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Etihad concerns

  Topic Started By:  EXEKEXEY    On:  Fri 29th August, 2014 at 12:05
Posts: 5
#1  Etihad concerns  Posted 29/08/2014 at 12:05
Working as Etihad Cabin Crew

I wanted to share an experience I've had as an employee of Etihad Airways in Abu Dhabi.

I worked for Emirates for over 5 years in the position of SFS. I loved the job, Dubai is a fantastic place to live and we were treated very well. Unfortunately, I had to resign due to serious illness in my family and move back home.

As experienced crew I passed an interview for Etihad and was employed around a year ago. They promised us the world and I was happy to sign the contract.

On arrival in Abu Dhabi things changed very quickly. Half of the batch were put into a hotel with no cooking or washing facilities and the other half into, what I can only describe as skanky, dirty accommodation. Security guards were very intimidating, overbearing and we used to (half) joke that we were living in Alcatraz. Not a nice place to live at all. Some accommodation is nice but you'll be very lucky if you get it. Ask to move? Forget it.. unless you know someone in head office.

Things went from bad to worse after we graduated. Transport is poor and, in my opinion a serious health and safety risk to crew. Drivers text on their phones and don't take correct safety precautions. Rosters are changed almost daily so you just can't have a life outside of work. I questioned the legality of changes and was told to just get on with it or come into head office to explain myself.

You don't get paid properly for the first three months. After that your salary is not exactly great for the hours your expected to do. Abu Dhabi is a very expensive city. Layover pay isn't paid at outstation and a lot of crew go hungry for the first three months. Or get fat living on fast food and then grounded by Grooming.

My main concern was with the ability and competence of management. Rather than listen to genuine crew concerns they legislate and try and back you into a corner. You're not allowed to have visitors and you're constantly watched and monitored by security. If you speak out regarding any genuine concerns you'll be given an Improvement Required form which means you may not get a bonus unless you keep your mouth shut.

Safety was a major issue for me. Etihad's service in the premium cabins, in particular, forces crew to choose between completing SEP checks correctly or setting up the service on ground. Crew that had only just qualified from the academy are given galley positions with no assistance from the senior crew. Most of the male seniors are very sleazy and touch the girls in the galley. You can't complain. One friend of mine that did was fired and deported.

Morale is very low at the moment. Management are forcing crew to give up their legal OFF days to assist at the airport and attend corporate management functions.

The point of my post is.. If you're considering Etihad as an employer over Emirates.. Or if you haven't been successful with Emirates and consider Etihad a close second best then don't.

A lot of the senior crew are leaving (myself included) because management haven't planned correctly for the current expansion. They are treating the staff like crap and erroding terms and conditions on a daily basis. Most people I talk to now (even new joiners) are incredibly miserable and can't wait to leave.

Even the pilots joke that senior management are appointing more Vice Presidents than any other airline they've ever know. This is a club of friends taking the Sheikh for a run for his money. Not a professional airline in the slightest. Google the work history of James Hogan CEO. He sold off Gulf Air assets to Etihad at a hugely discounted rate to secure his position as CEO. They're corrupt!

If it's your dream to fly then I understand the excitement and the possibility of a job here in Abu Dhabi. But the actual reality is anything but that.

Think very very carefully before you accept a job with Etihad Airways. They're going the same was as Qatar. If not worse.

If you want to live in a prison and be miserable good luck to you. If you want to fly in the Gulf region. Stick with Emirates and Emirates only.

There's a reason that Etihad took an injunction out against They don't want their staff or pilots to spill the beans.

Good luck and God Bless xx
Edited 04/09/2014 @ 13:10 Revision #3
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Posts: 55
#2  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 29/08/2014 at 13:19
In reply to post #1...
Wow, you were an EK SFS in 5 years, you must be really good! That's some fast career progress

Have you tried joining EK before Etihad? I'm quite surprised to hear this, as I thought EY will treat their employee similar like EK and nothing like QR. Quite an eye opener here..I hope you take care over there and are there any plans of rejoining back to EK for you?

Best wishes,
Edited 29/08/2014 @ 16:03 Revision #2
Timeline EK:
27.07 : AD in Sydney
28.07 : FI
04.08 : IC
06.08 : Missed calls & email to confirm dad's surname
11.08 : Offer Accepted status
13.08 : JFIP & GC (DOJ 10 Oct) !!
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Posts: 23
South Africa
#3  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:26
In reply to post #1...

Is it really so bad working for Etihad?

I am not familiar with this industry, and I am in the process of joining Etihad as an In Flight chef.

What are the main differences between Etihad and Qatar Airways which make them less desirable to work for than Emirates?

Are there any other cabin crew members who could put forward their advice or comments?

