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BA to close HKG base [confirmed for Cabin Crew]

BA to close HKG base [confirmed for Cabin Crew]

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Old Sep 29, 18, 2:12 am   -   Wikipost
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Old Sep 26, 18, 1:05 pm
  #106  
 
Join Date: Jan 2002
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Originally Posted by Howard Long View Post
His Linkedin profile appears to have disappeared. A real shame, not only did I skip lunch today, being a W1A fan I was quite looking forward to an entertaining read.
i read the profile with Hugh Bonneville’s voice. It totally worked.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 1:10 pm
  #107  
 
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Originally Posted by Ancient Observer View Post
Peck. Spot on. That is BA 2018. Says it all.

Flytowhere.
In my experience, since the late 80s, English has decreased, not increased. The Co I worked for worked through a lot of HKG and Cantonese traders. We often had a few drinks with them. Back in the late 80s we could mostly make ourselves understood without translators, and we went to some, er, interesting restaurants.
After handover, politically some of the Cantonese who spoke a little English were forced to take a lower profile, and the mainland Govt approved characters did more trading. I have no idea about how the bribery worked.
There are now quite a few non-English speaking businesses, restaurants and shpos now.
i have to agree, I have been travelling to Hong Kong for over 30 years and English among the general population has been in decline during that time. In the last decade I have especially noticed the lack of English among taxi drivers.


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Old Sep 26, 18, 2:07 pm
  #108  
Moderator: British Airways Executive Club, Iberia Airlines, Airport Lounges and Carbon Conscious Travel
 
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As I regular on the route, this news saddens me; the Cessation of Employment letter is so callously written, it enrages me. The lovely HK crew members deserved better than this.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 2:08 pm
  #109  
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
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I am British born Chinese. My Cantonese is dreadful, to the point it is embarrassingly bad, so I tend to stick with English when visiting Hong Kong. If I go to a shopping mall in Hong Kong Island or central Kowloon I have no problems communicating as English will be widely spoken. But go out of the main tourist areas or even taxi drivers in the central area then English will not be commonly well spoken.

When I was a kid I remember the BA flights to HKG always had crew who spoke my mothers language which she really appreciated.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 2:32 pm
  #110  
 
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Originally Posted by kaka View Post
on the good side BA may get rid of these low-yielding pax.
And fill those empty seats with lost opportunity?
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Old Sep 26, 18, 3:43 pm
  #111  
 
Join Date: May 2013
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Well can anyone on here honestly be surprised? This is BA in 2018, as we have seen over a few days, telling lies to customers and treating loyal staff like garbage.

I'm not sure how people can justify supporting such a company commercially, but I'm sure the usual supporters will be saying how wonderful it all is in the world on BA.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 4:05 pm
  #112  
 
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Just been sent this for a crew friend at BA. What another awful middle finger from their greedy management. Always loved the HKG crew 😞
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Old Sep 26, 18, 5:30 pm
  #113  
 
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Originally Posted by Howard Long View Post
His Linkedin profile appears to have disappeared. A real shame, not only did I skip lunch today, being a W1A fan I was quite looking forward to an entertaining read.
Profile owner just shortened the last name. Seasoned enough to hide a little. Linkedin
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Old Sep 26, 18, 6:04 pm
  #114  
 
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This is a very poor way to treat people. I no longer fly the sadly downgraded BA unless forced by work, so cannot withdraw my business, but as a Brit in Hong Kong feel shamed to see this crass behaviour on the part of the airline.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 6:22 pm
  #115  
sxc
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British Airways axes entire Hong Kong crew ahead of shutting city base
https://sc.mp/2QZrN3h

Article has been updated with statements by the crew. Also noting that at the last analysts briefing BA called out the HKG route as challenging.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 6:45 pm
  #116  
 
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Originally Posted by mrploddy View Post
Yeah you're right but are those people really going to want to go and work for BA on the current starting salaries at London wages ?.

If someone has got any form of decent language skills ( by this I mean University level graduate / spent time in the country ) they will be able to get a job with a much higher stating salary than BA.
I'm gonna ignore the Japan comments, that's not what we're talking about really, and language nuance is what it is. I'm also gonna preface this by saying, I don't live in London, I live in Vancouver, Canada maybe not as expensive as London, but not that far behind.

A problem with the economy is the race to the bottom in many industries. The demand for jobs is high and yea a small percentage of people get great jobs, others settle. I'm not talking about someone like me who has learned Spanish...Vancouver/London/NY/SF (you get it) are full of people FROM these countries, not people like me. So we're not talking about someone who just speaks Canto/Japanese, we're talking about native speakers. If you think that all those people (the educated ones) are all getting great paying jobs then I'm sure you've probably got one of them. There are plenty of educated people who speak multiple languages fluently who aren't in that situation. Lets even put them aside, the demand for cabin crew jobs is extremely high. Even non-cabin crew jobs, like ramp agents. Air Canada here still has a much easier time finding ramp agents despite being near the bottom of the pay scale. Why? Flight benefits and the perception that it's a career vs working for a contractor. I don't blame people for taking those jobs, but if Air Canada was really struggling for applicants, they'd up their pay, they simply don't need to. The same applies to the cabin crew, for every 1 cabin crew member working for BA, there's probably another 5 people lined up behind them trying to get that job either directly or would want to work there. I'm sure there's plenty of HK descendants in London who already work for BA and if they wanna hire more of those people, they'll put out the ads for specifically Canto fluent hires and they'll get them. Is there really a great reason for having the decentralization of their work force? If it's cheaper for BA to hire these people locally, I can't blame them for doing that.

