Do you have a query about life at sea? Simply click a question below to reveal the answer and discover more about daily life on a cruise ship.
Working on a Cruise Ship FAQs
Where will my cruise ship visit?
Cruise ships travel to exciting locations around the world. Information on the itinerary will be made available to you before departure.
What are the requirements for working on a cruise ship?
Regardless of your position, all crew members must present the following documents to qualify for employment:
- A valid passport.
- A C1-D visa (not relevant for Canadian/US residents) – this is a non-immigrant visa issued by US embassies around the world and allows crew members to pass through US ports.
- Relevant itinerary-driven visas (e.g. Schengen)
- Relevant qualifications/certificates - based on the role for which you have applied.
- You must also pass a pre-employment medical examination and a criminal background check.
How do I get to the ship?
You will need to travel to the port in which the ship is located prior to its departure. Popular methods of transport include plane, train and taxi.
Travel expenses may not be covered ahead of your first contract.
Who will I treat?
What conditions will I be expected to treat?
How long will I be away from home?
What language/s are spoken on the ship?
All staff must be able to read, write and speak English.
As many cruises cater to international guests, additional languages including French, German, Japanese, Mandarin and Spanish are beneficial, but not essential.
Will uniform be provided?
Yes. Uniform will be provided and, in most cases, is subsidised by the cruise provider. Some crew members may be required to purchase elements of their uniform, however, you will receive a briefing before departure.
In the interest of hygiene, your uniform will be laundered daily.
What should I pack?
As cabin space is limited, we recommend that you pack only essential items, including:
- Jeans and / or long pants
- Appropriate shoes
- Tennis and / or beach shoes
- Brush / comb
- Toothbrush / paste
- Shaving cream
- Mobile phone
- Travel alarm clock
- Beach towel
- MP3 player
- Hair dryer
Are any items prohibited?
Items that represent a hazard to health or severe fire risk are strictly prohibited.
Banned items include weapons (guns, knives, etc.), clothing irons, candles and incense.
Grooming aids such as curling tongs and hair dryers are permitted.
All cruise ships implement a strict zero tolerance approach to the consumption of illegal substances.
Will I get time off?
What happens in the event of a family emergency?
How often will I be paid?
Is accommodation provided?
Can I visit the ports?
Will my mobile phone work on board the ship?
What happens in the case of an emergency?
Will I always work on the same ship?
I require specialist equipment to carry out my role – will this be supplied?
What food is available?
Will I need money?
Can I call home?
Will I receive mail on the ship?
Are laundry facilities provided?
What leisure facilities are aboard the ship?
Each ship boasts a spa, hair salon, shops and fitness facilities.
Spa & Salon
You can book appointments for hair, nails and any other beauty or spa treatments. As a member of the ship’s crew, you’ll receive a discount on these services. Booking is essential and guests have priority.
You are free to use the crew gym during your time off. Most ships even have a selection of fitness classes available specifically for crew members.
Shops stock a range of products and typically closed when the ship is in port. There is often a crew shop which stocks basic toiletries and snacks.