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From: Meagan Pelayo
Subject: ATTN: Mike
Date: May 17, 2011
I found your articles when I was doing some research on how to apply for jobs on cruise ships. I have to say that I found your articles very informative and much more useful than any of the other crap that I found floating around the internet.
I have a few questions and you seem to be the best person to ask.
First, a little background...
I am currently living in Cancun, Mexico (nearest port is Cozumel). I have a ton of varied work experience and I am capable of learning anything. My work experience includes teaching, restaurant manager, customer service, general sales, time share sales, excursion/tour sales... Unfortunately, I have not completed my degree yet; however, it is irrelevant because I was studying physics and chemistry anyway.. I am also fluent in Spanish and 50% proficient in ASL.
I am trying to find what would be the most attractive position for me on a ship. Obviously, I want to find something that pays well without being stuck working for 10+ hours per day. I saw that you had listed a few things like excursion sales and jewelery sales. What do those jobs include? Is there anything special that they look for when the companies hire for those positions?
Also, I only really know of 3 cruise line companies: Royal Caribbean, Princess and Carnival. I'd obviously like to be hired by a better paying company and one that has the most to offer its employees. What companies did you work for and how did you like what they offered?
One last question, if hired on a ship and then I learned of an opening that I liked better, do most ships offer chances to move up or around to find something that suits its employees better?
Thank you in advance for the help. I am excited to find something and get started. Travel has been my dream since I can remember and I am excited that I have a real chance to make it a reality. :)
I'll try to keep it short.
I think jobs like shore excursions department, gift shop, entertainment staff, spa staff, casino staff, are a few of the "better" jobs onboard. They don't have as many hours as the wait staff and house keeping staff and contracts are shorter. They do get to talk to guests and get to leave the ship most days while in port.
To get a job like this, go to each websites employment section, see what they are looking for in a candidate and match that up with your experience. Easy, right?
A few names of cruise lines include:
Royal Caribbean, Oceania Cruise Lines, Princess Cruise Lines, Carnival Cruise Lines, Holland America Cruise Lines, Norwegian Cruise Lines, MSC Cruise Lines, P & O Cruise Lines, Cunard Cruise Lines, Cruise West, Aida Cruise Lines, Star Cruises, Fred Olson Cruise Lines, Celebrity Cruise Lines, Disney Cruise Lines.
There are more, but that is just off the top of my head.
If you get a job onboard, then yes, you will be able to meet other people and see what they do for work and if you're qualified for a job like that, then you are in a much better position to apply. After you've worked onboard one ship, any other line is ready to hire you because you know the routine and lifestyle.
I worked at Norwegian and Holland America. They were fine. Actually most ships are about the same. They all have pros and cons. They all have cheap drinks in the crew bar and offer similar accommodations for crew. The people are all very similar as well. Young-ish travelers looking for a good time and wanting to work hard and play harder.
Since you're new to things, apply to every cruise line I listed with an original resume/cover letter unique to the company and see who hires you. Ask the hirer as many questions as you can think to ask and accept the job from the company with the better deal. As well, check out what we've compiled on working onboard cruise ships, what it's like living on ships and how people get fired from cruise ships.
Hope that helps.
Editor/Author/Question Answerer/Travel Dropper
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