"The Insiders' Guide to Becoming A Yacht Stewardess"Subscribe Now

Table of Contents for “The Insiders’ Guide to Becoming a Yacht Stewardess”


Foreword by Adrienne Gang

I Must Confess… I never would have expected I’d become a yacht stewardess.
I Must Confess… It’s all Carl’s fault.


I Must Confess… The first step was a little traumatic for me.
Welcome Aboard!
The State of the Crew Job Market
A Quick Note on Gender and Terminology
How to Use This Guide
Now for What You Won’t Find
Setting Sail for New Horizons


Chapter 1: Shhh… I’ve got a secret.—Luxury Yachting Defined

“Is That Like Working on a Cruise Ship?”

Cruise Ships vs. Luxury Megayachts—A Vast Sea of Difference
Why Work on a Cruise Ship When You Can Work on a Luxury Yacht Instead?
I Must Confess…We yachties sort of frowned upon what life might be like aboard the ol’ cruise ships.

Yacht Definitions: The Superlative Confusion

Luxury, Mega-, Super-, Gigayachts… and How They Differ
Yacht Classifications (Table)

A Yacht’s Interior

Floating Cribs
Your Future “Office”

Who Onboard Can Afford All This? (The Owners, the Guests… and Their Money)

Owner-ship: For the Hull of It
I Must Confess… I knew very little about the high society life when I entered yachting.
Charter-ship: Boating with the Big Fish
I Must Confess… It was amazing what some of our guests deemed a necessity.

Oh, the Places You’ll Go (The Travel)

The World is Their Oyster…and Their Playground
It’s the Journey That Matters… But the Destinations Are Nice, Too
I Must Confess… I had never even heard of some of the places I made it to working on yachts.

Mum’s the Word (The Crew)
There’s No Business Like Boat Business (The Industry) 

Chapter 2: What Has Yachting Done for Crew Lately?—(a.k.a. The Benefits!)

The Job Market: Boom to Bust, But Coming Back

Contracts Are Still Coming
Crew Jobs—A Crisis?

(Drum Roll): The Benefits

Salaries to Savor
Tips Ahoy!
Crew Packages Come with Big Benefits

The Perks

Globetrotting in Yachting—The Travel
I Must Confess… Times in port, with no guests onboard, are spent living life to the fullest.
Making Connections—The People
Gaining a Family Away from Home—The Crew
Living on a Yacht—The Lifestyle
Charity: How the Lifestyle Lets You Give Back
I Must Confess… Sometimes, I felt more fortunate than the guests
Random Perks

Resist Temptation—Your Saving Grace

I Must Confess… I spent a little too much of my earnings on playtime—but I didn’t always regret it.

Chapter 3: There’s No “I” in CREW—Meet Your Fellow Crewmembers

A Portrait of Captain and Crew

The Key Ingredient = The Crew
I Must Confess… The pressure can be exhilarating
Types of Crew Employment

Crew Make-up

Departmental Fundamentals
Onboard Hierarchy (Table)
Crew Numbers and Examples (Table)

Positions and Responsibilities

Administrative Department


Engineering Department

Chief Engineer
Assistant or 2nd Engineer

Exterior Department

First Mate/Officer
Bosun or 2nd Mate

Galley Department

Executive Chef
Assistant Chef (Sous Chef)

Interior Department

Chief Stewardess
Stewardess—1st, 2nd, 3rd

Dual Positions

I Must Confess… I chose to use the more formal, British pronunciation for my new job title of “Stewardess.”

Chapter 4: Around the World with a Silver Tray—What Becoming a Yacht Stew Entails

Endless Chores Earns You Distant Shores

I Must Confess… Before I became a yacht stewardess, I was the least domesticated of any person I knew.
Julie from “The Love Boat” Ain’t Got Nothin’ on a Yacht Stew
As a Yacht Stew, You Might Be Expected to Be A:

The Big Three: Service, Housekeeping, and Laundry


Main Meal Service
Styles of Service
Lending Help in the Galley
I Must Confess… I always made it a point to befriend the chef.
Table Setting and Napkin Folding
I Must Confess… I sucked at napkin folding
Washing Dishes and Polishing Silver
Wine Service (Sommelier Skills)
Beverage Provisioning
Serving Snacks and Hors d’oeuvres
Other Types of Service


Cleaning, Dusting, and Vacuuming (Hoovering)
I Must Confess… Those %#@&!* GOLD SINKS were the bane of my existence!
Making Beds and Other Cabin Care
I Must Confess… I tried on a pair of guest’s shoes.
Guest Heads
A Day in the Life of a Stew on Housekeeping Duty WITH Guests Onboard
I Must Confess… I once cleaned a bit too thoroughly.


