Two weeks ago a television program in the U.K., "Cruises Undercover: The Truth Below Deck," revealed the harsh working conditions aboard cruise ships operated by Royal Caribbean Cruises’ subsidiary, Celebrity Cruises. The difficult working conditions and low pay are almost unimaginable by U.S. standards: 12 plus hour days, 7 days a week, 30 days a month with no days off over the course of 6 to 10 month contacts, for as little as $550 a month for non-tip earning ship employees.

The result of such a grueling schedule is exhausted and demoralized crew members who are often isolated from their families whose birthdays and anniversaries they miss on a regular basis.  

The mental health and emotional well being of crew members is not a topic that is discussed in the U.S.

Few Americans seem concerned with the working conditions on cruise ships faced by citizens of the greater world community.  Most U.S. citizens respond to the exploitation of crew members from India or Jamaica with the rationalization that whatever pittance the "foreign" crew members are receiving for Missing Royal Caribbean Crew Membersworking 90 hour weeks is more than the workers can receive back home. "If they don’t like the work, they can quit" is the common wisdom. No doubt many crew members are easily replaceable considering that a country like India has hundreds of millions of people unemployed.

A week before the "Cruises Undercover" program aired, a Royal Caribbean crew member disappeared from the Serenade of the Seas as it sailed to Italy. The incident was briefly mentioned in the Italian press, as well as in newspapers in Croatia and Spain. We mentioned it in our article "Crew Member Goes Overboard From Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas," but no major media outlets in the U.S. was interested in covering the story.

For a U.S. based cruise industry whose mantra is the "safety of our passengers and crew is our highest priority," there is little expression of such a sentiment when a crew member disappears at sea.

This weekend another Royal Caribbean crew member disappeared. While this is not uncommon as I will explain below, what is unusual is that the disappearance involved the the same Royal Caribbean cruise ship, the Serenade of the Seas. This incident was briefly mentioned in an Italian newspaper but, again, no one in the U.S, mentioned it.  We reported on it on Saturday – "Another Crew Member Goes Overboard From Royal Caribbean’s Serenade of the Seas." Now two days later, no one else in the U.S. has reported on the story.

Yesterday, I posted a photograph of the Serenade of the Seas on our Facebook page and asked "why are so many crew members going overboard from Royal Caribbean cruise ships? A number of former crew members commented and the consensus seems to be that cruise employees are working harder than ever for less money, One crew member said that working on a ship is "like going on a marathon before preparing yourself for it." Several former Royal Caribbean crew members left their thoughts which are worth reading. 

The concern that I have is that there are so many crew members employed by Royal Caribbean who have gone overboard. Were these employees overwhelmed by work and felt hopeless away from their families? There is great stress placed on the cleaners, cabin attendants and waiters by their supervisors and department heads as Royal Caribbean struggles to stay profitable. Consider that in the three years I have written this blog, the following crew members have gone missing from Royal Caribbean / Celebrity cruise ships:

December 2009 – Majesty of the Seas – crew member jumped.

December 2009 – Monarch of the Seas – crew member jumped.

March 2010 – Radiance of the Seas – crew member jumped.

May 2010 – Explorer of the Seas – crew member jumped.

May 2010 – Oasis of the Seas – crew member disappeared.

March 2011 – Grandeur of the Seas – crew member disappeared.

March 2011 – Constellation – crew member disappeared.

May 2011 – Eclipse – crew member jumped.

December 2011 – Summit – crew member jumped.

January 2012 – Monarch of the Seas – crew member disappeared.

September 2012 – Serenade of the Seas – crew member disappeared.

October 2012 – Serenade of the Seas -crew member disappeared.

The official investigation into these types of incidents lies with the flag state.  But countries like the Bahamas will never go onto a Royal Caribbean ship to investigate a crew death or disappearance and will never, ever criticize the cruise line.

An independent and objective investigation is needed to determine why crew members are going overboard from Royal Caribbean ships. If the cases involve suicides, an inquiry is needed to determine whether the long hours and low pay are contributing causes. There is no question that the crew members need greater rest and greater pay. 

