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.

Hello

Old 15th Jan 2014, 08:20
  #1 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
Hello

hello

i'm planning to fund myself in Canada to get my professional pilot licenses, PPL, CPL, ME, MEIFR, etc...
my ultimate goal after i done my study in about 1 year is try to get into Cathay AE program.

please help to give me some suggestion, if this is a good way to proceed, or if there is other option that better for me. am i too old for the AE program?

i'm a HKID holder and i'm already 41 years old.
i currently live in HK, but my parents are live in Canada, i'm also holding my Canadian citizen.

i made this change to my career at this time due to the china manufactory works are all dying very very soon, many of my old colleague also got forced to lay off and change job nature.

when i think of what i like to do in the past, i remember i used to like to be a pilot long time ago.

so here now, i try to work my way to do something i interested to do. and have my life reborn again. i hope.

i got approved from my wife to proceed this study in Canada, although i will missed my wife and my little 3yrs old daughter very much during my study.

please help to give me some suggestion, i like flying, i like travel.
i like to be a professional pilot. i need someone to light up my way to proceed.

thanks for your helping.
bbl is offline  
Old 15th Jan 2014, 11:58
  #2 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2011
Location: Noida, India
Age: 30
Posts: 123
Well you are certainly on the upper end of the age limit. However, there are plenty of opportunities in Canada. You can maybe start as a flight instructor or small flying jobs like banner towing, skydive pilot, survey pilot etc. Once you have experience you can try the small regional airlines. So having a Canadian citizenship is very useful. Good luck and age shouldn't be a problem as much. I know of people who started their career in aviation at about the same age as yourself. They're now airline pilots.
Three.Green is offline  
Old 15th Jan 2014, 17:40
  #3 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
i know my age is a big problem, but there is nothing i can do now.
the right time has passed, but i want to make it up now if i can.
i want to try to get into CX advance entry problem if possible, so i can come back to hk to work here.
also the AE program provide the pre SO training. so for sure i will be on the right track of job i wanted.

i know the instructor path and small flying jobs. but i want to try to get into airline direct training for my #1 priority, if i fail, then i look for something else.

i'm not sure about the pilot market in canada. i guess it is as bad as USA.

asia is the best growing market at this time, so i want to stick with asia if possible.
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Old 16th Jan 2014, 02:09
  #4 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Nuclear Dust City
Posts: 131
Let's do some basic math here... U r 41 now, takes at least 2 years to get to AE entry level if you are really up to speed and doing it full time, so 43/44 the earliest, if they r still hiring AE cadets at that time... Then almost another year before u finish Adelaide and start working, 45 the earliest... What makes you think CX would pay for your training instead for someone 20+ years younger than you? That's 20 more years of service (hopefully) for them to regain their cost, let alone the risk of you losing your medical before 65...

While I admire your dedication and will to chase your dreams, reality is you probably have missed the boat by at least 10 years. Sorry to be blunt but unless you have billions saved up and could literally not work for a single day again for the rest of your life, it's probably not a wise decision for your wife and kids. I believe there were cadets who were close to 40 when they joined but they were either single or no kids.
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Old 16th Jan 2014, 03:16
  #5 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Under the bridge
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In addition, the chances of CX taking in AE cadets are extremely slim, if not zero. And even if they are taking AE cadets, why should they take you over someone who is in his twenties with no family commitments? It is too risky for them, and Cathay is not a company known to take risks. Better to look into the market in Canada, compared with the AE option, it is a safer bet.
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Old 16th Jan 2014, 03:37
  #6 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 373
45 years old and aiming for the AE? I'd say very slim chance.

There are over qualified hopefuls trying with out success..

Read between the lines here, you have the benefit of very well meaning,polite,non partisan advise from old professionals.

