The right crew training for the right crew member

Written by Yachting Pages | With thanks to IMSAPYT and Beyond Limits Training

Last updated: 12/01/2018

The superyacht industry is an exciting and rewarding choice of employment, and quality crew training courses are essential, and often required for life at sea. 

male and female in lifejackets sailing a yacht

Click here to search crew training

Whether it’s your first job in the maritime industry, or you’re looking to progress in your yachting career, the right training will ensure that new recruits hold the essential skills that may be needed in an emergency at sea.

Which qualifications do I need as yacht crew?

Understanding the different yachting qualifications that are required for any given role on board a yacht can be a daunting task. To help you to meet the requirements for a role on board a superyacht, or know how to progress in your current role, you may wish to enrol on a specialist yachting course, a list of which can be found below. 

Mandatory crew training and certificates

STCW training, consisting of personal survival techniques; fire prevention and fire fighting; basic first aid; and personal safety and social responsibility. Find an STCW crew training provider.

ENG1 or ML5 Seafarer Medical certificates are required to work at sea. A Maritime and Coastguard Agency MCA-approved doctor must issue all applicants with an ENG 1 certificate. Contact a MCA-approved doctor in your area.

Additional crew training courses

  • Yacht Rating
  • Master 200GT
  • Yachtmaster Theory
  • Yachtmaster Practical
  • Sea Survival
  • GMDSS GOC
  • Navigation Radar
  • General Ships Knowledge
  • Oral Preparation
  • Navigation and Radar
  • Stability
  • Medical Care On Board Certificate
  • Business and Law, Seamanship
  • Oral Preparation (500T)
  • Oceanmaster Theory
  • Advanced Firefighting
  • Medical First Aid
  • Oceanmaster Cert
  • Ships Cook Assessment
  • Food Hygiene (HABC Level 2 and 3)

Superyacht job roles: What am I qualified for?

Deckhand

A deckhand is an entry-level role for employment aboard a superyacht. A sailing qualification is not essential, but will always be preferred, helping you to stand out among the competition. In the majority of cases, a deckhand may be required to undertake on-board maintenance work, including painting and carpentry, and other jobs to assist the operation of the boat.

The minimum requirement for a job as a deckhand is, of course, the STCW 95 Basic Training and an ENG1 medical certificate, however, a dependable deckhand will also be qualified with the following skills and certificates: RYA/MCA Personal Survival Techniques, MCA Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting, MCA Elementary First Aid, MCA Personal Safety and Social Responsibility.

Steward/ess

A steward or stewardesses’ priority on board is looking after the interior of the boat interior. In most cases, there will be a chief steward/ess who will lead a number of assistant stewards. The steward/ess will predominantly be required to clean the boat interiors, keeping all areas tidy and welcoming, and to supply refreshments to both the crew and the guests, along with other aspects of catering.

The minimum requirement for a job as a steward/ess is again the STCW 95 Basic Training qualification, however, a good steward/ess will be enthusiastic to progress and could therefore potentially be trained with the following skills and certificates: RYA/MCA Personal Survival Techniques, MCA Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting, MCA Elementary First Aid MCA Personal Safety and Social Responsibility.

yacht chefs piping icing on dessertsstudents looking at books in class

Chef

The chef’s role on board will be to prepare food for the crew and the guests. As of 7th August 2014, the Ships Cook Assessment become a mandatory requirement for any chef cooking for 10 or more crew members. STCW and ENG1 certificates are also mandatory. In terms of further qualification, experience will be the deciding factor here, and a good history of creating wonderful dishes will be essential. Chefs will also be required to have the relevant health and hygiene certificates, such as the HABC Llevel 2 and 3.

First mate/chief officer

The role of first mate/chief officer is essential in organising junior crew members aboard a superyacht. You will be the captain's right-hand man or woman, in charge of the deckhands and other exterior crew members.

An extensive background crewing will be necessary, and a number of qualifications would be beneficial for this role, including STCW 95 Basic Training, Yacht Rating, Master 200GT, Yachtmaster Theory, Yachtmaster Practical, Sea Survival, GMDSS GOC, Navigation Radar, General Ships Knowledge, Oral Preparation, Oceanmaster Theory, Advanced Firefighting, Medical First Aid, Oceanmaster Cert Comp. The only qualifications mandatory for a first mate/chief officer are the STCW II/2 and Medical Care On Board Certificate.

Engineer

A reliable engineer is a highly sought-after and well-rewarded job aboard a yacht. The engineer will manage the inner workings of the boat, and ensure all mechanics are running smoothly. 

