviews...i am sure u guys will make it...finger X


pandaman
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Old 7th Sep 2010, 13:36
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Expat females?

Plenty of expat females! been to HK a couple of times and never had any trouble finding any....

Otherwise I am in the same boat as you...happy with my current job and I'll probably hang around for a while at least...
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Old 7th Sep 2010, 15:10
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6080,

I'd get some stories to tell before you join a long haul company.
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Old 7th Sep 2010, 21:49
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Hey Vish i applied last year and they have only just sent the e-mail to me hang in there hopefully they will contact you when they do the interviews in your geographic area...

Anyone else been invited to the interviews in london??
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 08:23
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future TP

I am the same boat, I applied last year in july and still waiting a reply 8 ( i sent them an email,but they replied to wait until further interview will be conducted in my geo area)

i don't know what to do,and why they are calling some and other no (even if the apllied later than me)
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 10:39
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Hi Happyguy99,

Well done on the very detailed post to those interested / undertaking the new cadet program.

One thing you mentioned however,

Cathay Pacific opened up the Cadet Pilot Program to international applicants last year as they were not receiving a sufficient number of applicants within Hong Kong that fulfilled the minimum requirements.
That's a big call. Care to share your source of such a statement?

The real reason behind the move to international applicants is all about dollars.

More specifically, CX management's never ending drive to reduce cost's and employee contracts & conditions.

During recent talks between the Pilot body & CX management on the subject of Housing allowance, the DFO (Director of Flight Operations) main desire was to reduce expat terms & conditions. He even had it written down on his sheet of paper on the desk in front of him!!

The new international cadet scheme is aimed exactly at this. The pool for DESO was a very deep & healthy one. CX did not need to open up the doors for international cadets purely to source future pilots.

The scheme has been changed for ONE reason only, to reduce cost's & conditions for the future pilot body.

Good luck with your future goals & dreams but don't believe everything that CX management promises you. Keep your eyes open...

Cheers
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 12:03
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Expat females!? How excited will they be with a kid who earns nothing and lives in a 500sq/ft appartment in Sha Tin?

If you are in a reasonable position outside CX STAY THERE. You simply cannot live on the money they are offering you. You will save nothing and probably will go backwards financially. As many, including myself, have told you, the pay and the lack of housing is appalling. I have been in HK a long time and trust me you have no future in HK on half the money everyone else is on.
There will be great demand for pilots in the years to come. Get some experience before you sit in the back of an aircraft eating the sandwiches and making the bunks. 5 years of no flying to say you work for CX for half pay?! Come on!
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Old 8th Sep 2010, 14:18
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@harbourdweller, happyguy's statement is in no way contradicting the "real reason" of yours.

we all know it's a cost-based decision. they first wanted to field enough cadets sourced completely from a pool of hk perm. residents but that didn't end well, reason being what happyguy has said, "Cathay Pacific opened up the Cadet Pilot Program to international applicants last year as they were not receiving a sufficient number of applicants within Hong Kong that fulfilled the minimum requirements." and hence, still wanting lower cost pilots with no housing etc etc, the program goes international.

so, you're right, but happyguy wasn't wrong at all, you just missed his point.

ps for anyone reading this, this is a free market and i have no problem with their program aimed to reduce costs (in fact i'm in the pool). supply and demand, you have your terms the companies have theirs, you either take it or leave it, some of us love it and put our head in.
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 09:36
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Stage 2 and 3

Hey everyone, just finished Stage 3 yesterday. It has been a really intensive two days, and while I'm glad it is finally finished, the painful wait for an invitation to flight grading begins. I'd just like to share some pointers with everyone about to go through Stage 2 and 3 in the near future.

1. Be positive in ALL the exercises you do. They will try to put you off and give you stress, and it is up to you to demonstrate that you can deal with it. They want someone who will remain positive in adversity, and not just shrivel up or become defensive. If you cannot answer a question, just stay calm and tell them that you want some time to think about it. Don't reply with a quick "I don't know" and just let it go - be proactive and try to suggest a solution based on judgement and logical reasoning.

