How do I book and Pay for my Course?
Once you have decided on your date, you can send the booking form in and an invoice will follow - payment (deposit 200 euros) bank transfer.
Your invoice will state when your balance is due. Please do not hesitate to call if you have any questions 0033 646598149
Please note that all deposits are non-refundable unless it is Covid related which must be supported with a medical certificate. If due to government restrictions, you are unable to travel, a full refund will be given.
How do I get to the resort?
We arrange a transfer from Geneva airport and to tie your flight in with at least 3 other students. If you are less than 4, then we will try our utmost to get you on a shared transfer. There are many companies operating during the summer months so this is not normally an issue. Please note the included transfer is subject to numbers and arrival times. You will be given full details on booking.
It is also possible to arrive by car as there are a few parking spaces near the chalet but even if they are gone, there is a carpark close by. If arriving by train, please let us know in advance of arrival time in Aime, Landry or Bourg St Maurice so a pick up can be arranged if you are finding your own way to the valley.
If in doubt, please ask.
What type of person is the course suitable for?
You are likely to be a mixed bunch as so many people want to do a season these days! From Gap year students, couples looking for a career break, retired doctors and teachers or just people who enjoy cooking and want to combine that with a holiday in the mountains. Generally, you need to be flexible, practical and not afraid of hard work. All Nationalities are welcome
We also receive those who are completing their Gold Duke of Edinburgh award for the residential part of the award.
Do I Need a Visa
So since Brexit, visas are required to work in France or other European countries if you are British.
Step 1) Apply and secure a job with a UK company
Step 2) Your employer will apply for a work permit for you - you cannot do this yourself
Step 3) Your employer will assist you in applying for your work visa which you need to collect from the embassy in UK (London or Manchester)
The process can take time, so apply early! Courses will be running until before the season starts so you can always put on your CV that you are booked on the course! Students have informed me that the visa process was simple especially now they are used to dealing with the new process since Brexit!
If you hold a European passport, no visa is required!
I have never cooked before - will I be able to manage the menu?
We have often had complete beginners but by working in pairs, and with our help step by step, there is no reason why you cannot manage to learn and cook the menu, then go on to cook for large groups in a chalet with confidence and flair. Many 18 year olds get a job as a chalet host sometimes in charge of cooking for up to 13 people on their own - they are fabulous cooks by the end of the season!
What will I need to bring?
For the course you will need clean trainers (just for indoors) or a shoe with a covered toe. Aprons are provided
The other things to bring will depend on what activities you wish to pursue – swimsuit for water activities and pool, hiking boots….. you will be sent a full list if you decide on your activities in advance. Not all activities operate outside July and August so if you are coming in June or after September check with me first to avoid disappointment.
Soap is provided in the bathrooms so you just need to bring other toiletries although there is a small shop just 50m away. You will also need sun tan cream.
The weather can change very fast in the mountains and be glorious sunshine one minute then a storm the next so bring a waterproof jacket. The evening temperatures can also drop dramatically so bring warm clothes too.
Make sure you bring enough funds for activities and meal on day off.
Will We cook for Special Diets?
You will have a special dietary requirement in your chalet from time to time, so it is a perfect opportunity during the course to practice cooking for them. We provide some great recipes to suit vegans, vegetarians, gluten free, and dairy free diets which are generally easy and fast which will be added to your recipe book.
Do I Need Insurance ?
A standard holiday insurance is fine however if you intend to do the more ‘adrenaline’ activities ensure that you are covered
What if I need to cancel the course once it is booked?
If you have insurance and have a medical reason for cancelling the course, you will be able to claim on your insurance. If you cannot come for other reasons, then we will reimburse minus the deposit providing there is enough time to re-sell the place. For example - full payment is due 8 weeks prior to date of arrival. If you decide to cancel 4 weeks prior to this date, you will forfeit two thirds of the cost
What Package do Chalet Cooks get?
The average wage has increased greatly for a chalet host due to new regulations, meaning that working a ski season can actually leave you with money in the bank at the end of the season. It is normal to have accommodation and meals included even if it deducted from your substantial salary. In some cases, you have two days off per week - others it is 1 day plus two half days. If you work a 6 day week then you will get paid accordingly. Some companies have changed their format to offering self-catered chalets with meals delivered. There is no reason that you couldn't be the person cooking and delivering the meals!
Why Should I Choose this Course?
Firstly it is a real chalet in a ski resort, so you will get first-hand experience of the actual job you are applying for. Plus, having been in charge of chalet staff recruitment for more than 25 years I can guide you, knowing exactly what the chalet companies are looking for. What to add and what not to add to your cover letter.
A lot of the ingredients vary to the UK so a great opportunity to learn what is used here as well as what is available, plus the pitfalls of cooking at altitude and ways to avoid sunken cakes.
What’s more, this is a holiday destination too – so you will study hard when we study, but there is time to enjoy the wonderful Alpine playground and experience some of the great activities. The idea is that you follow a day in a chalet - from breakfast through to prep in the morning, some time off in the afternoons (depending on what has been achieved in the morning) when you would normally be skiing, back to do evening meal and clear up - and in between cooking you will learn all the other elements of being a perfect chalet host! You will also host and cook for invited guests just like in a chalet which is the best experience you could possibly have! We have to date, an excellent success rate of placing students in jobs for the ski season because we really want you to succeed!
What resort do I choose? What do I bring with me?
Eleanor Sands is happy to help with any question regarding life in resort - you can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org or @chaletgirleleanor on instagram
During the course, you will be given a complete guide, that Eleanor has kindly prepared for my students.