What Gets Done (Can you wash this?)
Folding and Ironing
I Must Confess… I skimped on the laundry because I knew bed sheets could be sent out to the dry cleaners.

Sample Stew Rotation Schedule

Chapter 5: A Stew’s Job Is Never Done—Beyond The Big Three

Host/Hostess (with the Most/Mostest)

I Must Confess… I was overwhelmingly star-struck by a guest once (and only once).
A Brief Word on Stew Panache
Concierge and Valet/Personal Assistant
Entertainer and Activities Director/Party Planner
Party-Planning Checklist
Theme Night Suggestions
I Must Confess… I had my fair share of party debacles… one of the most disastrous being the “Academy Awards Night Gone Awry.”

Guest Care

Tending to Seasickness
I Must Confess… I told the kids too much. (I’m not good with kids.)
Privacy Protection

Household Management

Inventories and Maintenance Logs
Hiring Contractors and Staff
Stowing for Sea
Stowing for an “Out of Water” Experience (The Shipyard)
Interior Manuals
I Must Confess… I loved shopping for the boat.
Guest Profiles
Sample Breakfast Notes

Back-Up Deck Crew

Docking and Handling Lines and Fenders If Needed
The Decks

Crew Care

Crew Areas
Crew Mess
Watch Duty
Crew Cabins
Crew Uniform

Special Skills

Massage, Beauty, and Fitness Training
Floral Arranging Know-How
Cooking Abilities


The Quick Start Guide: The A to Z of How to Become a Yacht Stew . . . .

Chapter 6: The Recipe for a Great Stew—The Skills and Traits Required to Get Hired

Recipe for a Yacht Stew: The Prime Ingredients
Personal Attributes Assessment

People Skills
Positive Attitude
I Must Confess… I had to bite my sassy tongue at times.
Team Player
Proper Etiquette
Appearance and Personal Hygiene
I Must Confess… I watched Naomi Campbell watch TV.
Observational and Listening Skills
Problem-solving Skills
I Must Confess… I once bribed some customs officials.
Organizational Skills
I Must Confess… No matter how prepared I tried to be, I was caught off guard a lot.

Transferable “Ingredients” from Your Previous Recipes
The Excavation of Your Work History

The Obvious
The Not-So-Obvious

Chapter 7: Learning the Ropes—Essential Training for Entry-Level Stews

STCW Basic Safety Training (BST)

A Quick Background on the STCW Code
STCW Basic Safety Training Standards
The STCW Basic Safety Training Course
I Must Confess… I sorta freaked out during a fire school drill.
Cost of STCW Basic Safety Training Courses

STCW Basic Safety Training Schools

STCW Basic Safety Training in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
STCW Basic Safety Training in Other Parts of the U.S. and Canada
STCW Basic Safety Training in Antibes, France and Palma de Mallorca, Spain
STCW Basic Safety Training in the United Kingdom
STCW Basic Safety Training in Australia

Specialized Stew Training

I Must Confess… Stew training was mind-boggling.
PYA G.U.E.S.T. Career Path for Stews
PYA G.U.E.S.T. Interior Crew Training & Certification Development Route

Interior Crew/Stew Training Centers

Interior Crew/Stew Training Schools in Fort Lauderdale
Interior Crew/Stew Training Schools in Europe
Interior Crew/Stew Training Schools in Australia and South Africa

Suggested Classes for Quick Training
ENG1 Seafarer Medical Certificates

Chapter 8: Picking Up Anchor—Choosing and Moving to a Hiring Port

The First Big “To Do”—Choose a Hiring Port

To Move or Not to Move? There Is Very Little Question. (MOVE!)
Hiring Port Options

What Criteria Do I Use to Choose a Hiring Port?

Seasonal Decisions
Peak Times to Find Yacht Jobs (Table)
Passport and Visa Considerations
Important Information for Non-U.S. Job Seekers

The Skinny on Hiring Ports

Fort Lauderdale, Florida USA
Antibes, France
Palma de Mallorca (Majorca), Spain
Newport, Rhode Island USA

Finding a Crew House in Your Hiring Port

Crew Houses and Your Budget
Crew Houses and Networking
Crew Houses and Convenience
Crew Houses and Day Working Leads
Booking Crew Accommodations
I Must Confess… My own crew house experience was tough to leave.

