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EK Greed - Shocking Crew Layover Durations  
User currently offlineFlyEmirates From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 10 hours ago) and read 26042 times:

With EK announcing LAX people seem to be quite excited, except for the crew.

Are you guys worried at all that the crew might be dozing off for take off/landing or does the convenience/price of the non-stop service offset these concerns?

DXB - LAX 15 hrs. 55 mins

26 Hour layover (essentially 22 hours rest in hotel room)

LAX - DXB 16 hrs. 35 mins

DXB - IAH - some 25 mins shorter benefits from a reduced layover of usually between 23: 54hrs - 25: 18hrs (looking at this months pattern so far

Some comments from pilots regarding LAX

"Oh whoopee another ball-breaker to put on the avoid list. I somehow can't muster the same enthusiasm that the corporate PR machine is oozing'

"Think of all the money they'll save in the six months - or two years - it will take to "study" the fatigue profiles of the crews on the flight. Then another two years while they test out the company-approved sleep patterns for crews."

"Passengers in all classes will enjoy the award-winning service from Emirates' international cabin crew...
That's if the crew can stay awake long enough to get the first service done.'

'Company approved rest patterns.Doesnt that involve waking up and the mention of taking CAFFEINE just before you start operating??Quite tempted to post those recommended EK rest patterns to show you im not joking when they mention CAFFEINE as part of the EK company approved ULR pattern just before operating to keep your alert levels up!!

Oh what about the prescribed approved usage of sleeping pills mandated by the company because CC could not get the proper rest they required to operate safely.Need i go on!!'

'Simple answer is bid to avoid, I have not done a single ULR flight and won't because of the totally inadequate rest facilities on the aircraft and the inadequate rest at the other end' (referring to the cockpit crew rest which at EKs request to have more 'space' for first class has been relocated to rear ceiling to share with the cabin crew - shows that a happier first class passenger with a larger more spacious cabin is more important than a rested pilot)

EKs unmeasurable greed has lead to a lot of people to leave even before the bonus has been announced reportedly some 350 odd first class crew left in January leaving quite a few flights which should have 3 first class crew leaving with 1 or even none in a few cases i heard. Sorry if anyone experienced any decline in service levels.

Some reasons why layovers are so short..

'I honestly believe EK management no longer give a toss about awards anymore. You could see the change about three or four years ago, when profit became almost an obsession with this company.'

They have structured each and every department in such a way that individual managers are rewarded for cost cutting within their own cost centre. This, without (from what I've seen) any concern for the overall effect within the company. What does some mid-level manager care about Skytrax when he receives a bonus for trimming the number of bagels on board a flight?

The message is very clear from the very top; profit first, then some way down the track, customer service. Having said that, they're quick to blame cabin crew for any issues on the flights. I have seldom heard of IFS supporting its crews in conflicts with some of our pains-in-the-arse pax.

Ek is now no longer any different to most Middle East companies. Spend money on fancy technology (vibrating seats, best entertainment system in the world), but don't spend anything on the human resource, where it really matters. IFE's and vibrating seats are a valuable investment, crew are just a necessary and annoying expense.

'The people running the catering are getting too clever by half. On a recent JFK, we had 8 first class pax - and two bagels with lox. Sounds petty, I know, but if an item, (in this case, a Noo Yawk speciality) appears on the menu, it's downright embarrassing for the flight attendant to have to tell a first class passenger one hour into the flight that they're out of an item that features prominetly on the first class menu.

I think we have to face the sad fact that EK is now a bucket shop operation living on a fast fading reputation - that is fast disappearing.

Someone has to get the message across to someone at the top who will listen that if you want to run a ULH operation, even without a pretence of delivering a premier product, you simply have to spend some money on things that are REQUIRED for such an operation. These include adequate crew rest, if not for the pilots, (who most people at the top seems to believe are little more than a barely necessary evil), then for the cabin crew, who are the face of the airline.

It's simply not possible to deliver a premium product to your customers on a ULH flight when your body clock is totally out of whack and you've had so little rest since completing the outbound 15 hour plus sector that you're almost cross-eyed with exhaustion.

