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Old 10-10-2012, 18:09   #1
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Is there another way?

Hi, I'm new to this forum and this is my first post. How do you get a start in the Cruising industry?

From the research I've conducted for a beginner it would go something like this:
1. Join a yacht club / Sailing forum
2. Build your miles up by volunteering and do courses through RYA until you get a commercial license
3. Use the equity in your house to finance the business plan, marketing and of course the Yacht
4. Go broke

Or is there another way? After countless hours of scouring the website forums and earbashing ever old and bold sailor I could get my hands, they only came up with the 4 points. Until I found some sailing schools that would take me on under an internship. Terrific idea if I was 21 yrs old and looked great in a bikini. BUT I'm not 21 and I don't look good in a bikini. What I am is 42 yr old who has spent his entire life in the Navy and is now looking for life outside the Military. If I was the type of guy who wanted to sign himself up to a Monday to Friday 9 to 5 job, I wouldn't have joined the Navy.

Do I really have to:
1. Put all my life savings into this at high risk or
2. Submit myself to serf wages to pay for the courses and detriment my wife and kids

or is there another way?

As a beginner I humbly ask for some pearls of wisdom and guidance from the vast experience that exists throughout this network.

I anxiously await the outcome


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Old 10-10-2012, 18:17   #2
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Re: Is there another way?

Welcome Loki! I am not an expert on the commercial side of cruising, except as a person who funnels their money to them.

I'm sure you'll get plenty of responses.

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Old 10-10-2012, 18:31   #3
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Re: Is there another way?

Am not really sure what you mean by "the Cruising Industry"?

Are you simply referring to running a crewed (or bareboat?) charter businesss, from making money off those who are using boats for extended vacations - or from the marine tourism industry in general. or anything which makes a buck involving boats?

Having asked those questions, you have nonetheless pretty much identified the basic business model - at least for many.
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Old 10-10-2012, 20:24   #4
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Re: Is there another way?

Not sure exactly what you mean either, but if you are talking about working in the boating industry, it seems (at least to me) that the most difficult part might be getting a Captain's license. And the big issue there is the amount of time you need to have logged.

I haven't looked at all the requirements, but you need almost a year documented on the water. Not sure the size of the boat matters though, so getting a small boat you can sail near you might be an option for that.
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Old 10-10-2012, 20:37   #5
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Re: Is there another way?

What navy were you in? (Remember, this is an international forum.) Did your years of service in that navy include significant sea time? Were you trained to operate boats, or do you have other special skills such as engineering or weather forecasting as a result of your naval training? Could you pass a Rules of the Road test if you took one without training for it?

It's all about skills. Give us an idea what skills you've developed, and there's a chance that someone in this forum can suggest ways to cash in on them. Otherwise, you're starting over from scratch.
cruising is entirely about showing up--in boat shoes.
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Old 10-10-2012, 21:24   #6
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Re: Is there another way?

Where you are makes a big difference. Different countries have differing requirements for those working in the industry.
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Old 10-10-2012, 22:42   #7
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Re: Is there another way?

All of the marine industries in just about every developed nation require you to have relevant qualifications. As I dont know what country you are in, I will assume you are in one of the nations developed nations for the sake of this conversation.

No doubt, with navy training you already have several certificates of assorted type, Sea Rescue, First aid etc.

With that you need to decide if its sail or stink boats you wish to work on.

If its sail, you will need to start building hours and get to professional sailing school and commence sail training. To get the relevant Certs.

If its Charter work you want to do, speak to a few charter Co's and tell them your goals. They will give you the exact requirements for an employee.

Yes, you will have to commit to Serf wages unless you spend a 100k on a boat and start your own business.
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Old 11-10-2012, 00:30   #8
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Re: Is there another way?

doing your stcw95 will allow you to work on stink boats,fishing boats,commercial boats without nessacarily needing other get a foot in the door.example,chef,engineers assistant,deckhand,purcer.
couple that with a 2day motorboat course,and you can drive the tender!
a meol or eng1-2 will get you in the engine room on a big yacht
a dive master qualification will get you working in the industry

working in a marina will also open up oppertunities,as will a boatyard
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Old 11-10-2012, 09:22   #9
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Re: Is there another way?

Following up on atoll's post.

I work in the industry as an instructor.
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Old 12-10-2012, 08:13   #10
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Re: Is there another way?

It might help to frame your question in terms of your career and lifestyle expectations. For example, what is your motivation to enter a Marine career? What kind of occupation are you looking for? Do you intend to have or support a family?

This field ranges from the volunteer boat bum looking for free passage to the captain of the Exxon Valdeez or the Norwegian Epic. You can bet the captain of the Epic is earning better than a fair wage, a nice home, and likely has a family who spends at least some time at sea with him.

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