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Aussie yacht crew coming home
Captain Greg
Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2012 11:11 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


After 10 years in yachting As Master and Mate I have returned home to continue on with the AMSA system. Post messages for info and stay tuned for updates
Captain Greg
Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2012 11:18 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Firsty let me tell you that I can give specific info on deck certificates but will try to help those interested in engineering tickets. Also bear in mind that my advice should always be checked with AMSA or your dep of Transport in Aus. AMSA are notoriously very rigid and their standards are amongst the highest in the world. My first piece of advice is to do all your short courses in Aus. Adv Fire, SHip Master Medical Care, PSCRB and SSO are not accepted if done outside of Aus. This sucks and makes no sense. AMSA will accept your sea time on yachts but the statement must be very specific and give all the info on the AMSA seatime guideline. More to come soon. I'm happy to help anyone who has a question about coming home.
Captain Greg
Posted: Thursday, February 16, 2012 10:52 PM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Dep of Transport Tickets. AMSA is currently in the process of writing new Marine Orders#3. This will be the 7th version. These orders are the rules for training and certification of seafarers according to the Navigation Act. You can find a draft copy of the new rules on the net AMSA.gov.au and go to Marine Orders. Basically all state tickets will be unified and run by AMSA. There will be little effect on people's existing state tickets except for fishing tickets which will be abolished. The new MO3 will have significant benefits por certification as the size of vessels required to gain tickets has been reduced as has some sea time requirements. For example, if the draft is past, you will need to serve 24-36 months sea time on vessels +500GT to be eligible to sit for the Master, Ch Mate ticket (unlimited) Check it out on the net.
Henning
Posted: Saturday, February 18, 2012 5:50 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Captain Greg wrote:
Dep of Transport Tickets. AMSA is currently in the process of writing new Marine Orders#3. This will be the 7th version. These orders are the rules for training and certification of seafarers according to the Navigation Act. You can find a draft copy of the new rules on the net AMSA.gov.au and go to Marine Orders. Basically all state tickets will be unified and run by AMSA. There will be little effect on people's existing state tickets except for fishing tickets which will be abolished. The new MO3 will have significant benefits por certification as the size of vessels required to gain tickets has been reduced as has some sea time requirements. For example, if the draft is past, you will need to serve 24-36 months sea time on vessels +500GT to be eligible to sit for the Master, Ch Mate ticket (unlimited) Check it out on the net.


Interesting that, When I was living in Aus the first time AMSA said they would accept all the sea time in my USCG jacket, that means under the new rules, I'd be eligible to sit for an AMSA Master Unlimited. I later found out it wasn't even necessary to get an AMSA license as they would accept my US license in Aus (at least for the Barrier Reef Pilots) so long as I had the right visa.

Stuart
Posted: Saturday, February 18, 2012 10:12 PM
Joined: 09/02/2009
Posts: 3


Hey Capt Greg, Any news on the engineering front? Specifically Chief Engineer Reg III/2(Y2 and Y3) and what are the rules regarding foreigners?
Henning
Posted: Sunday, February 19, 2012 2:04 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Stuart wrote:
Hey Capt Greg, Any news on the engineering front? Specifically Chief Engineer Reg III/2(Y2 and Y3) and what are the rules regarding foreigners?


When I was there immigrating with my ex 4 years or so ago you had to have a residency visa.