Build up your aviation career in Canada and ironically, there are 1000s of HKs would love your Cdn passport!.
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Old 16th Jan 2014, 04:45
  #7 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2011
Location: WSSS
Posts: 47
Since you have a Canadian citizenship, try to get into one of the US/Canadian carriers bro. They don't discriminate against age like how they do in this part of the world. America is a land of opportunity and people your age are making career changes. Some older than you are going to med school. So the point is, you are never too old to do it (I would not say this if you did not have a citizenship in that part of the world), but don't look back when you're 50 and regret that you didn't give it a shot.
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Old 16th Jan 2014, 11:38
  #8 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
thanks you all for the input.
it never be blunt to voice out the truth, i fully understand, no problem.

i know i missed the boat long long ago.
the school that i'm going to get in, it was sitting there near 30yrs ago already.
i should get in that school 20yrs ago if i was in the right track.
i'm hoping i can make up the time to put me back on the right track.

sorry, i didn't reply one by one, but i will reply it all here.

i'm 41 now, by the time i finish the professional pilot program, i should be a little over 42. the course only take 1 yr or about 13 months. it depends how hard i work. it is not a diploma course, it is just a professional program. i will be on full time for sure. so about 1 year is the time require.
Adelaide AE program training takes 33 weeks. so the dream is before 43 or a bit over 43 to get the AE program training done.

AE program is open for international who has the CPL, MEIFR and with 250hr of FT, but they prefer people with HKID.

as the entire licensing for the PPL, CPL, ME and MEIFR is expensive. and there is no place to learn this in hk, so i think, not much people with HKID had done this on their own cost. So, i think this is the advantage for me. (please correct me if i'm over optimistic)

i know i'm unrealistic. i'm a dreamer, but i know it is not 100% infeasible. just the chance is getting low due to my old age. i still had the chance to get into CX.

i guess cadet program is another case, they learn from zero to licensed. while the AE is already licensed to learn more experience for the flight in work. i guess the cost of the AE program is a lot lower to run. (sorry, please correct me if i'm wrong.)

i think the cadet is huge cost, because everyone in the class is learn from zero.
but for the AE program, student already gets all the licenses before they enter to the program. so i guess, like me, self funded for all licenses should still not that hard to get in. (i hope)

i think the most priority they want is with HKID. (i guess)

the reasons why i want to get into to CX AE program:
1) they have good salary to start
2) they provide on job training for who got all require licenses with 250hrs FT.
3) job base in hong kong, i still want to work a bit more in hk before i come back to canada.

i have read though "the truth about the profession".
i think the job market in canada should be similar to USA.

i think, my 2nd choice will be go back to Canada if i fail the flying job in hong kong. To get small flying job to start in canada, hopefully 1 day i can get into airline.
i love canada which i used to live here in vancouver. but at this time,
as i already back in HK for job, and i dying from another industrial. i want to work out myself in here again before i want to go back to vancouver.

i'm afraid the flying job in the USA, after i check though the entire web "the truth about the profession". i never know some pilots are on food stamps, very bad. i can't believe a profession life can be end up like this.

i really want to give it a try for the pilot training, and try to get into the profession. i'm sure i will regret if i didn't do it in this life. but on the other hand, i'm also worry about how i can get my pilot job and can i get into airline? i'm old, not so many yrs of life i can waste.

please tell me if i'm right:
1st choice, try CX AE in hong kong.
if fail, then go back to vancouver to find small flying job.
bbl is offline  
Old 16th Jan 2014, 22:29
  #9 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Nuclear Dust City
Posts: 131
Looks like you are pretty determined so my blessing is with you. However, the chances of u getting into the AE program straight out of your flying course is pretty slim, expect to gain a lot more flying hours than your 200 something you get out of the 1 year course, if you even get that, before you are considered for the AE course.

