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- Utility galley workers have the most difficult job on a cruise ship, the maritime lawyer Michael Guilford told Business Insider.
- Utility galley workers are responsible for a number of tasks related to food service, including handling heavy trash bags, washing cooking equipment with scalding-hot water, and using dangerous cleaning chemicals without proper protective clothing.
- Some clients have come to Guilford after being blinded by cleaning chemicals that have splashed in their eyes or having skin burned off their hands, he said.
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There are many difficult jobs on a cruise ship, but the hardest, most physically demanding position requires working up to 14 hours a day for less than $700 a month, according to a lawyer who represents cruise-ship employees.
That job belongs to a utility galley worker, the maritime lawyer Michael Guilford told Business Insider. Utility galley workers are responsible for a number of tasks related to food service, including handling heavy trash bags, washing cooking equipment with scalding-hot water, and using dangerous cleaning chemicals without proper protective clothing. Some clients have come to Guilford after being blinded by cleaning chemicals that have splashed in their eyes or having skin burned off their hands, he said.
"This is not your average Mr. Clean that you're using around the house," he said. "This is serious stuff."
Utility galley workers often work 12 to 14 hours a day, seven days a week, for just $500 to $700 a month, Guilford said. In some cases, they're not able to take scheduled breaks but are later required by their supervisors to change their time sheets to make it appear as if they took the breaks. Guilford said time-sheet manipulation was a common issue he heard from clients.
"The wage fraud that goes on on these boats is unbelievable," he said.
While the difficulty of the utility galley job exceeds all others on a cruise ship, waiters and room stewards, who clean passenger cabins, also have some of the most difficult jobs, Guilford said. Waiters have to carry heavy trays that can lead to back and shoulder injuries, while room stewards have to clean at a rapid pace, especially before or after passengers board their ship. Sometimes, they'll have to clean as many as 20 cabins in just three hours, Guilford said.
Each position makes $1,200 to $1,500 a month, Guilford said. While waiters work 10 to 12 hours a day, room stewards are on call for 24 hours.
"The conditions are harsh," Guilford said.
A representative for the Cruise Lines International Association, a trade association for the cruise industry, told Business Insider that all member cruise lines must follow regulations set by the International Maritime Organization and the International Labour Organization that govern the treatment of cruise-ship employees.
"The cruise industry strives to provide a high-quality work environment for its seafarers by offering ongoing training, career advancement and the opportunity to travel the world," the representative said.
"The cruise industry also fully supports the International Maritime Labour Convention, also known as the 'Seafarers' Bill of Rights,' which sets international standards addressing hours of work and rest, health and safety, and living conditions for seafarers and requires governments to ensure ships are in compliance," the representative added.
Among the CLIA's members are Carnival Cruise Line, Norwegian Cruise Line, and Royal Caribbean International.
Have you worked on a cruise ship? Do you have a story to share? Email this reporter at email@example.com.
- Read more about cruise ships:
- A lawyer who represents cruise passengers reveals the one thing you need to know before getting on a cruise ship
- Working on a cruise ship can be brutal — but 2 lawyers who rep cruise-line workers explain why even terrible cruise-ship jobs can be attractive
- A lawyer who reps cruise-ship workers reveals the most shocking thing he's heard about their job
- 10 cruise ship horror stories that will make you want to stay on land
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What is the hardest job on the ship? ›
While the difficulty of the utility galley job exceeds all others on a cruise ship, waiters and room stewards, who clean passenger cabins, also have some of the most difficult jobs, Guilford said.What is the job of a stateroom steward? ›
Performs routine duties in cleaning and servicing of guest rooms and baths under supervision of housekeeping supervisor. Cabin Steward promotes a positive image to guests and must be pleasant, honest, friendly and should also able to address guest requests and problems.What is the job of purser in cruise ship? ›
