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Pay question for current CX SO's

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.

Pay question for current CX SO's

Old 24th Sep 2012, 05:33
  #21 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jan 2004
Location: Planet Earth, mostly
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I have just a couple of questions and one is regarding the provisional tax. Is it just extra tax like council tax?

Is crwjerk's case of possibly paying $18000 tax a month typical?
No its not extra tax. It is advance tax for the next year. You may not have to pay it, depending when you start working in HK. If you do your following year's tax will be correspondingly lower.

HK$1,000 for phone is also way to much. You can get combined Internet, Phone and Cable TV packages for much less.

Utilities should also be much less.

There's lots of info available on-line, its better if you do your own research.

Last edited by etrang; 24th Sep 2012 at 05:53.
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Old 24th Sep 2012, 16:35
  #22 (permalink)  
crwjerk
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Yes you are correct. 30-40 units of alcohol if you stand with the homeless beggars out front of 7/11. If you fancy a proper drink, and as a flash new Cathay "pilot" you'll be straight down to Wyndham street spending 80 bucks + service charge per drink...... That's 12 drinks. Too many units per week for you??
HK$1,000 for phone is also way to much. You can get combined Internet, Phone and Cable TV packages for much less.
Ok, good luck with that.

Last edited by crwjerk; 24th Sep 2012 at 16:45.
 
Old 24th Sep 2012, 21:18
  #23 (permalink)  
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Inclusive exclusive

I have noticed on the apartment rental sites that some rentals are inclusive and some exclusive. What exactly is included? Am I to assume inclusive means power and water etc? Another poster mentioned club and gym fees. If an apartment lists a gym and pool as a feature do you still have to pay to use it? I know that sounds silly but I have learnt never to take anything for granted.

Some apartments listed have mortgage repayments the same as the rental payments. I know that there are obviously taxes and insurance to pay like everywhere else but is it realistic to say that you can buy for the same price as renting?
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Old 25th Sep 2012, 00:07
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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"inclusive" in a Hong Kong context generally means inclusive of property taxes.

If there's a gymnasium or pool, it's generally available to all residents as part of the strata fees, which should be covered in your rent.

Parking spots are not normally included.

Utilities are almost always to your own account. Water is nominal, electricity is something that should be taken notice of, as running AC in even a moderately sized apartment can be north of $2K/month.

As always, caveat emptor.
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Old 25th Sep 2012, 02:55
  #25 (permalink)  
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"Inclusive" , as Cpt said, means the Landlord will pay the Government rent and your building's management fees. You basically pay for it all anyway, if the rent is "inclusive" it will normally be a couple of thousand per month more than "exclusive", so make sure you negotiate.
 
Old 25th Sep 2012, 03:01
  #26 (permalink)  
 
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you'll be straight down to Wyndham street spending 80 bucks + service charge per drink...... That's 12 drinks. Too many units per week for you??
Not per week, per night.
a night out on the turps will easily cost you 1000 bucks
was your exact quote, and 12 drinks per night is too much especially if you're doing it every week. And most bars charge less than $80 for a drink even in LKF.
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Old 25th Sep 2012, 04:25
  #27 (permalink)  
crwjerk
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It would help you to read my post before knocking it. Most spirits in the decent bars on Wyndham st are around 80 bucks. If you want a glass of wine, make it 100. You can go down the steps and pay 70 at the hard rock, it's still expensive. I was referring to units per week as the previous poster had. 12 drinks a night is not much. Especially as you're buying drinks for whores ( no, you didnt know they were on the job until you wanted to take them home) and other tarts that aren't going to buy you one back. Where the hell did that 5 grand go last night????

Last edited by crwjerk; 25th Sep 2012 at 04:27.
 
Old 25th Sep 2012, 07:51
  #28 (permalink)  
 
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Where the hell did that 5 grand go last night????
Short-term memory loss is a frequent symptom of alcohol abuse, especially binge drinking.

you're buying drinks for whores ( no, you didnt know they were on the job until you wanted to take them home) and other tarts
Engaging in high-risk sexual behaviour is another symptom.
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Old 25th Sep 2012, 11:01
  #29 (permalink)  
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Before the thread gets hijacked

I know some people still find it hard to distinguish between regular girls on a night out and girls who are "turning tricks". The best way I have found to separate the two is by comparing your looks with the looks of the girl who all of a sudden finds you interesting. If your an average looking bloke and a smokin' hot girl all of a sudden takes an interest in you then guess what? Say no more.

