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What do I take with me?
Th. Freeman
Posted: Saturday, January 16, 2010 7:01 PM
Joined: 04/05/2009
Posts: 24

I am planning on heading down to the Med in search of a crew placement at the start of this up-and-coming season.

As this is the first time I'm attempting to do anything like this, has anyone got any essential items, kit, financial requirements etc I may need to consider taking with me? Im just starting to gather it all together now and need an idea, so not to pack too much.

Many thanks. I look forward to hearing your input.

Posted: Sunday, January 17, 2010 9:24 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026

Well I just paid 3 euro for a cup of coffee so bring plenty of fun tickets . As far as what to pack ...TRAVEL SUPER LIGHT...No Junk. I repeat SUPER LIGHT. Leave the laptop and all the other stuff at home.... Do Not travel with a backpack...You come to the yacht and those monsters are impossible to store. Any gear you bring takes up space and inconveniences your fellow cabin mate. If your traveling to must learn how to communicate in French. Check out your local book store for a handy MP3 player language instruction course. Basic French is all you will need. Bring a few books so that you can understand the region. Nothing worse than ignorant crew . If your dumb you will be stereotyped as a stinkpot crew, get trapped behing a squeegee and never go sailing. As I glance over the yachts bookshelf I see books that are always popular with crew and guests. .... Provence A-Z: A Francophile's Essential Handbook ,,, A Year in Provence ,, Adventures with Knife, Fork, and Corkscrew . The French Riviera: A Literary Guide for Travellers. Queen Victoria and the Discovery of the Riviera . A Life of Picasso: The Triumphant Years. And once light
Th. Freeman
Posted: Sunday, January 17, 2010 8:31 PM
Joined: 04/05/2009
Posts: 24

"Do not travel with a backpack"?

Wow. What do I carry my stuff around in then, a plastic carrier? Haha really professional!

Thanks for the advice junior. I need everything I can get right now.

Posted: Sunday, January 17, 2010 9:06 PM
Soft luggage, duffle bag. Jr. is not kidding when he says no backpacks, especially on a sailboat.
Posted: Monday, January 18, 2010 3:10 AM

How inventive you WAFI's are ....... u put your backpack under your mattress and sleep on it!  I've travelled the world for 30 years with my backpack ..... never had a problem!  




Posted: Monday, January 18, 2010 7:58 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026

Thomas, you just dont need to bring much. Yachting Shorts and a Polo for a job interview.... Yachting long pants and a shirt for nighttime, two pairs of shoes , couple jumpers, tee shirts , sleeping gear and that's it...The yacht supplies uniforms and if you find yourself short of casual clothing just stop by the shop and pick something up. The yacht supplies everything right down to your tooth brush. Travel with a duffel bag.....better yet two medium duffel bags. One for dirty clothes. I wont let backpacks on the boat...if you bring one you will have to store it ashore. One thing to consider is that we as yacht crew don't own the boat. Any extra storage space is reserved for guest luggage...and many times guests bring way to much hard luggage. . This yacht has quite nice crew get one small desk drawer, two large bunk drawers, two medium size cupboard shelves and half of a medium size hanging locker. Everything that you own must fit in this space. When you travel with too much a laptops or electronic toys or hair driers or electric toothbrushes or any other household gear it will invade your and your cabin mates space. On this yacht we have a laptop on the internet that crew can use and share, hair driers, irons, gizmo's... you name it....that belong to the yacht and crew are welcome to share . Jackets,foulweather gear, sea boots, safety gear....everything is onboard. For girls we always add a bit to the budget for clothing or shoes so they may personally purchase suitable out on the town with guests fashion.. On the yacht the owner does everything possible to eliminate crew gear clutter and allow you to Travel Light.............Avoid over packing. My last stewardess just carried way to much just...took two truck to offload .
Posted: Monday, January 18, 2010 12:54 PM
Joined: 28/08/2008
Posts: 7

I can't live without my laptop. Having one might help you avoid internet cafes. Just my 2 cents.
Posted: Monday, January 18, 2010 2:50 PM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026

Everyone is different....some cant live without hairgel
Th. Freeman
Posted: Monday, January 18, 2010 9:00 PM
Joined: 04/05/2009
Posts: 24

Hahaha, great pic junior, I was only thinking to pack half that amount though.

Your comments are greatly appreciated. At least now i'm starting to have a better idea. Keep em coming, and thanks everyone.

Posted: Tuesday, January 19, 2010 8:45 PM
Joined: 05/01/2010
Posts: 5

Hi Th,

What you need to do is think to youself,

What is important to me!

I do not go anywhere without my camera, so its the first thing in my bag. After that its some clothes blah blah blah some cleaning stuff.

All you have to think is can my bag be stowed away in a small space, so don't take anything hard, I.E. a suitcase.

Apart from that take what you want.

When I arrived i have more kit that even I new what to do with. Ok mind you I did arrive on the scene a few more years ago. But the same holds true.

I still have things that are important with me.

The most important thing to have with you is,

A thick skin, as you will be turned down for jobs. It happens.

