Yacht stewardess training: PYA’s GUEST
Written by Michael Henson
Last updated: 02/12/2016
What is the PYA’s GUEST?
Provided by the Professional Yacht Association (PYA), GUEST stands for ‘Guidelines for Unified Excellence Service Training’ and offers stewards and stewardesses a clear training route, leading to an industry recognised certificate of competence issued by the PYA. It has four levels, ranging from introduction through to head of department (GUEST 1 – GUEST 4) and each level is broken into a range of courses.
Do stews need specialist training?Besides the STCW and ENG1, no other course is mandatory for a stew to complete before finding their first job aboard a superyacht. However, undertaking further training courses will always offer certain perks and benefits. For example:
- They will stand you out from a crowded job market
- They will help you to land a job quicker
- They will make you more prepared for your role
- They will aid in career progression
What does it involve?The PYA GUEST interior crew training and certification development route is broken into four levels and once the required courses are taken in each route an internationally recognised certificate will be awarded.
GUEST 1 courses required for junior steward/ess certificate
- Interior introduction
- Interior basic food service
- Wine and cocktail introduction
- Food hygiene
GUEST 2 courses required for senior steward/ess certificate
- Interior intermediate
- Wine intermediate
- Cocktail and spirit intermediate
- Barista and tea master
- Powerboat level 2
- MCA medical first aid
- Please note 12 months yacht service, plus 60 days guest service time is required
GUEST 3 courses required for chief steward/ess certificate (under 500gt)
- Interior management
- Cocktail and spirit advanced
- Management of food safety in catering
- MCA medical care
- MCA advanced fire fighting
- MCA Sea survival
- Please note 12 months yacht service, plus 60 days guest service time is required whilst holding senior steward/ess certificate
GUEST 4 courses required for chief steward/ess certificate (over 500gt)
- MCA human element and leadership management
- Yacht accounting and budget
- Introduction to international safety management (ISM)
- Written and oral exam
- Please note half the required management entry-level yacht service will be on vessels over 500gt for those wanting to apply for management level above 500gt
Where can I do my training?
For GUEST accredited training schools near you, click here
Application for GUEST certificate of competency
To apply for your PYA certificate of competency, simply download and complete the application form from the PYA website, here.
Once complete, send the application form to the PYA - details can be found on their website - with the relevant supporting documents and certificates,, and an administration fee of €30, which covers the cost required to the issue the certificate.
Please note, if you already hold a PYA certificate, this also needs to be returned with the application so an amended certificate can be issued.
Once your have your certificates, there are still many other things to think about and organise. You should also consider:
For more crew guides and information on working in the yachting industry, visit Yachting Pages' crew corner.