You need a passport, which is valid for at least 12 months. For vessels going to U.S. ports, you will need to obtain a C1/D Visa at the US embassy in your country of residence.
2. Length of contract?
Usually between 4-6 months on Ocean Cruises. River Cruise Lines issue seasonal contracts from March till November.
3. Working hours?
Generally between 10 to 12 hours per day on 7 days a week.
STCW is the abbreviation for “Standards of Training, Certification and Watchkeeping for Seafarers”. The international agreement regulates standards for seafarers. An STCW certificate is the qualification for working aboard a cruise ship.
All crew members working on cruise ships have to attend a recognized basic training for services on passenger ships. This includes at least:
- A-V/2 (1) Crowd Management
- A-V/2 (2) Crisis Management and Human Behaviour
- A-VI/1 (2.1.1) Personal Survival Techniques
- A-VI/1 (2.1.2) Fire prevention and fire fighting
- A-VI/1 (2.1.3) Elementary First Aid
- A-VI/1 (2.1.4) Personal Safety and Social Responsibility
- A-VI/6 (4, 6) Security-Related Familiarization Training
All persons assigned to take up a security role on board, captains, nautical and technical officers, engineers as well as those listed in Schiffsbesatzungszeugnis (Minimum Safe Manning Certificate) bear a high responsibility for a large number of people, significant assets and the environment. They have to complete further courses, e. g. Crowd and Crisis Management, which includes:
- A-V/2 (3) Crisis Management and Human Behaviour
- A-V/2 (4) Passenger Safety, Cargo Safety and Hull Integrity
Courses are offered by S.T.A.R. Maritime in Rostock, Germany.
5. Health requirements?
Once you have been offered a position onboard a cruise ship, you have to pass a medical examination. Some cruise lines also require certain vaccinations, e.g. yellow fever.
6. Health insurance?
Yes, all cruises lines are obliged to provide a health insurance while working on board.
7. Travel expenses?
Generally the cruise lines organize and pay arrival and departure to and from the ship.
8. Accommodation and meals?
Is provided free of charge.
9. Accommondations on board?
The accommodations vary from cruise line to cruise line and depend on the individual position on board.
Uniforms are provided by the cruise lines.