Cruise ship chefs jobs demand hard work, attention and many hours. Despite the intensity, there are times when a little bit of time off can go a long way. It’s a given that cruise ship chefs will work with dozens of others from varying multi-cultural backgrounds every day, and also learn a great deal from superiors.
But there are other aspects that can promote genuine all-round learning as a cruise ship employee. Here are just four of these must-do / must-have experiences on board:
It’s a gamble whether you will have shore leave or not, but there will be at least a couple of occasions when your time off work and the ship’s time in port synchronise. Due to your long hours, the natural tendency may be to attend to your other chores – washing your laundry, tidying your room or even catching up on sleep, but it’s safe to say that you should take the chance to go on shore when you can.
Shore leave offers a great deal of opportunity to cruise ship chefs. For one, most cruise ships stop at some of the most coveted tourist destinations in the world. Many of the Caribbean islands are otherwise almost inaccessible for middle-class tourists from south east Asia, so get out and explore. Enjoy the beach, the local food and drink, and soak in the culture. These are once-in-a-lifetime opportunities.
One of the big open secrets on cruise ships is the fun that revolves around the crew-only area. Cruise lines are aware of the fact that they demand more than six months of their employees’ time, seven days a week and sometimes up to 10 or more hours a day. They ensure the crew have sufficient entertainment and leisure at their disposal.
There are whole teams assigned to schedule and organise crew events – themed gigs, sports competitions, DJ nights, festival celebrations. While it is up to each person to ensure that they are fit to work the next day, these parties can be unrivalled by land-based dos. As always, you must not do anything you do not want to, but seeing how staff let their hair down cruise ship style is something you do not want to miss.
Many cruise ship companies offer volunteering activities in their ports of call as a way to give back to the less fortunate in the countries they visit. These may include anything from beach cleaning to activities that help endangered animals or helping underprivileged children.
Signing up for these activities will give you a chance to give back to the communities that indirectly impact your life. It will give you a new perspective to the places that you work in. The crew activities department ensures that interested employees are easily able to give back to the communities during their time off. Take the opportunity to do a good deed.
Life would not be the same without an unannounced health inspection. It may be a rare occasion that a cruise ship chef avoids a health inspection during the entire duration of his/her time at sea, particularly in ports in the US.
While dreaded, these health inspections can help a great deal with your job. Without a doubt, they instill a high sense of hygiene and sanitation into every cruise ship chef, one they will carry with them for life. Successfully passing a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention inspection is a must-have experience on board.