Cruise Ship Jobs: Everything You Need To Know

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For many, working on a cruise ship is the job of a lifetime. You get to travel the world while experiencing all of the luxuries that cruise ships have to offer, all the while meeting new people from all over the world. What’s not to love? But how do you actually find cruise ship jobs? In this blog, I’ll explain everything you need to know to embark on your new career at sea. 

Different Types of Cruise Ship Jobs

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There are many types of jobs available on a cruise ship. From doctors to firefighters to massage therapists to housekeepers, the options are nearly limitless. And as you can imagine, each role comes with its own requirements and benefits. 

For experienced workers, the easiest way to secure a cruise ship job is by applying for positions similar to your job on land. For example, experienced nurses can apply to nursing positions on board, and experienced massage therapists can apply for masseuse positions on board. Given the experience required for these types of roles, the pay and benefits tend to be better. 

This application process also applies to more entry-level positions on board such as housekeepers, retail workers, and food service workers. If you have experience working in restaurants on land, you have a much better chance of being hired to work in a restaurant on a cruise. Keep this in mind when you’re looking for the right cruise ship job for you. 

Now, what if you don’t have any work experience? The great thing about cruise ships is that in addition to positions that require previous skills and experience such as nurses or firefighters, there are plenty of entry level jobs as well. Housekeeping, restaurant hosting, and retail cashier positions are three examples of cruise ship jobs that do not require prior experience. For a more complete list of entry-level cruise ship positions, check out this blog from Cruise Hive. 

Application Process

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As with jobs on land, the application process for jobs aboard a cruise ship varies significantly according to the specific position. For example, the process of hiring a cruise doctor is going to look different than the process of hiring a cabin steward. Thus, when doing your research on working on cruise ships, it’s important to find information for the specific job you are interested in. 

Generally speaking, there are two different routes to choose from: you can apply directly to a cruise line, or you can apply to a hiring agency that will find cruise jobs for you. If you choose to apply directly to a cruise company, the process is very similar to that of other, non-cruise related jobs. Simply look at the company’s website to find their job postings, read the requirements, and submit your application. You can also find cruise job postings on various websites such as Indeed and LinkedIn. 

If, however, you choose to apply to a hiring agency, you will have to go to their website and initiate the application process there. The benefits of working through an agency is that you have the help and advice of an experienced professional accustomed to the cruise industry. They scour the latest job postings and 

It’s also important to note that contracts, pay, and benefits can vary depending on the agency, so do your research and choose wisely.

So You Found A Cruise Ship Job. Now What?

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Once you have secured your position aboard a cruise ship, you will likely have to undergo a thorough training process before you start your contract. On most cruise ships, all crew members are required to pass safety and security training. From how to put out fires on board to how to direct passengers in the event of an emergency, you will be required to learn these basic skills to prepare yourself for possible scenarios on board. The logistics of these trainings vary from company to company, but it is common for employees to receive payment and accommodations (if necessary) for the duration of the training period. 

Employee Benefits

Now that you know the general process of applying for cruise ship jobs, let’s get to the fun part and discuss some of the benefits of a career at sea. The most obvious advantage to working on a cruise ship is that you literally get paid to travel. Your job takes you all over the world to new and exciting destinations, and you don’t have to worry about paying for a place to stay. Additionally, many of your basic financial needs are covered by your employer, including but not limited to food, medical expenses, monthly electricity and water bills, Internet access, and so much more. 

Furthermore, many cruise ships offer discounts to their employees for common travel expenses such as flights, taxis and shuttle services, hotel accommodations, and more. Cruise ship workers get to enjoy all of these benefits plus generous time off between contracts, allowing them to relax and prepare for their next voyage.

Photo by Colin Lloyd on Unsplash

As you can see, working aboard a cruise ship can be an incredible experience. While like in any job there can be downsides such as long working hours or working while seasick, the cruise industry is the land of opportunity for people looking to mix their career with travel and adventure. With the amount of diverse positions available, there is sure to be a cruise ship job for everybody. So update your resume and get to applying; your next voyage awaits!

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