If you are new to yachting and are just looking for your first job, it's very important to understand that traditionally, there are two major yachting seasons that determine where the majority of the yachts will be actively cruising.
Why is this important? During each of these two yachting seasons, the yachts are cruising with guests on. In those times yachts are in need of more experienced crew who can hit the ground running since yacht's crew won't have as much time to dedicate to training a new member.
So, if you are a green crew member, the best chances of landing your first job will be just before the start of each of these seasons.
This is not to say that junior crew won't be getting work in other times of the year, it just means that those periods will be the busiest recruitment times.
In the summer months the majority of the yachts are cruising in the Mediterranean area and during winter time, the activity area moves to the Caribbean and USA.
Approximately from May to October
Best time to look for work: February to June
Mediterranean season generally starts in May or even late April and peaks in the summer months when the temperatures in the Med are the highest and call to enjoy its beautiful waters and coastline.
Most yachts will spend that time cruising in Italy, South of France, Greece, Croatia or Spain.
This means that February to May will be the time when yachts are getting ready for the upcoming season and the best time for junior crew to actively look for work.
"Yachts will be coming to France/Spain/Italy/etc. and will be hiring temp crew to help get the yachts ready for the season; they will be looking for seasonal crew; assistance will be needed in shipyards; etc. This is the best way to get some expereince on the CV, get glowing references and from there, a more permanent position. " – Anna Horak, Engineer Recruiter at YPI CREW.
Crew hotspots in that period will be places like Antibes (France) or Palma de Mallorca (Spain).
"Antibes for junior crew is the place to be, as its where most of the agents are meeting and interviewing crew. Also, it connects easily by train to ports from Genoa all the way to Marseille, so you can attend interviews and trials in hours at a low cost. " – Louise Overend, Interior Recruitment Consultant at YPI CREW.
The best way to look for work will be to register with a few reputable recruitment agencies, such as YPI CREW, and stay in touch with the recruiters that will champion you to the yachts they work with.
"Make sure you let yourself known to us, reach out, call us so we can run through your CV and discuss your goals. If you are in the area, come and visit us – it makes all the difference as we can then start to build our partnership with you and guide you through the entirety of your yachting career. " – Alexandra O'Connell, Deckhand and Bosuns Recruiter at YPI CREW.
Approximately from November to February
Best time to look for work: October to December
Late November usually marks the end of the hurricane season and brings sun and warm weather in the Caribbean, making it the epicentre for yachts and yacht crew.
Antigua, St. Martin and Fort Lauderdale (USA) will now become the main points for cruising in that area.
Yachts will be preparing for the season from October to end of November, which will be the best time for junior crew to land their dream job.
One thing that is specific to Caribbean season is that yacht will, for the most part, be looking for crew with a B1 visa in hand since yachts will pass through the USA at some stage.
"Number one thing is to make sure your CV is complete and up to date and to always keep in touch with your recruiter, whether by logging into your YPI CREW profile or via email or WhatsApp. " – Alexandra O'Connell, Deckhand and Bosuns Recruiter at YPI CREW.
Not all yachts will make the seasonal crossing to warmer climates – some will stay in the area throughout the year for maintenance or shipyard periods.
This is the period when there are generally no guests onboard and yachts often operate with less crew.
Recruitment is still happening during these times but, depending on the department, it might be in a slightly smaller capacity than just before the two major seasons.
"On the engineering side there is still much happening, shipyard periods mainly, and often engineers need assistance with the workload. So be sure to check in with us whenever you are ready to look for work and we will guide you from there. " – Anna Horak, Engineer Recruiter at YPI CREW.
The best way to break into the industry is to make sure you have done your research on yachting. Find out what courses are best suited to you and the avenue you are looking to take, reach out to friends you may have in the industry, or ring an agency or training school for advice.
Always have a positive mindset. It can sometimes get a little discouraging to some green crew when they see their friends or housemates getting daywork etc. and they aren't. But never give up. This industry is about perseverance, hard work and determination.
Are you ready to find your new dream job onboard a yacht?
Become a member of YPI CREW through a free registration and let us connect you with the next step in your career.
Each of our recruiters is specialised in recruitment for a particular department and they will do their best to get you an interview onboard a yacht. They will also advise qualified crew how to best present their CV and prepare for a yacht job interview.
Are you looking for yacht crew for your yacht?
Get in touch with us so our recruiters can connect you with suitable, available and interested candidates, each of which will be checked, certified, pre-interviewed and ensured to be a perfect fit to your existing crew.
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