How to apply to be successful


Do your research and try to find out as much information about life and working on cruise ships and global cruise lines as possible. Search the Internet and have a look in the libraries. Perhaps you will be asked about the cruise company at the interview.

If you are still unsure which positions you should go for, what qualifications you need, or if your experience is satisfactory and relevant, you can as well Google for additional info and to find helpful advice in order to get the job of your dreams.

Be very proactive and apply for jobs you are interested in and you think you’d be a suitable candidate for.

Before you apply for a cruise line job, you need to think about what kind of job you would like to have and what the real chances of getting it are. The chances of getting hired depend a lot upon when you apply, your qualifications and current openings.

Apply for specific jobs. Don’t just send an application for “any position available”. Look at the job descriptions of the various job positions available first.

Be consistent:

When you register on for cruise ship jobs, you can select the preferred positions you would like to work on. However, about half of you choose too many positions.

You cannot be a good Marketing Manager, Cook, Captain and Nurse at the same time. If you select too many unrelated positions, you will not succeed. You would look like someone who doesn’t know what he/she wants to do and no cruise line will hire you.

Be focused. For example, if you have some experience in catering, apply for relevant positions within the Food and Beverage department.

Do not apply for senior positions if you have no or little previous experience. Similarly, do not apply for jobs which require qualifications you don’t hold. You’d be wasting your and recruiters’ time.

Watch your language:

Too many job seekers use inappropriate language in their covering letters, emails, CVs and job applications.

Do not try to be cool and use textspeak. “Thnx 4 ur time”. This is certainly NOT appropriate in your email when enclosing your resume to the recruiter.

Although in some countries it is acceptable to mention God and recipient’s family in official correspondence, most recruiters and employers within the cruise line industry live in the Western countries and some might consider well intended “God bless you and your family” offending and annoying. Avoid it, be polite but straight to the point.

Do not make it difficult to find out about you

Special Resume:

Write a resume (curriculum vitae). See our instructions about how to write a good resume/CV. Send your resume with a cover letter to the recruitment agent or to the cruise line company, which has advertised the vacancies. Highlight the most important points in the covering letter, briefly stating what makes you a great candidate for the position.

You will be given/sent application forms if the recruitment agent or personnel department of the cruise line company assess your resume positively. Read the forms carefully. Fill them in, express yourself concisely and clearly. Attach the resume and the covering letter with the form, even if you have sent the resume earlier.

If the cruise lines are looking for a person with your qualities, education and experience, you will be invited for interview. The interviewer will try to find out about your experience, abilities, education and motivation for the job.

If you are successful, you will get a “Letter of Employment” a few weeks after the interview. The letter of employment includes information about the cruise ship, the date and place of embarkation, your job position and other instructions.

You will need to go for a medical examination and get the internationally recognised medical certificate.

If your cruise ship is calling at a US port/ports and you are a non-US citizen, you will have to apply for the US visa type C1 (transit visa) and D (for the seamen), since most cruise ships depart from the USA. If you have been hired through the recruitment agent, they will apply for the US visas on your behalf. Read more about at our tips for visas and work permits.

You will sign a contract, usually for 6 months, which you may prolong for up to 10 months upon agreement with your cruise line. A compulsory break (from 6 to 8 weeks) follows upon completion of your duties. If your work has been satisfactory, you will be offered another contract after the break.