CV Advice

Everyday there are at least one or two budding new crew members visiting each boat with the hope of getting a job on board. Your CV is the first impression a Crew Agent or Captain will have of you and it will stick. If your CV isn’t selling you, you simply do not stand a chance.


Try to keep your CV clear, concise, simple and to the point – it should be two or three pages maximum. If a Captain or Agent needs more information they can ask.


Here are some tips as to what to include – at the bottom of the page you will see a downloadable CV template



When asked to submit a CV with photo this photo should actually be on the CV!! Make an effort with it and look smart and presentable; professional looking attire like a polo shirt is ideal. Just a headshot is preferable with a plain background, not in the bar! Using a photo you have from a night out will really not impress. The photo is necessary for many reasons, but mainly for the Captain to remember you; they really do see that many candidates on a day to day basis.



Generally an agent or Captain will scan a CV first of and will want to establish the following:

  • Your name

  • Your date of birth

  • Current Location

  • Contact details – make sure your email address and mobile number are up to date

  • Marital Status

  • Citizenship

  • Visas – list if you have your B1/B2 visa

  • Smoker – for some boats even social smoking will not be permitted

  • Visible tattoos and piercings – it is an appearance dominated industry so tattoos or piercings visible in uniform are often unacceptable

  • Health – State if you have an ENG1



This need not be long but a simple outline which position you are applying for. Sometimes it is difficult to establish from the CV alone the type of role a candidate is looking for. Remember to update this for the role you are submitting your resume for each time; a CV stating that you want to be a chef when applying for a Stew position will go straight in the bin! Conversely if you write a long list of positions it will look like you are not very sure what you want to do!!



List relevant Marine qualifications with date achieved first. These should include STCW10, Yachtmaster, silver service courses, diving qualifications. You can also list if you have a degree or diploma and, if you want, a BRIEF list of your high school grades.



Start with the most recent first. Put enough detail so that we can see what you have done, but don’t go overboard. Bear in mind that the Captain will be able to get some idea of what you have done just by the ‘position’ so be fairly brief. If you have spent time day working on various boats do not list every single boat separately; it just looks like you are jumping from boat to boat. Just write the period you were day working and list some or all of the boats worked on with location.


Other employment

List other jobs you have done outside the industry, again most recent first. You do not have to include paper rounds you might have done in your teens etc!


Interests and Hobbies

This might seem inconsequential but it is good to list. As a Crew Agent it gives a little bit more of an idea about you. Just a brief list is fine.



This should be a traceable list of references; make sure they are happy to provide you with a reference first! Please list their name, the boat or company they are from and a current phone number and email address


Common mistakes

So many CVs have errors or are even missing email addresses or contact phone numbers – make sure your mobile number and email are correct!!  If a Captain can’t get through to you after a couple of attempts he will move onto the next CV.


Cover letters

When applying for a job you may also need to put together a cover letter or covering email to send with your CV explaining what you are after. Cover letters full of typos or even written in text language will send your application straight in the bin. Take some time getting this right!


To view a template of a well laid out CV please click here

CV template