Introduction: Crew Member Jobs on Cruise Ships

A job on a cruise ship can seem like a dream. You get to travel to world and get paid for doing so. All of which can make it sound like a fantastic experience. But it’s not all sunshine and roses. Entry level jobs in cruise ships tend to revolve around dirty work. There are positives and negatives to crew member jobs on cruise ships, and some of these will be covered in the job description section. However, due to the tens of different type of jobs on a cruise this will obviously not be covered in an introduction.

One of the best qualities of cruise jobs is that they are almost always available; however, this is because most do not consider any of the entry level jobs in cruise ships to be long term careers. Most people tend to either get promoted or leave to work somewhere else.

Job Description:

There has to be a distinction made between the different type jobs on a cruise ships. This can be done by splitting the different entry level jobs in three areas:

  1. Entertainment
  2. Operation
  3. Service

Anyone working in the operation of a cruise requires a certain level of education or training, this will be covered in later blog posts, but at the moment this will not be covered. Instead we will look at the entertainment and service jobs. These two can be described as being similar to jobs on land. On a cruise ship there are stores, hotels, waiters, entertainers, etc… These are all the same as jobs on land. However, families and couples pay a lot of money for a cruise shop so the service they expect is much higher than what they expect somewhere else. A waiter, store owner, etc… need to show excellent customer service. A good place for more information is

Some other information:

  • You might be working 7 days a week and sometimes even 14 hours a day
  • The standard contract length is between 4-6 months
  • You will need a passport or visa (depending on where the cruise ship goes)

Skill Requirements:

In this only entry-level jobs will be specified. In future posts other jobs which require higher levels of skill will be explained. There is no specific education level required for working in the entertainment and service section of a cruise ship. Some skills you will need to have are:

  • Good at sea (if you suffer from sea sickness this might not be the type of job for you)
  • Customer service skills (you need to be able to talk to people and work for people)
  • Learn quickly (this applies to almost every job, but on a cruise ship there can be a lot of specific rules for each job or specific rules that apply to how you are supposed to treat people)
  • Have good stamina and mental strength (Considering the fact that you will have to be working for days to weeks on a busy cruise ship you will be exhausted daily)

How to get a cruise ship job:

The three most popular cruise ship lines are the Royal Caribbean, Carnival, and Norwegian cruise lines. Go to their websites and apply to multiple jobs. You will need a resume, make sure that you google how to make a good resume. Here is an example of what a resume should look like:

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Just apply to these three cruise lines on their websites (there are designated application sections of the site).

Additional information: You will probably have to write a convincing 400 word email for each application that describes why you should be hired.

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