There are a number of professional qualifications that an marine engineer must possess by law, such as the MCA STCW III/1 Officer of the Watch Certification. Other qualifications that would be beneficial include Yacht Rating, AEC, MEOL Engineer Yacht 4, Skills Test, Marine Diesel Engineering, Operational Procedures & Basic Hotel Services, Auxiliary Equipment & Basic Ship Construction, MCA Sea Survival for Yachtsman, Advanced Fire Fighting, Proficiency in Medical First Aid, Chief Engineer Statutory & Operational Requirements, Marine Engine Theory and Applied Marine Engineering.

Junior engineers would need the MCA STCW III/1 Officer of the Watch Certification to start life as a cadet. Further experience could then be gained or taught while on the job.

Captain or skipper

Everyone aboard a superyacht answers to the superyacht captain or skipper. To become a captain, you must possess extensive experience working on board boats, considerable training and a number of qualifications. Mandatory qualifications include the STCW II/2 and the Medical Care On board Certificate, however it's not uncommon for the captain to have the majority of the following:

  • STCW certificate levels
  • Yacht Rating
  • Master 200GT
  • Yachtmaster Theory
  • Yachtmaster Practical
  • Sea Survival
  • GMDSS GOC
  • Navigation Radar
  • General Ships Knowledge
  • Oral Preparation
  • Navigation and Radar
  • Stability
  • Medical Care
  • Business and Law
  • Seamanship
  • Oral Preparation (500T)
  • Oceanmaster Theory
  • Advanced Firefighting
  • Medical First Aid
  • Oceanmaster Cert

Substantial time as a first mate/chief officer (three to five years) would be expected, along with experience with budgeting, navigation, insurance and some engineering knowledge.

The captain must also be very skilled with leading a team and should be very personable, as he or she will have to deal with the crew and the guests of the boat on a daily basis. In the majority of cases, these will be very influential people who are used to exceptional levels of service. It's also important to have a basic understanding of the legal aspects of working on a yacht.

crew training candidates fighting fire flamesFire fighters tackling training blaze

What to look for in your crew-training provider

IMSA, a specialist in worldwide ISPS Code maritime training explained that all crew trainers should be approved as an accredited trainer by the MCA (Maritime & Coastguard Agency) to ensure they abide by the strict guidelines expected in the industry.

Your crew-training centre should be able to demonstrate to the MCA that training will be delivered under the supervision of personnel who have, either individually or collectively as part of a team, gained:

  1. A thorough knowledge of the practical application of modern methods, systems and procedures for safeguarding maritime security in accordance with the ISPS Code and SOLAS as amended.
  2. Practical and relevant experience of the operation of merchant ships.

From IMSA's perspective, “The most important aspect of the trainer is that he/she must be able to demonstrate total knowledge of the subject matter and have the relevant practical and commercial experience in the subject and operations of vessels to impart that experience to the delegates so that they benefit from both the theory and the experience.”

PYT also agrees that MCA Accreditation is as important as having IYT (International Yacht Training) accredited trainers, because IYT offers the most internationally recognised and trusted standard of excellence in yacht training.

Yacht crew members in water © Beyond Limits Trainingyacht crew members on STCW training © Beyond Limits Training

Bespoke training should be expected

In some cases, it's essential that trainers are able to tailor the courses they deliver, so that they're relevant to the audience and the vessel that the recruits will be working on.

It’s also important that there is close communication between yacht captains, first officers and ship security officers to ensure that the training being delivered is tailored to their ship’s security plans and any individual Standard Operating Procedures, as every yacht is different.

IMSA believes that assessing the trainers before committing to a training contract is paramount, and has produced a list to which can be referenced when selecting that all-important training:

  1. Trainers demonstrate knowledge of subject matter
  2. Trainers integrates current developments into content
  3. Demonstrates the relevance of course content
  4. Are MCA accredited
  5. Refers delegates to additional material where appropriate
  6. Well prepared and delivers material in a well organised manner
  7. Demonstrates an effective teaching manner
  8. Presentation demonstrates professional competence
  9. Places the presentation in context/course goals etc…
  10. Exhibits enthusiasm and interest with delegates
  11. Expresses ideas clearly and audibly
  12. Encourages delegate questions and interaction/class discussion
  13. Responds to delegate needs and incorporates feedback
  14. Adjusts to individual and group needs
  15. Meets delegate needs through a range of teaching styles
  16. Demonstrates respect for alternative points of view
  17. Open to suggestions from delegates
  18. Exhibits a positive attitude to all delegates/Treats delegates with respect

Search for certified crew training providers on Yachtingpages.com.