If I ran a large business and one dozen of my employees ended their lives or just "disappeared," I would launch an investigation and get to the bottom of the problem.

But cruise line executives think differently.  None of this puts money in the cruise line’s pockets. The crew are viewed as cogs in the machine. When they break, they are easily replaced. 

If you have a thought about this issue or have information about any of these cases, please leave a comment below, or join the discussion on our Facebook page.  


December 4, 2016 Update: A newspaper in Australia mentions this article in The One Issue You Should Consider Before Going On A Cruise. "Passengers just need to remember that the crew are working incredibly hard, and long hours, while they put their feet up on holiday. So tip them well and treat them with respect."

  • Andres bonifacio

    Just to say thank you finally someone speaks out about what and why some of the crew decided to go over board maybe because of to much pressure specially the waiters who works for tips and40% of passengers now a days dont pay the waiters intentionally after a long cruise and in return they will give the poor waiter a poor raiting that will ruin the waiters rating system of rccl that will result of less guest to be serve next cruise! Less guest less money for the family! Plus the bad rating that a guest give to the waiter will take at least amonth to recover . It affect us mentally very bad streess us more and i think its one of the reason why some of the crew plan or jump over board hope somebody can look in to this to help us chnange this system regarding this rating and how guest tipping system on board rccl cruise line!

  • Rubens Silva

    This is a fact! Don’t like, go home! This is what we listen in the life on board. I’m brazilian and, like me, almost all crew members in the cruise ship has option of job in our country. Because this, almost everybody ask sign off in the first week of work.
    But for our collegues from another countries this is not the reality. They don’t have choice. That’s why when they don’t stand the pressure, they make something crazy.
    We need help! We need somebody to look for us and make something to put an end in this situation.

  • Selvam Subramaniam

    Please include Star Cruises in your reserch and analysis also. There have been many crew ‘incidents’ there also.

  • dedi sarwanto

    All that written above is true for 100%,,we need a strong union to help us,for better life on board,and during off board for vacation.

  • Jose Lopez

    As a witness of an actual crew member jumping overboard from the Sun Princess near Pacific coast of Panama back in 1999 and the many stories close friends told me about years later, i can honestly say the reasons for someone jumping overboard are never single reasons but a combination of various circumstances.

    Certainly working 11 hours a day for 11 months plays a key role, the competition among cruise lines makes a living hell week in week out for every crew member that gets tips, falling to a certain personal percentage of satisfaction on some cruise lines might mean you may be losing your rank.

    Managers and supervisors have to deal with so many regulations, USPH inspections, security briefings, environmental meetings, safety ongoing training, fleet wide protocols, etc., that is practically impossible for you to spend time with your team, i know this first hand, i spent 16 years at Princess, 10 of those as a supervisor.

    But what i feel is the main reason why crew jump is the inability of cruise lines to carry enough extra personnel to cover up for sick crew members and those who are not mentally fit to perform.

    Often times, when a crew member falls sick, and for that i mean is really sick for a ships Dr to issue a permission not to work, it only means hell to the rest of the team, because they will have to cover for the work that crew is not going to perform.

    But for those who are having problems back home, problems that if you were home might not cause you so much stress, on board they magnify a great matter, right there you are not mentally prepare to deal with the every day job, but even if you seek help, you will still need to work, nobody is going to issue you a break for something that no one can understand and feel but you. That is when bad things happen, that is when an assistant cook stabs an Italian chef or you end up jumping overboard as an statement that you need help.

    The truth of the matter is that, depending of what country you come from, is the amount of attention you can generate, to make this a clear example, British and Italian crew members have a 6 month long contract on board Princess ships, Portuguese and South Africans 7, Mexicans 9 and Filipino 11, right there you have plenty reason to throw yourself over board

    Contact me if you have specific questions, i will be more than happy to answer you

  • anonymous

    its also about time that crew get proper and decent meals. How can crew be expected to eat most of the meals they get given. They cant dare to complain. Long hours, very bad meals, being over tired, being away from home for many months, work pressure, worried about their families, low pay ect will lead to all the issues aswell as deaths of crew that cant handle it all anymore.

