Name: Erich Cuizon
Yacht: M/Y Harbour Moon
Length: 43M/141' 1"
Years in current position: 7
Years in industry: 16
Previous vessels: M/Y The One, M/Y Latusca, M/Y Unicorn, M/Y Bossy
I’ve been working in this industry for 16 years and my goal has always been to become a captain, which I started last season when I got my Yachtmaster 200.
If I didn’t work in the industry, I’d like to work in business; car sales for example, something like that.
The toughest part of the job is the long season: Getting out of bed to pick up guests by tender after a party is tough. I’m used to it, as you can imagine, but all summer you don’t sleep very much.
I think my advice to kids today is to be less demanding and more serious. In my day, we never asked the captain how much the salary was — you just wanted a job — but these days they do. And they can be demanding about the food they eat, things like that. Then they go out partying after work. Take things a bit more seriously and don’t ask for so much. If you want to impress on the job, work hard and heartily!
Extra qualifications can be a real help; most of the boats have a lot of toys these days so training certificates for the toys and scuba can really help.
The most important thing I’ve learned on board is to be patient: patience, patience, patience!
My greatest achievement has been to support my family financially and all of my kids have gone to university through my hard work. My eldest is a nurse, the second a marine technician, and the third is a psychologist. I am very proud of it and am much
more relaxed now they have all graduated.
When I was young, becoming a mariner was one of my dreams. I started studying marine technology when I was working as a builder. Then I started working on the passenger ships as purser, then chief purser.
The best part of the job is meeting celebrity guests — and when the boss gives you a bonus at the end of the season!
My best deck tip is work hard. Shampoo and wax for the paintwork and then sealer on the teak.
This article originally ran in the February 2022 issue of Dockwalk.