Captain Greg
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 7:47 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Yes, it is correct that you do not need an AMSA License to work in Australia. AMSA is just one of many Flags that recognise and issue STCW standard marine licenses. If your vessels flag is Australian you will need to have an equivilency endorsement from AMSA. AMSA has a list of nations certificates that that will be approved. The difficulty will be in gaining a working visa and then being approved to join one of the 3 maritime unions. Foreigners generally find it difficult to join these. There are more and more foreign flagged vessels operatingt in Australian oil/gas feilds so being Australian is not compulsory but again, the unions apply pressure to keep it Australian unless the position can't be filled locally.
Captain Greg
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:07 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Hi Stuart. You would need to have a work visa and to apply to AMSA to see what they will accept. Most likely they will not accept your Y2/3 as they are not STCW (merchant) standard certificates due to the fact that they do not cover all the training components required by IMO/STCW. They may give you some credit for your training but it will be FAR less than what the tickets gives you in the yachting industry. Your seatime should be accepted based on the following: Comercial or private vessel, duration of voyages, particulars of the vessel/s
Captain Greg
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:20 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Some advice for Australian working in Yachting who want to continue back home some day. 1) Work on comercially registered vessels 2) Work on >500GT vessels 3) Do all your stcw training in Aus. incl GMDSS, Adv Fire, Ship Cpt Medical, PSCRB and basic sea safety. Foreign courses are not accepted!!! 4)Work on active, seagoing vessels not marina dwellers 5) Keep photo copies of the vessels Cert of Registry 6) Get seatime statements from Management Company, not the Captain. Ensure the info contains duration and frequency of voyages, duties performed and their duration/ frequency and the level of responsibility during your service refer to AMSA Marine Orders here http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2006B00538
Captain Greg
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 8:34 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


So, what do you get from AMSA for your MCA Master <3000GT (Y). The short answer is.....not much. I was offered a Mate <500 but I already had done Master class 5 and an AMSA endorsement on that. I rejected this offer and jump to the next level. The state departments may issue you with a Master 4 or 3 but you will first have to prove to a training provider that know all the subject matter and this will come down more to your experience as opposed to yacht training. If your an old hand then you will whip through it and come out with a good state ticket otherwise you may find yourself sitting in on more class time to understand the required material. Australasian Maritime Institute in Perth (ex Swam Maritime) will do this but be WARNED. This will never be approved by AMSA for a full STCW ticket ie master <500 unl. You will get a certificate for 35 0r 50m vessels operating within 200nm from AUSTRALIA only. From here the training stops. I decided to do the full AMSA recognised retraining at the Fremantle Maritime Center to gain an international Masters License as my goal is to be a Master Mariner.
Henning
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 3:38 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Captain Greg wrote:
Yes, it is correct that you do not need an AMSA License to work in Australia. AMSA is just one of many Flags that recognise and issue STCW standard marine licenses. If your vessels flag is Australian you will need to have an equivilency endorsement from AMSA. AMSA has a list of nations certificates that that will be approved. The difficulty will be in gaining a working visa and then being approved to join one of the 3 maritime unions. Foreigners generally find it difficult to join these. There are more and more foreign flagged vessels operatingt in Australian oil/gas feilds so being Australian is not compulsory but again, the unions apply pressure to keep it Australian unless the position can't be filled locally.


True, difficult but not impossible. I found that with a quiet display of competence that I was readily accepted within Australian industry; maritime both operationally and technically. The first time I lived there I was a lead man / detail fabricator on a program that built the 6 new river catamaran ferries on the Thames. 4 of those boats I formed all the stern tunnels as well as bench fabricated hundreds of fit parts. The fact of the matter is that Australians in their daily lives are subject to huge amounts of very subtle and much not so subtle anti American propaganda. The main reason for this is so they don't realize just how f-ed they're getting. Once they realize that not every American is a bogan or a yabbo they accept you and you go on. I left Aus because my GF left me just before the 2 years were up and my Immi guy said "most people wouldn't have called", "I have no reason to stay." He called me back a while later and said they could transfer me to employer sponsored for the two months and I said "Thanks but no thanks, wanna go home."

Being on a Partner Migration visa helps as well because at least you already have one thing in common, you gotta put up with an Aussie Shiela...