As for working in Canada, again, if you have saved up billions and don't need to work ever again for the rest of your life, not a bad choice. However, expect to having to start low (ramp, loader, dispatch) somewhere up into the freezing north for couple years before you even get a chance to touch any sort of flight control on a big plane, and I ain't even talking about big shinny jets. You sure you wanna freeze your behind off breaking your back at age 45? If so, by all means, go for it.
CXChildLabour is offline  
Old 17th Jan 2014, 03:28
  #10 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Location: Yellow Brick Road
Posts: 1,132
Hi. Sorry to tell you, you are wrong in many aspects. I have been in this industry for 10 years but time and time again I see newbies are fed the wrong info. I have been watching this thread with interest and I am going to tell you the brutal truth, so that you can take stock and live a real life.

Forget the AE. It isn't really happening for 250 hour wannabes, and btw that's just a minimum figure. Unfortunately you just don't fit the profile.

If you are planning to train in Canada, then you can also forget about joining another airline in HK in default, as CAD requires you to have ATPs which you can't do in Canada until 750 hours. Many have fallen into this trap.

There is little difference in cost for an airline to train you as a cadet or AE. It's all about market demand and supply.

You are not the only one with money to train. I know of lots of 250 hour CPLs who have been waiting for years for a chance to get into any airline in HK. Many of them don't even have a current job, as pilot skills are not readily transferable into other jobs.

Don't become a pilot for the money. This is now the case all over the world, not only HK. Join it only for the passion for flying. If you need the money, do something else instead.

Your best shot in the industry is to train and work in Canada as you have citizenship. Don't just awe at shiny metal (airlines), general aviation is much more fun and I dare say might make you a better pilot in a shorter time.You will have to be prepared to tour and live across the provinces to find a job. You won't find a job living at home.

Please wake up.
ReverseFlight is offline  
Old 17th Jan 2014, 13:31
  #11 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 6
The AE program is not open at this time, although you are free to submit an application for the full ab-initio cadet course. From what I gather, it won't be open for a while. You will basically be betting on them re-opening the program in 13 months (assuming you successfully complete your CPL and multi-IFR exactly when they re-open the program), betting on them accepting your age, betting on getting through the selection process that takes up to a year, and betting on getting into the program in the end. I don't know about you but that's enough uncertainty for me to not plan on taking this path.

If you really want a career change and you really want to be a pilot, do your training in Canada and find work in Canada. But expect to work your way up, whether it is a non-flying position within a small charter company or flight instructing. The only advantage you have is a Canadian citizenship. But don't expect to fly big shiny jets within the next 3-4 years.
fozzi is offline  
Old 18th Jan 2014, 01:02
  #12 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Location: Under the bridge
Posts: 71
Not to mention there is already an extremely long holding pool of applicants who were already accepted into the AE programme then never got a start date. They will be the ones to start first if the programme ever resumes.
DrakeSkyle is offline  
Old 18th Jan 2014, 16:00
  #13 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
hi Cxchildlabour
yes, i'm pretty determined into it now.
i will get at least 250hrs during the training to make sure i meet the minimum requirement for the AE program.

my 1st choice is the AE program, 2nd is come back to canada to find small flying job.

i don't have billions save up and i do need to work for my living.
but do u start the same as me when you start your training?

i think most of us started the same. only i start at old age.
and now, u have already get out of the poor life, right?
i know old age is my major disadvantage, i just want to find a solution to work out my pilot career.

start with low pay and work in freeze up area is ok for me. it is expected, and i learn from other sources, this is a must. if i can get into the AE program, i think i should be able to get away from it.

it is still better than work in a nice place such as HK but in a hopeless industrial, the entire manufactory will be end in china within a few years. we all can foresee this.
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Old 18th Jan 2014, 16:50
  #14 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
hi Reverseflight

for student after pilot training, 250hrs what they normally gets. if 250hrs are too little, how many hours do they want?
do they want pilot do some small fly work and get some more hours before apply their AE program?

can you please explain me more about the CAD and 750hrs? i'm not understand why i cannot join another airline in hk.

