Life at sea for a cruise ship crew revolves mostly around work. Long hours with no days off make up every day of your contract. However, cruise line companies ensure that cruise ship crew have a number of facilities at their disposal to keep them happy at work.
Accommodation & food
Room and board is paid for by the cruise ship company. Typically, each crew member shares his or her cabin with another, most often of the same sex. Only in special cases where heterosexual spouses or long-term partners get permission from the company are they allowed to share a cabin.
These days, each room is equipped with an en-suite shower and toilet, a desk, mini fridge, safe box, storage space for luggage and sometimes a television. For crew, the layout often involves bunk beds to save on space, but higher ranked officers get either separate bedrooms or a room to themselves.
Cruise ship crew also have separate galleys and buffet areas for them where they are served delicious food ranging from healthy and nutritious to decadent comfort food. Often, menus are designed keeping the nationalities of the crew in mind, so Indians can expect to find rice, dal, curries, rotis and familiar vegetable preparations.
For cruise ship crew to be able to put in their long hours, companies offer additional amenities for various conveniences. Laundry areas – either free or for a very nominal fee – ensure that crew have clean uniforms to wear every day. They are available 24 hours a day as cruise ship crew work in shifts.
There is also a separate convenience store and medical shop where cruise ship crew can get daily essentials such as batteries, stationery, hygiene products as well as medications for a variety of illnesses particularly common colds and sea sickness.
A doctor is available on call especially for crew so they can get treated at the slightest sign of an illness. This helps cruise ship companies nip conditions such as norovirus in the bud before they can turn into potentially dangerous epidemics.
To keep crew happy, cruise ship companies offer a variety of entertainment and leisure options. There are outdoor and indoor spaces reserved solely for crew, where passengers are prohibited from entering.
Here, you will have access to a swimming pool and sunbathing areas, a gym, recreation room with indoor games such as snooker or billiards, foosball, chess and cards. There’s also a lounge area with a DVD player, a library of books and specially designated crew smoking zones.
Additionally, there is a crew bar and disco offering beverages at rates much lower than what passengers would pay. A specific department on board caters to the crew entertainment and regularly organises everything from volunteering activities to theme parties, with something new happening each week.
All of this keeps the cruise ship crew motivated and happy to perform at their peak and stay loyal to the company.