Henning
Posted: Wednesday, February 22, 2012 3:44 PM
Joined: 01/06/2008
Posts: 1052


Captain Greg wrote:
Some advice for Australian working in Yachting who want to continue back home some day. 1) Work on comercially registered vessels 2) Work on >500GT vessels 3) Do all your stcw training in Aus. incl GMDSS, Adv Fire, Ship Cpt Medical, PSCRB and basic sea safety. Foreign courses are not accepted!!! 4)Work on active, seagoing vessels not marina dwellers 5) Keep photo copies of the vessels Cert of Registry 6) Get seatime statements from Management Company, not the Captain. Ensure the info contains duration and frequency of voyages, duties performed and their duration/ frequency and the level of responsibility during your service refer to AMSA Marine Orders here http://www.comlaw.gov.au/Details/F2006B00538

So basically save all your class money for a trip to Tassie?

Captain Greg
Posted: Monday, February 27, 2012 4:35 AM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Tassie is just one of several Recognised Training Providers (RTP's) that AMSA accepts. I am studying in Fremantle but there are two places in Sydney and one other in Adelaide or Melbourne. None in Queensland??? You can also go to Warsash and complete the OOW unlimited course. I spoke with the director of the college and there is a 5 month conversion process to go from yacht master 3000 to OOW unl. With this STCW standard ticket you can be recognised for equivilency by AMSA but unfortunately the short courses are not.
Smith
Posted: Monday, February 27, 2012 2:17 PM
Joined: 28/07/2009
Posts: 10


Hi Greg, just to clarify. The 5 month conversion process from Yacht Master 3000 to OOW unlimited, is that in the UK or Australia? Do you know if there are any other sea-time requirements for this or do you just show up for 5 months at school?
Captain Greg
Posted: Sunday, March 11, 2012 2:18 PM
Joined: 16/01/2011
Posts: 11


Warsash Maritime college in England have advised me that they have a conversion process for yacht master<3000 to OOW unl. There will be a seatime requirement which is likely to be the same as the standard merchant OOW prerequisites. You should check MCA's MGN 95 (M)Part ii. Heres the link http://www.dft.gov.uk/mca/mcga-mnotice.htm?textobjid=19651723F6A14382 Email Warsash and other UK Training centers for specifics of their yacht-merchant conversion.
Billy The Kid
Posted: Monday, May 14, 2012 7:16 PM
Joined: 14/05/2012
Posts: 1


Hi Captain Grego,
Thanks for posting such in-depth info, interesting stuff!
So from what I understand everyone going home is going to experience something a little different when it comes to converting to AMSA tickets, depending on your own qualifications and experience and what direction you want to head within maritime employment in Aus?
Could you offer some advice on what sort of qualifications I should be looking at in Aus based on the fact I (will) have a Mater 3000gt (Y) MCA ticket? Considering the only short course I have completed in Aus is an Advanced Fire Fighting ticket (over 5 years ago...). I would prefer to go for unlimited commercial tickets but is this necessary for employment on supply vessels/ tugs on the NW Shelf (for example)?
Could you also outline in a bit more detail the courses you are currently taking? Including durations and costs?
Thanks,


Charlie82
Posted: Tuesday, May 15, 2012 10:41 PM
Joined: 05/09/2008
Posts: 1


I returned to Australia in January and thought that I would convert my tickets "for a rainy day".  I approached a training provider and they said it should be pretty easy given I've been a skipper for the past 2 years, and the state office should be ok, this was just for master 5 level.  So then it began...

I had to complete just the exams for the Master 5, which over time, dragged out to include assignments, and a practicle which was very hard to organise given that I was doing it on my own.  This process dragged out about 6 weeks longer than expected.  Although the exams were not difficult (I have to MCA Chief Mate 3000 gt (Y)), it was just getting the paperwork side of things through that were the hardest, right down to the medicare card for the course fees!  However, saying that, it is a 9 week course and very dragged out at the AMC from all accounts.  Even once you recieve the ticket, it still doesn't give you much (24m full commercial), and given the size of the boats you will need an MED2 to complement it to get any work.

