Cruise Ship Job - Cabin Steward

Passengers on cruises expect their rooms to be prepared several times a day, with beds waiting for them in the evening. They even expect towel animals! How much does the cabin steward / stewardess make?

The amount of course varies from line to line, and based on the tips given. The salary is typically about $1,800/month. Remember - that's not for 40 hours of service. That is usually for 7 days a week, 12+ hours a day, of reasonably hard work. That's about $5/hr. You usually work during the day - so you can't enjoy the ports you're visiting - and you're not allowed to be on deck with the passengers in your off hours. Instead, you have a crew room below decks, and eat from the crew kitchen.

Your room is a small one in the lower end of the ship, and you'll be sharing it with three strangers. You have to clean your own room of course :)

But that being said, you are getting free room and board. You can in essence save every penny of what you make and send it back home to your family, or store it away in a saving's account. For many people coming from third world nations, this is an incredibly lucrative deal. They make far more on the cruise ship than they could possibly make in their home village.

That being said, remember that ships are not registered in places like the US or UK with fair labor laws. They are registered in countries explicitly set up with ship-friendly (but not employee-friendly) regulations. The ship expects you to pay your own fare to and from the ship. So often if the ship lends you the money for both air fares (which must be purchased up front as a requirement of employment), you now can owe the ship 2 months salary or more before you even begin. Also, you can be forced to sign a 2-3 year contract in order to join up with the cruise line, meaning even if you hate your job, you are trapped there.

Some people love cruise jobs - but usually those are the bartenders and entertainers, who can work up in the sun and enjoy the "real food" and luxury of the boat. Be sure to go into any cruise line job with open eyes!

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