Let's not even go near how the pilots on such flight might handle the situation should they be confronted with a major emergency. Risk management? Someone's certainly squeezing that down to the last drop.

What do others working for SQ, CX etc think of the layovers with regards to safety?

48 replies: All unread, showing first 25:
 
User currently offlineAa757first From United States of America, joined Aug 2003, 3350 posts, RR: 7
Reply 1, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 26023 times:



Quoting FlyEmirates (Thread starter):
DXB - LAX 15 hrs. 55 mins

26 Hour layover (essentially 22 hours rest in hotel room)

LAX - DXB 16 hrs. 35 mins

Out of curiosity, what is the average layover time for a flight like this? And what do EK crew consider ideal?


User currently offlineCRJ900 From Norway, joined Jun 2004, 2190 posts, RR: 1
Reply 2, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 26015 times:
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Does EK fly to the US with 2 sets of crews, like SQ does?


Come, fly the prevailing winds with me
User currently offlineFlyEmirates From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 3, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 25926 times:

average layover will be around 26 hours, this includes waiting in immigration getting to hotel etc

32-48 hrs same as CX on their US flights would be more acceptable, EK are too greedy to pay the allowances to crew to facilatate this, the 25 hour layover in IAH is a bargain for EK as crew each get only 84USD allowance.

EK in an initial press release said that the IAH service would have 2 sets of crews, this faded away and none of the flights have 2 sets of crews - IAH, JFK etc. LAX is unlikely to when it starts.


User currently offlineMaverickM11 From United States of America, joined Apr 2000, 17494 posts, RR: 45
Reply 4, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 25888 times:

I think SQ is a lot more generous on their 345 routes. I don't remember the specifics but I think they get at least 48 hours in NYC/LAX and don't do more than one ULH trip a month? I could be making that up.


E pur si muove -Galileo
User currently offlineFlyEmirates From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 25877 times:

Some crew can be rostered 3 JFK/IAH/GRU a month

User currently offlineExusair From United States of America, joined Sep 2000, 684 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 9 hours ago) and read 25779 times:

As a Flight Attendant for Delta, I have flown DXB from ATL as well as NRT and TLV.

We have had a 24 hr layover for years in NRT, and this is a 14 hr flight from ATL.

For DXB it has been anywhere from 24hrs to 72hrs of layover. All night flight in both directions.

TLV has been either 26hrs or 50+ hrs of layover.

Our crew rest facility has berths, not bunks and if you are fortunate enough to fall asleep, crew rest is on average 3/12 for NRT, 4 hrs on TLV and 5 - 5 1/2 on DXB.

We do these trips with a crew of 11 in the cabin and 4 in the cockpit.

From personal experience, I prefer the 24 hour layovers. I seem to be able to recover from these trips a little bit easier than from doing a 10 hr westbound trip from Europe where our crew rest is absolutely abhorent, a few coach seats blocked off for our use. I find that if I spend too much time in a different time zone, the ability to readjust when I return home makes is a little bit harder.

Although DXB - LAX is westbound, incurs a time change of -11 hours, 24 hours may seem brutal, but in comparison to our 14 hr NRT and a +14 hr time change, is not going to kill you, provided you do the trip no more than 3 - 3 1/2 times in a 30 day period.


User currently offlineBigvince76 From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2006, 70 posts, RR: 0
Reply 7, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 7 hours ago) and read 25366 times:



Quoting FlyEmirates (Thread starter):
when profit became almost an obsession with this company

I don't wish to seem rude, and I do have some sympathy with the crews, but what exactly is a company supposed to be obsessed with. I think if it is safe, and people are willing to do it then it will happen. The glory days of 72+ hour layovers are long gone.


User currently offlineThomasCook From United Kingdom, joined Aug 2004, 796 posts, RR: 8
Reply 8, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 25148 times:



Quoting Aa757first (Reply 1):
Out of curiosity, what is the average layover time for a flight like this? And what do EK crew consider ideal?

