Whether you want to work as a deckhand on a small private vessel or join the large service staff of a superyacht, it’s important to learn how to write a yacht CV.
Working on a yacht can be a fulfilling career. It is a great way to experience the sea, visit different places, meet important people, and have unique experiences. It is also, however, a difficult career. The employee quarters on a yacht typically have little privacy, the days can be long, and the work can be difficult. Further, when you are working on a yacht, you are at sea. You can’t go home until the voyage is over, which could be weeks or even months.
This means that your yacht CV needs to show that not only are you skilled, you have the personality and constitution for working on a yacht.
But if you, like Moby Dick’s Ishmael, find yourself with little or no money in your purse, and nothing particular to interest you on shore, it may be time to write a great yacht CV and see the watery part of the world.
This article will explore all aspects of writing a yacht CV, including:
A yacht CV is a document describing your yachting skills and experience that you submit to employers as a part of a job application. It will contain details like personal information, work experience, education, and skills.
The yacht experience can vary greatly. Some yachts may have only a single captain on board and a handful of passengers. Others, such as enormous superyachts, may have a large dedicated staff and crew. Yacht jobs can include captain, crew, bosun, mate, deckhand, dock worker, marina worker, chef, sous chef, stewardess, engineer, and more.
The exact details of your yacht CV will depend on your specific career. There are several different paths that might take you to a yacht, and it’s important that your CV has the right details for your specific goals.
If you want to become a yacht employee, sometimes called a “yachtie”, your yacht CV will need to show that you have all the certifications and accreditations for the position you are applying for.
The specific requirements of a yacht CV may depend on what country the yacht company is based in and what countries it will travel to. Because most yacht jobs will require sailing to and from different countries, you will have to be conscious of where the particular yacht job is based and what the hiring requirements are.
Further, the specific qualifications, certifications, and skills that you need will depend on what specific yacht role you are applying for.
If you are looking to work in the kitchen of a yacht, for example, or as wait staff, you will want to list your food safety certifications, your culinary education, and your experience serving.
If you are looking to work as a member of the deck crew, you will need appropriate safety certifications.
Will you be working as a tour guide? Will you have to use the helm, or do any navigation? Will you be dealing directly with customers, clients, or passengers? If so, make sure your yacht CV reflects this.
Certain certifications are required to become a yachtie. When you apply for a yacht job, you must ensure that you have the right certifications for your role.
Anyone who works on a commercial ship will need a Standard for Training, Certification and Watchkeeping (STCW) certification.
Also required is an ENG1 Medical or equivalent, which is a certificate confirming that you are medically able to work on a yacht and at sea.
Other certifications, while not strictly mandatory, can improve your CV, such as deckhand training courses and boating certifications like Power Boat 2.
If you are applying for a role in the kitchen or in a hospitality role, you can also look for stewardess training courses, food safety and hygiene certifications, hospitality courses, silver service courses, and more.
It’s important to think carefully about exactly what type of career you are pursuing and what certifications can help you.
Once you have the certifications you need, you can get to work writing your yacht CV. Yacht CV sections include:
At the beginning of your CV, make sure to add your personal information.
This should begin with your contact details. In your contact information section, include your:
In the USA and Canada, you are not expected to include a picture with your yacht CV. In most European countries, however, a picture will be expected, especially if your position will be guest-facing. Make sure to study the CV requirements of your specific country when preparing your CV. If you provide a picture, make sure it is professional and appropriate.
Some yacht companies also require you to state whether you are a smoker, and whether you have tattoos. You can include this alongside your contact information, or in a separate Personal Details section.
At the top of your CV, begin with a brief professional summary. A summary is a short section, usually only a few sentences or bullet points, that briefly describes you and your experience. It should have a few key highlights, either of key skills that make you a great candidate, or some important achievements from other roles that show what you can do.
A great summary can be what convinces a hiring manager to read the rest of the CV.
Your Work Experience section is the most important part of your CV. It is the longest section, and the section containing the most detail.
In a Work Experience section, list previous positions in reverse-chronological order, beginning with your current or most recent job and working backwards. In each role, provide a job description that details your responsibilities and achievements in that position.
