New life in Doha

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ORYX
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New life in Doha

#1

Post by ORYX » Thu Sep 06, 2012 11:57 am

Right peeps,
Its been a while. Tooo long in fact.
The last time I posted SAA and woolworths were still regarded as good companies.

So I finally joined my new company in Doha on the 3rd august 2012.
Biggest problem? wiping the smile from my face again.
But in all seriousness, the only glitch I had so far was joining a middle east company again during Ramadan.
Luckily this time round I knew what to expect.

anyway, it is amazing how habit makes you do things without thinking.
logged on this morning thinking I was coming here and by mistake typed http://www.flyafrica...........
OOPS, anyway, saw the first topic there and it caught my eye . "Racist Woolworths - SA Defiant"
WOW, not gonna bore you with the details, but here was a topic being discussed for which I was banned from the site.
viewtopic.php?f=64&t=1725 the whole story is here.

Anyway, amazes me the double standards in this day and age.

But, and sorry for harping on this again, lets move on.

The first few days here was spent with introduction courses and getting to know the operation a bit.
Being my first BIG company that I work with, I was blown back and amazed at the magnitude of it all.
I can now understand why they have such a backlog of training, but a backlog that they are cleaning up very rapidly.

But to give you an idea of current fleet and of whats to come:

Current (although this is outdated already):
16 Boeing 777-300er's
9 Boeing 777-200lr's
3 Boeing 777-F
4 Airbus A340-600
27 Airbus A320
16 Airbus A330-200
13 Airbus A330-300
3 Airbus A300-600F
2 Airbus A319lr
12 Airbus A321-200

On order:

80 Airbus A350
60 Boeing 787
14 Boeing 777
80 Airbus A320 neo
6 Airbus A320
13 Airbus A380-800

So you can only imagine for yourself the nightmare of hiring crews for whats to come. Just quickly looking at the fleet and orders , they are doubling their fleet, which means that they will have to double their crew (crew was 1950 when I joined) and cabin crew was 6000.
So don't be fooled by all the comments on pprune. These guys still need lots of pilots. So my suggestion to all back in SA. NOW is the time to put your cv in. You snooze, you loose.

I will from time to time update this page here and give my ideas here and there.
For now, I am almost complete with all the ground courses (except aeroplane courses) and it would seem that I will only be scheduled for sim training round about December, January 2013.
It suites me fine though, gives me time to get my family up here and to study for whats to come.

You all have a great day now
Cheers

:noidea:



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four engine jock
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Re: New life in Doha

#2

Post by four engine jock » Thu Sep 06, 2012 12:05 pm

Good to hear good news. Best of luck!



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Moertoe Pilut
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Re: New life in Doha

#3

Post by Moertoe Pilut » Thu Sep 06, 2012 3:39 pm

Glad you're enjoying it :thumbs:
When are the wife and the kids coming over??


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Re: New life in Doha

#4

Post by Raffles » Thu Sep 06, 2012 4:59 pm

So, your company is like Iberia. They have at least one of every type of airliner ever built :bingo:


Hindsight is what you see from the tail gunner's position. :D

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Re: New life in Doha

#5

Post by Propnut » Thu Sep 06, 2012 5:05 pm

Looking forward to the next installment Oryx.


Still trying to catch the gravy train.

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Re: New life in Doha

#6

Post by Moertoe Pilut » Thu Sep 06, 2012 6:40 pm

ORYX wrote:Anyway, amazes me the double standards in this day and age. But, and sorry for harping on this again, lets move on.

That "other" site is quick to run us down, but almost everything they have done up to know, as an "improvement", seems to be copied from here.... :whistle:


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Re: New life in Doha

#7

Post by ORYX » Thu Sep 20, 2012 7:49 am

Hello Peeps
Since we last spoke, a few things have happened.
I finally received my Residence permit. As all who have flown in the middle east will know, without the RP you cant get anything done in the middle east.

So after receiving the RP, I was finally able to get the driving license (straightforward conversion from the SA license), got my passport back, managed to get my cellphone contract, managed to connect the tv again, getting connected with Internet today (inshallah) and most importantly, managed to get my booze license :)
Unlike other liberal middle east countries (UAE and Bahrain) there is only one Booze shop in Qatar, it is run by QDC (Qatar distribution company) which is part of the Qatar group of companies. So without a booze license, you cant shop.
The booze is not so much the real issue though. The issue is, inside the booze shop is the PORK shop.
So nice to have real bacon with eggs again.

Also managed to apply for the families visas, so now we just wait. As soon as the visas arrive, the family can finally join me. Its now been almost two months since I saw them last and as much as I enjoy the bachelor's lifestyle, I miss the two terrorists and the ball and chain. It is a very quiet house without them. I am sure the tune will change once they are here :)

As far as training goes, I have now gone for every foreseeable course they could throw at me at this stage, except one. Tomorrow we will be hopping over to Dubai to do our ditching training at Emirates training college. After that the roster shows XTBN and Days off. At this stage I am looking at a possible simslot in December or January 2013.
A lot of people are complaining about the slow pace at which the training is happening, but I am very thankful actually.