  • anonim.

    cnn heve to visite any of the ships of rccl ,make a records and present to publish how is realy treatet crew,thanks…

  • Jose

    Yes !! Very poor food,long hours ,to much pressure ,
    low wages like Liberia …
    WE NEED HELP PLEASE !!!!!!!!!!!

  • anonymous

    Mr Walker, crew from all around the world needs you to be their spokesman, by themselves they have no chance to even be heard by anyone, none of their requests to the shipping companies they work for sound unreasonable. These people are humans, they have parents who love and care for them, wifes, children.

  • Agnelo B Rebello

    It all depends upon u r contract what it says . I believe all of us, read the condition of the contract before sign.If u c leaving condition it better to stuck up……….

  • MarriageDomain

    How UNFORTUNATE this is.

    Indians dream of that Shippee job and invest so much of their Time, Money and Efforts only to be dealt Cruely.

    Moreover they have little to no Support when on Ship because of which they are forced to take such drastic steps.

    Pray to GOD that all Shippees (not just Indians) get better working conditions in the near future.

  • Harold

    I have noticed the changing morale and attitude of cruise crews (on another line but from Carnival group). It is not good at all and it is so obvious that the cruise lines, not just RCI, have only one focus… profit.
    It is time to pay service staff a civilised salary and dump this system of utilising tips to suplement poor wages. A tip is intended to be a reward for good service not a cheap way out of paying staff proper salaries.
    Time for proper working conditions too… it is obvious that they work like slaves and this day and age that is just not acceptable.

  • kuli pesiar lacur

    yes that is true can you imagine we are work from 7am to 10 pm break 12 noon to 3 pm all the time in section with high pressure i was crew for fill position pool attendant
    job is very hard and low wage 250 ero next contark is 547 us can you imagine how big mafia this company ..
    most of as is asian crew india /indonesia/filipines.
    i think becouse small money and before go on board they have to pay for agen fee from 3000us to 5000us more.
    i think the company dont know or dont want to know about they patner ask big money for join in they company so this the resaon some crew man over board becouse can not handel the job and no money back after 1 contarak this true hapan in bali indonesia
    before they go to job they have spent money around 5000us …here also i remain all agency in bali ask money foe join and rejoin REMAIN ALL AGENCY CRUISE LINE

  • raj

    carnival cruise lines follow the same as well.,plz include that also in this topic.,

  • jason

    What happened to the crew member that was found dead in a cabin in sydney this week

  • anonimous

    I was reading your article and well I worked there for way looong time and believe me the amount od indians on this ship is outstanding hotel director most of management bagr manager fb manager maitred headwaiters it manager….and keep on going…..tobe honest i think some maifas are onboard because of thta indian control the ship and of course their people is scared about it to fail to make mistakes before their supervisors because it could affect their lives once they go back home i heard stories of management borrowing money and strange promotions between themselves same nationality but these favours should have a price….me i quit the ship just because I wanted to try something diffrent im now in Costa and is completely opossite the story to serenade i feel im working on a ship just now before i dont know what was that but believeme somebody should check themafia sin there im not amazed this lovely boy fell to be involved in that besides that managers and supervisors are always covering eye to their indian people so you see crewmembers every turn around fired….its too obvious the influence of indian crew has destroyed the moral of the crew onboardthis ship`…im not amazed at all about waht this guy did and maybe he was pushed outside….but we will never know —well i feel happy i took this from my chest …..i dont expect any result anyway.




