4 Essential Qualities Every Candidate Should Have In Order To Work And Survive On Cruise Ship

Dec 27, 2019

This marks my 12years of ship life. I embarked on my 1st journey on 20th Dec 2007 on Celebrity Summit and I can say one thing that no matter what anyone has to say or think or feel it is one of the toughest jobs in the world, it changes you physically, mentally and emotionally but I do admit that I am loving every minute of it and thank from the bottom of my soul to all who had made this journey possible for me through support and encouragement.

There are just handful of pros to work on the ship.. major being the money (If anyone including yourself or the hiring agents have convinced yourself as a pros to this job that it's the easiest way to travel the world then you are up for a surprise and probably won't last a contract)and there are tons of cons.. major being away from your loved ones and family.

I like to take a moment here and mention 4 qualities that are very important but not limited if anyone ever wants to work on a cruise ship or already are, and needs a word of advice. If you have a friend who wants to work on the ship feel free to share so they can somewhat understand what is expected.

  • (1) Highly Highly Highly Self Motivated (yes I said highly 3 times)
  • (2) Culturally Diverse
  • (3) Have to give your 200% (Believe me 100% is not enough)
  • (4) Adaptable (Welcome changes in a brink of a second literally to any circumstances and not B#@ch about it)

Below is a more detail explanation of all these qualities.

1. Highly Self Motivated

I did say highly SELF-motivated because you have to understand that as soon as you step on the ship doesn't matter if it's your 1st contract or 20th you are on your own you might be greeted by the most welcoming crew or just by an frustrated security guard who might had a very bad last night taking care of some alcohol-infused guest and might end up venting on you and it's not like land that there will be shoulder for you to cry on or someone close to you who is on the other end of the call calming you down.. you have to understand that the security guy might be a nice person but sometimes it's just stress. It will be very demotivating imagining you came here from so far away to make it happen for you and the first thing u stepped on the ship and this happened and that can be the case every single day as to no matter how comfortable the crew or your colleagues want you to feel by showing you how ship works and what is expected from you in your job but they will not be taking your hand and guiding you through ship life and how to cope up with it as they might be going through the same process. The worse is you have to do it all on your own. So the only way to go is to keep motivating yourself stay positive because you will get the hang of it. If not then u will get depressed or worse because stress is a way of life on ships.

2. Culturally Diverse

I said culturally diverse because as soon as u step on the ship especially if you have been out of your country for the first time you will find crew from all different parts of the world and even some places that you never heard about before which means different cultures different way of living and some might make you uncomfortable because you never knew.

Don't bargain on the stereotype you might have seen in a movie or series because it won't be like that but again it's up to you to keep an open mind as things you are going to see might be taboo for you back home. I have personally seen some guys and girls refused to work and quit just because their managers or head of department were Women or gay or black... All this has no place and is zero tolerance on ships so if are a hardcore then ship is not for you because you have to understand that they are just humans like yourself who have left their families and friends behind to earn a decent amount of money and provide and have a career.

Have to give your 200%

Well like any other job u have to do your best to survive and get promoted so you give your 100%. However when comes to ship life I always say 100% is just not enough. You have to be on your toes all the time. Being on time is you being already late you have to be ready 30 minutes and more before time which means then you MIGHT be on time and on top of it perfection is a bar set very low. Every thing has to be beyond perfection because believe me everyone is there to judge even you urself and they know perfection so it's common and not impressive. You might think you have been doing this your entire life and perfection is your middle name but at the end of the cruise when you get comments or when evaluation comes in you might think of changing you name leave alone the middle one.

4. Adaptable

Last but not least Adaptable. One of the main thing that defines us as humans is our ability to adapt to circumstances and I am here to say that working on ships has given me an entirely new meaning to it. Working that long on the ship has shown me how so very few of us are willing to change to circumstances and how our arrogance and I know it all and this is how it's always been done attitude has limited our decision when it comes to making things work on ships... I have learned that there is never a right or wrong way. And especially on ship when you can built an entire event through weeks of planning and then at the last second just because nature decided to change its course or wind picked up just a few miles u have to change the entire event and make it work in just an hour before it begins and which can be made even more difficult if it affects the guests itinerary and makes them angry as now you have your entire team not only concerned to make the event work but at the same time calm the guest as well.. this is very common when it comes to ship life and it's brutal...... It's just you have to be ready to face any circumstances and changes and that too with open arms, smile and a can-do attitude. There is nowhere to run or hide as u middle of the ocean.

So all and all I also recommend is never let any of your emotions cloud your judgment or make your decisions when it comes to working on ships because there will be lots of stress and days when u will feel like left out or singled out and it will feel like the day is never going to end and when u look around there is no one for a hug or to understand and support you but all you have to do is be strong take a minute go to an open deck look out at the stunning view of horizon beyond the ocean of the rising or setting sun or the clear sky with moon and stars shining and reflection on water still as a calm lake..sulk in a breath of fresh air ..go to a happy place.. think of the person or your pet you love the most or even yourself and get back in there with more energy and will to do better...and lastly, I always say if you first time on the ship give it a month don't quit because the first month is always the hardest and at the end of the month if you still cannot cope up be real to urself QUIT .. nobody will judge you or stop you as I said it's a very tough job and it's not for everyone rather then get depressed and do something that you might regret and put your family or loved ones through hard times as well.