Click here to search crew training

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The Right Yacht Crew Training for the Right Yacht Crew Member | Yachting Pages
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The right crew training for the right crew member

Written by Yachting Pages | With thanks to IMSAPYT and Beyond Limits Training

Last updated: 12/01/2018

The superyacht industry is an exciting and rewarding choice of employment, and quality crew training courses are essential, and often required for life at sea. 

male and female in lifejackets sailing a yacht

Click here to search crew training

Whether it’s your first job in the maritime industry, or you’re looking to progress in your yachting career, the right training will ensure that new recruits hold the essential skills that may be needed in an emergency at sea.

Which qualifications do I need as yacht crew?

Understanding the different yachting qualifications that are required for any given role on board a yacht can be a daunting task. To help you to meet the requirements for a role on board a superyacht, or know how to progress in your current role, you may wish to enrol on a specialist yachting course, a list of which can be found below. 

Mandatory crew training and certificates

STCW training, consisting of personal survival techniques; fire prevention and fire fighting; basic first aid; and personal safety and social responsibility. Find an STCW crew training provider.

ENG1 or ML5 Seafarer Medical certificates are required to work at sea. A Maritime and Coastguard Agency MCA-approved doctor must issue all applicants with an ENG 1 certificate. Contact a MCA-approved doctor in your area.

Additional crew training courses

  • Yacht Rating
  • Master 200GT
  • Yachtmaster Theory
  • Yachtmaster Practical
  • Sea Survival
  • GMDSS GOC
  • Navigation Radar
  • General Ships Knowledge
  • Oral Preparation
  • Navigation and Radar
  • Stability
  • Medical Care On Board Certificate
  • Business and Law, Seamanship
  • Oral Preparation (500T)
  • Oceanmaster Theory
  • Advanced Firefighting
  • Medical First Aid
  • Oceanmaster Cert
  • Ships Cook Assessment
  • Food Hygiene (HABC Level 2 and 3)

Superyacht job roles: What am I qualified for?

Deckhand

A deckhand is an entry-level role for employment aboard a superyacht. A sailing qualification is not essential, but will always be preferred, helping you to stand out among the competition. In the majority of cases, a deckhand may be required to undertake on-board maintenance work, including painting and carpentry, and other jobs to assist the operation of the boat.

The minimum requirement for a job as a deckhand is, of course, the STCW 95 Basic Training and an ENG1 medical certificate, however, a dependable deckhand will also be qualified with the following skills and certificates: RYA/MCA Personal Survival Techniques, MCA Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting, MCA Elementary First Aid, MCA Personal Safety and Social Responsibility.

Steward/ess

A steward or stewardesses’ priority on board is looking after the interior of the boat interior. In most cases, there will be a chief steward/ess who will lead a number of assistant stewards. The steward/ess will predominantly be required to clean the boat interiors, keeping all areas tidy and welcoming, and to supply refreshments to both the crew and the guests, along with other aspects of catering.

The minimum requirement for a job as a steward/ess is again the STCW 95 Basic Training qualification, however, a good steward/ess will be enthusiastic to progress and could therefore potentially be trained with the following skills and certificates: RYA/MCA Personal Survival Techniques, MCA Fire Prevention and Fire Fighting, MCA Elementary First Aid MCA Personal Safety and Social Responsibility.

yacht chefs piping icing on dessertsstudents looking at books in class

Chef

The chef’s role on board will be to prepare food for the crew and the guests. As of 7th August 2014, the Ships Cook Assessment become a mandatory requirement for any chef cooking for 10 or more crew members. STCW and ENG1 certificates are also mandatory. In terms of further qualification, experience will be the deciding factor here, and a good history of creating wonderful dishes will be essential. Chefs will also be required to have the relevant health and hygiene certificates, such as the HABC Llevel 2 and 3.

First mate/chief officer

The role of first mate/chief officer is essential in organising junior crew members aboard a superyacht. You will be the captain's right-hand man or woman, in charge of the deckhands and other exterior crew members.

An extensive background crewing will be necessary, and a number of qualifications would be beneficial for this role, including STCW 95 Basic Training, Yacht Rating, Master 200GT, Yachtmaster Theory, Yachtmaster Practical, Sea Survival, GMDSS GOC, Navigation Radar, General Ships Knowledge, Oral Preparation, Oceanmaster Theory, Advanced Firefighting, Medical First Aid, Oceanmaster Cert Comp. The only qualifications mandatory for a first mate/chief officer are the STCW II/2 and Medical Care On Board Certificate.

Engineer

A reliable engineer is a highly sought-after and well-rewarded job aboard a yacht. The engineer will manage the inner workings of the boat, and ensure all mechanics are running smoothly. 