  • francis fernandes

    i am in housekeeping.working for royal carribean for 5 years now.the rating system is very bad.even if all your guest give you excellent rating but you do not get any comments from guests you go back of the house.which means no pay for 2 weeks.during this time you get paid 10$ a day.which is very less.some crew members ask guest to write comments to survive.if we get caught telling guest about it we get fired.if we get good comments and good ratings for the company the management gets good bonus.both ways it is win win for the company.we have to manage with whatever tools we get as management onboard tries to cut budget the get thier budget is very difficult to work in this environment but i have no choice as i have to support my family.this really makes you suicidal.i hope some would help us.

  • Lorenzo M

    Hi. I don’t know the situation and the problems that are you talking about. but i’m waiting for to start with royal. I’m italian, and i’m hired like sportstaff. this is my first experience on the ships
    Can you say me something more about life on board and sportstaff job?
    thank you. I know that this is not a community for this type of question..but i hope that someone can help me!
    Good luck!

  • Chloé Yew

    Hi All,

    I just got off from a RC cruise on The Legend of the Seas this morning.
    It’s been an amazing voyage cruising with RC although I did not join much of the activities onboard but instead spending most of my time enjoying the breath-taking serenity on top of the deck.
    I was so amazed by the crew services and hospitality. It’s almost impossible not having any of them to greet you with a simple hello or smile despite the long hours they were working on.
    Most of them are extraordinarily friendly to the guests, perhaps part of the reason is because of the tipping system they had in place? Well, I can’t comment on that.
    But my curiosity got the better of me that I actually asked one the crew member about life onboard as I thought it could be one of the coolest job on earth sailing from one continent to another.
    I was told that most of them are on a contract basis, 6 to 8 months. Upon completion of contract, air ticket will provided to them so that they could fly home from where they docked. Working hours is about 10 hours a day.
    I also googled about life onboard online and I came to know about this website and thought of dropping a comment/feedback, not sure how much it would help the crew members but hopefully their welfare could be something for the company to look into with so many voices raised here.
    I wasn’t surprise with the working hours as I myself witnessed it with my own eyes while I was onboard.
    I actually traveled with another friend of mine, our daily activities will start off with usually a morning jog then followed by strolling around the ship, do some reading, sun bathing and etc. Throughout the day, we actually rotated our 3 meals in between Windjammer, Park Cafe and Romeo & Juliet. That was when we spotted all the familiar faces of the Dining Attendant or Assistant Waiter.
    For example, if they were working in the noon in Park Cafe and we definitely will see them again for dinner time at Windjammer.
    It’s almost like a project runway where they get changed and suit up ready to be thrown to the runway for another assignment.
    Me and my friend always wonder how much time could they possibly be given to rest as the turnaround time is so short.
    Although I have never worked in a ship before, but I can feel their lethargy, their exhaustion and pressure running high being out to the sea for several months away from home.
    We also wonder is it really good money to work in a cruise ship as we can imagine the amount of time spent onboard with nothing but long hours of work.
    Apart from those working in the dining place, there are also Room Attendant. You could easily get your room cleaned up twice in a day! See how productive they are?
    At the end of my trip, I realized how lonesome it can be working onboard a cruise ship.
    Considering the amount of time spent out to the sea where you got nowhere to run to, no one to share your joy and tears with, unless you are good in blending in with your colleagues from all around the world else I guess it will be pretty doomed stuck in middle of an ocean.
    This was my 1st trip on a cruise ship, and I can’t help but to admit that I fell in love with the ship/RC the moment I stepped onboard. Although there were times you could get bored when some activities are not meant for the Gen-Y like us but all in all, as a guest, I definitely enjoyed all the memorable moments the ship brought to us.
    I’m missing it all already! People I met onboard, people I had a small chat with, people dining on the same table, people I exchanged smile with. But this is not the main reason that I’m writing this.
    I went home and took a nap after I got off from the ship, woke up missing the ship and at the same time feeling a sense of sympathy to all the crew members as they are about to embark to another journey to another place.
    Each place they were docked at is just another touch-and-go to them. Wondering how would they feel with people coming in and out of their lives.
    These are all my genuine experiences throughout my 5 days spent onboard, from what I have seen to how I felt.
    I strongly believe that a good organization should have a very strong foundation of employees welfare in place. Although they are contracted employees, I believe they all should be treated equally with their hard work.
    Our trip wouldn’t be so complete and satisfying without all these guys working so hard behind.
    I love RC and with the most talk-about top-notch customer services and hospitality that you had for all your guest, you should thank them for being part of the reason to make our stay fulfilling.
    I’m not sure how true are the comments posted here, neither am I in a position to justify it but I do believe that these guys do deserve a better reward from the company.
    Being a reputable organization, I really hope that the Management could look into this matter with our little voices raised here.
    Till then, we shall wait impatiently with the change/improvement we hope to see that could provide a better working place to all the crew members.
    You guys rock and stay positive always! =)

