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Old 30-01-2014, 11:27   #1
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Charter company's for experience?

Is there any or a hope of chartering companies out there that would hire a I suppose called green horn to staff a chartered vessel?

Would I need first the stw95 certification even before offering my self to be even considered? Or are there companies who would hire and work someone like me who is new to being on the ocean but who can cook, work on electrical and mechanical things, and understand maps and could pick up navigating with a little hands on experance.

I wish I could walk the docks more the closest near me is Liberty Island State Park and well thinking about this for almost a year I spent last summer each weekend on my local lake just putting around and sleeping till I had to show up again to my job Monday morning.

Another question. What is the going rate for crew pay? If I could work and keep my place and pay be anywhere near what I'm doing now I'd give my boss a 2 week notice and be on a plane somewhere to whom be willing to have me. Even a weekend voyage somewhere leaving nyc area I could go on without a hitch. Just how common is something like that?

Just wondering around with no destionation to be had.
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Old 30-01-2014, 12:01   #2
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Re: Charter company's for experience?

First, not clear on what you mean by "staff" a charter vessel. On smaller boats, more or less under 50' there us usually only one hired hand on a bareboat charter and that's the captain. Crewed charters in that size range are usually husband/wife teams. Boats that aren't owned by a couple will still have a captain and will be looking for someone with gourmet cooking skills, ability to do a mirror finish varnish job and be able to stand watch, handle sails, do maid service, etc.

The big fancy yachts with a larger crew will also be looking for someone with skills except for the basic maid/janitor jobs. If you are an ace diesel mechanic and know AC and DC electric and can do it up to ABYC code or similar then you can look for an engineering position on a big boat.

Having classes and certifications and taking courses can't hurt, but what will get you the job is knowledge and experience, how you present yourself and what you can contribute. Without that then all the classes in the world will get you nowhere.

At the same time, I know plenty of guys working in the charter trade in a number of jobs that have never taken a class, have no certifications, etc. Just experience and know how. Note that this is fine as long as you aren't taking passengers for hire which does require a captain's license.

Bottom line, you need to pick up some experience and develop some skills to have a good chance at getting a job on a boat. Start at the bottom at one of the charter companies. You'll be changing oil, cleaning toilets, hauling parts around. Do this for a while, show up on time and sober and you can work your way into delivery crew and start moving up. Or you can just look for boats looking for extra crew to help on deliveries and start building sea time.
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Old 30-01-2014, 12:55   #3
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Re: Charter company's for experience?

Skipmac, thank you for the reply. I mean by staff as any position under a captain I suppose. If that makes any sence. I am not afraid of labor, mechanics and oil changes I have not a issue with, cleaning toilets ehhh part of living out there just hope I have no open cuts on my hands and don't let the smell get to me if real bad. Cooking is not gourmet so to say but I can follow recipes as well as suggestions to put things together.

I sure will read up on ABCY codes it appears as a next step for me to do some research on.

All in all tho there are companies who would hire a willing and able body to assist who is also willing to work for compensation? If so great!

This is a new adventure for me since I have accomplished one dream I have in this life. 10 years ago I never thought I would do it but found a way to get my CDL (license to drive tractor trailers) and dropped over 500k miles besides all the little trucks I have operated. When I was 18 I was told I'd never be hired if I got my CDL without experance. 3 years later I found a big company and signed up with them and drove a few years getting the experance needed to be hired locally for me.

I've had good experances presenting myself for hire as well. For what I know, I know I can get it done.

A engineering position does sound right up my alley after getting time out to sea. Ace mechanic diesel I will say border line. I'm good at figuring it out as I see it but as of yet never pulled a motor completely apart till I have my motor to tear apart.

Again Skipmac thank you for your words.

Just wondering around with no destionation to be had.
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Old 30-01-2014, 13:01   #4
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Re: Charter company's for experience?

The main problem is that there are lots and lots of guys like you that want to earn a living around boats that already have experience. If I was trying to do this I would go to where the charters are like Tortola (not sure about the work permit deal but there's lots of US citizens working there so must not be too hard) and go for an entry level job working, cleaning, fixing the boats. A big problem for the charter companies is finding employees that are reliable and will stick around for a while.

Show up, stick it out, be reliable and you'll have a really good chance to move up in the company. Lots of turnover.
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Old 30-01-2014, 13:45   #5
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Re: Charter company's for experience?

If I could survive cleaning and fixing I'd sure go. Just have to figure out that route. Like how to get the visa and place to live. Unless I can just sail my aquarius instead of selling it and live aboard that. Be a far fetched plan. I bet possible tho.

I'll do some looking into Tortola as well if it can be a possible path for gaining what's needed. I'm liking lots of turnover that means new spots openning but why the high turnover? People moving on to bigger places, or is it how the charters are managed, other staff, just can not survive on the wages? People not wanting to work? Different then what was imagined?

Where are other places as well with work like in Tortola I may be able to seek as well?

This jump I'm approaching it a lot different then any skill I have in the past. Being in this forum for one is a start and asking. Previously I just presented myself and asked to be hired. Weather it be in the kitchens, pizzerias, trucking or towing companies when I had bits and pieces of knowledge to be still considered unexperienced and still got hired to learn. All those places I just saw a openning and thought sure why not I would like to do that not thinking about a thing just a change of scenery and skill to tuck away. Besides trucking which was a dream I could see I could get. Sailing a little tougher for a while back having little time to even set aside just working my tail off treading water I think it's time to focus to the seas.

Just wondering around with no destionation to be had.
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Old 30-01-2014, 14:00   #6
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Re: Charter company's for experience?

I used to work for a major charter company, and started at $300usd a week working as a mechanic, electrician, customer service, plumber, cleaner, dinghy tech, charter boat captain, and running the chase boat. I usually worked 50-60 hours a week. This was with a 200t commercial captains license.

I used to make more money doing freelance rigging work after hours versus my base salary in the charter industry.

They like to tell people, "You are being paid in sunshine."

That being said, the experience has allowed me to have a very successful career in yachting after getting out of the yacht charter business.
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Old 30-01-2014, 19:43   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Wonderinlost View Post
Is there any or a hope of chartering companies out there that would hire a I suppose called green horn to staff a chartered vessel?

Would I need first the stw95 certification even before offering my self to be even considered? Or are there companies who would hire and work someone like me who is new to being on the ocean but who can cook, work on electrical and mechanical things, and understand maps and could pick up navigating with a little hands on experance.

...
Short answer "yes".

Many of the crew I work with on charters are inexperienced.

You can cook well? If so, that's a very good skill to get you hired. Your other skills are a bonus (but don't say "maps" during your interview..nautical "maps" are called "charts"...unless you know navigation I would just skip that subject...not much navigation on charters anyway...the captain has likely run the route many times).

Most mid sized charter vesssel companies could careless about STWC etc and on that class of vessel it is not a legal requirement.

Much of the day to day business of running a charter is more about hospitality industry like skills than sailing skills...esp for the crew.

As posted, you wont get paid much. If a trip goes well, tips are likely to be more than your pay.
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Old 01-02-2014, 08:00   #8
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Re: Charter company's for experience?

Ok. Thank you FLLCatsailor and belizesailor.

Just wondering around with no destionation to be had.
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