WARNING! Stumbling Block number 1.  Before they could issue my CoC I needed to sit a basic VHF course as I didnt do it in my M5 (cost about $150).  Why is this I say, check this out, GMDSS GOC from Warsash. Ba bow, Not worth a cracker unless someone at AMSA checks it out.  So for the $370 and 3 week wait for Canberra to check it out, I had to sit and wait for my CoC to be issued.  Now I have a what is called a Certificate of Recognition by AMSA, which will never be an AMSA GMDSS, so if I want to renew it, I have to do so in the UK, then revalidate it again here (every 5 years)! Once again, as mentioned in this thread a lot, to work here, do your courses here, so unfortunately, next time I will just do it here!

WARNING! Stumbling Block number 2.  What do the below all have in common when in Aus?

STCW Basic 2007, AU$1800, Sydney (not AMSA audited school)
PSC & RB, 2009, GBP 1200, UK Fleetwood (not in Aus)
Advanced Fire Fighting, 2011, US$1495, Resolve, Fort Lauderdale
Medical First Aid, 2011, US$1650, MPT, Fort Lauderdale

They are not worth a cent! And trust me, there is no way around it unless you have an equivalent CoC from a recognised jurisdiction. So as AMSA does not have a Yachts category, they cannot recognise any of these.  But if you can home with a commercial 3000 for instance, they would!

So off to the AMC I went to do my Basic STCW again recently.  For $2650 and NINE days! I was held captive in Launceston and forced to sit through the BASIC again!  Now I am waiting, as these certificates now STILL HAVE TO BE SENT TO AMSA WITH A FEE TO BE APPROVED!

So at this point, about 4 months later and thousands out of pocket, still out of work....

I think about the best option is to come home and go straight for your Master 4, it includes all the STCW and GMDSS at discounted prices in the course fee, and gives you a ticket worth something.  At the time I was enquiring I thought it was as easy as the bloke selling me the course said it would be, he was right, but that didn't include the paperwork, so much paperwork and checks.  And each time something gets checked allow 20 working days!




Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 2:16 AM
Firstly, Thanks Capt Greg on providing such great information… If you don't mind, I have a question relating to your story. I also want to catch up with AMSA tickets for a "rainy day". I hold an MCA Chief Mate 3000gt, but only a NSW Coxswain. I have done some of the M5 modules already from completing MED3. I am going to try to complete the rest of the assignments/modules by correspondance (may or may not be possible). Would you suggest I eventually go for MCA Master 3000gt(Y), or AMSA M4? I already hold an AMSA GMDSS GOC, would that aviod the stumbling block you mentioned regarding recognition? Thanks very much Jimmy
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 3:03 PM
I should re-phrase that last bit; Do you think one day an MCA Master 3000gt(Y) ticket will be recognized by AMSA, and should I even bother trying to get my MCA Chief Mate 3000gt recognized as an equivalency for M5??? Thanks again Jimmy
Anonymous
Posted: Monday, July 9, 2012 11:11 AM
I'm trying to do the conversion of a MCA Masters Unlimited to an AMSA Masters Unlimited Certificate of Recognition, which requires sitting an AMSA Masters Oral. I've got the syllabus, but am struggling to find a training institute, or in fact any books, to help me find out what the Oral entails, particularly on the Australian Law side.
Andy
Posted: Sunday, July 15, 2012 7:56 PM
Joined: 15/07/2012
Posts: 18


