Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

 
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 17-10-2012, 15:30   #1
Registered User
 
capn_cranky's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Boat: Fav. Lagoon 440
Posts: 12
Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Dear friends,

This year, I almost bought a 42' cat in the caribbean which included training and some connections that would kick-start me into chartering. Unfortunately, the deal fell through and I am back to the bottom of the ladder.

I am considering a second career as a crew member and have been acquiring education (CYA) in advance of sea-hours. I've taken sailing courses in live-a-board cruising (35'), VHF, navigation, celestial navigation, and hope to take an advanced cruising course next year. I will require sea-hours before I move on to the IYT Yachtmaster credentials.

I've been told that crewing can be as easy as hanging out on a dock in the caribbean and asking for work. But what if I want a longer term commitment? Where do I go? Small charter yachts? Schooners? What's the best idea if I want to gain hours and experience in the caribbean?
__________________

__________________
Arrrrr,
capn_cranky
capn_cranky is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 15:37   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2011
Boat: WTB Lagoon or Leopard 38'-40'
Posts: 1,271
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

What are your credentials?
Perky young people-person with great cooking skills?
Crotchety old salt with torn jeans and greasy fingernails?

What do you like to do?
Entertain wealthy vacationers from Europe and South America?
Fix engines and scrub decks?
Stay up all night watching for little lights on the horizon?

You need to start by understanding what a boat is, who operates them, and for what purposes... from there, you should have an understanding of where to find the jobs, who you need to talk to, and what you need to say to them.
__________________

ArtM is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 15:54   #3
Registered User
 
capn_cranky's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Boat: Fav. Lagoon 440
Posts: 12
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Thanks Art,

I'm an optimistic, sun-loving, mid-life career changer wanting to be involved in the sailing yacht charter business, but I am just worried about consistency of income. I see myself as a jack-of-all-trades wanting to make sure vacationers have a great experience. My end-goal is to captain such a vessel myself... some day.

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtM View Post
What are your credentials?
Perky young people-person with great cooking skills?
Crotchety old salt with torn jeans and greasy fingernails?

What do you like to do?
Entertain wealthy vacationers from Europe and South America?
Fix engines and scrub decks?
Stay up all night watching for little lights on the horizon?

You need to start by understanding what a boat is, who operates them, and for what purposes... from there, you should have an understanding of where to find the jobs, who you need to talk to, and what you need to say to them.
__________________
Arrrrr,
capn_cranky
capn_cranky is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:03   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2011
Boat: WTB Lagoon or Leopard 38'-40'
Posts: 1,271
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Quote:
Originally Posted by capn_cranky View Post
Thanks Art,

I'm an optimistic, sun-loving, mid-life career changer wanting to be involved in the sailing yacht charter business, but I am just worried about consistency of income. I see myself as a jack-of-all-trades wanting to make sure vacationers have a great experience. My end-goal is to captain such a vessel myself... some day.
I'm not in that business (yet), but my solid impression is that "consistency of income" is not one of the primary benefits of such a job. Is income consistency critical for you? Or can you learn to live on a highly variable income?

As I recently said to another poster, these jobs range from bumming rides from lonely circumnavigators to being captain of the Norwegian Epic. You will be somewhere in between.

How you get your credentials and earn your seatime is up to you. It depends on what you need from the job, and what you have to offer, and how flexible you will be to earn a paycheck.

You seem to have a romantic vision of being a boatbum - which is cool if you are financially and physically capable of it - but if you have financial obligations, require healthcare coverage, want a steady paycheck, etc then you have to enter the paid labor market. The job will be more than sitting on a foredeck knocking back sundowners, but then that's not really a career. If you want to retire to the Caribbean on someone else's boat, that's one thing. If you want a career as a seaman, that's another.
ArtM is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:19   #5
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 21,508
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

I had a friend and his wife that worked on luxury yachts, eventually he skippered. I would think hanging around Ft Lauderdale, and checking the crew postings on line would get you started. Look clean, well groomed etc. These yachts are maintained constantly and then are told be somewhere on a certain date.... and off they go! Getting good crew is probably a challenge for the boat manager, so if you are what they want it will likely be pretty much a full time thing.
__________________
"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard











Cheechako is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:20   #6
Registered User
 
capn_cranky's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Boat: Fav. Lagoon 440
Posts: 12
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Thanks Art,

This is what I need to hear. There's nothing romantic about being poor, so the next step is to figure out how to career as a seaman and save the small vessels for vacation. Then again, I could be a drifter if I could make 35K per year. I'll look into the career route for now. Any advice is welcome.


Quote:
Originally Posted by ArtM View Post
I'm not in that business (yet), but my solid impression is that "consistency of income" is not one of the primary benefits of such a job. Is income consistency critical for you? Or can you learn to live on a highly variable income?

As I recently said to another poster, these jobs range from bumming rides from lonely circumnavigators to being captain of the Norwegian Epic. You will be somewhere in between.

How you get your credentials and earn your seatime is up to you. It depends on what you need from the job, and what you have to offer, and how flexible you will be to earn a paycheck.

