THE GLOBAL FILIPINO MAGAZINE Issue 11 Pandemic effect: Commis chef turns financial advisor

Pandemic effect: Commis chef turns financial advisor


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Working abroad, for Claudio Corrales, is temporary. Though it is only short-term, working in Dubai for more than four years now has molded him into the person he is today. Working initially as a commis chef at a famous hotel in downtown Dubai, Corrales had a major career change due to the pandemic. From preparing food inside the kitchen, he found himself providing financial advice and helping people to plan their future plans like education, savings, investment, and retirement. 

The culinary graduate said that the reason why he is working abroad and starving harder in life is his family. “I am also the breadwinner in our family. Being in Dubai also gave me the chance to earn and send my siblings to school until they graduated from college,” he said. 

Corrales arrived in Dubai in 2016 and worked as a commis chef at Movenpick Hotel in Jumeirah Lakes Tower. He was assigned to the cold kitchen preparing salads, sandwiches, and sushi. During his stay in the hotel, he was hailed ‘employee of the month’ twice and was awarded as the ‘employee of the year’ in 2017. 

“I am very passionate at work as I love cooking and preparing food for the people I love,” he said. 

On the sideline, he works as a freelance commercial model and worked with the world’s leading brands including Sacoor One, Emirates, Du Telecom, Nestle, and Expo 2020, among others. 

Now that he is working as a financial advisor where his work requires him to meet people, allowing him to listen to different struggles in life. 

“Most of the people I met are struggling to manage with their finances and what I love about my job is to be able to help and share my knowledge on how they can manage and their future plan,” he said. 

Living in Dubai

Understanding that working overseas is just temporary, Corrales said that staying and working in Dubai helped him financially and explored more of his capabilities, talents, and skills. 

His greatest struggle was losing his job and having a hard time looking for a new one due to the pandemic. Trying everything to survive, Corrales sold food, facemasks, soaps, and perfume to his friends. As the breadwinner in the family, he has a responsibility to send money back home regularly. And in the absence of his full-time work, he sold cakes and worked on a part-time basis in a real estate firm. 

“Life abroad is not that easy as people often see. But I have overcome all of these struggles by having faith and trust in Him,” he said. 

“Working abroad is temporary. We should always plan and think about our lives for the future. We can enjoy ourselves sometimes, we can do the things we want but don’t forget to save. Don’t spend too much time at work, learn to rest,” Corrales said. 

This story has been featured on the 11th issue of The Global Filipino Magazine. To get a copy, you may contact Mr Orli Gayeta at +971503196856. If you have an inspiring story or know someone with one, please send an email at

The Global Filipino Magazine is the only Filipino magazine in the UAE that prints on a monthly basis. Its goal is to champion the success of every global Filipino across the globe.

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