Hi guy's, some thing's that should be noted- AMSA no longer issue (since 2005) STCW endorsments on state tickets. AMSA do not recognise MCA yacht tickets, they will however recognise seatime on commercial yachts, I find this a bit hipocritical. The latest draft for the new national system, where state tickets will be issued by AMSA, will not change anything as they will still be restricted to the Australian coast and not have STCW endorsments. If you can get or have the seatime AMSA tickets are very good as you can use them on any type of vessel including yachts. Trying to get Australian state tickets recognised by MCA or trying to get MCA yacht tickets recognised by AMSA is not going to happen anytime soon.
Anonymous
Posted: Wednesday, July 18, 2012 4:14 AM
Well explained Andy; to go further my I thought I would explain my experience having just finally completed my transition from yachts holding an MCA Master <3000 (Y). You have to decide what equivalent qual you want: 1. AMSA Master <500 Unlimited OR 2. State Master 3 (following are steps that led me to successful attainment of Master 3 recently) - Submit an application for Sea Time Assessment with either AMSA or DOT (dept. of transport) - Submit an RPL (recognition of prior learning) to maritime school for approval/acceptance for the shore based courses diploma. - Once you have the diploma and sea time assessment you can apply for an oral.. Don't expect it to happen overnight and good luck!!
Andy
Posted: Wednesday, July 18, 2012 8:24 PM
Joined: 15/07/2012
Posts: 18


I take it you already had a state issued Master class 4. Did you also do the AMSA Master <500GT? Just to add a little more for charlie82 and others; The entry level tickets are AMSA Mate<500GT or state Master Class 5. To be elegable for a state Master Class 3 or an AMSA Master <500GT you are required to gain seatime while holding a state Master Class 4 or AMSA Mate <500GT. To be elagable for a state Master Class 4 you need to gain seatime while holding a Master Class 5. As far as i know there is no way of leapfrogging to the higher tickets. Also STCW basic training is not required for state tickets.
Anonymous
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2012 1:15 AM
Andy - I held a M5 prior and attained M3 after the steps i explained.
Andy
Posted: Sunday, July 29, 2012 11:37 AM
Joined: 15/07/2012
Posts: 18


Hi Anon, That is quite interesting to me. Can i ask you where you had your seatime assessment for the M3. Just wondering how you were able to skip the M4. Also what courses did you need to do in Oz for the Diploma.
Anonymous
Posted: Thursday, September 27, 2012 1:12 PM
first of all, AMSA don't issue a Master 4 (not yet anyway until STCW'10 Manilla amendments come in) and second, you don't need a Master (Y) 3000gt to do the OOW Unlimited commercial ticket... go to Newcastle in Oz, and with your TAG book and seatime and you can do the Watchkeeper unlimited course in less than 5 months... also, don't think that with Y tickets that you can come to Oz and use them, unless you are on a yacht... commercial is different and most flag states/authorities don't look at time in a port or at anchor as 'seatime'.... Yacht tickets don't convert to much at all in the commercial world, and AMSA is the strictest authority by far in the world... and I have quals from 5 different countries... including other endorsements... be prepared to start all over again, or spent 2 years fighting to get any RPL, and by then you could have just gone and done it...
AW
Posted: Thursday, November 8, 2012 7:31 PM
Joined: 26/08/2009
Posts: 1


Hi all, I'm just waiting to sit my OOW yacht oral in england and I plan to come home in June. Over the past couple of years I have applied to have my sea time assessed and luckily was allowed to sit my deck watchkeeper oral after completing the require schooling. I spoke with friends and my options were tastier or Perth and I have chosen challenger tafe in Perth. Looking on the course structure I have completed a lot of it but after reading the previous posts I might as well box the, away for a rainy day. I have had an arduous time with amsa even having someone tell me "we are not here to answer your adhoc questions" when all I was trying to do was get a straight answer. I hope that after this it will pay off. If anyone has any suggestions on a clearer path I would be most appreciative. On a good point out of my friends that have gone home all have gained employment and are very happy with their decision to go back.
David.L
Posted: Tuesday, January 22, 2013 6:37 AM
Joined: 22/01/2013
Posts: 1


Hello Capt. Greg, Do you have any idea on the expected time frame for implementation of Marine Order Part 3 issue 7 ? Regards, David
Anonymous
Posted: Saturday, February 2, 2013 10:09 PM

I don't understand why a certificate to the STCW 95 requirements isn't accepted by AMSA.....