You need a lot of time to set up a house and get organised. All my other jobs in the middle east was rushed and it was a constant worry about the family and stuff. This time round it seems to be happening the right way round. First get settled, then you can concentrate on work.

And believe me, although it is a relaxed roster for now, it allows me time to STUDY!. there is a lot to be done before going to the sim. CBT (computer based training) OMA (operating manual Part A or "the Bible") and FCOM (flight crew operating manual) is but three things that need to go into the old grey matter. And considering the FCOM is about 6800 pages and the OMA is about 680 pages, that is a lot for this brain to get in.

So in short, yes I would love to get flying, but am very thankful for this time to get the studying behind me before we head of to the sim.

Anyway, time to go and find some swimming trunks for tomorrow's big dip

Cheers

:noidea:



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Re: New life in Doha

#8

Post by Raffles » Thu Sep 20, 2012 8:44 am

Glad you're enjoying it! Now you just need your :biker:


Hindsight is what you see from the tail gunner's position. :D

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Re: New life in Doha

#9

Post by Moertoe Pilut » Thu Sep 20, 2012 1:06 pm

ORYX,

It all sounds very good and I'm actually thinking of applying, but before I do that, a few questions for you:

Is the allowance they give you for housing enough for a house/apartment?
Does QR give you an allowance for furnishing your place like EK does?
Does QR give you something like a pension or provide you with something similar like EK does?
How do you get to and from work, do they pick you up?
How long does it take generally to get upgraded?
How does the travel work in regards to tickets? Do they give you business class for you and the family?

I like the way they how they let you settle in before concentrating on going to work, something that's also very important for the family.

Glad to hear your family is joining you up there soon, please give them my best! :thumbs:

Cheers,

Moertoe


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Re: New life in Doha

#10

Post by four engine jock » Thu Sep 20, 2012 2:29 pm

Glad you found a good place to work.
Wish you and your family all the best.
TC



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ORYX
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Re: New life in Doha

#11

Post by ORYX » Fri Sep 21, 2012 11:23 pm

Dear Moertoe
Unfortunately, at this stage, all recruiting has been stopped until the end of the year, so even if you wanted to, you would not be able to apply now.
As far as your questions go

Is the allowance they give you for housing enough for a house/apartment?
It all depends what you want and what you used to, but the simple answer is yes, and no.
I am renting a 5 bedroom villa in a compound close to the schools, for that I am paying in.
You can however get standalone villas (4 to 5 Bedroom) which will fall within the housing allowance, but you will be faced with location

Does QR give you an allowance for furnishing your place like EK does?
NO

Does QR give you something like a pension or provide you with something similar like EK does?
Not sure how emirates works, but no. You do however get a government sponsored plan that goes something like this. If you are with the company for less than three years, you get 21 days paid salary for every year worked. After three years it becomes one month for every year worked. So basically, after twelve years of work, you get paid one years salary if you leave. and that is calculated on your final pay check.

How do you get to and from work, do they pick you up?

You either drive your car or you take a taxi :) . There is however, unconfirmed rumours that once the new airport is open, they will have a similar system to Emirates.

How long does it take generally to get upgraded?

Right now, the official stance is you are eligible for command after three years, unofficially, I know of a few guys that got upgraded after one and a half years on the A320. But from what I understand, all other fleets is still three years. Beats SAA's 11 years :)
How does the travel work in regards to tickets? Do they give you business class for you and the family?

You and your family get one return ticket each year mahalla. The rest is unlimited Id90's or Id50's for you and family.
They recently introduced as well that you know get 12 tickets a year for extended family (ID 90 or ID50) but still have to confirm this, cause I really don't want the mother in law here :)

Right, now that that is out of the way, WHAT A DAY. we went ditching today at emirates in Dubai. what a system they have. To have a whole cabin system which is on jacks, just like the flight sims, makes a huge difference and makes it very realistic, we did simulated galley fires, simulated seat fires, simulated toilet fires and decompressions. Did emergency slide evacuations and did water ditching . Attached are two pics to give you an idea, but my perception towards ditching has really changed after this, been a long day though, left Doha at 10am this morning and only got back to the house at 11:35pm. But i suppose its the sign of what is to come

cheers

:noidea:
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Re: New life in Doha

#12

Post by Moertoe Pilut » Sat Sep 22, 2012 3:26 am

Thanks for the info ORYX :thumbs:

I tried yesterday to get online and fill out a "profile" with them, it only lets me go as far as giving passport details etc, I guess that explains the not hiring until the end of the year. Time to make a move, SA isn't getting any better and I'm sure as sh!t am not getting any younger and I can't take this being away from my family anymore, had enough of it, this will be my last stint in the k@kplaas.


