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Starting out in the super yacht industry is an exciting and rewarding choice of employment. Some choose to use the experience as a gap year while many others follow it as a long term and extremely rewarding career path.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (UK) (MCA) set the world standards which are followed by South Africa and many other countries.The industry provides safe and rewarding employment for young persons.

What do I need to qualify to work in this rewarding industry?

You will need to:

More Detail


In general this is a young person's career. A lot of people treat it as an interim career. However, an investment of 8 to 12 years of your life should guarantee you the opportunity to return home and purchase as a partner a substantial financial share in a business..

Hard work is rewarded through a clearly defined career path for deck officers and engineers.

The opportunity to travel is always there and you will see the sights of the world while working alongside the captains of industry.

If you fit the mould you can choose how far your career will take you.

Captain? "I'd love the responsibility."

Mate (First officer)? "I don't want the captain's responsibility but I love running the boat."

Bosun? I always get the best out of the crew without the officers' responsibility."

There is a place for everyone.

Where should I go

There are two main centres; the United States/ Caribbean area and the Mediterranean Sea.

Fort Lauderdale, Florida for the United States area and the starting point of the largest concentration of boats in the world. Antibes in France for the Mediterranean. Both have advantages and disadvantages. However, we recommend Fort Lauderdale simply because it is a year-round destination and a starting out point for the Caribbean Islands.

How do I prepare

We cover this point extensively during our crew training course and discuss at length your prospective interview, some of the visa pitfalls and what you can expect on arrival at either destination. This is an important part of the course and is extremely beneficial for both you and your parent's peace of mind.

We keep ourselves current with conditions at both venues by having one of our senior staff visit the local industry in Fort Lauderdale and Antibes annually.

Take charge of your future

Every moment on board should be a learning moment. Your experience is your future and you must ensure that the time spent is always beneficial. The biggest problem for a teaching establishment is when those prospective candidates think they have the required experience to take them to the next step up the ladder. They have the time but not the depth of knowledge required to progress. Please ensure that this is not you by ensuring all of your experience is converted into knowledge.

Ask how things work; show an interest when you are on watch take every chance to use the vessels instruments and charts to improve your experience. Try to join a vessel with a (cadet) program rather than one where the deck officers protect their positions.

What will I be doing

As a deck hand you will be cleaning everything outside the vessel. The boat must always look outstanding, the best it possibly can. A perfect picture from the top of the mast to the waterline. Excellence is required and is not negotiable.

Owners and masters are proud of the way their vessels look and you work hard at keeping up that appearance.

As a member of the interior crew (stewardess/steward) the inside of the vessel is your domain. Looking new is not good enough. it must always be immaculate. You must make everything look better than new. You will attend to the owners and their guests delivering the standard of service that is far superior to that of a five star hotel.