Wednesday, December 12, 2012

The first few days in Susi Air

If you are successful at the interview, you will normally get a positive reply within 4-5 weeks. You will receive an email confirming this, along with other information pertaining to your start date.  The first thing on the list is the business visa application in Singapore. Your intake group will all be given a date to be in Singapore for the visa application. I recommend you buy a one way ticket from your home base to Singapore and then a return ticket from Singapore to Jakarta on one of the low-cost airlines such as Jetstar, Lion Air, Tiger Airways and Air Asia. You will not use the return leg of this ticket, but the immigration services in Jakarta might start questioning you if you don’t have it. Also, its important to book a hotel in advance. Have a look at or the like for cheap hotels near Orchard Road. I spent 1 night in Singapore, but you can do it in 1 day if you arrive very early. I don’t recommend this though! Susi Air reimburse your hotel room with up to SG 100, so be sure to keep hold of your receipts!

The visa application is done in the morning at McDonalds on Orchard Road. You show up at 8 am and hand in your passport and business visa application (which Susi Air sends you) to Mr. Wahab. You cannot miss him as he sits at his “office” with paperwork all around. He is an agent who takes all the passports to the embassy for processing. Arriving at McDonalds is also the first time you meet many of the other guys in your intake. You will be spending the next 6 weeks together so it’s a good idea to get to know each other quick. Mr. Wahab arrives back in the afternoon around 16h00 with all the passports and hands them back. You are then free to head to Changi Airport and catch your flight to Jakarta.

Arriving in Jakarta you are expected to catch a Bluebird taxi to Susi Air accommodation in Jalan Senjaya III or a hotel that has been arranged. Make sure to take only a Bluebird as I have written before. The next day you attend the medical in North Jakarta. The driver picks you up around 6 am and drives you to the medical centre.  Make sure to bring your passport, foreign license and logbook. There is a blood test, urine test, physical examination, eye test, ear test, chest x-ray, ECG and dental check up. All the tests are normally done by 09h30, but you only receive your results around 12h00. Usually a couple of guys will fail on their cholesterol numbers. Don’t stress as this is quite normal and seems to be very arbitrary!

First Aid Course
The day after the medical you usually have to attend a first aid course in Senjaya. It’s around 4 hours and you learn basic first aid, including how to use a defibrillator, give mouth to mouth and how to dress wounds. There is a short test afterwards but it is all very straight forward. After that your are usually free to check out Jakarta on your own until you have to catch your Susi Air flight to Pangandaran and the start of ground school which will last for 4-6 weeks. More on that next time!