Migrating from Dubai to Canada as a chef


A Chefs inspiring Journey from India to Canada amidst the pandemic

My name is Aniketh and I am a chef by profession. This is the story of my journey from Dubai to Canada. I would like to share my journey of securing permanent residency in Canada and the challenges and triumphs I encountered in the process.

 Cooking has always interested me. From my childhood, I was always fascinated by cooking and saw it as a creative process.  I loved the idea of mixing certain ingredients, processing them and then cooking them to create a dish that everyone will relish. I was always trying out new dishes at home ever since I was allowed to cook with fire.

Initial journey

In pursuit of my dream to become a chef, I joined a culinary course after completing my school. Cooking was not just a hobby for me, I wanted to make it my profession. A career as a chef was exciting to me.

Culinary arts provide a plethora of intriguing employment options. As a chef, you can create menus to suit changing tastes and dietary preferences, maintain food quality standards, and keep track of inventory. This is the job for you if you have an adventurous mindset, enjoy cooking, and are creative.

The food certification sector has grown by leaps and bounds in recent years. Consumers are growing more cognizant of food safety requirements, as well as nutritional and organic consumption.

Key stakeholders are adopting new mandates in the aftermath of rigorous laws and regulations imposed by governments around the world.  The hospitality industry continues to grow every year and so will the demand for chefs. As a chef your options range from working in cruise ships to being a personal chef at private homes. You must know how to work under pressure, and must be ready to be on your feet for long hours.

Career dream

After obtaining my degree, my professional journey began as a junior chef in a leading hotel chain in India. I climbed up the corporate ladder and started preparing for additional certifications like Hazard Analysis Critical Control Point (HACCP) and Certified Culinary Administrator.

I also started a food blog. All these efforts were geared towards my ultimate aim of becoming a pastry chef.

My destination-Canada

My dream would not be realized unless I gained international exposure. I started looking for jobs abroad and with my experience was able to land a job as a senior chef in a reputed hotel in Dubai. The work experience in Dubai opened my eyes to the variety of cuisines in the world and helped me gain exposure. I was also training to become a pastry chef on the side.

After working for three years in Dubai, I was keen to migrate to a country where I could hone my skills as a pastry chef and also get a better pay and quality of life. While researching my options, Canada seemed the best bet.

On a global scale, I aspired to master pastry making as well as ace restaurant management and people management abilities.

I discovered that a cuisine’s genesis occurs in North America or Europe, where it is available in its purest form, rather than in India or Dubai.

Canada provided me with favourable conditions in which to test my new radical views. Canada has an unrivalled level of exposure and dynamism. In addition, the country is known for maintaining a healthy work-life balance.

In today’s online world everything can be found out instantly. As a result, learning about the application procedure, job options, and so on was not difficult for me. Nonetheless, I had a lot of questions, and I wanted to be comprehensive in my approach.

Choosing Y-Axis

I decided to approach an immigration consultant and opted for Y-Axis. I was impressed not only by their experience and reputation, but also by the positive feedback they received from their customers.

At Y-Axis Dubai, I spoke with a counsellor about my desire to immigrate to Canada, my family background, work experience, work interests, skills, and certifications, and so on.

I talked about my career choices in Canada, as well as my immigration options.

The counsellor advised me to apply for a Canada PR under the Express Entry program or the Provincial Nominee Program.

Canada immigration programs including the Express Entry program work on a points-based system. An applicant must score a minimum number of points to meet the eligibility criteria. The applicants score points on factors such as age, language, education and work experience.

Here are the points you can earn for meeting the eligibility requirements based on the following criteria:

  • Age: You can score the maximum points if you are between 18-35 years. Those above this age will score lesser points.
  • Education: Your minimum educational qualification must be equal to the higher secondary education level in Canada.
  • Work experience: To score the minimum points you should have at least one year of work experience. More years of work experience will help you gain more points.
  • Language ability: You must have at least 6 bands in your IELTS equivalent to CLB 7 to be eligible to apply. Higher scores mean more points.
  • Adaptability: You gain ten points on the adaptability factor if your family members or close relatives are living in Canada and will be able to support you when you move in there.
  • Arranged employment: A valid job offer from a Canadian employer entitles you for ten points.

Check your eligibility here

Based on the advice of my Y-Axis counsellor, I decided to apply under the Provincial Nominee Program since there was a huge demand for chefs in New Brunswick, Saskatchewan, Alberta, and Manitoba are looking for qualified culinary experts who want to live and work in Canada.

While filing the application in the Express Entry pool applicants can opt for the province that has the candidate’s occupation along with an Expression of Interest. An Expression of Interest (EOI) is the first step for candidates interested in becoming permanent residents in the chosen province. It is a pre-application process which allows candidates to fill in an online application to indicate their interest in applying to that Province and demonstrate their qualifications. The information required is based on the province’s criteria and is used to assess the candidate’s eligibility and determine whether the candidate’s details can be entered into the International Skilled Worker EOI system.

Candidates with attributes aligned to the needs of the opted province’s labor market condition and immigration objectives are selected and given Invitation to Apply or ITA.

 An important point to remember is that once you receive an Invitation to Apply (ITA) from Canada Immigration, you have only 60 days to file an application.

So, get your chef skills assessment done beforehand. This doubles as your red seal qualification meaning you are eligible to work as a chef in Canada from day one.

Apart from this, a provincial nomination adds 600 points to your CRS score which will improve your eligibility to enter an Express Entry draw.

I also began my job search in Canada and secured a job as a pastry chef in Manitoba. My dream was finally becoming true.

 Journey to Canada

I moved to Canada once my PR visa was approved. I started on my new career journey with a lot of expectations and hopes and was confident that I will not be disappointed.

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