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Re: New life in Doha

#13

Post by ORYX » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:39 am

Hello Peeps
Moertoe, I spoke to someone at HR the other day. The new recruitment page will aparantly be up and running end of the month, so I suggest you check the website towards the end of the month. It sounds like a clean slate , so you apply first, you first in line :)
He also said that it will be an easier system.
good luck

Today the family finally arrives, so busy day today, and Felix is trying to ride that balloon as well today, so gonna be watching that later hopefully as well.
Also looks like my type rating will start next month in Bahrain!
Cant wait



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Re: New life in Doha

#14

Post by Moertoe Pilut » Sun Oct 14, 2012 10:45 am

Thanks for the update on the recruitment side, I will definitely give it a shot :thumbs:


Good to hear the family has joined you, I'm sure you're pretty happy about that! Please send them my regards and tell them next time the wors will be less spicy :thumbs:


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Re: New life in Doha

#15

Post by ORYX » Tue Apr 01, 2014 9:27 am

Hello peeps
WOW! they say time flies when you are in a coma, and it seems being a pilot, you are always comatose d.

I cant believe its been that long since i posted here, but in all fairness, I have been busy :)

Last time we spoke, Woolworths was a bad company, SAA was making a loss but still begging for more (nothing changed there) , Nelson Mandela died, then came back to life, then died again, then came to life and finally got recycled ( i Think)

Juju got thrown out, then licked his wounds, now wears a red beret and does not like JZ

JZ has gone mental, Guptas took over waterkloof, E-toll started and failed and started again (still failing) and Nkandla is the best place to live :)

All that in 17 months.

Right,
getting back to Doha, so finally went to Bahrain in mid november 2012, finished my type rating on the plastic in mid December 2012, then finally started with line training in Feb 2013.
I was finally signed out on the 20th March 2013 and then started living the "dream" of an airline pilot.
Have to say, I thought Cargo flying was bad, but would do that again in a heartbeat. Flying passengers is a very interesting experience and flying for such a big airline is even more so.

The routes on the 319/320/321 are very interesting and diverse, and after the first 10 months of circumnavigating the globe, I found my favorite routes, surprise surprise, its Africa. I must say i miss the continent and really enjoy flying there.
So now I bid basically for three routes, Dar Es Salaam, Nairobi and Kigali. All old hunting grounds

Flying to India is fun, but GAtvol of HF, flying to Europe is boring and too expensive.

to give you a idea of how busy we are, a rundown of my hours since 2013

Feb=30.48 block
March=62.2
Apr=55.57
May=74.37
June=36.04
July=56.31
Aug=57.32
SEPT=59.08
Oct=70.38
Nov=66.34
Dec=33.55
Jan 14=67.45
Feb 14=41.16
Mar 14=66.13

Makes for a Total of 776.38 hours in 13 months (that excludes sim time) so not bad going.  So I reckon by July I will have 1000 hours on the Airbus.

There are many exciting developments for this year coming , The new Airport will be opening (like it has since 2009 :) ), the A380 is arriving, the A350 is arriving and A new low cost carrier is starting hopefully by November 2014.

As far as life in Doha goes, Traffic is manure! but in all fairness, so is traffic in Nairobi, Dar and basically the whole world.

Schooling (for the married guys) is a huge problem with schools now bursting at the seams. It is almost impossible to get your kid into a school, and when you do its hell of an expensive. Thinking of sending my eldest to another country for education since the company pays schooling worldwide, Just don't know where to send him. Any Ideas will be appreciated.

Housing, like in any middle east country, is also expensive. The landlords know exactly what the companies pay for housing, so they adjust it every time housing goes up, I have however struck it lucky now in a small compound and the landlord is very nice (actually dropped the price in 2013) so here is hope for the world

The ball and chain also managed to find a job since she got tired of the other job (raising kids) so extra income is always welcome. Had to import a maid from Kenya though, since the Philippines are useless.
so far working out great.

As far as career prospects goes, the company recently brought out a fast track to command program, basically I am now eligible for command two years after final line check instead of three. So I can look at starting training next year march. There is also fleet changes to contend with so thinking about that, but must say, i feel I rather do the command upgrade before i change fleets.

And congrats to RAFFLES, finally flying again!

So that is 17 months update, whats happening that side :)



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Re: New life in Doha

#16

Post by Raffles » Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:18 am

JA! My hours are a bit less than yours, but I reckon they will pick up...


Hindsight is what you see from the tail gunner's position. :D

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Re: New life in Doha

#17

Post by Moertoe Pilut » Tue Apr 08, 2014 11:53 am

Geez Oryx, try my schedule 11:22 per month :bingo: Although that will change very soon..


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Re: New life in Doha

#18

Post by Pine » Tue Apr 08, 2014 2:55 pm

Oryx, welcome back.  Must say, you have quite a bustling life over there.  :thumbs:

Only less positive point.....................you flying that fibre-glass thingy.  :whistle:

Moertoe and Raffles, if I look at those hours, you better start working........  :bingo:

:outtahere:


Don't judge each day by the harvest you reap, but by the seeds you plant.

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Re: New life in Doha

#19

Post by ORYX » Thu Apr 24, 2014 1:48 pm

Ja Pine, never had a choice , but must say, the plastic is actually nice if you dont want to fly no more :)

Moertoe, why is that changing soon?



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Re: New life in Doha

#20

Post by Raffles » Thu Apr 24, 2014 3:59 pm

When you doing your upgrade?


Hindsight is what you see from the tail gunner's position. :D

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