Thirty days straight of 16+ hour work days (legally you need 8 hours off…pssshh… yeah right) with 24 hour turn arounds, including charter. All you want is an Ambien, a bottle of wine, and 24 hours without people. Exhaustion probably set in a week and a half ago, but you still need to get four more days out of your body and mind. The homestretch. You daydream of that bikini clad day off with a pocket full of cash just to get you through another sheet change. If you’ve worked on a busy boat, you know exactly what I’m talking about.
This is all too common for crew, especially in the super short Med seasons. Is it legal to be worked this much? Technically, no, but it happens. Is this job for everyone? Absolutely not. No way.
What you see on Facebook or Instagram isn’t a true representation of who we are in the work place or what we do. Take a look at the three photos posted below. What do you see?
According to these photos, I wake up to take Tika for a sweet little tender ride. Followed by a cold beer by the pool while making a “To Do List” for work. Capped off by a cocktail and sunset on the dock. Reality? Not reality.
Victoria from It’s the Wanderlust, gave her insight into “What They Meant When They Said the Yachting Industry ‘Isn’t For Everybody’“. Mind you, with her limited experience on a boat and an entry level position, she still aced the basic challenges all new people face in yachting.
- Hierarchy and chain of command – not everyone can handle this.
- Hard physical labor – mindless and repetitive.
- Long ass days – some people can’t hack the hours.
- Crew don’t have full run of the boat or town – its not like living in at home.
- Some people can’t stand being around people – All. The. Time.
Victoria shared with me that she only lasted one season – a backpacker stew. Half of the crew coming into the industry do not last, same with any job. It appears that she’s now a traveling writer and having an absolutely amazing time seeing the world… from more than a porthole.
The reality is, you work your everloving ass off while trying to maintain a smile and cheerful attitude. It’s not for the faint of heart. We work hard and play harder. Check out my Instagram see what it’s like on our days off. The blood, sweat, and tears are all worth it.
Reality. A nerve-racking, heart pounding, sleepless reality.