Working for SAA

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Working for SAA

Unread post by nadi207 » Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:45 am

I've always wanted to be a pilot for SAA since I was young. I'm currently undergoing flight training in the States, probably gain 1500 hours in the next two years. If I wanted to eventually make that step, what is some advice you could give me?

Just a little about my self, I am a SA citizen, early 20s, bachelors from a highly ranked institution.
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Wilco » Wed Sep 11, 2019 4:59 am

nadi207 wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:45 am
If I wanted to eventually make that step, what is some advice you could give me?
Network, network, network, and then network some more
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by nadi207 » Wed Sep 11, 2019 5:46 am

Wilco wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 4:59 am
nadi207 wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:45 am
If I wanted to eventually make that step, what is some advice you could give me?
Network, network, network, and then network some more
I’ve connected and messaged with a few current employees and pilots with the airline currently on LinkedIn but besides that I’m not sure what to do besides that since I’m not currently based in the country. I’ll definitely continue to look networking opportunities though. Thanks!
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by jaggedassasins » Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:32 pm

IMHO, stay in the states, you'll do much better
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Jack Welles » Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:38 pm

jaggedassasins wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:32 pm
IMHO, stay in the states, you'll do much better
OP's dream is to fly for SAA. How does staying in the USA further his ambition to fly for SAA? :?
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by jaggedassasins » Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:46 pm

Jack Welles wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:38 pm
jaggedassasins wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:32 pm
IMHO, stay in the states, you'll do much better
OP's dream is to fly for SAA. How does staying in the USA further his ambition to fly for SAA? :?
Maybe I should have elaborated further on my thought instead of coming across like a grumpy fart. I haven't had lunch today so I'll blame it on low blood sugar :mrgreen:

Maybe I'm also pessimistic, it was also my dream to fly for SAA at a point in my life, however realistically, looking at the state of the airline and our economy in general, would one realistically want to leave the USA, where I think your opportunities for a great flying career are greater, to come here and fly for a bankrupt airline.

Anyway, thats just my thoughts on the matter. Not trying to be ugly about it.
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Fransw » Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:54 pm

jaggedassasins wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:46 pm
Jack Welles wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:38 pm
jaggedassasins wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:32 pm
IMHO, stay in the states, you'll do much better
OP's dream is to fly for SAA. How does staying in the USA further his ambition to fly for SAA? :?
Maybe I should have elaborated further on my thought instead of coming across like a grumpy fart. I haven't had lunch today so I'll blame it on low blood sugar :mrgreen:

Maybe I'm also pessimistic, it was also my dream to fly for SAA at a point in my life, however realistically, looking at the state of the airline and our economy in general, would one realistically want to leave the USA, where I think your opportunities for a great flying career are greater, to come here and fly for a bankrupt airline.

Anyway, thats just my thoughts on the matter. Not trying to be ugly about it.
I agree with the assassin here. Rather stay in the US for a couple years. With a bachelor degree and 1500hrs the next step is airlines. But in SA the next step, if you are lucky, is a gig on a caravan..
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Wilco » Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:03 pm

The other posters are exactly correct.

Once you hit 1500 hrs TT, get a job with a regional in the US (assuming you have the right to work in the US) flying a CRJ or ERJ and then once your total time is 3000 plus re-evaluate your plans. The majors are hiring.

However; if you still want to work for SAA; you will now be at least a bit more competitive
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Jack Welles » Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:09 pm

Fransw wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:54 pm
jaggedassasins wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:46 pm
Jack Welles wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:38 pm
OP's dream is to fly for SAA. How does staying in the USA further his ambition to fly for SAA? :?
Maybe I should have elaborated further on my thought instead of coming across like a grumpy fart. I haven't had lunch today so I'll blame it on low blood sugar :mrgreen:
Maybe I'm also pessimistic, it was also my dream to fly for SAA at a point in my life, however realistically, looking at the state of the airline and our economy in general, would one realistically want to leave the USA, where I think your opportunities for a great flying career are greater, to come here and fly for a bankrupt airline.
Anyway, thats just my thoughts on the matter. Not trying to be ugly about it.
I agree with the assassin here. Rather stay in the US for a couple years. With a bachelor degree and 1500hrs the next step is airlines. But in SA the next step, if you are lucky, is a gig on a caravan..
Okay, so you okes are effectively making a political statement. I get it. Here's the thing. OP clearly has the right to stay in the USA. This puts him in a very strong position. He can follow his dream to fly for SAA. If it all is as politically ghastly as you okes are suggesting he can upsticks at any time and return to the USA. He's single, quite young and thus easily mobile. Bingo, he'll be okay whatever happens.

