Cruise Ship Work - Working on Cruise Ships

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Cruise ship work: considerations

There are many things to consider when applying for cruise ship work. The benefits are obvious and plentiful, but the negative aspects of spending long periods of time onboard a 150m vessel are also noteworthy.

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The main reason most people seek cruise ship work is to see the world. And this they will do. The initial period of employment will not give you a choice of destination; cruise ships will hire where they need workers. However, if you are employed for a second season, you will be able to choose your destination.

There are a number of financial advantages to working on a cruise ship. Once on board ship, an employee will have no expenses at all. With salaries roughly equalling those in the same land based job, there is the potential to save a lot of money. However, it is also worth remembering that, though the majority of people onboard might be on holiday, you are not and will be expected to work an 8-14 hour day. It is good money, but you will have to earn it.

As with any service industry, appearance is important. All staff will be expected to wear a uniform when on duty and follow the dress code when not. Staff will need to be well groomed, clean and neat at all times.

Most modern cruise ships have good facilities for their staff as well as their guests. There is normally a crew fitness centre and swimming pool as well as a private recreation room. Don't get too relaxed though. Cruise ships operate frequent drugs tests of their crew. Stay away from drugs or you might find yourself rapidly unemployed and in the hands of the nearest local authorities.

It is also important not to forget that to enjoy working on a cruise ship, you need to be able to live in quite a small space for quite a long period of time. The crew rooms are normally in the bowels of the ship and no more than 125 square feet. And you don't even get all this to yourself. You will sleep in bunks and share this tiny space with at least one other person. If you are claustrophobic or merely antisocial, steer well clear of cruise ship work.

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