On our LHR-HKG sectors with flight times between 10.5 and 13 hours, we have a stopover (in an amazing hotel) of just under 48 hours and I love every minute of it!

Regards
ThomasCook



A380 Crew
User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 25357 posts, RR: 49
Reply 9, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 6 hours ago) and read 25104 times:

I dont see how a 24hr layover is cruel or greedy as you wish to imply.

I do know several international operators that do schedule as little as 12-16hrs block to block rest after longhaul flying.

Additionally the LAX flight will undoubtedly operate with some form of heavy or double crewing allowing for crews to gain some rest enroute.

EK simply is trying to remain efficient and manage cost. Why double hotel cost, or schedule many multiples of required legal rest? The airlines business is for profit enterprise and not meant to be vacation paradises for the employees.

[Edited 2008-03-13 18:23:55]


From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineFLYACYYZ From Canada, joined Jan 2004, 1914 posts, RR: 11
Reply 10, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 24897 times:

It has become common practice (paticularly amongst North American carriers) where a flight operates on a single daily basis to have the crew layover for 1 day or roughly 24 hours, and return on the next days flight. Running around and shopping for crappy watches, pashminas, and buying useless items at the 100YEN store in lieu of crew rest is optional.


Above and Beyond
User currently offlineAznMadSci From United States of America, joined Dec 2007, 3667 posts, RR: 5
Reply 11, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 5 hours ago) and read 24799 times:

There is a general thread regarding FA duty time from different airline perspectives: FAs on Long Haul Flights (by Rouge Mar 4 2008 in Civil Aviation)

I was a bit underwhelmed with recent service on EK despite flying HKG-BKK-HKG in J. How does EK schedule rests for trips like DXB-BKK-HKG or DXB-BKK-SYD or even DXB-SYD-AKL?



The journey of life is not based on the accomplishments, but the experience.
User currently offlineVHXLR8 From Australia, joined Feb 2005, 500 posts, RR: 3
Reply 12, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 24563 times:



Quoting Aa757first (Reply 1):
Out of curiosity, what is the average layover time for a flight like this? And what do EK crew consider ideal?

At QF, when we do MEL/LAX (roughly a similar flying time, albeit slighty less), we get a slip of 39 hours in LAX. Occasionally you may get more; roughly 48 hours if you are continuing on the LAX/JFK/LAX pattern. There are the odd trips were you may be lucky enough to get more time there, but they're few and far between, and generally VERY senior!


User currently offlineKevin From Canada, joined Dec 2000, 1144 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 24486 times:



Quoting FlyEmirates (Thread starter):
I think we have to face the sad fact that EK is now a bucket shop operation living on a fast fading reputation - that is fast disappearing.

I will have to agree with this statement. For years I waited impatiently for the day when I will have a chance to fly the "world's best airline" . That day came last November. BKK-DXB-DME , DME-DXB-BKK are the sectors flown. I was dissapointed to say the least. I felt like I am visiting a Wal Mart or I am sailing on a mega large cruise ship. Crew .seemed very robotized. Their every move and action meant " Geez, when will this be over, can't take it anymore". I had to call the steward 3 times before I could get my ear plugs. And no I did not press that button every 5 minutes. 15 minute gaps between calls. Absolutely nothing remiscent of personal service, just mass production. Same goes to Singapore Airlines, that I flew during the same trip. Not impressed.

The only airline that provided excellent service and had no "NO" in their vocabulary, was Cathay Pacific.

Just my personal opinion.


User currently offlineTG992 From New Zealand, joined Jan 2001, 2910 posts, RR: 10
Reply 14, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 24483 times:

At Air NZ, 72% of duties NZ to the Americas (which range from 11h 30m to 14h) must have 2 nights layover at destination. Thus the minimum rest varies from 32 hours to 56 hours.

The flip side is the ghastly new pattern they've just introduced for certain AKL-HKG-AKL duties, where you pax up, arrive at 0615, and operate back at 1900 that evening (!) It's absolutely brutal, mainly due to the large time difference and the fact we're only entitled to a business class seat if it's unsold (so in other words, never, given our current load factors).



