skip to Main Content
Cruise ship workers - testimonials

Working for a cruise ship: testimonials

“Why testimonials? If there is one thing I have learned from directing the recruitment of ship personnel for Princess Cruises in the areas of Hotel, Deck, Marine and Medical, it is that even the most qualified applicants may not have what it takes to succeed working for a cruise ship. In my 11 years of experience with Princess, I have often met extremely qualified Chefs, Photographers, Chief Electricians, Hotel Directors whose credentials were very impressive, and who against all odds, did not make it on board. In the majority of these cases, two components were missing in the equation: drive and motivation. Only those with a strong drive and motivation to work at sea succeed. Making a commitment to work on a cruise ship is agreeing to adopt a life style, an environment, rules and regulations that are not found on land. It takes the “right” personality to adjust to cruise ship life and only those whose personal motivation surpasses the desire to “travel and see the world” will succeed and grow professionally. For these reasons, I felt that it was important to give human and personal perspectives to this process. The crew members quoted below have come from various backgrounds and cultures but have all demonstrated the values and characteristics needed for working for a cruise line.”

Jean-Philippe Malric
Principal – Pro Sea Staff

Benoit Sicard – Cruise Ship Youth Counselor

“I worked as a Youth Counselor for two summer seasons and I could not have asked for a more rewarding experience. I love to travel and I love to teach. Having the opportunity to work on a cruise ship as a Youth Counselor, allowed me to visit places in Europe I could have never afforded to travel to on my own and to do what I enjoy doing most in my professional life, teaching. I do admit that my first few weeks were difficult. The days were long and my schedules often hectic but overall, I stuck to it and it got easier. For me, the most challenging aspect of the job was the fact that we all work seven days a week, that took a little of getting used to. However, we all found the time to squeeze it all in and have fun in the process. On my second contract, I was also assigned to a cruise ship in the Mediterranean and revisited some of my favorite ports. I suspect that I will rejoin on other contracts when not teaching.”

Cruise ship testimonials - counselor
Cruise ship testimonials - front desk

Fabienne Grosso – Front Desk

“Working at the Front Desk of a cruise ship is a bit like working at Grand Central at peak hours. The first ship I worked on carried approximately 3200 passengers and in all honesty, I felt like all of them stopped by my station at one point in time. The work is challenging and sometimes stressful as passengers come see you for every possible scenario and you are expected to have all the answers. You wear many hats, answer the same questions over and over as you are the first point of contact for passengers. Customer service is paramount in this industry and so the expectations are very high. My experience in hotels and hospitality prior to joining for my first cruise line contract was definitely very helpful as I possessed the basics of customer service and was therefore able to settle in quickly. The one aspect I was challenged with is definitely the volume of passengers. If I were to recommend one thing to anyone wanting to apply for a position on a ship is to be prepared to be flexible and to practice “smiling” for long periods of time – trust me even the most challenging customers lose steam when being greeted with a smile.”

Celia Pinto Teixeira – Cruise Ship Nurse

“Prior to joining for my first contract as a cruise ship nurse, I had worked as an Emergency Nurse in a busy hospital in Madrid for 7 years and whilst I had researched the position of shipboard nurse, I must admit that I was not as prepared as I could have been for the position. In my experience as a nurse on land, I always worked in one area of a hospital, in my case ER. On board, I found myself having to work in several areas. As a shipboard nurse, I was working as lab technician, receptionist, X-Ray technician, first responder, etc. Most medical teams on board are composed of 5 nurses and 2 doctors and all cruise ship nurses are expected to rotate to different areas of the medical facility. I found this aspect professionally very enriching. The volume of passengers and crew we treat is high and every possible medical scenario is to be expected. I just completed my first contract and I highly recommend the position for nurses with a background similar to mine.”

Cruise ship testimonials - registered nurse
Cruise ship testimonials - pastry chef

Ricardo Guzman – Cruise Ship Pastry Chef

“If one day someone had told me that I would be baking over 50,000 breakfast pastries a week, I would have ran away and yet today, I admit that it has become a norm for me working as a Pastry Chef on board a cruise ship. However, the most challenging aspect for me was not found in the Galley. The lack of personal space was definitely the aspect of working at sea I struggled with at first. The ships are big but it is not easy to find your personal space. At home, at the end of a long day, I get to go home and speak to whomever I want to or sometimes no one! On ships, you are always with a fellow crew member or passenger. That aspect takes a little adjusting to.”

Give it a go, join the crew!

Back To Top