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777222LR
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Posts: 369
Joined: Fri Feb 17, 2012 2:19 am

United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 12:54 pm

Hey All,

I just flew SFO-HKG-SFO on United in February. Great flights both way, and the international WiFi and stream-to-device on demand movies were great. I understand now how not having PTV's in coach can work. On both of these flights, I noticed that 100% of the flight crew were of Asian descent. Are these flight attendants based in SFO or HKG? I read somewhere that United has a flight crew base in Hong Kong. Can anyone confirm?

Thanks.
 
roseflyer
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RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:18 pm

HKG is a United Flight Attendant base. They have Americans as well as locals working out of HKG. These flight attendants are similar to LHR and FRA and do work international flights to the United States. They are covered under the same union rules and work the same as their US counterparts. The only exception is that since international trips and domestic trips must be segregated, they can't fly domestic in the US.

The HKG crews are different from the ones that used to be in cities like BKK and SIN and could only fly within Asia. The HKG flight attendants are just like the US based ones. Personally I love reading people talking about how the US based crews are terrible and that only the Asian/European airlines have decent crews when United for decades has been staffing a significant percent of their long haul flying with foreign based crews. It's great for HKG and FRA since there is no need for translator FA's since most speak the local languages.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
Cipango
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RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:50 pm

I have flown many times from HKG on UA (mainly to SIN) and the crews ex-HKG have consistently been excellent. Most of them have flown with UA for decades and they lack the "sass" many possess on the domestic sectors in the US. Of course, like every company, there will be outliers, but my experience has always been great and I have witnessed them interact with passengers in a courteous, friendly manner on every flight.

Do they mix the HKG and SIN crews on the SIN-HKG-SIN routings?
Let's fly! Unless it's on a CRJ 200, then I'll stay down here.
 
roseflyer
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Joined: Fri Feb 13, 2004 9:34 am

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 1:55 pm

Quoting Cipango (Reply 2):

Do they mix the HKG and SIN crews on the SIN-HKG-SIN routings?

I thought NRT, HKG, LHR, FRA and CDG before it closed were the only AFA foreign domiciles for United.
If you have never designed an airplane part before, let the real designers do the work!
 
Cipango
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Joined: Wed Jul 22, 2009 3:55 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 2:00 pm

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 3):
I thought NRT, HKG, LHR, FRA and CDG before it closed were the only AFA foreign domiciles for United.

On my most recent UA flight from HKG-SIN the FA said she was based in SIN?

I could easily confuse this with living in Singapore and commuting to HKG.
Let's fly! Unless it's on a CRJ 200, then I'll stay down here.
 
quiet1
Posts: 323
Joined: Fri Apr 02, 2010 7:39 am

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 9:50 pm

The BKK and SIN F/A domiciles closed several years ago.
 
barney captain
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Joined: Tue Nov 06, 2001 5:47 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Mon Apr 04, 2016 9:56 pm

Does anyone have list of the current UA FA domiciles?
Southeast Of Disorder
 
FlyHossD
Posts: 2066
Joined: Mon Nov 02, 2009 3:45 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 12:10 am

Quoting 777222LR (Thread starter):
On both of these flights, I noticed that 100% of the flight crew were of Asian descent.

How did you know the pilots were "of Asian descent," too? In my experiences as a passenger on long haul flights, I generally didn't see all the pilots (usually just the one doing the external preflight inspection).
My statements do not represent my former employer or my current employer and are my opinions only.
 
N1120A
Posts: 26562
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2003 5:40 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 12:17 am

Quoting 777222LR (Thread starter):
On both of these flights, I noticed that 100% of the flight crew were of Asian descent. Are these flight attendants based in SFO or HKG? I read somewhere that United has a flight crew base in Hong Kong. Can anyone confirm?

The SFO-HKG and ORD-HKG flights are almost exclusively staffed by HKG-based crews.

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 1):
They have Americans as well as locals working out of HKG.