A part of my question that remains unanswered is if it's possible to buy a flat for the same money as it does to rent in Hong Kong or are there many hidden costs I don't know about?
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Old 25th Sep 2012, 13:47
  #30 (permalink)  
 
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if it's possible to buy a flat for the same money as it does to rent in Hong Kong or are there many hidden costs I don't know about?
The main problem you would have is that banks in HK will normally not lend more than 70% of the property value. Even with additional insurance the maximum loan is 90%. If you can come up with the large down-payment required, then interest on the mortgage would be similar to the rent. Principal repayment, especially in the early years could also be a problem, and negative amortising or interest only loans are not readily available in HK.

Even if you could afford the down-payment I would not recommend buying in HK, one of the most expensive property markets in the world.
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Old 25th Sep 2012, 22:13
  #31 (permalink)  
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Thank you

I can't think of any other questions so I appreciate all the replies and PM's. I have to figure out now if coming to HK is still worth it.

Just to give some comparison where I lived in Sydney was $1750 a month which is close to $14000 HKD (Thats for a small one bed around 550sq feet). A pint at the nice bar down the road was $9 which is about $70 HKD. My car space was $200 AUD a month and you get the point. I don't think it sounds as bad as everyone makes out. I lived in London for while and that was expensive!

Are the people on here moaning about cost of living in HK part of the minority or majority?
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Old 26th Sep 2012, 03:02
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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Are we really saying now 1500 hrs is too experienced to be an SO...

what a joke

Last edited by blade; 26th Sep 2012 at 06:10.
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Old 26th Sep 2012, 11:48
  #33 (permalink)  
 
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PIlotchute, $1750/month for a 1 bedder, that was in a good area in Sydney right ? That will get you a place that is advertised as 550' (more like 400) in an average area in HK (maybe DB), not Soho or mid levels. Car space 200/month, good luck even getting a space in HK, maybe 3-400AUD a month in Tung Chung. BTW, petrol is 2aud/litre, there are tolls everywhere, if you wanna drive an older 6 or 8 cyl it will cost a lot more than oz in insurance/rego.

If you buy a place and then want to rent it out, you have to have min 30% equity in it and all rental income is taxed, there is no negative gearing. Also remember if you wish to return to Oz, all foreign income has to be declared to the ATO, likely you will have to pay tax in Oz also.

As for how to tell which girls are the hookers in Wanchai, that's easy, it's the girls talking to you
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Old 26th Sep 2012, 12:39
  #34 (permalink)  
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That was in Bondi

I wish it was in a nice area. Bondi is ok but the flat was pretty tired and on a busy road. A decent 1 bed in a decent area in the city or close by was $2200-$2500 a month. $500 a week in Sydney isn't that much these days. The point I wish to make is everywhere is getting more expensive these days. I don't need a big place as there would only be two of us living there. I think a big problem in Australia is our obsession for having houses with rooms we never use. I have a friend who lives in 4 bed house and has no kids! He also has a study and a games room.Why?

In regards to the car I had to keep it because Sydney public transport was not up to par at all. If the train or bus ever did turn up (after dark especially) it would have some drugged up idiot onboard screaming his head off and threatening people. I have experienced public transport in HK and found it efficient and pretty cheap. If I was in HK I don't think I would need a car anyway.

As for buying in HK when is ever the right time?

So if I do come to Hong Kong and can get over having to live in a small flat (shoe box) without a car in a tolerable area like DB is there anything else I should look out for?

I thought those girls in the bar in Wanchai were school students wanting to practice their English?
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Old 26th Sep 2012, 23:53
  #35 (permalink)  
 
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pilotchute

I have several properties in Sydney. Bondi is expensive, period. Inner city Sydney is expensive, period. None of my properties would attract the rental return you quote per square foot, period. You have obviously made a choice to live in one of the most expensive areas of Sydney.

You and your partner may be able to live in a small apartment but I must ask do they work? If they do, chances are they won’t in Hong Kong. 550 ft² becomes very small when you have to look at it 24 hours a day especially when you are away for up to half the month. More marriages suffer and fail because of this than I can poke a stick at. Oh and 550 ft² in HK isn’t the same as 550 ft² in Sydney. In HK it is considerably small running at about 70% efficiency for an apartment of that size. So that 550 ft² apartment is really about 385 ft² liveable area.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 00:29
  #36 (permalink)  
 
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So if I do come to Hong Kong and can get over having to live in a small flat (shoe box) without a car in a tolerable area like DB is there anything else I should look out for?
Here's what it comes down to:

You're thinking of leaving in an expensive city so that you can...live an an even MORE expensive AND polluted city. With the added hit of being away from your family and your friends, with no chance of ever going back (bases are well and truly dead). Our old contracts recognized this and provided us with a healthy financial incentive to come to HKG. The new i-kid contract does not.