For each entry, include:
If you have experience working on a yacht, you should emphasize your yacht positions, providing them with more detail than you do to other positions. Work Experience entries for yacht jobs can also be formatted differently. For yacht positions, list the name of the vessel, its size, and whether the yacht was private or charter.
Deep Blue | 103’ | Private Stewardess June 2021 - August 2022
This gives yacht employers a clear idea of what kind of yacht experience you have.
When writing your job descriptions for each role, try to focus on concrete examples of your experience, including achievements and accomplishments. Describing only your basic duties makes for a boring CV.
To come up with achievements, try to brainstorm concrete successes that you contributed to. It can help to consider quantifiable aspects of your job. If you can provide verifiable numbers, your experience will seem more credible and more impressive. For a yacht CV, measurable aspects of previous positions could include the size of the vessel, the length of the voyage, the number of passengers or rooms, event attendance, provisioning budgets, and more.
Further, be sure to use active language as much as possible when describing past experience. Action words make your work experience seem more dynamic, and make you sound like an independent worker who takes initiative and gets the job done. Action words like organized, managed, hosted, spearheaded, and navigated all indicate an employee that employers would be happy to hire.
The importance of your education will depend on your specific role. If you are applying to work as a server or deckhand, a post-secondary degree won’t be necessary (as long as you have the right certifications). If you are applying as an engineer, however, you will need to show that you have the right academic credentials.
In your Education section, list your degrees in reverse-chronological order, beginning with your most recent degree and working backwards. For each entry, include the:
Generally, a description isn’t needed in an Education entry. If there are particular aspects of your education that you would like to highlight, however, such as GPA, specializations, or a key project, they can be included.
Certain certifications are integral to your yacht CV. If you want to work on a yacht, or any commercial vessel, you will need to show that you have the right safety training and health certification.
This usually means that you need to list your STCW certification and ENG 1 Medical certification. You may also want to include your Power Boat 2 certification. First aid certifications can also be an asset.
However, those certifications may not be enough. Be sure to study the job posting and research the position as much as possible so you know exactly what certifications will be required.
A Skills section is a section of your CV where you list your most important and most relevant competencies. This can include soft skills, like communication and people skills, and hard skills, like electrical engineering or navigation.
A Skills section, while not strictly mandatory, is a great way to make your yacht CV more impressive. Listing all your skills in one place makes it easy for employers to quickly glance at your CV and see exactly what your expertise is.
The easiest way to format your skill section is to simply list your skills in a bulleted list. Sort the list so that your most relevant skills are at the top.
If you would like to draw more attention to your skills, you can make each skill or skill area a heading, and provide a more detailed description of the skill below. With VisualCV, you can even add strength ratings to each skill. This method works great for skills-based CVs.
Yacht CV skills can include:
When you work on a yacht, you will be sharing cramped quarters with all of your coworkers, with very little privacy and no time to yourself. For this reason, it’s important to make sure you are a good culture fit for the vessel. While not mandatory, it can be a good idea to include a brief selection of your interests and hobbies in your yacht CV so the employer can see if you will fit in with the rest of the crew.
Even if you are only applying for yacht jobs, it’s important to customize your yacht CV for every application. Different job postings will have specific requirements and specific skills they are looking for, so it’s important to make sure your CV is a perfect fit. A generic CV won’t be perfect for every application.
To do this, study the application closely, and research the company and vessel to learn as much about it as you can. Then, use what you have learned to carefully customize your CV so that the right skills, experience, and personality are emphasized. Remain truthful, but edit your experience so that it matches the job description as closely as possible.
A dedicated and enthusiastic steward with extensive experience working on yachts and superyachts. Capable of achieving the most demanding targets and objectives whilst remaining focused on delivering a high standard of service at all times. Naturally strong interpersonal skills give me the ability to communicate concisely and articulately with crew and guests. I enjoy being a part of a successful and productive team and have the ability to shine in high pressure environments. I am certified in first aid, ship safety, and health standards.
Steward Deep Blue | 103’ | Private
Senior Steward Demeter | 100' | Charter
Steward Ranger | 60' | Private
Master in Tourism & Hospitality Management University of Texas
Community Success Manager & CV Writing Expert
Ben is a writer, customer success manager and CV writing expert with over 5 years of experience helping job-seekers create their best careers. He believes in the importance of a great resume summary and the power of coffee.
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