Playing Billiards At Orange Monkey Bar!

If you are looking for things to do with your friends in Ottawa then you might want to head down to Orange Monkey Bar, grab some drinks and play pool with your buddies!

While the entrance of the pool is a single door, you would surprised on how much big this pool hall is and is an ideal spot for a big group to hangout. You don’t need reservations and can easily bring in more than a dozen people.

The venue does have a dive bar feel when you enter and features a bar with more than enough seating. I have been to the place a couple of times and have never seen it packed. Drinks are affordable as well starting around 5 bucks.

The Bar

I personally have enjoyed coming to the venue and play pool with my buddies with no issues. I do feel that the tables get a bit pricey as the venue charges per person as well as based on the time spent. The venue also features those jukebox machines so you are able to play songs at the venue for a small price.

Pool Tables

They do have some other game machines as well if you are interested. I saw a couple of pinball arcade bars besides the bar.

Pinball Arcade

If you are around the area, this could be the perfect spot to end the night. Play your favorite tunes and play billiards with your buddies!

Rating: 8/10!

Address: 250 City Centre Ave, Ottawa, ON K1R 6K7

What To Do If You Don’t Have A Guarantor For Canadian Passport?

As per the Canadian Passport Authority; if you need to apply for your first passport, you will need to provide them with a guarantor and the requirements for the guarantor are that they must have known you for 2+ years and must be Canadian passport holder of 18 years of age or more.

You might run into issues where you are not able to find a guarantor because you have recently moved to a new place within the country and don’t know anyone for more than 2 years. Also there could be other reasons like folks you know might be Canadian Citizens but might not be holding a passport or you might have just not met anyone because of personal/health reasons.

If you don’t know anyone more than 2 years in Canada!
In such a scenario, you can request a Statutory Declaration in Lieu of a Guarantor Form from Service Ontario (or Passport Office). The form is not available online.

You will need to get this form signed by a notary public/justice of the peace/commissioner for oaths. The person signing doesn’t need to know you personally and should not charge you for this.

If you know someone living far away in Canada!
Canada is a big country and driving is not always possible. What you could however do is send out the completed page to your guarantor alongwith your photo and ask them to complete the guarantor’s section for you.

Then they (guarantor) can send the form back to you by mail. I do recommend you to get tracking for your mail and if you are traveling soon then ask them to send it back by expedited mail.

If you are outside Canada
You will need to go to Canadian Consulate or Embassy and request them for a Statutory Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor form. You will need to get the form completed by a Canadian/British diplomat/consular representative; or by a local government official/member of parliament/civil servant.

Expect longer processing time with Statutory Declaration in Lieu of Guarantor
You might be asked to provide more references and if the references are outside Canada then it can take a while for the consulate/embassy to check those details out. It would be ask the Passport Office on processing times so you can plan your trip accordingly!

Live Country Music and Drinks at Montgomery Scotch Lounge!

Last year I had bookmarked a place called Montgomery Scotch Lounge but never got a chance to visit it until now! While I was walking towards the place, I didn’t really know what to expect. Part of me felt that it was going to be a run down location or have a dive bar feel but boy I was wrong!

This place looks absolute stellar and is a perfect place to hangout with your date, close friends and family members! The venue has nightly live music during weekdays where the musicians play some of your favorite country music (maybe other genres as well).

Live Country Music

For my drink I ordered – Reginald De Koven, a cocktail consisting of Glenfiddich, Sweet Vermouth, Maple, Citrus and Bitters. Even though my drink looked small, I could appreciate the amount of alcohol in it and a couple of these would be enough to get me buzzed for the night!

Cocktail – Reginald De Koven

The venue does have a couple of local artists perform live music and will rotate as the night goes. Even though my stay at this scotch lounge wasn’t too long, I enjoyed it and plan to visit it again in the near future!

My rating : 9/10! Highly recommended!

Address: 1154 Bank St, Ottawa, ON K1S 3X6

Do Canadian Companies Hire From India?

Yes, it is possible for someone to get hired by a Canadian Company while living in India! This is going to be hard though as you are going to be competing with the local candidate pool but if you put the effort in, you can increase your chances in securing a job in Canada!

Where to get started?
The first thing before you even apply for any jobs would be to have your resume ready for whatever jobs that you plan to apply. Here is a quick guide that you can go through to prepare your resume for Canada.