    With love for RC,
    Chloé Yew from Malaysia/Singapore

  • jhon smith

    as a former royal Caribbean crew member I can state, a nice history of things that royal Caribbean does to its employees onboard, first a facilities cleaner less then 600 us a moth 12 hours working more specific from 5 am to 5pm on boarding days the facilities cleaners must clean up the ship and also distribute the luggage for the guest, finish at 6 pm an then back to work at 12 am. before on royal a cleaner use to be happy as on their time of during the day, they were able to do some side jobs and make some additional money, royal Caribbean make changes on this things and make impossible for them to do that additional money, regarding the bar staff, housekeeping staff, dinning room staff they work base on gratuities paid by the guest at the end of every cruise, meaning to say they don’t have a salary if the guest after 10 days of work two times a day for them don’t pay the gratuities that means no money, in addition to that, this group of staff needs to pay for their own flight tickets and hotel arrangement, its a company that make specially the housekeeping and dinning room staff work base on ratings if a cabin attendant does not have nice rating this one go to a back of the house group and spend two weeks working cleaning crew cabins for as low as 10 daily and still working 10 hours a day, royal Caribbean charge their guest 5 us dollars per person per day for the gratuities for those who make the gratuities go to their credit cards and for those who don’t pay the cabin attendant still gets the money deducted from their pay for those guest who didn’t pay meaning to say the cabin attendant pay for the guest how didn’t pay. its a company who does not provide tools for the people to work, who keeps all the money they make to build more ships and no to invest on making their employes happy, for example if a ship like the voyayer class vessels a ship for 3600 passenger they charge 5 per person per day and from this 5 only 4 go to the cabib attenadant and 1 gos to “the support team that helps the cabin attendant on boarding days” the company pays 30 us dollars for this support duties to this individuals, for a boarding day maybe 30 people will be use for this duties by 30 another 30 for other duties means 1800 us dollar per boarding day an if the company charge 1 per guest per day to pay this guys that means that in a 10 days cruise is 36,000 for the cruise and only 1,800 will be use for the boarding day were is the rest of the money, royal carribean makes people work like crazy and give a lot of rules to follow and never provide the tools to follow those rules and if you make a complaint regarding not having tools to perform your duties you get fire as simple as that, another thing they many people on their management team racist as hell, to finish I will just say something if you thing you can do it go for it, but is not a recommendation, I have try with the Disney cruise line and this is a company that cares about their employees think before and if you don’t believe try and you will see for your self’s thanks to the people who make this page possible

  • navigator

    i was waiter assistant on board of RCCL ship NV….i worked 3 days in a raw,for 13 hours and 30 minutes per day…..after that…i tried to find smth to eat…but as always..nthn…because i am alergic of pepper…but there was everything with pepper except water..if you don’t believe me…go and ask NV-CREW MEMBERS…i worked 3 weeks only LUNCH and DINNER…that means “no time to get out”…no connection to the world…and only stress…everything i was doing..was somebody to tell me “do it,or i give you papper or warning”…nobody told me “ok,you’re tired,go 10 min and have rest,then come back”….i tried to do my best…i got good comments from guests…but the supervisors,commented me in the bad way,at 90 days evaluation they told me,”you didn’t pass the evaluation”….ok…maybe i didn’t ,but nobody told me what to do,in order to take it…and..after they dismissed me,nobody cared for the money i spent to get this job…and i didn’t earn the money i spent to go there…and we were pushed to say “i feel good working there”…otherwise they send u home automaticaly….the reality there is only AMERICAN COMPANY,WITH EASTERN COMUNISM.