The purser on a cruise ship is a staff member in charge of financial matters onboard. Specifically, the Chief Purser oversees a staff that manages money and accounts, as well as many guest services on the ship. Behind the scenes, the purser's duties include accounting of cash during each sailing.What are the duties and responsibilities of cruise line workers? ›
Cruise ship workers provide services to passengers on cruise ships. Besides assisting in the operation of the ship, they may serve food and drinks, maintain cabins and public areas, lead shipboard activities, and provide entertainment.How many hours a day do cruise ship employees work? ›
Your daily work schedule while onboard will depend on your particular position, but you can expect to work seven days a week and anywhere between 10-13 hours per day.How hard is working on a cruise ship? ›
Cruise ship crew life can be intense: long hours, no days off for months, lots of rules, demanding guests, small living quarters and little to no privacy. But working on ships also allows you to travel to places some only dream of while making some amazing connections with fellow seafarers from all over the world.How much do Cabin Steward get paid on cruise ships? ›
Cabin Stewards: Average Salary of $650-$1,150 monthly, including gratuities. If they work on a luxury cruise line, they may receive over $2,000 each month with tips.How much does a cruise ship steward get paid? ›
Average Carnival Cruise Line Steward monthly pay in the United States is approximately $5,271, which is 183% above the national average.How much do you tip a Cabin Steward on a cruise? ›
There aren't any hard-and-fast guidelines for this type of tip since it's contingent on your experience, but $25 to $40 on behalf of a couple roughly works out to an extra $2 to $3 per person, per day, for a seven-night cruise.What is the average pay for a cruise ship worker? ›
As of Mar 3, 2023, the average annual pay for a Cruise Ship Worker in the United States is $49,005 a year. Just in case you need a simple salary calculator, that works out to be approximately $23.56 an hour. This is the equivalent of $942/week or $4,083/month.
How much does a celebrity cruise ship captain make? ›
$88,765. The estimated total pay for a Captain at Celebrity Cruises is $88,765 per year.Do cruise ship employees live on the ship? ›
Crew members live on cruise ships while they are working onboard, and they have an entire area of the ship just for them. How much different are crew areas from guest areas, and what do these facilities look like? In some cases, crew areas are a lot like guest areas because some crew have guest privileges.How much does a cruise ship bosun make? ›
A bosun salary generally ranges between $3,500-5,000 per month, starting at $3,500 for those with minimal experience. Factors that might lead to a higher bosun salary include watersport certification, such as those all-important diving or kitesurfing credentials, and engineering experience or qualifications.What is the highest position on a cruise ship? ›
Captain / Master
The Captain is the highest ranking officer and the Master of the cruise ship.
A Yeoman purser or ship's purser is the person on a ship principally responsible for the handling of money on board.Do cruise employees get free food? ›
Do cruise ship employees get free food? A majority of cruise ship lines offer their employees free food throughout the duration of their contracts. There's typically a special kitchen on the boat that prepares food for staff members. Employees may eat in separate dining areas, depending on their classifications.What is the average age to work on a cruise ship? ›
In general, the minimum age to work on cruise ships is 21 years old. Although there are some exceptions where the minimum age to work onboard is 18 years old. The average crew member at Carnival is between 25 and 45 years old.Who gets paid the most on a cruise ship? ›
It comes as no surprise that the ship's captain has the biggest salary from working on a cruise ship. The master of the vessel has a huge responsibility for ship safety for crew and passengers along with navigation. The captain can earn almost $100,000 manually depending on the cruise line and experience.How much do cruise ship workers make per month? ›
While ZipRecruiter is seeing monthly salaries as high as $8,542 and as low as $1,208, the majority of Cruise Ship Worker salaries currently range between $2,500 (25th percentile) to $4,833 (75th percentile) across the United States.How much do cruise ship workers make an hour? ›
While ZipRecruiter is seeing hourly wages as high as $46.63 and as low as $6.97, the majority of Hourly Cruise Ship Worker wages currently range between $14.18 (25th percentile) to $26.44 (75th percentile) across the United States.
How does Royal Caribbean treat their employees? ›
they take care of their employees and very family oriented
great company to work for, very flexible with schedules, benefits are great, they really care and do a lot for their employees on every level. i would highly recommend working for Royal.