A willingness to work hard, its not all sun and fun here.

Determination, to get a job and struggle through.

Good luck and rock on!

Posted: Tuesday, January 19, 2010 11:05 PM
junior..."Provence A-Z: A Francophile's Essential Handbook ,,, A Year in Provence ,, Adventures with Knife, Fork, and Corkscrew . The French Riviera: A Literary Guide for Travellers. Queen Victoria and the Discovery of the Riviera . A Life of Picasso: The Triumphant Years"'re not actually suggesting he purchase and carry all these books? The MP3 language download is a good tip, but other than that I myself would probably purchase a single field guide for the region you plan on going to...unless you're a chef with cookbooks, who wants to lug around a library? Other than that, all the advice I've seen so far has been good. Soft luggage which won't damage varnish and can easily be crumpled or rolled to stow in a bilge, a weeks worth of clean clothes and undies and pjs, etc, and of course a laptop and portable flash drive for a digital copy of your CV and emailing the crew agents and boats. Computer cafes aren't always easy to find, or that cheap. Good luck with your season!
Posted: Tuesday, January 19, 2010 11:10 PM
as far as money goes, i would advise to bring enough guarantee a bed to sleep in and food to eat for a least two months without any work (just to be safe) as well as backup to go home if the situation gets desperate. also, remember that while networking is all well and good, the more cash you spend in the pub means the less time you'll be able to stick around and look for work.
Posted: Tuesday, January 19, 2010 11:43 PM
Get a good quality leatherman with a holster, they are very useful and make you look more prepared and professional when you turn up for daywork / trials. That said, don't cut anything you shouldnt!! A USB stick is useful for keeping copies of your CV, scanned certificates and a copy of your passport. also email these things to yourself in case you lose the USB stick. Take plenty of business cards with a photo of yourself and a link to your CV that you have uploaded to the internet (keep this updated). Getting them done in the UK at Staples or somewhere like that is much cheaper than it is in Antibes, where you will get ripped off! Print off your first batch of CVs at home (about 20), as it is also expensive to print stuff in antibes, like 50 cents a copy. Not too many though as you will need to update it after you have done daywork. Personally I'd take a laptop with a european adaptor socket as interent cafes are expensive, and many hostels have WIFI. Before you leave get a seaman's discharge book from the MCA so that you can record your sea time and avoid taxes when you get back. Register with all the crew agencies before you leave , as this takes about 2 days to do! good luck!
Posted: Tuesday, January 19, 2010 11:56 PM
Joined: 08/04/2009
Posts: 3

Forgot to mention, order a Gymsim or similar international phone sim card now off their website, so that you don't get stung by roaming charges or have to buy a french phone and then an italian one when you go to italy etc etc. They are quite cheap qnd i think people can ring you from the uk cheaply too. When you get there get a railcard, that is if you intend to pay for the train, a lot of people risk it. you will probably need to take the train most days to go between monaco and cannes. If you are under 25 you can get a railcard for about 40 euros that cuts your train fare in half, saving you between 2 and 5 euros every time you go on the train.
Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 8:24 AM
Joined: 17/12/2009
Posts: 2

I am attempting to get a seaman's discharge book however I have been told that I need to have a letter of employment in order to get one of these, is there another way..?

Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 8:37 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026

Hey Oli99. Ive heard of this Gymsim card , but how does it work ? Whose cell phone network does it log onto. I reviewed the wbsite but it wasnt clear.
Th. Freeman
Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 9:12 AM
Joined: 04/05/2009
Posts: 24

Yasmin, A testimonial from a previous/present vessel is sufficient for application of a discharge book. The MCA/DFT just need to see you've had active service on a commercially flagged vessel.

Some great advice so far, trully apprieciated. Thanks for spending your time filling me in. The Gymsim card seems a great idea, just as junior said though, the website is not too clear. Has anyone had personal experiences with this sim? Is there still 3G internet support? (I was thinking of an iPhone in a few months).

Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 9:56 AM
Joined: 14/01/2009
Posts: 1026

Internet via laptop in Europe is best purchased gprs, umts 3G by buying a stick from one of the companies...Im using a vodafone stick at the minute...49 euro per month unlimited. Wifi is unreliable ,spotty and expensive in many areas. The 3g works everywhere your phone works. It would be interesting to find out if GYMSIM is also able to power the internet con. The problem with the internet sticks is roaming . you end up with Greek, Croatian, Turkish, French, Italian, Spanish... piles of sticks everywhere.
Posted: Wednesday, January 20, 2010 8:08 PM
Joined: 18/11/2008
Posts: 66

You cant take a backpack...? WHAT!!!! i am currently looking at mine and thinking what to take with me this year I have taken a backpack on every boat i have been on and never had a problem there not exactly big and they squash into a small ball if you crunch it up properly are you insane???????

Well take a camera, Im taking my Laptop its essetial! Oil Skins... depending on what your doing i supose.
Me... My Bag = Make up, heels, 1 uniform , hair straightners, loads of products and some clothes!

oh have fun good luck finiding yourself a job! its a great atmosphere down in the S of France.

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