What are the Different Cruise Ship Jobs?

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  • Written By: Jessica Ellis
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 11 November 2019
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Taking a job on board a cruise ship can be the beginning of an exciting adventure for anyone who wants their career to include world traveler. People in a wide variety of careers can find a job that suits on these floating resorts that wander nearly every ocean in the world. Working on board a cruise ship can also be beneficial for those looking to save money, as room and board are usually part of the package with many cruise ship jobs.

For entertainers, cruise ship jobs are fun and plentiful. Cruise ships that specialize in longer trips need constantly changing entertainment to keep passengers excited and happy. Many larger ships offer several different venues for performers, including jazz clubs, discos, stand-up comedy clubs, and even live theaters for plays and musicals. Salary varies between cruise line, but novices working as extras or chorus members can expect to earn around $1,600 US Dollars (USD) per month, while veteran entertainers may receive upwards of $4,000 USD per month.

Anyone with hotel or maintenance experience will find many available cruise ship jobs. In addition to requiring a full guest-service staff like any hotel, cruise ships need a self-contained maintenance department to deal with any and all problems. For people without an established business who want to incorporate more travel into their lives, cruise ship jobs are a perfect opportunity to mix skills with pleasure.


Of course, cruise ships are still ships, and are always in need of a skilled and experienced crew. People with sailing, engineering, or even information technology experience can all find work helping the ship get where its going. It's not every computer programmer who can step outside their office and catch air while watching dolphins leaping with the boat!

In addition to maintaining luxury hotel-like accommodations, large cruise ships also typically offer guests many different choices for dining. From casual poolside snack bars to gourmet restaurants with celebrity chefs, the aspiring chef or restaurateur will find plentiful opportunities for training in food-related cruise ship jobs. Salary range for wait staff and kitchen assistants is often comparable to restaurant jobs on shore, but usually includes gratuities as well as ample training experience.

Even without experience in a particular area, many workers can find cruise ship jobs that are entry level positions. While it may sound easier to take a retail job in a gift shop at home, you can add the joys of constantly changing scenery and world travel to an everyday job. Typical cruise ship jobs for the inexperienced include entry-level positions as boutique attendants, receptionist, guest service agents, or basic food service work.


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Post 3

There are Disney cruise ship jobs for people that are willing to dress up in cartoon character costumes. My little brother played Goofy on a Disney cruise ship for almost two years.

He made good money but he said that it was harder than you would expect to be in a mascot costume and to account for the movement of the ship. He definitely had a learning curve.

Post 2

I was a dance major in college and didn't realize until right at the very end how hard it would be to find a job. I looked for months before someone suggested that I look into cruise ship jobs. I love to dance but I am not stuck up about it. If someone is going to pay me I will dance in just about any style as part of just about any show, nudity excluded.

I ended up getting hired on as basically a chorus girl on a huge cruise ship. We would be on the water for two weeks and then off for two weeks, back and forth. I made a lot of money but the travel really wore on me after a while. I ended up getting a job with a show on dry land.

Post 1

I had a friend who worked on a cruise ship for a while. She had a background in theater and she basically worked as the stage manager for their various stage shows. This included everything from magic shows to bands to dancers.

I think she was glad to move on when she found another job but it sounds like she had fun while she was there. A strong sense of camaraderie develops amongst people working in close quarters like that. I know she still keeps in touch with people that she met on the ship.

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