  • godbless you

    i was working for Holland America Line for 10 years and almost all cruise ship company only thinking about how to get a profit, they dont care about the crew, especially to the crew in the low rank, please help them if you have a power, Its all about power, cruise company they have a huge money to give to the authority, so they can covered all the mistake and slavery, racist, low pay, intimidation, etc on board, if you you the one who have the power please help them…now i am quit already but i hope you can help the other who still work on board now….they are so many crime, corruption, slavery, harrassment, happen on board,,,,help them .

  • john

    I am a crew member in royal carrebbean I have seen supervisors in facilities department on radiance of the seas are so rude they don’t care about the cleaners they do the rules as they want no time off for the persons who really wants to go out in certain port but they will decide whome to give you know they will check the port manning and they know you are on port manning they will give you time off ,the royal carrebbean rules are that no supervisor can have any relation s with the ir cleaners but here the headcleaner Han not even that he goes to help her when she works in her ares not even that he got her pregnant ,this girl gets the best time of the contract actually it looks like she is on vacation there are other crew members ( cleaners ) who really humans also but are not considered , my point is I really don’t wanter to interfere in other people’s personal. Buisness but come on those all the cleaners need to be consider equal we all know there is lot of unemployment in this world ,we all have a replacement waiting to cover our space .but at the end if the crew members are not taken care ,or if they are stress how can they deliver the wow to the guest ,I love royal carrebbean cruiselines but the management on board is not following the book of what Royal carebbean has implimented I have seen crew members start their contract in day shift they finish their full contract in day shift they are supposed to do half the contract day and half the contract night butthe supervisor will keep the people they like in night so they can do side jobs in day ,enjoy the ports ,keeping all this in mind we dermis how crewmembers are stress and end their life. That’s all to say a immidate action needs to be taken to make cruise industries better.
    John russel

  • john v

    hi i worked as a cafe attendant on royal caribbean allure of the seas, and im very dessapointed about this company, the most important asset in a bussines should be the people working but they care more about the guests.

    we work for us$700 during 8 months, there is no respect for us, and the company always wins, if you get fired theres is like 2000 people behind you waiting for the position and they have all the world to choose from.

    royal caribbean feels so proud about their upcoming ships, but i met so many sad people in allure, is true that this kind of job makes you stronger, but this is not the way, i really feel ashamed about this coldblooded people, let make this world a better place please

  • jewel crew

    Hi,I was on jewel as a waiter but now I m at home..and I m so happy to be here(I mean at home).life on board is very hard.It can be better if company take action.Supervisers are very rude!!!working hours are very long and no day off!!why we have to pay for uniforms,phonecoll,internet,flight tickets!!!!those things must be change and food on board is disaster!!!pls if you have power to do something about this help us!!