I have completed GMDSS, Adv Fire, Medic First Aid, Personal Survival and Rescue Boats through Warsash, and ur saying these course won't be recognised by AMSA???, even though the AMSA courses are the same standard.

Please help.. ;(


freetobes_3
Posted: Wednesday, March 20, 2013 5:21 PM
Joined: 22/05/2011
Posts: 1


Like you guys, I'm looking to head home and have been going through the familiar "no-one has a straight answer" BS for over a year. I spoke to Roger Towner at the MCA at the Monaco Yacht Show and he told me that the reason that AMSA didn't recognise "limited to Yachts" tickets is that they don't have a category for "limited to yachts"and that the MCA had created this license to fill a gap in the system due to giant yachts rapidly being constructed in Europe with a massive under supply of mariners to work on them. I then heard that the MCA and AMSA were getting together again in March 2013 to try and work out their differences and that the goal was to create an Aussie license "limited to yachts." Because I'm moving back this April and need to work immediately I've had my see time recognised by Maritime Safety Queeensland. The result is that they've given me permission to sit my Master Class 4 and I need to go back to school for 7 weeks at a cost of AU$4,000. It's a big FU really because I hold a Master 3000gt and have 14 years experience, 9 of which as captain up to 43m. All they really have given me is a Master 5 which is basically a commercially endorsed Yachtmaster Offshore with a notice of eligibility to do a Master Class 4.  

AndyG
Posted: Friday, March 22, 2013 8:43 PM
Joined: 15/07/2012
Posts: 18


Freetobes, would be great if AMSA introduce a yacht certificate, but can't see it happening. 

Last time I spoke with Jeff Holden at AMSA regarding yacht tickets his words were, "AMSA does not intend on introducing some niche market boutique ticket". His words exactly! 

They could easily match Master 5 with OOW, Master 4 with 500GT and Master 3 with 3000GT. Job done.

Until 2005 AMSA had an STCW endorsment for state tickets and guys that came over with that were crossed over to the MCA class 4.

I came over in 2009 and got squate from the MCA. Had to start again. Even though the actual seatime required for a state Master Class 4 is more than four times of that required for a 3000GT (Y). 

 


AndyG
Posted: Tuesday, April 30, 2013 8:03 AM
Joined: 15/07/2012
Posts: 18


Quick update.

I spoke with Roger Towner at the Antibes yacht show recently and the meeting between MCA and AMSA to discuss yacht certificates did not happen. He was quite sure though that AMSA have not and will not change their view on yacht certification.  

 


Zenith
Posted: Sunday, March 9, 2014 9:13 AM
Joined: 28/04/2011
Posts: 58


I have an AMSA Master CoR on the back of my MCA Master Unlimited CoC, which required another oral in Fremantle and was as hard as, if not harder, then the MCA oral. Finally, with that I got Permanent Residency in Australia and am now deciding what to do next with regards work.

Within a few weeks I've had some job offers offshore and in pilotage, starting salaries exceeding AUD$200,000.

I would have liked to stay in yachting, but I don't see it as an affordable option. Offshore jobs have included as junior DPO 5 weeks on/off for a starting salary of $200k, which when you compare to working 4:2/2:1 or possible 3:3 in yachting earning $150,000 a year but paying tax makes it an unrealistic option to stay in yachts.  

I have spent the last 6 years on board super yachts as 3rd, 2nd, 1st and Chief Officer, and thoroughly enjoyed it. But to live in Australia with the family now, it looks like offshore or pilotage is the only way forward. I would be interested to know any Ozzies with unlimited tickets and how they get on. One things for sure, no way in hell I'm going back to the UK with my kids now, so if it means giving up yachting to stay in Australia, then so be it. But if there are options I hadn't thought about, would be nice to know.


 
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