The salary range for a Cruise Waiter job is from $28,846 to $38,010 per year in the United States. Click on the filter to check out Cruise Waiter job salaries by hourly, weekly, biweekly, semimonthly, monthly, and yearly.What is the minimum salary in cruise ship? ›
Average Carnival Cruise Lines Commie salary in India is ₹ 4.1 Lakhs for experience between 2 years to 8 years Commie salary at Carnival Cruise Lines India ranges between ₹ 0.6 Lakhs to ₹ 8.0 Lakhs.What happens if you don't tip on a cruise? ›
What happens if you don't tip on a cruise? Most cruise lines work on the basis that the crew members' pay structure is based on receiving tips. If you choose not to tip, for whatever reason, you are impacting the salaries of the crew who have served you so well during your cruise.How much do you tip on a 7 day cruise? ›
In general, plan on giving $16–$23 in gratuities per day for each passenger. Note that the amount should be tabulated for each individual in your party—don't try to tip once per couple or group. So if you're planning to go on a 7-day cruise, expect to give a total of between $112 and $161 per person in gratuities.How much does a cabin steward get paid? ›
Average salary for a Cabin Steward in India is 4.5 Lakhs per year (₹37.5k per month).What is the highest position on a ship? ›
Captain / Master
The Captain is the highest ranking officer and the Master of the cruise ship. He/she has a full authority to make executive decisions in order to preserve the life and safety of the ship's personnel and guest and must apply extreme care and proper judgement according to...
The lowest ranking personnel in the deck department. An ordinary seaman (OS) generally helps out with work that able seamen do. Other tasks include standing lookout, and generally cleaning duties.
Rough weather, inspections, operations, lack of sleep, being far from family for months can really upset everyone. When you are tired, you cannot just take a day off. We face many challenges, and this job is not meant to be for everyone.What is the coolest job in the Navy? ›
Navy area of specialties include:
- Humanitarian Aid.
- Law & Management.
- Repair & Maintenance.
- Special Warfare.
- Weapons & Electronics.
Who is the highest paid person on cruise ship? ›
It comes as no surprise that the ship's captain has the biggest salary from working on a cruise ship. The master of the vessel has a huge responsibility for ship safety for crew and passengers along with navigation. The captain can earn almost $100,000 manually depending on the cruise line and experience.What rank is a doctor on a ship? ›
If you enter as a licensed physician, your rank will typically begin at captain or major (Army/Air Force) or lieutenant or lieutenant commander (Navy), but it may be higher depending on where you are in your civilian career.Is it better to be higher on a cruise ship or lower? ›
The higher the deck, the better and, often, more panoramic the view. Cabins on top decks aren't always the best on the ship, but many suites and specialty cabin categories are typically located on upper decks.What is a captain's wife called? ›
In only one of all the thirteen seagoing stories is an adjective used about a captain's wife: 'plucky'.What do pirates call their lovers? ›
matey (or mate)What is the salary of ship crew? ›
The average salary of a Able Seaman at Shipping Corporation of India is ₹ 5.1 Lakhs per year which is 42% more than average salary of a Able Seaman in India which receives a salary of ₹ 3.6 Lakhs per year.What are the most common illnesses most seafarers acquire while working onboard any ship or vessel? ›
Because of their nature of work, seafarers are bound to visit many ports in different parts of the world and are thus exposed to various pandemic and epidemic diseases such as malaria, cholera, yellow fever, tuberculosis etc.What are the most common illnesses most seafarers acquire while working onboard any ship or vessel discuss? ›
Hypertension is mentioned as one of the major occupation hazards onboard merchant and offshore fleets. Excessive stress, fatigue, loneliness, smoking, consumption of alcohol, lack of physical activity etc. are the main causes for the same. Hypertension can also lead to other illnesses like stroke, renal failure etc.What are the common problems of a seafarers? ›
They shared 5 most common problems: they experienced homesickness and seasickness within a few months; long distance relationships suffered; they hardly adjust to other crew onboard, and they suffered fatigue onboard ship.What military jobs are top secret? ›
Intelligence, information technology, linguistics, communications and medical jobs typically require holding a security clearance.
What is the best paying job in the Navy? ›
Us Navy Salaries By Department
Our data shows that employees in engineering roles earn the highest wages at Us Navy, with an average yearly salary of $66,018.
- Aircraft Launch and Recovery Officers. ...
- Armored Assault Vehicle Officers. ...
- Artillery and Missile Officers. ...
- Command and Control Center Officers. ...
- Infantry Officers. ...
- Special Forces Officers. ...
- Military Officer Special and Tactical Operations Leaders. ...
- Medical, Pharmacy, and Dental Services.