-
User currently offlineMax Q From United States of America, joined May 2001, 4515 posts, RR: 18
Reply 15, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 3 hours ago) and read 24439 times:

You have a good point, but Continental has the same length layovers on many of our ULH flights.

Fatigue is always an issue, however, many of our pilots (myself included) will often prefer a shorter layover to allow more days off at home.



The best contribution to safety is a competent Pilot.
User currently offlineViscount724 From Switzerland, joined Oct 2006, 25309 posts, RR: 22
Reply 16, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 24006 times:

Article in a Malta newspaper on a week in the life of an EK flight attendant, relevant to an EK cabin crew recruitment campaign in Malta.
http://www.independent.com.mt/news.asp?newsitemid=66132

Also came across the following blog by an EK flight attendant (from Australia). She covers all her travels and often includes comments about problems and issues that affect flights on different routes etc.
http://tampaxtowers.blogspot.com/


User currently offlineAyubogg From UK - Scotland, joined Mar 2007, 218 posts, RR: 0
Reply 17, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 23938 times:

The thread-starter's user name suggests he is a fan of EK but his post here would say otherwise... I'm not saying a fan can't bring up criticism, it's just an observation.  cheerful 

Back to the subject in hand:

I've always wondered how the life of flight attendants for carriers with ULR's works. I feel that after months of working for EK or VS or CX that have mostly routes that involve changing multiple time zones and flying at uncomfortable hours, the crew would stop caring if the sun is up or the moon is out, if tired, they sleep. I can't imagine arriving from a 14 hour flight and having to cross customs and immigration, getting on a shuttle, crossing traffic, and arriving at hotel only to do the same the next day. faint 

My hat's off to all you awesome cabin crews worldwide!  praise 

Peace in the Middle East!

-Ayubogg



Alba gu bràth
User currently offlineANstar From United Kingdom, joined Nov 2003, 5240 posts, RR: 6
Reply 18, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day 1 hour ago) and read 23793 times:



Quoting FlyEmirates (Thread starter):
Some comments from pilots regarding LAX

Is the 24 hour layover also applicable to the flight crew or is it just the cabin crew?

I know with some airlines they have different Layover patterns


User currently offlineCarfield From United States of America, joined Dec 2003, 1920 posts, RR: 9
Reply 19, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 1 day ago) and read 23449 times:

I believe AC flight crew operating the ULH YYZ-HKG also has a 24 hours layover... they arrived on AC 15 at 2pm, and then will depart on AC 16 at 4pm the next day. Very short layover...

(That explains why if the YYZHKG flight arrived late the day before, even the YYZHKG arrived on time the next day, the flight will delay till 24 hours for crew rest... For for those flying AC HKG-YYZ flight, remember to check the arrival time of the flight the day before... if that flight was extremely late, your flight to YYZ will definitely be late.)

I believe that most airlines will give the F/As more day off at home to compensate the rest hours (also to cut crew allowance and so forth), but for those who have a family at home, it may not be too bad.

Anyway, I believe it is within the regulations.

CX F/As, despite having longer layover, on the ULH routes to YYZ and JFK, they will not have a second set of crew to help out. And now on those long haul flights from LAX, sometimes they need to layover at KIX or ICN or TPE for refueling, now the cabin crews will stay on that flight to HKG, instead of crew change at TPE or KIX or ICN, but I believe that that the cockpit crew might be a different story, but on those ULH flights, they will have extra set of cockpit crew anyway.

Pilots also tend to have more rest time than F/As. Also stricter laws for obvious reasons...

Carfield


User currently offlineAirtrainer From Belgium, joined Aug 2003, 1558 posts, RR: 12
Reply 20, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 22656 times:



Quoting Bigvince76 (Reply 7):
what exactly is a company supposed to be obsessed with. I think if it is safe, and people are willing to do it then it will happen

That's just the problem, mate... People are not willing to do it, they just don't have a lot of choices. Money, money, MONEY !!! When (and where) will it stop ?