Crew Housing Lists

Fort Lauderdale Crew Housing
Antibes Crew Housing
Palma Crew Housing
St. Martin/St. Maarten Crew Housing
Newport, Rhode Island Crew Housing

What to Pack

A Quick Word on Valuables
Laptop/Tablet PCs
Mobile Phone & Plans
Miscellaneous Items to Consider

Chapter 9: Let the Job Hunt Begin!—Crew Agencies, Day Working, and Networking

Crew Agencies (Employment Agencies) 

The Advantages of Using Crew Agencies
Crew Agency Hiring Process

It’s Not Easy Being Green

Be Persistent
Show You Are Eager and Dedicated to Your Quest
Be Patient

Get Registered 

Crew Agencies in Fort Lauderdale, Florida
Crew Agencies in Antibes, France
Crew Agencies in Palma de Mallorca, Spain
Crew Agencies in Newport, Rhode Island
Crew Agencies in Newport, RI and West Coast, U.S.
Crew Agencies in the U.K. and Australia
Training Schools Placement Assistance

The Online Job Hunt

Internet-Only Crew Agencies
Online Job Search Sites
Online Bulletin Boards, Forums, and Scams

Day Working

Day Work Pay
Using Day Work Pay to Network
How Day Work Can Lead to a Permanent Job
How Day Work Can Help You Build Your Portfolio
How to Find Day Work

Dockwalking—For Temporary or Permanent Positions

Challenges for Dockwalkers
Make Up Business Cards
I Must Confess… I screwed up my first time day working (and I even took my toothbrush!).

Trade Publications—Online and Offline

Publications Based in the U.S.
Publications Based in the Mediterranean
Publications Based in the Caribbean

Networking—Making Connections and Meeting the Right People

Public Job Boards in Yachtie Bars (and other places people post)
Get Out and About in Port
Networking in Fort Lauderdale
Networking in Antibes
Events to Attend

Chapter 10: Fit to be Hired—Résumés/CVs, Interviews, and Accepting Your First Job!


Is it a Résumé or a CV, and What the Heck is the Difference!?

CV Strategy

Getting Started: Reflect and Brainstorm
Advice: Consider Your Audience

Anatomy (What to Include)

Head Shot Photo
The Basics: Contact Details and Personal Information
Objective and Summary Statement
Qualifications/Skills Summary
Education and Training
Employment History/Work Experience
Honors/Activities/Special Skills

Tips for CV Construction 

Writing Quality

Sample CV


The Power of the Written Word
How to Submit Your Reference List
Prepare Your Contacts
Some Final TIPS on Obtaining References


Interviewing with Crew Agents
Interviewing with Captains or Other Hiring Representatives
Interview Questions for Crew to Ask Captains or Other Interviewers

Deciding Which Type of Job You Want

Motoryachts vs. Sailing Yachts: Which Do You Choose?
Charter Yachts vs. Private Yachts
Bigger Yachts vs. Smaller Yachts
Level of Service
American Flag vs. Foreign Flag Yachts

Chapter 11: All Aboard—Life “Out There”

Moving Onboard

What to Bring
Cabin Fever (Crew Accommodations)
Fitting in With the Crew
Romantic Relationships Onboard
I Must Confess… I dated a fellow crewmember.
Dealing with Seasickness
I Must Confess… I got seasick on a couple occasions.

Work Schedules

No Guests Onboard—Work Hours, Breaks, and Meals
Guests Onboard—Work Hours, Breaks, and Meals
I Must Confess… I played hooky from work one afternoon, while we were on charter.

Behavior Guidelines

Personal Hygiene
Alcohol Consumption

Keeping in Touch with “Back Home”

Phone & Skype
Banking and Bills

Changing Jobs and Crew Turnover 

Changing Jobs
Boat Hoppers

Money Management
Life After Yachting  

Future Possibilities
I Must Confess… I worried about what I would do “after.”


Thoughts on Being a Yacht Stew
I Must Confess… I grew to love the sea.

Appendix A: Understanding Yacht Measurements
Appendix B: A Sample Mediterranean Itinerary
Appendix C: Culinary Terms
Appendix D: Sample Lunch and Dinner Menus
Appendix E: Guest Profile: Charter Review Example
Appendix F: Worldwide Yachting Publications, Websites, and Books to Check Out

Line Break

The 2nd Edition of The Insiders’ Guide to Becoming a Yacht Stewardess is available now. Grab your copy today!

Not ready to buy yet? No problem! Get more information about superyachts, who owns them, where they travel, and what the guests are like by downloading Chapter 1 here.

The Insiders Guide to Becoming a Yacht Stewardess 2nd Edition by Julie Perry Download Chapter 1