What job sites should I use for Canada?
The two most popular job portals used by Job Seekers in Canada are Indeed and Linkedin. There are a ton of other websites but Indeed aggregates from a ton of company websites already and Linkedin is a great way to get connected with recruiters. You would not need to look at any other job portals.

What type of companies should I apply for?
Usually Big Companies will be more willing to help you with immigration. If you plan to work in the tech industry then some of the popular ones hiring in Canada are – Shopify, Facebook, Amazon, Google and Microsoft. If you are interested in the Financial Industry then some of the bigger banks in Canada are – Royal Bank of Canada, Toronto Dominion Bank, Bank of Nova Scotia and Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce.

Most importantly! You will need to research what major companies are there in the city that you plan to move to and apply accordingly!

What if I am interested in working for smaller companies?
Usually smaller companies might not be willing to sponsor because they might have a limited budget and would prefer not to spend it on immigration/legal fees. However, you can still try applying BUT you must let them know that you are willing to help them navigate around the immigration stuff when needed. If you know what type of work visa you might need, and what are the requirements, it might be easier to convince them not only to offer you a job but also help with sponsorship.

How long would it take me to find a job?
Finding a job can be a job in itself. Usually it can take anywhere between 3-6 months for someone to find a job depending on their skillset and salary they are targeting, the higher the salary, the more time it can take to find a job.

How To Expedite Your Canadian Citizenship Application?

Processing times for citizenship grants have increased over time and for a lot of applicants it can take more than 2 years for them to granted their citizenship.

In case you believe that you have an emergency, you might be able to request urgent processing for your citizenship. Eligibility for urgent processing is granted under the following circumstances –

  • Requiring citizenship to apply for a job.
  • Requiring citizenship to attend school, college or a university.
  • Requiring citizenship to avoid losing job.
  • Requiring citizenship to travel abroad because of death or serious illness of family member

The urgent processing might also be granted if you had a successful appeal regarding your citizenship application.

Already sent in your application?, here is what you would need to do

  • Write a letter on why you need urgent processing
  • The letter must include your UCI, Name, Birth Date, Email and Phone Number.
  • Gather any other evidence (For e.g – letter from employer or hospital)
  • Send the documents to the Immigration Services using their web form –

Haven’t sent in your citizenship application? You would need to –

  • Write a letter on why you need urgent processing
  • Gather all the evidence for your request.
  • Include the letter and evidence with your citizenship application.
  • You must write ‘Request Urgent Processing – Grant of Citizenship‘ in bold/dark letters on the envelope.
  • Send in your citizenship application to the processing center.

Not all applications are accepted for urgent processing
The case officer will review your application and can reject the urgent processing request if they believe you haven’t provided a satisfactory explanation or have provided insufficient evidence.

How long would it take for urgent processing?
Even if you make an urgent processing request, you still have to go through all the necessary background checks, citizenship test and your citizenship oath. Depending on how fast it gets done for you, you might be able to get your citizenship within a few weeks to a few months.

3 Outdoor Dining Restaurants That Are Open In Ottawa During Winters!

Looking to experience dining in sub-zero temperatures? Here are three outdoor dining restaurants that are open even during the coldest days in Ottawa!

Back To Brooklyn
Address: 81 Clarence St., Ottawa, ON K1N 5P5
I found Back To Brooklyn to be the warmest place to hangout despite the outdoor temperature being lower than -20 Celsius! Also their outdoor patio feels like you are still indoors. They have a lot of heaters to keep the place warm!

Drinks at Back to Brooklyn

If you are looking to have drinks then Back To Brooklyn would be a really good choice for a winter hangout with your friends!

The Brig
Address: 23 York St, Ottawa, ON K1N 5S7
If you are looking to have a meal I think Brig would be a good choice. I had the chicken wings at The Brig, the last time I went and they were real good!

Hot Chicken Wings at The Brig

Bar Lupulus
Address: 1242 Wellington St. W, Ottawa, ON K1Y 3A4
The Outdoor Patio at Bar Lupulus looks nice however I felt that since it’s bit more open than the Brig and Back To Brooklyn, you might feel more cold here. Also during my visit I felt that they had a very limited food menu, basically snacks to go with your drinks.