2. Show your aptitude at teamwork. Personality is a VERY important thing they consider, and they want people who are good at working with others. The group exercise and flight planning exercise are used to gauge your ability in this area. Make sure you respect others and listen to them when it is their turn to speak, and also make yourself heard as well. Make suggestions and try to refrain from being a control freak (if you are one).

3. Show your enthusiasm. Think about all the study you have done in the past few months, and remember that the interview is the very moment to let them know how much effort you have dedicated into trying to score this job. Sit up straight, look them in the eye, speak loudly and confidently. I have the impression that Cathay likes people who are confident and know what they are talking about (or at least look like it).

4. Don't be afraid of making mistakes. I know this kind of coincides with my previous point of being positive, but I'd like to emphasize this once again. Somehow people are afraid of making mistakes, and are therefore unwilling to talk about things they don't fully understand, or become uneasy after making an error. DON'T be scared of that, accept it is only normal. They will question you if you present an erroneous answer, so you need to keep calm and promptly re-think everything through. Don't dwell on mistakes you have made, they are not looking for someone who is perfect, but someone who can recognize mistakes, correct them and move on to become a better pilot through such experience.

Hope these hints are useful for other prospective candidates. I'm happy to share more of my experiences if that's what anyone would like. I was asked a bucket-load of questions during my Stage 2 and 3 interviews, as such I really cannot remember everything that was asked. I'll try to compile them and I will post them at a later date. Good luck to everyone else who has upcoming tests, and well done to everyone who have finally finished Stage 3.

I'd like to share a few words with those who unfortunately could not pass any particular stage in the selection. During my management interview, I had the opportunity to ask the management pilots several questions. One of my questions was what they thought was important for young, aspiring cadets like myself. The management captain looked me in the eye, and told me "Never give up on what you want to do." So A, E and J, if you are reading this, hope you guys will bounce back from today and eventually return as stronger candidates.
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 09:40
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happyguy99

Thanks for your detailed post on flight grading. Hopefully I will get to make use of the information you have kindly provided.
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Old 9th Sep 2010, 11:28
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herrtob

ps for anyone reading this, this is a free market and i have no problem with their program aimed to reduce costs (in fact i'm in the pool). supply and demand, you have your terms the companies have theirs, you either take it or leave it, some of us love it and put our head in.
The only problem with that is that the company is now attacking existing CX pilots T&C regarding housing.

Also unknown to you or any other international cadet is from the latest round of negotiations between the AOA and the company regarding housing for cadets it was made very clear by the company that they have absolutely no intention of paying any housing to any international cadet or direct entry pilots employed since the introduction of the “Racial Discrimination Ordinance” by the Hong Kong SAR government in 2009. The company wasn’t even forthcoming with the pay scales the new international cadets will be on when they start to arrive in Hong Kong at the end of this year after completing their 62 week training course in Adelaide. I can just imagine the faces of these cadets when they arrive in Hong Kong and are told that they are now on “C” scale salaries rather than the “B” scale they were promised. Not even I thought the company would stoop to such lows but unfortunately it would appear that is exactly what the company is planning. No housing and now possibly “C” scales salaries. If some of you thought it would be tight with no housing, it has possibly just got even tighter.

Before anyone says I am talking BS here are a couple of the extracts from the AOA newsletter on the 6th Sept 2010:

The Company has already made the first moves to expand the CEP program. We have written to the Company asking for information on the terms and conditions that these pilots will be placed on when they finish their training. We are still awaiting a reply.

Make no mistake, management is on course to introduce C Scale by expanding the CEP program and reducing the terms of future DEPs. The Association must be determined in its support of our CEPs and future DEPs.

If we permit the Company to reduce the terms of new recruits, current DEPs will quickly become the “A scale” of tomorrow.
Back in 1999 management forced "A" scale pilots to take a substantial pay cut or face losing their jobs.

So my question to you is what will you do when you are here and the company forces you to accept "D" or "E" scales? Afterall the company has a history of doing this exact thing.
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