Life is short : eat dessert first !
User currently offlineYyzcabincrew From United Arab Emirates, joined Apr 2002, 101 posts, RR: 0
Reply 21, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 23 hours ago) and read 22641 times:

FLYEMIRATES, it amazing that you would take the time to post this....just hope that you also had the time to say the exact same thing before the Mar 10 deadline. But chances are you didnt even bother to complete the survey.

I will tell you what I tell every misserable cc that i come across when they start their witch fest; Is EK forcing you to work for them? are they holding you hostage? if y ou are not happy do the company and yourself a favour...Pack up and leave!
It's attitude like yours that perhaps we no longer get the awards we use to get....if you think we have it bad at EK then you might want to try other airlines, try operating YYZ BHX then get off the flight clear customs and Immigration and go back to the derture gate and deadhead back from BHX to YYZ all on the same day, or YYZ AMS then run a marathon to the KLM ticket counter to catch a positioning flight to LIS where you arrived at 1400 local ( if on time) and depart the next morning at 0900....I have a lot more examples if you want to know them msg me trust me some will make you re think your views on EK.

Ciao


User currently offlineB747-4U3 From United Kingdom, joined Jan 2002, 990 posts, RR: 0
Reply 22, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 22 hours ago) and read 22092 times:



Quoting Kevin (Reply 13):
The only airline that provided excellent service and had no "NO" in their vocabulary, was Cathay Pacific.

Just my personal opinion.

Couldn't agree more! I fly regularly with CX and no other airline has been as consistently as brilliant as Cathay. They really do wipe the socks off everyone else.

Quoting Yyzcabincrew (Reply 21):
It's attitude like yours that perhaps we no longer get the awards we use to get

NO, it's attitude's like EK's management that cause you not to get the awards you used to. If the working conditions are good, the crew are happy and that rubs off onto the passengers so that they too are happy. If the working conditions are bad then the crew won't be happy and neither will the passengers.

For example, I won't fly with QR again, mostly because the staff were incompetent and rude, and partly because I saw a QR crew waiting for their transport to the hotel in HKG and they all looked miserable and weren't talking to each other. On the other hand BA and Virgin crews are always chatting, joking and asking about the best places to eat and drink....and they are the sort of crew I want serving me, happy crew.


User currently offlineDispatchguy From United States of America, joined Jan 2006, 1249 posts, RR: 2
Reply 23, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 21846 times:

When I worked at UAL as a pilot scheduler, our UAL895 ORD-HKG crews had a 50-some odd hour layover at HKG (also a 15-16 hour flight).

The 24 hour layover is a tad sad;



Nobody screws you better than an airline job!
User currently offlineAIR MALTA From Malta, joined Sep 2001, 2501 posts, RR: 1
Reply 24, posted (6 years 6 months 1 week 21 hours ago) and read 21599 times:



Quoting B747-4U3 (Reply 22):
For example, I won't fly with QR again, mostly because the staff were incompetent and rude, and partly because I saw a QR crew waiting for their transport to the hotel in HKG and they all looked miserable and weren't talking to each other. On the other hand BA and Virgin crews are always chatting, joking and asking about the best places to eat and drink....and they are the sort of crew I want serving me, happy crew.

I have flown QR last November (VIE-DOH-KWI) and it was one of my worst flights ever. It was a night flight from Vienna to Doha in an A320. The crew consisted of a Slovak and Indian girl and a Moroccan and Egyptian guy (in Economy). They were ally oung and they seemed a bit lost. The Slovak girl had problems understanding English and she was abit rude with the passengers telling them to sit down as they wanted to strech their legs on this uncomfy A320s. The service was a bit robotic. The fligh departed Vienna at 22:50 I think. We had a dinner service which lasted 2,5 hours, plus 30 minutes for the Tax free shopping and then ONLY 45 minutes were they dimmed the lights and again a long breakfast service before landing in Doha. Everyone wanted to sleep but they over doing things to prove they are the 5 stars airlines. I did not enjoy my experience with QR! Flying back, I used BA and it was whole different story. The cabin crew were professional, yet friendly and funny. It was again a great experience!