You seem to have a romantic vision of being a boatbum - which is cool if you are financially and physically capable of it - but if you have financial obligations, require healthcare coverage, want a steady paycheck, etc then you have to enter the paid labor market. The job will be more than sitting on a foredeck knocking back sundowners, but then that's not really a career. If you want to retire to the Caribbean on someone else's boat, that's one thing. If you want a career as a seaman, that's another.
__________________
Arrrrr,
capn_cranky
capn_cranky is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:24   #7
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: San Diego
Boat: Pearson 39-2 "Sea Story"
Posts: 1,109
Quote:
Originally Posted by capn_cranky
Then again, I could be a drifter if I could make 35K per year.
Could you please clarify this comment?
__________________
SV Sea Story adventures
Greenhand is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:26   #8
Registered User
 
capn_cranky's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Boat: Fav. Lagoon 440
Posts: 12
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

I visited Ft. Lauderdale last year or so and loved it. The example you gave is one of my fears.. basically the idea of freelancing for 1 week here or 2 weeks there, always chasing the money. I'd much prefer a salary, but I guess that would mean giving up the adventure. I'm beside myself... what's more important... income or adventure. Not sure anymore.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Cheechako View Post
I had a friend and his wife that worked on luxury yachts, eventually he skippered. I would think hanging around Ft Lauderdale, and checking the crew postings on line would get you started. Look clean, well groomed etc. These yachts are maintained constantly and then are told be somewhere on a certain date.... and off they go! Getting good crew is probably a challenge for the boat manager, so if you are what they want it will likely be pretty much a full time thing.
__________________
Arrrrr,
capn_cranky
capn_cranky is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:33   #9
Registered User
 
capn_cranky's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Boat: Fav. Lagoon 440
Posts: 12
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Quote:
Originally Posted by Greenhand View Post
Could you please clarify this comment?
RE: Then again, I could be a drifter if I could make 35K per year.

Hi Greenhand,

I meant that I would likely be interested in crewing piecemeal (drifting from boat to boat) if my year-end totalled 35K. Anything less may keep my legs attached to land.
__________________
Arrrrr,
capn_cranky
capn_cranky is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:36   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2011
Boat: WTB Lagoon or Leopard 38'-40'
Posts: 1,271
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Quote:
Originally Posted by capn_cranky View Post
I visited Ft. Lauderdale last year or so and loved it. The example you gave is one of my fears.. basically the idea of freelancing for 1 week here or 2 weeks there, always chasing the money. I'd much prefer a salary, but I guess that would mean giving up the adventure. I'm beside myself... what's more important... income or adventure. Not sure anymore.
This thought process has led me to understand the old stereotype of the sailor with a "girl in every port". It solves the simple problem of where you will go between jobs, and how you will get your laundry done!
ArtM is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:42   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2012
Location: San Diego
Boat: Pearson 39-2 "Sea Story"
Posts: 1,109
Quote:
Originally Posted by capn_cranky

RE: Then again, I could be a drifter if I could make 35K per year.

Hi Greenhand,

I meant that I would likely be interested in crewing piecemeal (drifting from boat to boat) if my year-end totalled 35K. Anything less may keep my legs attached to land.
Yeah, I was hoping their was some irony there... 35k is a very respectable income and not at all that of a drifter. It may not be enough to keep up with the Jones', but it is plenty to keep a roof over your head, or a deck under your feet, if you prefer.
__________________
SV Sea Story adventures
Greenhand is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:48   #12
Registered User
 
Notyet's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2012
Location: Greece (for now)
Boat: Dean Ocean Liner 365
Posts: 62
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Adventure and security are arch enemies. If you want more adventure, you'll have to give up some security. If you want more security... you get the point.
But you can always just start trying out. If it doesn't work for you, you can go back to a regular job on shore, right?
Notyet is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:56   #13
Registered User
 
capn_cranky's Avatar

Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Toronto, Ontario, Canada
Boat: Fav. Lagoon 440
Posts: 12
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Hi Notyet,

I was hoping the middleman would make a comment... "give it a try and see if it's for you"... I may just have to do this while I can. Thank you for this - I appreciate it. Testimonials are welcome.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Notyet View Post
Adventure and security are arch enemies. If you want more adventure, you'll have to give up some security. If you want more security... you get the point.
But you can always just start trying out. If it doesn't work for you, you can go back to a regular job on shore, right?
__________________
Arrrrr,
capn_cranky
capn_cranky is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 16:58   #14
Armchair Bucketeer
 
David_Old_Jersey's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 10,012
Images: 4
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Well, you seem to have already discovered how many make money from boats.

From selling courses.

Albeit the "Cruising" Courses seem to be a particularly US thing (no doubt they will migrate accross in time)......as it sounds like you are not flat broke, I would work out where you want to go and post up on the internet as looking to crew and can contribute to "expenses" (ideas of what that will be do vary!) - putting hand in pocket will mean you likely have the pick of the litter.......use that as a way to gain knowledge, experiance & sea miles and more importantly to suss out what is on the ground and what you like.......odds are that even with courses behind you that will have to start at the bottom (i.e. for piss poor money), but learning the ropes from the ground up (on someone else's dime) is always useful before you bet own money on being da boss.
David_Old_Jersey is offline  
Old 17-10-2012, 17:17   #15
Senior Cruiser
 
Cheechako's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Skagit City, WA
Posts: 21,508
Re: Newbie Questions about starting to crew

Quote:
Originally Posted by capn_cranky View Post
I visited Ft. Lauderdale last year or so and loved it. The example you gave is one of my fears.. basically the idea of freelancing for 1 week here or 2 weeks there, always chasing the money. I'd much prefer a salary, but I guess that would mean giving up the adventure. I'm beside myself... what's more important... income or adventure. Not sure anymore.
Actually, I wasnt indicating you would need to move around constantly.
"Getting good crew is probably a challenge for the boat manager, so if you are what they want it will likely be pretty much a full time thing. "
But I do have a feeling it could be seasonal.... depending... size of boat, wealth of owner. (I'm sure Paul Allen's yacht has year round crew!)
__________________

__________________
"I spent most of my money on Booze, Broads and Boats. The rest I wasted" - Elmore Leonard











Cheechako is offline  
 

Tags
crew

Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 00:13.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2019, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.