Your minimal housing assistance is not indexed, so as time goes by it remains fixed, however your rent will be steadily increasing effectively putting you in a position where you are going backwards financially and also in lifestyle.

It's that simple but the GEN-Y kids they are hiring (exploiting) have their rose tinted SJS glasses on and don't want to hear it.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 01:25
  #37 (permalink)  
 
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As usual, good accurate advice from 404 and Dan.
BTW, are you married ? If not your partner won't be recognised by immigration, there is no such thing as " defacto " in HK. Unless she can get sponsored in her own right ( eg doctor, lawyer, finance, teacher ) she will have to leave HK every 3 months. Also chute, I have no idea what/if your family plans are but try looking ahead a little, is the HK lifestyle ( pollution, crowds, lack of parks/playgrounds ) what you want for your kids ?
Take the pain in Oz early, do the hard yards, in less than 10 years you could have a jet command with an LCC " struggling " on circa 200k/year, or you could be a CX F/O possibly 5 years from command wondering how you can " afford " to come home.
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 06:51
  #38 (permalink)  
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Thank you everyone

I would like to thank everyone who made a contribution to this thread. I now have the answers to many of my questions and feel I can make a more informed decision in regards to accepting an offer from CX should I make it through the interview process and flight screening.

If anyone else's want to jump in with any other money or living expenses questions regarding HK go for it.

Cheers
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Old 27th Sep 2012, 20:54
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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Pilotchute,

Let me add some more points of view. Firstly, we are definately getting too bogged down with the figures stated - by myself and others. One may wish to live as a pauper and save a decent amount, one may wish to live a half-decent lifestyle and have nothing at the end of the month. one may enjoy the pleasures of a cold lager, one may not. One may be happy living in a shoe-box, one may not ad nauseum. So lets look at the big picture.

Regardless of how you live, there is no sustainable future in HK for you. This is the point the likes of Titan, Dan Buster, and crwjerk are trying to get across. Even if you are single, you will struggle to save up 30percent deposit on ANY property. And if by some miracle you do, good luck finding a wife to live with you in that shoebox and just forget about kids.

The lack of housing has ensured the above paragraph is not BS I'm afraid. The normal path of life is to earn money, buy assests and use them to provide for you in your old age. The lucky ones amongst us who have invested wisely will have a retirement with no detriment in quality of life. The majority of us with housing (and have not had two or more divorces) have accomplished this. We have bought properties and paid for them purely with the housing allowance and made a reasonable profit on selling them.

Cadets can only dream of this.

And this is the point I was making before. For those with zero hours or less than 1500 hours, this is an amazing opportunity. It's also an easy road. Try talking to the Canucks dicking around in -35'C temps earning sweet FA or the romantic stories of CPL holders washing Cessna152s at an airfield just to get an instructors job or a job towing gliders. Kudos to the ones that have gone down this road an made it - but life is all about taking chances if they come. And the CX Cadet scheme is one of them. We may not be the airline we were once proud of back in the 80s but our planes certainly cure SJS (Shiny jet syndrome). Not many first time jobs give you the chance to argue amonst your classmates about what plane they want to fly - the 777ER or 330 or the forthcoming A350XWB. Wow!!!!!

But it is not sustainable. And CX know this. Hence the loan to make sure you return 6 years of service. Before the unforgivable loan, any cadet could have left CX at any point- the letter stating you must work 6 years for the company might aswell have been toilet paper because it means nothing. This unforgivable loan scheme is as good as a bond.

So do not take my word for it, nor Dan Buster, nor Titan et al. The fact that CX themselves have implemented this loan scheme is their own statement that the package is not good enough! That's the proof my boys - from the horse's mouth!

That was my point earlier. Come here only as a short term plan. Hk isn't bad, the staff travel (contrary to what people say) isn't too bad and after 4 years as an SO (could be less), you start getting RHS time. And a free rating! This is much better than other horror stories you hear about pilots trying to get that elusive first job.

I hope this really summarises the scheme - the Big Picture is simply this: Entering Cathay as a cadet is unsustainable for a career in CX. It is purely short term.
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Old 28th Sep 2012, 07:54
  #40 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2011
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Well said Betpump

You stole my thunder..
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