How Can Crew Member End up in Prison or Get Fired from Cruise Ship

Jun 25, 2016

In recent years, the cruise ship industry has been facing many lawsuits filed by their guests. Some of them are justified, but there are some passengers that go on a cruise with the intention of using the cruise company. There are many cases of injuries and other ways that some passengers try to benefit and get big money from the cruise lines. Sometimes these people succeed in their intention, other times they don't.

What is important for you as a crew member is that you need to be covered before you end up back home, or even worse, in prison.

Here is some advice that crew members need to take it seriously:

Do not get involved in any romantic relationship with the passengers. If you do, here are some possible scenarios of what would happen:

1.    You can get fired by the company if the onboard management finds out. This would be the best case scenario.

2.    The passenger can report rape and you can end up in prison. Even if it wasn’t rape, the passenger can use this situation for their own benefit which would end up with a big compensation, while you end up in prison. Don’t think that the cruise company you work for would stand on your side.

When there are rough seas, guests with bad intentions would walk around the vessel and try to use the weather to their own advantage. There was one case among many when a female passenger was wearing her high heels and was walking around the buffet area when the ship was shaking. She did notice that there was not a yellow sign for wet floor. As she was walking, she fell down and injured herself. She ended up with a big compensation, while the crew members ended up getting fired.

Here is some other advice that is not related to guests, but can cost crew members their job, or even jail time.

Do not store pornographic material on your laptop. There have been numerous cases when pornographic material was found on crew members laptop by the local authorities, thus getting the crew member in trouble. Among the files, there might be pictures of minors which the crew member might not have been aware of, but this does not make any difference for the authorities. If they find this, a crew member can end up in prison for up to 15 years.

When a crew members contract is done and he or she needs to go back home, there might be crew members from his or her country who might like to send some gifts to their loved ones back home with their fellow crew members. Be extremely careful with this situation, although the crew member leaving knows the crew member who wishes to send the gifts for six months that doesn’t mean that his or her intentions are good. One might not know if in these packages some illegal items or substances have been stored.

Do not bring drugs on-board. Drugs are illegal worldwide, so why risk it? Nobody would like to end up in some Mexican prison, right?

Do not borrow, or steal company property. There have been many cases when crew members pack in their luggage some piece that belongs to the company and once security have checked them on the gangway, they have been busted. A crew member would not be fired for this but will be in the crew member's company file for future references. An example for this are waiters packing in their luggage pepper mils, or bartenders packing a shaker. I mean come on, a crew member makes enough money to buy one of each.

Also, there are random cabin inspections and if they find out that a crew member keeps company property in his or her cabin they would issue that crew member a warning. Example: Crew member took a metal stand for the menu from lido and used it for placing a picture in his cabin.

Crew members should never drink more than he or she can handle. There is a strict alcohol policy on a cruise ship and if security, or supervisors, find a crew member intoxicated the company will fire the same.