MK Trading what a joke! This is one take on a scam, whatever you want to call it. Do not sign up with this company. I was stupid enough to do this, and do I regret it. My gut told me not to do it, but I would not listen to it, so I paid the ultimate price, and this is a shortened version of what happened to me.
I refused the job at Hai’l university, (employed by MK trading and not the university directly) because I had to pay for the ticket and visa (this is a warning sign and I did not pay attention to it). I then decided to go ahead and take the job, but MK Trading would pay for the one way flight and this would be deducted from my first salary. I arrived in Ha’il on September 24, and was dropped off at this hotel of sorts. I was given a plastic key to room 403, and upon entering the room I went to the fridge to get some water, but there was nothing in the fridge, and it was not switched on. I then went down to the lobby and asked the person who was in charge for some water and he gave me a cup of water. I asked him if there were any washing facilities (washing machines and dryers) he stated NO. I then asked him if they had an ironing board and an iron, and he once again replied NO (all of this according to Tamim AL-Ansary would be in place upon arrival). The following day nobody from the trading company or the university contacted us and this went on for a few days. Finally on the 29th we were asked to meet at this building that was going to be used for the English program; it was across the street from the hotel (the hotel was going to be were we lived for the duration of our stay). On the 29 nothing happened; it was to introduce themselves, and we had to go back the next day to get questions answered. At this point I had been living on bread and jam as I had no money (I was under the impression that MK Trading would give us an advance on our salary). On the 30th it was just another get together and to explain the course, which was a joke. Anybody could have done that. Maybe that is why they hired people who do not have teaching degrees? Some questions were asked about MK Trading, but they were unable or they would not talk about it, and MK Trading were not present. One of the direct hires approached me and asked if I had any questions, so I asked him to tell me the truth. He did, and he did not paint a pretty picture. You would not get paid for at least 2-3 months, there is no medical, the hotel is where we are will be living for the duration of our stay; the list went on and on. He then told me about the special classes they had after finals last year, and some of the teachers had not been paid as of yet, and they all left. That was 4 months ago, so what recourse do they have none.
One person had money sent by Western Union, but he could not get it as he did not have Saudi ID, and you can not send money out for the same reason, but MK Trading would send it for you at a price. At this point my friend and I decided to leave, so we booked the flight for the 4th of October. We spent 20 hours in the airport in Bahrain as we wanted to get out of Saudi for fear that M Trading might try to stop us if we stayed at the airport in Saudi.
I don’t want to bore you with the details, but this is true, and yes everyday I woke up thinking that it would get better and my attitude was positive as I wanted to stay there for at least one or two years just to make the money, but I lost money. Please stay away from MK Trading; they tell you what you want to hear. Their emails to you are very good, but they have double meanings, and when you speak to them in person on the phone you can’t understand them. One final thing if you look at the pictures of Ha’il University, it is very beautiful, but in real life it is a skeleton. The picture is what it will look like in 20 years maybe. One final, final thing: this is October 5th, and they still do not know that my friend and I have left as Daniel Bowles Director; E.L.C. sent my friend an email on the 4th October which is below.
From: Daniel Bowles
Subject: Re: apologies
Cc: "Eid Haisoni"
Date: Sunday, October 4, 2009, 3:55 PM
What you have been told about M-Trading is probably basically true about their record, which is very poor, though it is equally probably exaggerated and so far the indications are that the situation has now improved. If you are still here, please come to see me (office no. 110).
If, however (as your message implies), you are already back in Thailand, I am sorry you have left without discussing the problems but I appreciate your notifying us.
These are some of the emails these two characters have been sending to me, and each other and they made sure that I received them I have not changed anything just their email address, as I would not like them to get unsolicited mail from anybody. I never said than I would pay for any ticket, and this person Gregory has made himself the leader, and he does not have a teaching degree to teach English. Once again this proves what sort of people I had to deal with. I was looking forward to working there, and I was going to say for at least two years. They also can not take the passports of the other people as the visa is not for a year it is a business visa and is valid for sixty days only. They when the visa expires they have to pay for the extension. As you can see this character Greg has his noise right up you know where. I also agreed that they could deduct from my first salary the amount of the one way ticket to get to Hai’l. But I had been there for 5 working days (9 days total), so I figured that the days that I was there (not including the weekends) takes care of the one way ticket, as I paid for my flight out of there. I also had to pay for my business visa. Greg also admits that he is not a teacher, and Tamimul states that, because we left he is unsure about his wedding. This proves that his only concern was his commission for hiring people, and not the welfare of the employees.