They also have some Brit ex-pats.
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
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LAXintl
Posts: 24501
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 12:12 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 1:04 am

Quoting barney captain (Reply 6):
Does anyone have list of the current UA FA domiciles?
sCO
CLE
DEN
EWR
IAD
IAH
LAX
ORD
SFO

sCMI
GUM

sUA
BOS
DCA
DEN
FRA
EWR (opens May)
FRA
HKG
HNL
IAH
JFK (closes May)
LAS
LAX
LHR
NRT
ORD
SFO
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
stratacruiser
Posts: 236
Joined: Thu Dec 08, 2011 7:07 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 9:12 am

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 9):
Quoting barney captain (Reply 6):Does anyone have list of the current UA FA domiciles? sCO
CLE
DEN
EWR
IAD
IAH
LAX
ORD
SFO

sCMI
GUM

sUA
BOS
DCA
DEN
FRA
EWR (opens May)
FRA
HKG
HNL
IAH
JFK (closes May)
LAS
LAX
LHR
NRT
ORD
SFO

Doesn't seem to make sense that the only IAD base is sCO, while sUA has one at DCA. Maybe it's the other way around, or can FAs work out of either airport?
 
VC10er
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RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 9:51 am

On all my sUnited 747 flights to and from the USA, which I haven't done in a few years, the female FA's who were Asian, wore their uniform HATS   The hate matched the old sUS uniforms, which I thought were horrible, but the hat itself was very cute and had a bit of style.

What was sad was that they were mixed with USA based FA's who didn't wear the hat. So, I asked about them while in flight. My (originally pleasant) middle aged FA said "I wouldn't be caught dead in that hat, but the young Asian girls love them. Why I don't know, I wouldn't go that far for this airline's management) I said to her, "you should wear it, I would if I was a female FA, it's a very classy looking hat, it makes boarding United so much nicer and classier and United needs that...especially in this market". She bristled and went far further bashing United (yes, bashed UA to a Global Services pax in Global First) and the hat symbolized doing something supportive for her employer who she clearly hated.

I do not begrudge her her dissatisfaction with her employer, but I do think that she keep her anger to herself and her colleagues, but she should treat her passengers to the best of her ability as its a reflection on her even more than UA.
Hat or no hat.

I realize that many here would think her vocal negative attitude toward her job is indicative of United, but out of thousands of UA FA's, I found her to be an exception. I rarely ever get a surly or negative FA on United. Even in economy.

Question: if you're a United FA, an American citizen and based in the USA, can you put in for a transfer to one of these other markets? And would UA give an FA a relo package to HK for instance?
To Most the Sky is The Limit, For me, the Sky is Home.
 
smi0006
Posts: 2545
Joined: Wed Jan 16, 2008 7:45 am

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 10:29 am

Quoting roseflyer (Reply 1):
HKG is a United Flight Attendant base. They have Americans as well as locals working out of HKG. These flight attenda

Do they base in HKG for better flying? As in they commute from the states or all local hires? Are flights ever 100% Hong Kong based or mixed? How many crew in the base?

Quoting VC10er (Reply 11):
I haven't done in a few years, the female FA's who were Asian, wore their uniform HATS   The hate matched the old sUS uniforms, which I thought were horrible, but the hat itself was very cute and h

Did not know they had recently had uniform hats.. Did the crew have to buy them, or were they part of their uniform allocation?

Shouldn't be wearing mixed uniform pieces that's a it ordinary, old or new- otherwise no uniformity. But does show pride and class a hat! Does AA have a hat? Do any DL crew wear theirs?
 
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LAXintl
Posts: 24501
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 12:12 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:57 am

Quoting stratacruiser (Reply 10):
Doesn't seem to make sense that the only IAD base is sCO, while sUA has one at DCA. Maybe it's the other way around, or can FAs work out of either airport?

No its correct. sUA DC base has been referred to as DCA even as it covers the IAD hub primarily.

