Whatever your age and experience, the Yachting Industry can offer you a host of challenging and rewarding careers. The entry level for most careers is RYA MCA Yachtmaster Offshore. A few jobs will require a Commercial Endorsement and a few will require STCW Basic Safety Training such as mega yachts of over 24metres and commercial vessels carrying more than 13 passengers.
Flotilla Skipper – Flotilla Skippers have accommodation onboard the lead yacht and often in a shore based crew house during time off. It is a social job which entails briefing the flotilla on the passage for the day, guiding the yachts out of port in the morning and guiding them in every night. Evenings are spent with guests and the skipper can expect to eat and drink for free in many local restaurants. Contracts are usually awarded for a season in the Med or Caribbean but positions do come up regularly mid season.
Yacht Trainer – Often Flotilla companies need trainers to work shore based teaching guests from Beach Clubs the basics of sailing. You will have shore based accommodation, sailing around the local area for a few hours a day. If the job requires teaching an RYA course, you will need the additional qualification of RYA Cruising Instructor.
Sailing Instructor – Once a qualified Yachtmaster Offshore, you need to attend a week’s Cruising Instructor Training Course to become an RYA Cruising Instructor. You will be able to teach Competent Crew and Day Skipper courses, living onboard the yacht for the 5 day course. Schools usually provide breakfasts, lunches and some evening meals. For these posts you will need a Commercial Endorsement. (http://www.rya.org.uk/coursestraining/professional/commercialend/pages/commercialendorsements.aspx)
Charter Skipper -You will be responsible for all aspects of the operation and maintenance of the yacht which will include provisioning, providing breakfasts, lunches and some evening meals, organizing laundry, cleaning and undertaking any necessary repairs and routine servicing. This is a job best suited to couples with one person taking responsibility for the upkeep and sailing of the yacht and another responsible for provisioning, catering and housekeeping. Positions are still available for singles.
Superyacht Deckhand – These are the some of the most sought after jobs in the Yachting Industry so, unless you are very lucky, RYA MCA Yachtmaster is entry level for deckhands. The pay is excellent and you will be provided with uniforms and meals so your personal expenses are negligible. The job can be seen as glamorous as you get to rock up at the most prestigious harbours of the world but you will be rising early every morning, cleaning, painting and varnishing, to keep the exterior of the yacht in pristine condition. Progress is possible from deck crew to Bosun, Engineer, First or Second Mate and even Captain.
Superyacht Captain – Classic Sailing Yacht, Luxury Motor Yacht
The Captain of any vessel has one ultimate responsibility – the safe manning and operation of the yacht. They are answerable to the owner and will be in a decision making role with regards to staffing, budget management, customs, upkeep, repairs and be ready to take the yacht at a moment’s notice to wherever the owner requests it. Captains are often required to assume the role of host on charter yachts so must be highly skilled in dealing with people. Salaries are high.
Delivery Skipper – You will usually need plenty of experience and a minimum of 25,000 miles under your keel to be taken on as a skipper for a specialised delivery company. Owners have to be assured that you are capable of handling their prized possession with care. Most skippers are freelance and negotiate their own rates on a per mile basis. You might find yourself on short deliveries, moving yachts from container ships to their destination ports or half way around the world to new homes Down Under.