Thanks for your prompt reply. Let me see whether he will pay back or not. I really appreciate your idea of sticking a notice board in the hotel. You have so much creative ideas and I will definitely update this to our boss when he is free.
Please find below email address of them. If you have the chance to convince them and bring them back, I will be so much thankful to you.
Let us see. And, please collect all the Male teachers passport and handover to Mr. Roger immediately. Make sure that all teachers should have the photo copy of the passport with them.
Sent: Tuesday, October 06, 2009 9:34 AM
To: Tamimul Ansary
Subject: Some Updates
Marhaba, Dear Tammim
Steve said that he will pay back to M-Trading for his air ticket.
I think that we should find him firstly before making any judgements.
I am going to organize a notice board in hotel's lobby so all M-Trading consultants will be looking for your announcements over there as our internet connection still not too good.
Please do not get disappointed too much. I will try my best to help you to find them. Please let me know their email addresses.
My best wishes on your soon marriage!!! Insha Allah!
We shall find them one way or another. I know that you're very nice to everybody and it's not fair.
Subject: RE: Urgent
Date: Tuesday, October 6, 2009, 1:50 AM
Thank you so much dear Greg. I appreciate all your work and help you are doing to me. I am quite disappointed with both the teachers ran away because the company will cut the ticket payment from my salary only. It’s again very big loss in my salary when I am supposed to get married by next month. Anyway, it’s all quite small hurdles in this business.
Sent: Monday, October 05, 2009 4:06 PM
To: Tamimul Ansary
Subject: Re: Urgent
Dear Mr. Al-Ansary
Thank you very much for your phone calls.
Everybody informed regarding passport situation. All M-Trading Teachers will bring their passports to the University tomorrow and they will hand over their passports to Mr. Rogel or Mr. Sultan.
Please do not worry. Everything under control.
Have a lovely evening!
HA'IL - SALAH ALDEIN -
ROUND SOUTHERN -
AL-BONDQIYAH HOTEL -
ROOM # 402
--- On Mon, 10/5/09, Tamim Ansary wrote:
From: Tamim Ansary
Date: Monday, October 5, 2009, 6:59 AM
Good day to you,
As per Saudi Ministry of Foreign Affairs instruction, a government stamping has to be attained in your passport after arrival to Saudi Arabia. Kindly take a photo copy of your passport and hand over it to Mr. Roger or Mr. Sultan immediately. You will receive the protection letter from our company exchange to the passport in next two days.
Thanks for all your support and usual cooperation.
Thanks & Regards
Al-Kam Trading Company
International Manpower Division
To: Subject: Hi from Ha'il / attention to
Hi there This is Greg. I'm just wondering where are you? All other teachers are wondering too. You didn't say good bye... Are you doing all right? Things are getting organized over here. We submitted our first time sheet (with working hours) already. We shall get our pay on next week hopefully. Will you come back? We are lack of teachers. Anyway all the best to you! Do you have a phone by the way? My phone number is: Please feel free to give me a buzz.
Please take me off your contact list, and check your spelling.
Sent: Tuesday, October 06, 2009 3:11 PM
Thank you very much for your rude message,
Well, it's not the way people do business anyway... You are a thief if you will not pay the money for your air ticket back as you promissed. Is it why you two didn't say good bye to anyone because you wanted to steal?
You will be traced and you'll have to pay a fine (something like 10'000 reals). Moreover you'll never be able to enter K.S.A. again.
Just keep it in mind. This is if you will not come back.
Anyhow I am wishing you the best.
P.S. I'm not hiding from anyone that my qualification in Software and Hardware engineering. I'm an engineer. However I don't mind teaching for now.
First of all I will reply to this message, and after that forget it.
I arrived there (Ha’il) on the night of the 24th September, and the contract begins from that date (even though we did not sign one), so not counting the weekend that gives me a total of five days which covers my ticket correct? So I am not a thief; let’s get that part straight. I do not have to pay anybody any money for I was there in body and soul ready to work, so they have to pay me and everybody who was there from that period of time.
Let me advise you on Saudi law MK Trading can not take anybody’s passport, because of the stamp that is already stamped in it. It is only a 60 day business visa, and nothing else is required, so if they take your passport it is illegal OK. If you had a yearly visa then that is different they will take the passport.
Please show this or send it to T as he has sent me emails with your name on it, and I know that you are in contact with him OK. Please do not contact me again thanks and good luck in you adventure.