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OOW MCA, Commercial Crossover into yactching industry
Posted: Thursday, January 20, 2011 1:35 PM
Joined: 13/01/2011
Posts: 3

I am 24 years old and have been going to sea for 7 years now aboard commercial vessels.  I obtained my MCA OOW unlimited certificate 3 years ago  and have been working in the oil industry ever since.
I have always had a keen interest in the yachting industry as my father was a skipper on 20m charter boats in the Caribbean before I was born, that is one of the main reasons I pursued a career at sea.
I feel that I have gained enough experience now at sea as a 2nd officer and I would like to crossover into the yachting industry. I have all the relevant STCW 95 qualifications and a Higher Diploma in Nautical Science. BUT one thing I lack is experience obviously, a couple of agencies informed me I need to start as a deckhand. I have heard of a few guys who crossed over and got positions as 2nd mates on larger yachts. Has anyone been in the same position or got any tips and advice where to go from here?

Posted: Thursday, January 20, 2011 4:18 PM
Joined: 09/09/2008
Posts: 2

Personal opinion, for what it's worth: I would advise a deckhand job first. This could be on a larger yacht (>3000GT) where your OOW CoC would be useful, but the size of your first yacht isn't essential providing it is run correctly.
On any yacht your CoC will be useful, but for you to be in charge of a seasoned deck crew who know how a large yacht is run, without yourself having the experience, will be difficult.
Not impossible, but better with the experience.
I employed a commercial OOW (deck) on his first yacht 11 years ago...he spent 2 years as a Deckhand and had a great time...he then moved to 2nd Officer on larger yachts, in due course to Chief Mate and is now Master (Unlimited) and a very respected and successful Captain of a >70m Motor Yacht.
He enjoyed his learning time as a Deckie...
Good luck.

Posted: Friday, January 21, 2011 7:18 PM
Joined: 09/10/2008
Posts: 134

Yes, you could get a job as a 2nd Mate on a big m/y, but I am guessing that the reason that you came to yachting will be more forfilled if you do a couple of years as a deckie and it will give you the knowledge to be a much better yacht captain. It should be fun with the right Mate/ Captain! Also you will probably be earning close to what you were getting commercial (right?) so why not? View it as an investment in the long term plan!
Posted: Friday, January 21, 2011 10:39 PM
Joined: 13/01/2011
Posts: 3

Thanks for the response,

I started off at the bottom when I started my commercial career and would expect to do the same again in the yachting industry,

Here is the next question, what is the best way about getting a job? With my current qualifications and sea experience, dose this stand me in good stead? I am used to working long hours, being in confined spaces with other crew for months on end, all of these issues arent new to me. 

I have signed up with a couple of agencies who inform me they will be in contact if anything suitable comes up. I have been considering going to Palma in April and see if I can find anything in person,

Posted: Saturday, January 22, 2011 12:18 PM
Joined: 07/10/2010
Posts: 15

Hey Nic, pse email me, have two contacts for you, yachts that are recently reclassified to commercial, and others that are > 3000t that need commercial CoC's

Posted: Saturday, January 22, 2011 10:47 PM
Joined: 13/01/2011
Posts: 3

Thanks Gilana, that would be amazing. I have just sent you an email,