There are a number of professional qualifications that an marine engineer must possess by law, such as the MCA STCW III/1 Officer of the Watch Certification. Other qualifications that would be beneficial include Yacht Rating, AEC, MEOL Engineer Yacht 4, Skills Test, Marine Diesel Engineering, Operational Procedures & Basic Hotel Services, Auxiliary Equipment & Basic Ship Construction, MCA Sea Survival for Yachtsman, Advanced Fire Fighting, Proficiency in Medical First Aid, Chief Engineer Statutory & Operational Requirements, Marine Engine Theory and Applied Marine Engineering.

Junior engineers would need the MCA STCW III/1 Officer of the Watch Certification to start life as a cadet. Further experience could then be gained or taught while on the job.

Captain or skipper

Everyone aboard a superyacht answers to the superyacht captain or skipper. To become a captain, you must possess extensive experience working on board boats, considerable training and a number of qualifications. Mandatory qualifications include the STCW II/2 and the Medical Care On board Certificate, however it's not uncommon for the captain to have the majority of the following:

  • STCW certificate levels
  • Yacht Rating
  • Master 200GT
  • Yachtmaster Theory
  • Yachtmaster Practical
  • Sea Survival
  • GMDSS GOC
  • Navigation Radar
  • General Ships Knowledge
  • Oral Preparation
  • Navigation and Radar
  • Stability
  • Medical Care
  • Business and Law
  • Seamanship
  • Oral Preparation (500T)
  • Oceanmaster Theory
  • Advanced Firefighting
  • Medical First Aid
  • Oceanmaster Cert

Substantial time as a first mate/chief officer (three to five years) would be expected, along with experience with budgeting, navigation, insurance and some engineering knowledge.

The captain must also be very skilled with leading a team and should be very personable, as he or she will have to deal with the crew and the guests of the boat on a daily basis. In the majority of cases, these will be very influential people who are used to exceptional levels of service. It's also important to have a basic understanding of the legal aspects of working on a yacht.

crew training candidates fighting fire flamesFire fighters tackling training blaze

What to look for in your crew-training provider

IMSA, a specialist in worldwide ISPS Code maritime training explained that all crew trainers should be approved as an accredited trainer by the MCA (Maritime & Coastguard Agency) to ensure they abide by the strict guidelines expected in the industry.

Your crew-training centre should be able to demonstrate to the MCA that training will be delivered under the supervision of personnel who have, either individually or collectively as part of a team, gained:

  1. A thorough knowledge of the practical application of modern methods, systems and procedures for safeguarding maritime security in accordance with the ISPS Code and SOLAS as amended.
  2. Practical and relevant experience of the operation of merchant ships.

From IMSA's perspective, “The most important aspect of the trainer is that he/she must be able to demonstrate total knowledge of the subject matter and have the relevant practical and commercial experience in the subject and operations of vessels to impart that experience to the delegates so that they benefit from both the theory and the experience.”

PYT also agrees that MCA Accreditation is as important as having IYT (International Yacht Training) accredited trainers, because IYT offers the most internationally recognised and trusted standard of excellence in yacht training.

Yacht crew members in water © Beyond Limits Trainingyacht crew members on STCW training © Beyond Limits Training

Bespoke training should be expected

In some cases, it's essential that trainers are able to tailor the courses they deliver, so that they're relevant to the audience and the vessel that the recruits will be working on.

It’s also important that there is close communication between yacht captains, first officers and ship security officers to ensure that the training being delivered is tailored to their ship’s security plans and any individual Standard Operating Procedures, as every yacht is different.

IMSA believes that assessing the trainers before committing to a training contract is paramount, and has produced a list to which can be referenced when selecting that all-important training:

  1. Trainers demonstrate knowledge of subject matter
  2. Trainers integrates current developments into content
  3. Demonstrates the relevance of course content
  4. Are MCA accredited
  5. Refers delegates to additional material where appropriate
  6. Well prepared and delivers material in a well organised manner
  7. Demonstrates an effective teaching manner
  8. Presentation demonstrates professional competence
  9. Places the presentation in context/course goals etc…
  10. Exhibits enthusiasm and interest with delegates
  11. Expresses ideas clearly and audibly
  12. Encourages delegate questions and interaction/class discussion
  13. Responds to delegate needs and incorporates feedback
  14. Adjusts to individual and group needs
  15. Meets delegate needs through a range of teaching styles
  16. Demonstrates respect for alternative points of view
  17. Open to suggestions from delegates
  18. Exhibits a positive attitude to all delegates/Treats delegates with respect

Search for certified crew training providers on Yachtingpages.com.

Click here to search crew training

YP Print Skyscraper