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I'm from South Africa. What do I need to get in order to work overseas as a commis chef?

I am a commis/trainee chef. I have less than 1 year's experience.
I am a sporty guy . I spend most my time in the kitchen trying new things. When I'm not in the kitchen I surf or relax at the beach.
I like new ventures. I have a roll-up-my-sleeves attitude. I enjoy spicy service times. I am willing to be trained and learn new things. I am a quick thinker and find ways to solve problems as quickly as possible. I am a team player. I can do what's expected of me and I'm capable of being left alone to do tasks assigned to me.
I take responsibility for my failures and won't disappoint when I'm given a second chance #career #chef #travel #iamthesecretingredient #culinary


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4 answers


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Kenji’s Answer

Hey from what I know if you are based in SA you have a few options. All of them require applying successfully for entry level position advertised in job posts such as linkedin, Glassdoor, Zip, etc. There are many. Look for new hotel openings or new branded restaurant shop openings for memorable experiences abroad.

I have an SA friend posted in Nigeria as Chef de Cuisine now. I have hired many foreigners in more entry level positions in Gulf Countries where whole hotels could be staffed by foreigners, not only the management positions.

What could be most advantageous is if you will stagier at a top restaurant either where you are or perhaps in Europe where that system is quite normal process and then apply for higher positions like Demi CDP or CDP with the finer dining experience under your belt. Pays better and the experience could be more to your expectation in Middle east that is.

If you get up to sous chef at some point say in Dubai or similar, you could possibly get a chance to transfer to Asia in those mid level positions. That's how it works still.

Good luck!

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Swaroop’s Answer

Hi Marcell,

You can start by trying to get some experience working in top hotels in your country. Relevant work experience to showcase your skills can put you a step forward in grabbing opportunities to work overseas.

Look out for apprentice programs that are being offered by hotels. I found a few and hope it helps you:
https://www.nbi.org.za/launch-of-swiss-south-african-hospitality-apprenticeship-programme/
https://jobs.hilton.com/apac/en/career-areas-emea

Good luck!

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Mark’s Answer

Your best bet is to find a recruiter for a big hotel group in the US. A lot of them will bring you over as a j1 if you meet their qualifications. A lot of people doing that in my city are coming from various Asian islands. Fairmont hotels is doing that, might look into kimpton as well. Ive heard mixed reviews about the program but it's a foot in the door.

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Richard’s Answer

I would look into the cruise ship companies, great way to travel and learn slot.

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