Kind regards,
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Posts: 5
#4  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 29/08/2014 at 15:45
In reply to post #3...
They used to be really good but things have changed a lot. Even the Flight Deck are getting concerned and jumping ship now. I've seen it happen over the last 12 months and Cabin Manager friends say the last 3 years have seen massive changes.

They're simply just expanding and recruiting too fast to care about their staff anymore.

I did try Emirates again but my age is against me. I'm in my mid 30's now and have been doing this jub for a long time. I want to get out of the UAE really. It's just not what it used to be.

European airlines don't pay so great but at least you have rights!

Etihad think it's acceptable to treat their staff like animals for some reason.

Not for me.. Sorry!

Hey Mike I'm an Onboard Leader and have a lot of experience working with the InFlight Chefs. It's an easy life compared to the kitchens but you have to sacrafice your love of food and put up with Cabin Crew telling you that whatever you cook is wrong. The guests in First Class are generally okay but one single complaint or negative comment about the food and you will be pulled into the office to explain yourself.

The Mise En Place is dreadful and getting worse as they try to save money to cover all the new aircraft they've bought. Most of the lads I know are moving onto the ground because they're expected to produce quality food from what is essentially the leftovers from Business and Economy catering. Your name is on those plates.. I wouldn't be happy.. Not when they're paying 40000dhs for a ticket. The number of complaints can be overwhelming.

There's a group on Facebook called Etihad InFlight Chefs. Join that and ask questions. Some of the lads just put up with all the crap so they can have days off but if you're serious about your cooking I'd give the place a wide berth if I were you.
Edited 29/08/2014 @ 15:52 Revision #3
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Posts: 5
#5  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 29/08/2014 at 16:35
In reply to post #4...
A few months ago they introduced a scheme "For Chef's By Chef's". The basic outline is that on your LEGAL days off you have to travel accross town, at your own expense and do service and a burger restaurant in the Fairmont Hotel.

This was the brainchild of a guy called Eugen Prongrcz. Who claims to be a fully qualified chef but only ever ran a burger bar on a cruise ship. He was a barman. Never a chef.

You don't get paid for these shifts. You'll peel potatoes, cook chips and get messed about by the younger chefs. You'll spend your day cleaning down areas and, if you're lucky, they might let you cook a steak and get involved on a section.

Why? Because airline chefs aren't qualified to run a section let alone a kitchen. Etihad think this will be good experience for the team. Despite employing you as a leader.

Zero pay and MANDATORY! If you don't go you'll be put on report.

Same with the flight attendants. Rather than give someone else a job they'd rather ask the girls and boys to 'volunteer' their time to work at the airport. They pretend that it'll be good for your career if you do.. if you don't you'll get pulled on your six monthly review. Again zero pay.. no change in rostered flying hours.

As an onboard coach I've been informed that I HAVE to put a certain number of crew on report every six months or I get put on report myself. Cabin Managers are pulling their hair out. How do you motivate a team when you're potentially denying them their bonus?

It's this style of management that has really annoyed everyone. There's some very talented and beautiful crew at Etihad but, like me, we've simply had enough and we're packing our bags and saying thanks but no thanks. We don't have a union. we have to vote with our feet.

We're employed on a contract.. We shouldn't be expected to take on another full time role and work for free.

Etihad take crew that have been fired from Emirates. I know of at least 3 guys and two girls since I joined. That should tell you everything you need to know.

If I would have known everything I do now I would never have signed that contract and agreed to come!

It makes me laugh. Etihad claim to be The Worlds Leading Airline. They don't have a patch on EK and never will until they sort their management structure out. And that's not about to happen any time soon.
Edited 29/08/2014 @ 16:43 Revision #2
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Posts: 5
#6  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 29/08/2014 at 16:45
In reply to post #2...
Please don't think I'm a disgruntled employee. I'm not. I would dearly love to stay and will miss my friends dearly. Etihad make it very difficult for anyone to share information about the company and even took an injunction out against which can be viewed here.

Etihad have done their best to keep their secrets quiet. To the point where they'll take legal action.

There's very little info on the net about working for the company. I just wanted to get the truth out so that you people are well informed. I never had that opportunity!
Edited 31/08/2014 @ 11:30 Revision #3
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Posts: 8
#7  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 08/11/2014 at 12:41
In reply to post #1...
Hi! I have sent you a PM hope you can help thank you in advance!
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Posts: 56
United Kingdom
#8  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 08/11/2014 at 16:54
In reply to post #1...
I'm quite surprised since etihad to just won top 10 employers award
OD/AD- 11/10
FI- 16/10
IC- 27/10, 30/10
OH- 16/11
2nd OH - 20/01
JFIP- 10/02
GC - 14/02
FA- 09/03
DOJ- 16/04
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Posts: 3
#9  Re: Etihad concerns  Posted 18/04/2015 at 12:26
In reply to post #8...
So....what's the consensus on EY? To work or not to work for them.
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