What’s It Like to Work on a Cruise Ship?

What's It Like to Work on a Cruise Ship?
Share This Post

If you’ve ever thought about working abroad, you might consider a job at sea. There are plenty of jobs available aboard cruise ships around the globe, from entertainment staff to chefs.

Cruise ship jobs come in various forms and pay well. The majority of positions require no experience, although those who already have some knowledge and skills can improve their chances of being hired.

Working aboard a cruise ship is a great opportunity to explore new places and meet new people. If you love adventure, excitement, and meeting new people, this career choice could be perfect for you.

Have you ever wondered what it’s like to work on a cruise ship? This article will discuss what it’s like to work on a cruise ship, including the ups and downs, the pros and cons, and what you can expect.

Land More Interviews With A Professional Resume

Get a professional resume review from a certified career expert

The work environment on a Cruise Ship?

Working on a cruise ship can be a very demanding and intense experience.

Members of the crew frequently put in months of double shifts with no time off. Crew personnel also have to cope with strict regulations and sometimes difficult passengers. As an added downside, cabins aboard cruise ships are sometimes rather cramped.

Working aboard a cruise ship may pay off in many ways despite the difficulties. Members of the crew experience other cultures, expand their horizons, and develop their abilities. They may also be entitled to free or heavily subsidized food and transportation.

The pleasures of working aboard a cruise ship much outweigh the difficulties that must be overcome. The chance to see the world is a major perk. Crew members on cruise ships get to travel to many different locations. In addition, they are exposed to individuals from diverse walks of life and cultures.

Free or heavily subsidized transportation, food, and other benefits are other major perks of working aboard a cruise ship. Because of this, working on a cruise ship may be a low-cost means of seeing the world. Also, many ships offer their crews the chance to take culinary arts, bartending, and customer service classes.

Is it difficult working on a Cruise Ship?

The work environment on cruise ships may be stressful and demanding. Physical exertion, lengthy shifts, and little breaks are the norm. However, the benefits far outweigh the drawbacks. As a cruise ship employee, you will have the unique opportunity to see the world, learn about other cultures, and make new friends from all over the globe.

The long hours are a major challenge for anybody working aboard a cruise ship. Workers frequently put in 12-hour days or more. This may be quite taxing on one’s energy levels. There are generally typically few opportunities for rest. Because of this, maintaining concentration and drive may be challenging.

Another challenge of working on a cruise ship is the strenuous physical effort. The work environment requires a lot of hard lifting, extensive cleaning, and extended periods of standing for employees. This may be quite taxing on your physical health.

What benefits can I expect when working on a Cruise Ship?

1. The World is Yours to Explore

Working aboard a cruise ship affords you the unique chance to see the globe while earning a living (or at least a lot).

From the Mediterranean and Northern Europe to the Caribbean and Alaska, cruise ships visit many diverse destinations.

As a crew member, you’ll have the unique opportunity to travel to exotic locations while earning a living.

2. People from all around the world will be there to greet you.

Working aboard a cruise ship also has the bonus of exposing you to individuals from various walks of life.

Passengers from all over the world go on cruise ships since they visit so many destinations. As a crew member, you will interact with people from all walks of life.

3. Your Room and Meals Are on the House

Work aboard a cruise ship typically includes free room and board. Yes, both issues have been resolved.

It’s common practice for a ship to have separate quarters for its crew members, where they may rest, dine, and socialize while not on duty. You can have a peaceful time here, away from the bustle of the passenger areas.

4. Free Time Is Provided to Allow You to Experience the Ports You Will Be Visiting

Some crew members, such as those in charge of the ship’s security, medicine, and housekeeping, must remain on duty even while the vessel is docked. However, most crew members have considerable freedom during this time. If this is the case, you may have plenty of free time in port to go ashore and enjoy the local attractions and atmosphere.

5. You’ll Pick Up Useful Know-How and Experience

You may learn valuable skills and experience working on a cruise ship that will help you in any job. Time spent at sea looks great on a resume, whether you’re aiming for a promotion within the cruise industry or a complete career change.

Working aboard a cruise ship may provide you with valuable experience and transferrable abilities, such as:

  • Customer service
  • Food and beverage service
  • Hospitality
  • Sales
  • Marketing
  • Event planning

What’s the typical day of a Cruise Ship employee?

As a cruise ship employee, your work schedule will vary depending on your position. However, you can expect to work seven days a week and anywhere between 10 and 13 hours per day.

For example, if you work in the dining room, you may have to be on call for meal times, which means being available to work whenever guests are eating.

Or, if you work in guest services, you may have to be available to help guests with any questions or problems they have.

No matter your position, you can expect to work long hours and be on call most of the time.

How can I start working on a Cruise Ship?

General and position-specific expectations vary widely on cruise ships. Before you proceed to the hiring process or the application process, be sure you can check off all of these boxes. No matter what your role entails, you can count on these minimum standards:

  • At least 18 or 21 years of age
  • Valid passport
  • Language fluency
  • Visa or work permit
  • Passing score on medical examination

It’s important to remember that every cruise line has its own rules and regulations.

There are normally three types of employees on board a cruise ship: officers, staff, and crew. A wide range of entry-level to managerial positions are available in each of these fields. Here are a few examples of the varied work available aboard a cruise ship:

  • Galley cleaner
  • Pot washer
  • Bar Utility
  • Deckhand
  • Cabin steward
  • Bell staff

Applying directly with the cruise line’s main office may be necessary for some itineraries, while others may work only with an outside agency or hiring partner.

Consider the cruise company you want to work for and check out their employment page. When you locate a position that interests you, apply for it online by following the guidelines. You should always include a cover letter and résumé when applying for jobs.

Land More Interviews With A Professional Resume

Get a professional resume review from a certified career expert


Working on a cruise ship can be tough and demanding but rewarding. You get to see the world, meet new and interesting people from all walks of life and make great friends.

If you think working on a cruise ship sounds like something you enjoy, don’t hesitate to contact our expert resume writers today.

We will be happy to help you get started on your journey to an exciting new career onboard one of these magnificent vessels.

Is Your Resume Working?

Get a professional resume review from a certified career expert

Is your resume getting ignored?

Land more interviews and get hired faster with a professional resume written by career experts.


Resume + Cover Letter

$ 199
  • Professionally written resume - By experts that know your industry
  • Formatted for success - Formatting that will get an employer's attention.
  • Keyword optimized - Your resume will be optimized to pass through Applicant Tracking Systems.
  • Collaborate with writer - Work directly with your resume writer for a personalized experience
  • Cover Letter - Employers are 40% more likely to read a resume with a cover letter.

Contact Us

Contact us if you have any questions

Monday - Friday, (9am - 5pm EST)


Priority Support


(786) 474 - 6976