I have talked to a QR cabin crew and he told me he could get fired for drinking an extra can of coke while on duty. He might have been over reacting but I sensed that things were not as great as we would have imagined. And his dream was to move to European airline (KLM).

I have a problem with all those booming Middle Eastern Airlines. They probably have the best IFE and the newest aircraft but I am not sure they treating well their staff!



Next flights : BRU-ZRH-CAI (LX)/ BRU-FCO-TLV (AZ)
25 Tonyflyboi : Hi Guys I work For BA and all west coast service LAX and SFO we always get 2 local night and that the case on all our services to BKK/SIN HKG NRT and
26 AIR MALTA : Well I don't think that will ever happen... Unfortunately!
27 Ronerone : That is true, however as discussed above, finding a medium between the company's needs and keeping the employees happy is quite important. There are
28 BSBIsland : Simple as that IMHO.
29 DLPMMM : I don't understand what the big deal is. I fly a more difficult schedule as a passenger, with the ground time taken up with meetings. Heck, I have a f
30 Bardoman : I agree with you. In many private-sector jobs, people are pushed to their limits most of the time. Of course you need the crew to be able to fly safe
31 Rbgso : I really don't see what is wrong here. You work 18 hours, sure, but not all those 18 hours are tough. Then you get 24 hours off at a hotel. What's the
32 Post contains images Schipholjfk : This is kind of dumb to say. We are in one way or another a hostage to our jobs - after all we have to feed our families, provide housing, educate ou
33 Post contains images Pacifique75 : Exactly!!!
34 Post contains images Lightsaber : The times seem safe. Emirates is growing and thus they have to provide a work environment that continues to attract pilots and flight attendants. But
35 JFKPurser : At AA, JFK-NRT is 14.5 hours with a 24 hour layover. It's really fine with every one of us FAs. It means more time off at home and the trip is one of
36 EmiratesUK : Fly Emirates.... Sorry - but if you don't like working for them anymore get a new job.... I don't work for EK, instead I'm one of your frequent flying
37 AndrewUber : LOL that pretty much hits the nail right on the head! I lived in Dubai for two years and that is the most accurate description I've seen yet! I think
38 LAXintl : It seems to me the OP'er and maybe some of his colleagues have forgotten that work is meant to be exactly that -- Work. Not some resort like living wh
39 ORDagent : It really is easy to RANT online as you are anonymous as this is not done face to face. As JFKPurser said most airlines are down to 24 hour layovers e
40 JFKPurser : You know, EmiatesUK, this logic to anyone (such as myself, for example) who has invested years in a career and is trying to vocalize their frustratio
41 AC888YOW : I don't work in the industry so I can't really say for certain, but I must admit that a day (ok, 22 hours) of recovery doesn't seem all that bad to me
42 COEI2007 : haha! Then you dont want to even know what conditions are like in EI! Its not paradise but we do LAX and SFO, 10/11 hour flights ex DUB, and we would
43 Dispatchguy : However, when you are onboard, it is your choice to sleep, read, or whatever u do to pass the time. The reason that aircrews have max duty limits is
44 Ohsopc : THAI's crew get 2 nights rest (36+ hours) on their BKK-JFK/ BKK-LAX routes. They also get a period of 1 and 2 day before and after grace periods as we
45 DLPMMM : True, but they can sleep, read, or whatever they do to pass the time on the ground. I will be in meetings negotiating. They also get a several hour r
46 Post contains links Dispatchguy : In which they cannot truly rest, in which shuteye is strictly verboten. I think the max duty when combined with the painfully short layover is a prob
47 DLPMMM : [quote=Dispatchguy,reply=46]In which they cannot truly rest, in which shuteye is strictly verboten. I think the max duty when combined with the painfu
48 Zeke : Cabin crew at CX normally get an extra days layover than the pilots. Pilots normally operate the same flight out as they brought in the previous day,
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