for the market demand, i'm not understand why the pilots demand are so bad, as there are pilots retire, there are more and more flights needed over the world, and also, china is the biggest expanding country, they need pilot to fly their planes. i can speak and write Chinese and mandarin.

i really don't know they have so many HKID holder having CPLs waiting for hk airlines job vacancy.
i really don't know there are many CPLs out there in hk.
i had double check with CX, they do prefer HKID holder for the AE program.

i know, pilot skills cannot be transfer to any other job.
but i think this is the same for most of the profession cannot easy to transfer into other job. e.g.. engineer cannot fly plane.

some of the reason i join pilot is for money. i know i can get more pays when i get more and more flight hours. i thinks most of us do want to get a decent living from they job. i do understand about the pilot pay pyramid.

i understand most likely that i won't be able find job in my home area hk/vancouver, i don't mind to move myself to anywhere in order to build hours. my wife and my daughter will be still living in hk during my pilot training (at the moment, i still want to continue my up coming pilot training plan). both my wife and daughter may or may not need to move with me during my future job base. it will be further consider again depend where i get a job.

my 1st choice still want to try to get into AE, if not, try to find small flying job in hk. if not ok, then i back vancouver to find small flying job in canada.

i do hope i can work out.

thanks again Reverseflight, i'm really not sleeping. i do understand the situation and ways of pilot path. but i just want to try to with the best target i want then to the 2nd and 3rd best choice.

i do know this profession is in awful situation. but i do have hope in asia.
i do know this profession is hard to start, while getting all the licences only need about 1yr. but i do like flying, and i do have the hope to get a decent living from this job one day.
bbl is offline  
Old 18th Jan 2014, 17:06
  #15 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
hi Fozzi
i had already summit the application for the ab-initio cadet course, they had already rejected me.
but i had update CX about i'm funding myself for the pilot training.
i will double check with them again tomorrow if they can transfer me to the AE program or not, as i had already summit my application to the cadet program.
i think their cadet program and AE program and open and close from time to time. they are not open all year around is understandable.
they had confirmed me there is no age limit by email. realistically they accept or not, i'm not sure.
i think, betting and uncertainty are in all of us during the pilot training.
when u was in the pilot training, do u know if u can find a job or not?
do u know which employer u will get in?
unless u are in airline cadet training, then u be sure all that. but u still uncertainty if you can passed too subject or not.
i'm not the lucky guy, i didn't make a right choice when i was young. i'm trying to correct it now to make myself to be success in pilot career.
my 2nd choice will be find small flying job in canada. as long as i can find job to build hour, it will be ok for me.

if possible, please share how you get your decent pilot path done for me to learn.
bbl is offline  
Old 18th Jan 2014, 17:08
  #16 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
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Posts: 42
hi Drakesskyle
i really don't know there were applicants accepted to the course but the course wasn't have a schedule to start.
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Old 18th Jan 2014, 23:57
  #17 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Hong Kong
Posts: 6
bbl,

You're right, there is a lot of uncertainty associated with this profession and industry, and it's nice to see that you're not discouraged by it at all. My suggestion is to consider all options and always plan for the worse and anticipate the worse case scenario. Best of luck to you whatever path you take!

From your other replies to the others, I think i might have some answers to your questions. In Canada, we don't really get a "frozen ATPL" like in many countries. For the purpose of converting a license, a lot of airlines in Asia (Hong Kong included) like to see a frozen ATPL (ground examinations for the ATPL completed). However, in Canada, unless you are enrolled in one of the few "integrated" programs approved by Transport Canada, you are not allowed to write the ATPL written exams unless you have half of the total hour requirement. This means you need half of the 1500 hours for the ATPL in order to write the written examinations for the ATPL (this is where the 750 hours comes from). I hope this helps.

