Finding Employment on Cruise Ships

Now you know where you're going, you're ready to start looking for work. Because of the many different types of work, and the obvious fact that people are hired on a needs basis, you need a lot of sources to find job vacancies.

The job hunt- perspectives

From the start, the job hunt itself is useful, because you're learning how the industry operates. It's important to learn the way things are done, because this really is a whole different sector of employment, even if you're doing the same work you did on land.

Your CV will need to be adapted to every position for which you apply.

All the basics of CV writing on are required. You do need to present your application well, because this is a field where jobs are very much sought by others trying to get into the cruise industry.

In the orientation chapters above, we've seen that ships and employers vary, and so do job conditions. You need to research your potential employer, unless they're a top of the range 'brand' cruise line like P&O or Cunard.

It might seem a bit picky for a job seeker to be fussy about a new job, but every human being on Earth has had a job they've loathed, at some time.

Bad jobs, in any industry, do not help. You might have to leave one, and yourCV will now contain a hole in it, and you will have wasted valuable time, and perhaps lost money in the process.

You're looking for a career job, either as a starting position, ongoing work, or an advancement. Those are your priorities, and you need to keep that in mind when looking for jobs, anywhere.

In the cruise industry, a patchy, on/off job record doesn't help much, either. They really need experienced, reliable, people. You could be shooting your career dream in the foot by getting stuck with a job you can't stand.

Career objectives andjob hunting

The big name luxury cruise lines are the top of the heap. They're the ones with the real Dream Jobs, and competition for positions is intense.

If you can get a job with one of the big names, it's a prestige job. It's also a tick of approval for the rest of the industry. These jobs can make your career.

So it's a good idea to find out what their employment standards are.

One way of finding out is to ask them. Their HR people can tell you the basics, what they can and can't do for you, and maybe point out any sources of information. You won't be wasting your time.

First hand information is always useful.

Don't guess about what the employer needs.

If there's anything you don't understand about the job, the job ad, or the basics of the industry, forget the job if you don't bother to find out, and wind up doing an interview proving your ignorance.

That, you can do without.

It's humiliating, and worse, it's a waste of effort.

If this is your first cruise ship job

If you've never worked on a ship before, you have one major hurdle to jump.

Age doesn't matter, although they prefer people to be over 21. There's a requirement for basic fitness, and a medical exam. All of that is standard practice.

The cruise lines offer induction training for new employees. They don't let people just walk onto a ship.

The hurdle is making it clear that you understand your new job.

You need to convince the employer that you've done your homework. That means checking out the fundamentals of ship jobs, knowing the important facts, and understanding that a ship job isn't like a land job.

It shows initiative, and common sense, that you've taken the time to orient yourself, and have a good working knowledge of cruise ship work.

You need to do that anyway, if you're intending to work in the industry.

But remember this is a competitive job market, and other people are as keen as you are to get that job. This is the interview scene, and they're looking for the best they can get.

Every bit of knowledge, your presentation, your professionalism, your CV, and your interview style, matters.

The industry isn't short of applicants. Recently a lot more jobs have opened up because a lot more ships are coming online.

The competition is still ferocious. You need to make them see you as the one they want for the job.

Sources- Jobs and information, never mind the hype

Online information is prolific, but often not necessarily much more than a travel brochure.

Pictures of places full of palm trees and supermodels aren't jobs.

(You'd think they'd do something about that.)

We got very fussy about who we wanted to use as sources. A lot of our users have enquired about cruise ship jobs, including concession jobs. We decided to exclude the sales pitches, and the Tooth Fairy, and did a search of sources on very strict criteria:

  • Sources for references had to be people with direct personal industry experience and a lot of it,
  • Detail, facts about working conditions, and real-world scenarios had to be the only things on the sources,
  • Information had to be presented clearly, objectively, and comprehensibly.
  • Job advertisements sources had to be of good representative quality. This is a job market. People need to see the real thing.

Ship jobs by those who've done them: This one stood out above all others, a guy who really has been there and done that. Includes some stories from real life about actual situations on board, compulsive reading. Also an e-book for more info.

Very useful (Some of these are also job sites) Our own outline. We try to keep it real, and it's a good starting point. This includes reports on cruise ship job scams, don't miss it. Includes direct links to cruise ship lines, including the big names, and job hunting Cruisestaff includes a useful FAQ, basics of the employment process.

Job sites Big site, gives a good look at the employment process Catering jobs, useful for people in the field, and a look at the variety of work. P&O Australia, site includes a wide range of jobs, and P&O's approach to employment. Cruise Ship Employment Databank© A big online recruiting agency. Royal Caribbean International site. Major employer, 40,000 employees.

Search for a Cruise Ship Job :
Search the main cruise ship employment sites directly here.