NYC was similar - JFK base that covers the other airports. Even without any flying at JFK, the JFK base still remains with admin offices and staff until May when they transfer to EWR.

Quoting VC10er (Reply 11):
Question: if you're a United FA, an American citizen and based in the USA, can you put in for a transfer to one of these other markets?

Yes you can transfer if your seniority can hold it.

Quoting smi0006 (Reply 12):
Do they base in HKG for better flying? As in they commute from the states or all local hires? Are flights ever 100% Hong Kong based or mixed? How many crew in the base?

I've met HKG based Americans. Some elect to live there, others commute in. Same with other foreign bases that have U.S. citizens also.

As of January HKG base population was 317. Other foreign base populations are FRA:366, LHR:473, NRT:382.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
flyboy80
Posts: 2069
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RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Tue Apr 05, 2016 2:09 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 13):
I've met HKG based Americans. Some elect to live there, others commute in. Same with other foreign bases that have U.S. citizens also.

As of January HKG base population was 317. Other foreign base populations are FRA:366, LHR:473, NRT:382.

Wow thats a large portion of desirable international flying staffed by foreign staffed crews.


Might someone know In terms of seat miles flown on long haul overwater trans-Atlanta/ Pacific, how much larger is UA than DL and AA?
 
N1120A
Posts: 26562
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2003 5:40 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 am

Quoting stratacruiser (Reply 10):
Doesn't seem to make sense that the only IAD base is sCO, while sUA has one at DCA. Maybe it's the other way around, or can FAs work out of either airport?

The sUA DCA base covers all 3 WAS airports. The sUA JFK base covers(ed) all 3 NYC airports.

Quoting flyboy80 (Reply 14):
Might someone know In terms of seat miles flown on long haul overwater trans-Atlanta/ Pacific, how much larger is UA than DL and AA?

I'm thinking DL dwarfs everyone on Trans-Atlanta  
Mangeons les French fries, mais surtout pratiquons avec fierte le French kiss
 
United1
Posts: 4153
Joined: Wed Oct 08, 2003 9:21 am

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:17 am

Quoting flyboy80 (Reply 14):
Might someone know In terms of seat miles flown on long haul overwater trans-Atlanta/ Pacific, how much larger is UA than DL and AA?

Year end 2015...DL is a blit larger than UA is across the Atlantic however across the Pacific UA is roughly equal to DL and AA combined in size. I didn't include Latin America but in short AA dwarfs UA and DL....

RPM (000)
Atlantic
DL 40,451,502
UA 37,492,500
AA 29,218,490

Pacific
UA 33,299,439
DL 23,884,050
AA 10,457,303


ASM (000)
Atlantic
DL 49,117,993
UA 47,188,858
AA 37,610,665

Pacific
UA 40,841,434
DL 27,802,644
AA 12,454,404
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jetblastdubai
Posts: 1946
Joined: Sun Aug 18, 2013 10:23 am

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:38 pm

Quoting flyboy80 (Reply 14):
Wow thats a large portion of desirable international flying staffed by foreign staffed crews.

Not sure about all the foreign domiciles but US-resident FAs are able to transfer to the LHR base. My ex-roomie transferred there in the 90s. I'm not sure if she is allowed to fly a US domestic trip or not.
 
a380787
Posts: 4573
Joined: Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:38 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:46 pm

Quoting United1 (Reply 16):

Quite surprising that the airline with the most number of hubs in GMT-5 has by far the least amount of Atlantic ASM/RPM.

On another hand, UA's Pacific figures are possibly inflated by the Micronesia network out of GUM.
 
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Polot
Posts: 10501
Joined: Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:01 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:10 pm

Quoting a380787 (Reply 18):
Quite surprising that the airline with the most number of hubs in GMT-5 has by far the least amount of Atlantic ASM/RPM.

That is because AA never really had an extensive European network compared to UA(CO) and DL- rather they just focused primarily on the big cities, especially LHR and CDG, with larger planes, and US's network was smaller and highly seasonal.