I actually applied to Dragonair's pre-qualified cadet program a while ago and although I have more than 250 hours, they wanted all ATPL written examinations completed, which I was unable to do until I reach 750 hours total time. They said it is a Hong Kong Civil Aviation Department requirement for license conversion that I have passes in all ATPL exams, so until I have those completed I was not eligible to continue in the selection process.

So although having an HK ID gives you a slight advantage in the eyes of airlines in HK, a lot of times they're looking for something more (ATPL written exams completed, jet time, more than 250 hours, etc). From what I see, there are more and more HK people training overseas to get their licenses and trying for the CX cadet programs.


I currently teach at a flight school in Canada, let me know if you have any more questions and hopefully I'll be able to answer some of them.
fozzi is offline  
Old 19th Jan 2014, 18:34
  #18 (permalink)  
bbl
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Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
hello Fozzi
thanks so much for your reply.
i should get my training in Pro IFR in vancouver. they look like more correct in many ways.
i will back in vancouver to check out the school in end january later. where are u teaching now?

yes, i asked the flight school in canada before, they said they won't have any frozen ATPL in canada.

i have asked CX, i guess their priority is wanted HKID holders.
for all other needed they want, i don't know.

i think, there are not much hk people funding themselves to get study profession pilot on they own.
because the basic cost is half of the million hk dollar. (u don't need to worry much on this)
(only the stupids and stubborns continue want to be pilot. )
for cadet program, there is no experience needed, only AE needs all the licenses.
i'm don't know if the cadet program applicants already done all licenses on their own when they apply to the cade program.
bbl is offline  
Old 20th Jan 2014, 01:47
  #19 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Dec 2007
Location: Nuclear Dust City
Posts: 131
Bbl,

Yes of course all of us went through periods suffering when we first started, but majority of us were in our twenties with no family obligations, pretty much could afford to hit the reset buttom numerous more times if it fell through.

Having said that, we are here to give you advise cause you asked for it. We gave you our views and if you don't like what we tell you then why bother asking. I'm just trying to put you out of your misery but hey, it ain't my life at stake. Just don't say we didn't warn you if it never works out the way you dreamed of. I just hope your wife and daughter are as determined as you are in your quest, if you are planning to do this alone in Canada and then in Adelaide then you are probably not gonna see them much for the next 3-4 years, best of luck.
CXChildLabour is offline  
Old 20th Jan 2014, 06:06
  #20 (permalink)  
bbl
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: hong kong
Posts: 42
hi Cxchildlabour

yes, i understand i start in old age.
but actually, my original profession had already pressed the reset button for me since last feb. i got lay off since feb last yr. the entire industrial is dying. i cannot get back onto the boat due to my seniority level. job availablity is very little over the yr, and the pay is 20-30% less than before. i cannot get back onto the boat, even if i can get back on, within a few yrs or sooner than few yrs, i will get lay off again, then harder and harder to get back to the boat again, or the industrial will be completely ended. in the past yr, i try to search for jobs in the same industrial and also find a way out to head for new start. i finally find out from the very deep of me, in which i want to be a pilot. and to catch up the time from my twenties.

please don't say this, i never oppose everyone to give me their valuable comments from their profession. i'm new here, what i have found are from the internet, if no inner guy told me, i wouldn't know anything inside.

i'm sincerely thanks you all who help me to give their opinion here in the post, and who had send me private message to give me comments and info.

i really thankful that everyone help to give me the truth information here.
i know the truth is painful now. i cannot imagine how bad it will be end up in me.

i'm not 100% sure if want to do it now or not, i like flying. i also need a decent living. i will continue look for info and ways of get it though for the pilot career. and plan a way for what i should do if after the pilot training.

i will live with my parents in our old house during my study in vancouver. and my wife and daughter can always come to visit me during my study in canada or adelaide. or i can get back to hk during holiday.

i will go vancouver at the end of the month for cny. i will visit the flight school and further discuss with school to see.

i really don't know if i should hope for the further in pilot career or it is completely hopeless for me now.
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