As an aside: from a flying perspective and the type of aircraft they fly etc AIUI SAA is pretty good.

I'm not an airline pilot so perhaps someone who is and flies for SAA can tell us whether the airline, from a pilot's perspective, is in a terrible state etc etc, ie broken-down, old, unsafe aircraft etc
Last edited by Jack Welles on Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:22 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Burner » Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:12 pm

jaggedassasins wrote:
Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:32 pm
IMHO, stay in the states, you'll do much better
Agreed!!! Forget SAA. It's a fantastic airline to work for sure. But with the right to work in the US, there are far FAR better companies to aim for. FedEx and UPS spring to mind!
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by snoopy » Wed Sep 11, 2019 3:33 pm

I'm yet to meet any unhappy pensioned SAA pilot...So it can't be bad to work for the airline as a pilot. AFAIK they have the best salaries and perks of any local airline. :arrow:

But I know former SAA pilots who decided to go and fly overseas - they too are very happy, and advanced their careers overseas a lot faster than they would have in SAA.
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Ugly Duckling » Wed Sep 11, 2019 4:16 pm

Looks like it could also be SAX or Mango
viewtopic.php?f=233&t=223106
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Deanw » Wed Sep 11, 2019 6:48 pm

nadi207, have you read this thread? viewtopic.php?f=1&t=222550

Many of the comments (not all) apply to your present circumstances.
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by IKTAV » Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:54 pm

Speak to almost ANY current or ex-SAA pilot. Regardless of our useless government, SAA is still one of the best flying jobs anywhere in the world. And NOT for the pay and “perks!” Nope. It’s MUCH more than that!

Here’s a thought for you: I still have contact with plenty of my friends and colleagues who’ve left SAA for greener pastures over the years. Even after all this time, I still would not change places with ANY of them!

I’ve just returned from a conversion in the USA. The stories our American instructors told us makes one realize that it’s not much better anywhere else. It’s not just SA folks. This whole world is a flippen’ mess! All you’ll do is swop one set of problems for another.
At least in SA we understand our muppet politicians - useless as they are.
I definitely don’t understand the ME crap. Nor do I understand how they do things in the Far East. At least in SA our village idiots are mildly entertaining. They’ve certainly saved me a fortune in DSTV. :lol: :lol: :lol: (Loved the Hlaudi episode on the Zondo channel today. You cant make this sh*t up. :lol: )
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Re: Working for SAA

Unread post by Richard Smit » Thu Sep 12, 2019 1:08 am

You’re on the right track.

Keep working on your ME, two-crew, turbine time, and get an SA:CAA ATPL.

SAA will be needing a good few crew soon... In my opinion.

Now...

I’ve been flying since April ‘88.
*SAAF
*Some really fun (new civvy) stuff
*SAX (April ‘94)
*SAA
^(Contracts... Fastjet, Global, Jetstar).
^Back to SAA.

There simply isn’t a better airline job on the planet than SAA.

Here’s why:
1. It’s a mature, professional, super-well trained operation.
2. Your colleagues are also South Africans... They get you. They get your hopes and dreams. They understand your realities.
3. You can bid on your roster (a rare thing outside of legacy carriers).
4. Usable rebate travel.
5. No training bond.
6. Well maintained aircraft.
7. Some of the very BEST cabin crew in the world. People that you can have a chat to, and a laugh, or just get along with.
8. You get meals when you fly.
9. Good hotels.
10. Reasonable time off between flights.
11. A good pilot’s association, that really works hard to ensure one’s conditions of service are sustainable, and competitive.
11. One of the safest, most professional operations on the planet (I’ve seen the others).

So....
Give it stick. Enjoy your flying, and watch the news.
SAA is s very long term career move. Very long term indeed.

If it’s a quick “in, upgrade, and move on” that one is after, SAA will not provide that opportunity.

If you want to be sure your colleagues have your back, and that you’re working with pilots that are exceptionally selected, trained, and cared-for by their airline, then SAA is worth aiming for.

However.... If I was starting out af the age of 18-23, I’d get into a major (legacy) airline in the USA, and work my way up the seniority list.

If I had a young family, I’d do the same.

My friends and colleagues (Pupes course) that are at Emirates, have (without exception) excelled, and are at the very top of their game on B777/A380.

Would I change places wit them? No.
But, that’s just me. EK remains an amazing opportunity.

So.... That’s my opinion. I’m sure s there are others that hold at least as much water.

I wish you an exciting, rewarding career!
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