Quoting a380787 (Reply 18):
On another hand, UA's Pacific figures are possibly inflated by the Micronesia network out of GUM.

They contribute, but when you consider that a majority of the Micronesia network is on 737s flying relatively shorter distances they don't "inflate" the numbers that much. UA is just huge in the transpacific market, which isn't surprising when you just look at their SFO hub alone and completely ignore all their other transpac flights.

[Edited 2016-04-06 07:11:53]
 
a380787
Posts: 4573
Joined: Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:38 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:29 pm

Quoting Polot (Reply 19):

That is because AA never really had an extensive European network compared to UA(CO) and DL- rather they just focused primarily on the big cities, especially LHR and CDG, with larger planes, and US's network was smaller and highly seasonal.

AA+US has transatlantic services from BOS JFK PHL CLT MIA (did i miss any?) on their own metal just from the eastern seaboard. Historically you're right they were smaller and more concentrated, but post-merger should have little reason why they should be that far different from the 2 primary competitors.

Atlantic side, there isn't a lopsided hub dominance scenario like Latin (MIA) or Pacific (SFO) .... and everyone has their JVs, so the playing field is as even as you can get. Their limitation in JFK evening slots is more than compensated by the large selection of hubs at their disposal, many of which have minimal resource constraints. Some also have major CPE advantages, e.g. CLT.
 
ordbosewr
Posts: 605
Joined: Thu Jun 09, 2011 8:30 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 2:58 pm

Quoting a380787 (Reply 18):
On another hand, UA's Pacific figures are possibly inflated by the Micronesia network out of GUM.

according us data (http://www.transtats.bts.gov/Data_Elements.aspx?Data=4)

2014 (2015 data is not available for final Q)
domestic ASM (all us carriers) from Guam = 475K
international ASM (all us carriers) from Guam = 1.781M
total ASMs (all us carriers) from Guam = 2.256M

for same report, making is UA only:
domestic ASM (all us carriers) from Guam = 467K
international ASM (all us carriers) from Guam = 1.31M
total ASMs (all us carriers) from Guam = 1.778M

So Guam is a rounding error is the ASMs.
RPMs UA total = 1.289M (down YoY)
RPMs all us carriers = 1.679M (down YoY)
 
thegoldenargosy
Posts: 618
Joined: Thu Sep 30, 2010 4:14 am

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 6:44 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 13):

As of January HKG base population was 317. Other foreign base populations are FRA:366, LHR:473, NRT:382.

How senior do these bases go?
 
User avatar
LAXintl
Posts: 24501
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 12:12 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:37 pm

Quoting thegoldenargosy (Reply 22):
How senior do these bases go?

#1 person in HKG is in the top 4% of seniority, with big chunks in the 40-50% range(about 20-year seniority)

LHR has many more senior members, but also is quite well distributed overall with relative junior(8-year) members also.

NRT is quite senior with most junior being 18 year seniority.

FRA like LHR as some very senior folks also but pretty well distributed with bulk of populations in 20-year seniroty range with younger ones under 10-year seniority also.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
a380787
Posts: 4573
Joined: Tue Jul 09, 2013 4:38 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:43 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 23):

NRT is quite senior with most junior being 18 year seniority.

Impressive ... doesn't that lead to a pretty high cost base ?
 
User avatar
LAXintl
Posts: 24501
Joined: Wed May 24, 2000 12:12 pm

RE: United Hong Kong Routes

Wed Apr 06, 2016 10:18 pm

Quoting a380787 (Reply 24):
doesn't that lead to a pretty high cost base ?

Does not really matter. You will still have that same employee working somewhere - be it NRT or DEN.
There are union agreed pay-rates which will be paid regardless. Sure there might be some currency gains or losses from time to time, but the largest benefit of overseas base is savings on things like hotels in costly city like Tokyo.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California

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