Last year, I went on a 3 week trip around Europe. Like how all good holidays end, I was left itching for my next adventure and slightly dreading coming back to reality. While I was away, I kept throwing around all these ideas about what I could do once I got back. The thought of Canada kept popping back into my mind, as I have had a couple of friends who had done seasons there and loved it. Even though I’ve never skiied in my life (attempted snowboarding for an hour or so) and I hate the cold, so who knows why I have this weird attraction to it!
My problem was that I was in Europe in August, and it was too late (plus I had no money left) to do the Winter season that year. I really didn’t want to wait another whole year to do it! So I kept thinking of other things I could do, but I really had my heart set on Canada.
Then in the end of November, after 2 months of being back into the daily grind, I won a trip through my work to Hawaii. I decided since I now had Hawaii to look forward to, then I could do Canada for the 2013/14 ski season and the waiting game wouldn’t of been so painful!
In January I contacted The Working Holiday Club to express my interest for the next season. They were the company we sold through Student Flights, however I did look into another company as well (so it’s not me being biased when I say they were the best!). Jake from TWHC gave me a call to have a chat about everything, and told him I was interested in Whistler Blackcomb as that seems to be the biggest resort. That way, if I completely suck at snowboarding or break a bone attempting to there will still be heaps happening in the village! He gave me a run through of what the Powder Package product the sell is all about, and answered all my questions.
I paid my deposit and had a Skype interview with Julia, who is based over in Canada. It was pretty much just an interview to make sure I would be suited for a role there, and to figure out what role would suit me best. She also gave me helpful tips for my next interview with the resort!
I was pretty on to it with my visa- even if I wasn’t offered a job at Whistler I had decided I was going to Canada anyway. So I applied around March, and all got accepted within about a month. Pretty straight forward with us Kiwis (although we only get a 1 year visa where as Ozzies get 2 years 😦 )
In July I flew up to Auckland for my interview with the recruiter from Whistler Blackcomb. I was pretty nervous going in to it as I hadn’t had an interview in years, but the lady who interviewed me was really easy going and although she asked me a few of the standard questions mostly it was just a chat to get to know me and to talk about Whistler.
I got the email about 2-3 weeks later, with the brilliant heading line of “It is our pleasure to offer you a position with Whistler Blackcomb for the upcoming 2013-2014 Winter Season!” I got the role I had applied for- reservations host. I thought my travel agent skills would best transfer over to that 🙂
Next came flight booking time! I had booked Air New Zealand, who fly direct from Auckland to Vancouver and my flight was on sale so only cost about NZD950 or so for a one way ticket. I booked so I had a little while to explore before I started my job.
Which brings me to where I am today! I left New Zealand on September 29th , and into Vancouver also on the 29th. There was a VERY long wait to get my work visa issued- I was in line waiting for almost 2hrs. Then spent 3 nights in Vancouver to recover from jet lag and wander around the city, then caught the bus/ferry/bus to Victoria which is where I am now! I am here for 6 nights to get a good feel for the place and not have to rush. Then I am back to Vancouver for a week to play tourist/ get SIN number bank details etc sorted and to jump on my bus for Whistler!