Bar Lupulus Winter Patio

Note – Depending on the time and day, some places might be really busy so always good to call them ahead of time enquiring if a reservation is needed or if the restaurant is closed for the day.

Hot Chicken Wings in Ottawa at Chez Lucien!

If you are looking for some of the hottest wings in Ottawa, you should definitely try dining out at Chez Lucien.

When you go there you will specifically need to mention to the server that you are looking to have their hottest wings (They call them suicide wings). Otherwise you might end up with their medium/hot wings.

Your order of Suicide Wings is going to come with the Chicken Wings (really hot); carrots/celery and ranch dressing.

Suicide Wings at Chez Lucien

While the name might make you think that the wings are extremely hot and you would not be able to tolerate them, that did not turn out to be the case at all! Instead I found them to be one of the most delicious hot wings in the City! These wings are meant to be enjoyed even though they are quite hot.

I recommend everyone to visit Chez Lucien and order their Suicide Wings! You will not be disappointed!

Move To An Income Tax-Free Country!

If you are working remotely and getting taxed a lot in your home country, have you ever thought how much more you would be making if you were living in another country and taxed at 0 percent? 🙂

Is it worth moving?
The answer to this question will depend on how much taxes you pay annually. I have given an example below where it might make sense for you to move –

Let’s say you are living in the UK and making about 200K USD.
You will end up paying approximately 70K USD in taxes as a UK resident but if you were living in a tax-free country that 70K USD goes straight to your pocket!

If you were able to save an additional 70K for 10 years – it would be 700K!

Living in a tax-free country starts to make more sense if you are expecting your income to increase significantly.

Countries with no income tax
Here are some countries you can consider moving to –

  • Bahamas – English speaking; North America
    Bahamas is an island country located very close to Florida, United States and if you end up moving there, you will see a lot of American and Canadian tourists. The weather is nice and warm throughout the year! The Cost of living is moderate. Bahamas is a developed country and most regions are considered safe (some regions depending on the islands might be risky to live). While there is no income tax; you do have to pay social security.
  • Costa Rica – Spanish speaking; North America
    Costa Rica is a small Spanish-speaking country in Central America. The Cost of living is low. Costa Rica wouldn’t tax you on foreign income but if your income was generated otherwise, you might get taxed.
    Other advantages to consider Costa Rica include cheap healthcare.
  • United Arab Emirates – English speaking (in Dubai); Asia
    While located in the Middle East, UAE is considered a developed country with Dubai being well known around the world for its extravagant lifestyle. The Cost of living in the UAE is moderate.
    Please note that the UAE culture and laws are influenced largely by Islam, and it would be good to look into what kind of lifestyle you can expect living there.
  • Bermuda – English speaking; North America
    Bermuda is a British Overseas Territory but follows a different tax system. Bermuda is suitable for folks who deal primarily with North American/European customers. The cost of living in Bermuda is very high. Bermuda is considered a developed territory and most areas are considered safe for living.
  • Monaco – French speaking; Europe
    Considered to be one of the wealthiest countries in the world. This might be a suitable option if you work primarily on the EU timezone.
    Cost of living in Monaco is high. Country is considered very safe for living. Certain parts of Monaco speak Italian as well.

Things to consider before moving

  • Consider travelling before moving
  • Residency period – Usually you need to reside for more than 6 months in the country every tax year to be considered a resident for tax purposes.
  • Moving costs – The more stuff you have, the higher the moving costs.
  • Import costs – Some countries can charge you import fees if you are planning to import a car.
  • Culture – Would you fit in well in the new country
  • Language – How hard would it be for you to talk to the locals
  • Work contracts and taxes – If you work for certain clients (government); you might need to figure out your work contracts and how you will report your income.
  • Friends – You most likely don’t know anyone in the new country!
  • Family – If you have family members, you will have to see if your new residence will work well for them or not.
  • Healthcare – If you are reliant on healthcare systems often, it would be good to look into what coverage you would get on the public/private healthcare system of your new residence.
  • Lifestyle – Check what the locals do for fun/entertainment

Do you really want to move?
Your new residence might work out well for you! But it’s important to consider that you take good care of yourself and are able to enjoy your time there! A lot of people drop the idea of moving because certain things don’t work out well for them. If you were to ask me, I would consider doing it only for the short term!