Originally Posted by corporate-wage-slave View Post
That letter from Mr. Garry Bird certainly looks inept and unnecessarily blunt to the point of rudeness. We don't know if there was a meeting beforehand or some other form of communication, in which case it would be more understandable. I sincerely hope there is a support channel of some sort set up for those affected. These letters can't be sugar coated, it's bad news however you look at it, but it wouldn't have harmed to have spent 10 more minutes in phrasing it more kindly. And a paragraph mentioning the highlights of BA's HKG operations would not have gone amiss either. Dealing with bad news is part of life, but so is leaving with one's head held high.
With my previous comments sounding callous, I will say I totally agree with this. The letter was pretty blunt. Bad news is bad news either way, but to give people just 7 days is a real kick in the nuts, good luck finding another job THAT fast, in any industry.

What I wish had happened here, would've been an invite from BA to continue working for the company in London, or in another capacity in HK (if those jobs exist). Now maybe, union rules, visas etc prevent that. I don't know. I also don't know EXACTLY why they're doing this, cost saving I'm sure, but are they trying to just lower their overall number of cabin crew, or is it more expensive to run 80 crew from HK than it is to run 80 crew from London? But to just sent a letter that says "you're out on your ..., deal with it", is pretty harsh.

I feel bad for this group of employees, but I also can see if this is a cost saving measure, then it's probably overdue unfortunately.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 7:11 pm
  #117  
 
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Originally Posted by drvannostren View Post
I'm gonna ignore the Japan comments, that's not what we're talking about really, and language nuance is what it is. I'm also gonna preface this by saying, I don't live in London, I live in Vancouver, Canada maybe not as expensive as London, but not that far behind.

A problem with the economy is the race to the bottom in many industries. The demand for jobs is high and yea a small percentage of people get great jobs, others settle. I'm not talking about someone like me who has learned Spanish...Vancouver/London/NY/SF (you get it) are full of people FROM these countries, not people like me. So we're not talking about someone who just speaks Canto/Japanese, we're talking about native speakers. If you think that all those people (the educated ones) are all getting great paying jobs then I'm sure you've probably got one of them. There are plenty of educated people who speak multiple languages fluently who aren't in that situation. Lets even put them aside, the demand for cabin crew jobs is extremely high. Even non-cabin crew jobs, like ramp agents. Air Canada here still has a much easier time finding ramp agents despite being near the bottom of the pay scale. Why? Flight benefits and the perception that it's a career vs working for a contractor. I don't blame people for taking those jobs, but if Air Canada was really struggling for applicants, they'd up their pay, they simply don't need to. The same applies to the cabin crew, for every 1 cabin crew member working for BA, there's probably another 5 people lined up behind them trying to get that job either directly or would want to work there. I'm sure there's plenty of HK descendants in London who already work for BA and if they wanna hire more of those people, they'll put out the ads for specifically Canto fluent hires and they'll get them. Is there really a great reason for having the decentralization of their work force? If it's cheaper for BA to hire these people locally, I can't blame them for doing that.
The Japan example is relevant because BA tried this before... they shifted LHR-HND to MF and tried hiring Japanese-speaking crew — but as CIHY points out (in post 11 of this thread) it failed since they couldn't hire or keep any decent speakers at the wages they were paying — so why would HKG/Cantonese be any different?

Also interesting how it seems you're saying we can't compare HK to Japan but we can compare London to Vancouver (or BA to AC)... And if we do want to compare BA to AC this would be something like staffing YYZ-HND with Rouge crew — wonder how that'd go down lol
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Old Sep 26, 18, 7:28 pm
  #118  
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
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I am another who liked the BA Hong Kong based crew, friendly, professional and a credit to a sad airline.

Fortunately there are other choices of airline. I was just about to book my planned 2 trips in premium cabins to London in early 2019 on BA from HKG. Will not mean anything to BA but I am taking my money elsewhere thanks to the disgraceful way the crews have been treated.

Can only hope that Bird and Cruz choke on their bonuses.
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Old Sep 26, 18, 7:34 pm
  #119  
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Originally Posted by neofung View Post
Ok if you guys remember this video https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o-p2vBZbSF8, I strongly recommend BA to remove this video from youtube.
Delete this first (Canto version)

Last edited by percysmith; Sep 27, 18 at 6:38 am
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Old Sep 26, 18, 7:53 pm
  #120  
 
Join Date: Jul 2010
Location: Sydney, Nova Scotia
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I have no insight or necessarily disagreement re the business case for closing the crew base, but the implementation here is awful. Just shifted my next F LHR/HKG sector en route to Oz to CX - pointless, I know, but I'm pretty sure that treating staff this way will in the long term cost BA many times the apparent saving.
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