  • arnab roy

    yes rccl as a company (human resources wise )is really a big blot in the cruise lines . there are many reasons . i worked in rccl for 7 years . 2007 i left it for good because i had an accident in enchantment of the seas , where i broke my wrist in windjammer cafe galley. they took in hospital in Bahamas and they declared unfit for my job. what they did after that was quite amazing , they told me that expenses for operation in US will be too much , so offshore medical referral team suggested me to go back to my country (india) and do the medical operation , the money will be paid by company . i was signed off from lauderdale alone with broken hand with luggages and no assistance ,to miami and then to india. that takes around 19 hours . i survived this ordeal , anyhow reach my home , without money because i was signed on only 2 months back . got the doctor , had a long operation , fixed my working left hand wrist. doctors suggested that there is not only fracture ,but there also nerve damage . so bear everything , that point of time my family was in real bad financially .Miami office told me they will be sending money (they call medical benefits. but suddenly after 6 months they stop sending money , they have a company rule that say if crew member has been injured for more then 6 months benefits stops . . i started to work in India , where there will be no stress in my hand , Secretary job , phone receiving and all merger jobs just to stay afloat, in india even i cant do chef jobs. i contacted one miami lawyer mr alsina , he fought for and given me some money i needed , to start my life fresh . he is an angel to me. tell you what cruise ship companies specially rccl are trying to be the big shark in the business . they are taking out new cruise ships like they making sausages . they are growing bigger and bigger . and they need people . and where the best place to get people — biggest populated country in the world . india . the hiring partner mr jadav (when i joined was a hell of guy ) . sends people like peanuts . and the best part is you cant get promoted until you butter your superiors. and the supervisors are so skillfull in that , they will take work out you and will give you temporary promotion ,but dont make it official in shore side next contrace you back to square one . these all tings lead to extreme unhappiness and mental blockage . i know in navigator when started one philipino guy was so tired and exhausted that he thought he was in the bathroom (,when he was in crew cafe bar) he got naked and started to pee . believe me i have seen this. but worst thing happened to me i lost one of my classmates in sea . his name was probir ghosal . he died because he was overboard , nobody knows what happened , till next morning , some say it was murder some say it suicide, but i know him very well , he cant commit suiside , something has gone wrong .
    best thing the company not only denied his family any kind of compensation ,but didnt even bother to give his last things he has , his dress and personal belongings .
    after this i heard this i left cruise lines for good , it has increased my physical health by 10 yrs.
    if in US law , there can be a probation where cruise companies who have their office in america have to be liable to america. because once the ship goes in water they behave in a most non responsible way .
    need to do something, because those place are still running under slaves in a modern way

  • sabelo mashinini

    Hi I was working there 2008 until 2012 they don’t care there I was working as a chef commi 2 I was on vacation when I supposed to go back I report to them one of my famly is death I can not come back they agree with me in miami head office when I want to return they tell me stories one was incharge was rude to me she told sorry u will go back after 3month but now I am at home I don’t want to go back there is like hell even supervice they don’t care are rude too low money also working especial cooks they take you like an animal you will never see me there hardtime

  • Borj

    Can i ask a question?? What is the duties and responsibilities of a cafe attendant in a cruise ship?? Is it the same with crew mess attendant?

  • dev

    Ok thanks god that i found this site..Tommorow i had in plan starting checking fly tickets for RCC..Now when i read this iam glad.Now i know that iam staying in home and will be better to forget this job.Now it looks like to me like slavery..Ok dont want to be killed or throwed from board :X ty a lot and good luck to everybody with this job.

  • Suzie

    I worked for RCI for 3 years in Accounts payable. I was thrilled when I got such an amazing job offer, little did I know it was to be hell on high waters. By nature I’m a positive person so I thought surely it well get better eventually, it only got worse. The treatment of crew is horrible, hours are long, the pay is pitiful and management is the worst-they couldn’t care less about their team members. I lost my mom in 2012 and went through a horrible period of depression. I was even suicidal, nobody cared!! I couldn’t eat, sleep or even concentrate at work. You know what they did? They wrote me up and tried to have me fired for my poor work performance. When I tried to tell them why I was not able to perform as previously I was told not everyone wants to hear about my loss. Heartless.
    You work tirelessly 7 days a week, 7-8 months and long hours but nobody is interested in your welfare. I wouldn’t recommend RCI even to my worst enemy.
    I knew of Food & Beverage crew members who had even longer contracts who got addicted to energy drinks just so they could survive. I pray something will be done soon, this is a form of slavery.

  • Evelyn

    Hi, I have something to ask.
    I was a Royal Caribbean crew member. As a Bar Server, in many Royal Caribbean ships I heard was 5 to 9 hours a day at port. On Splendor my maggenemet was putting us to work 11 to 14 hours a day. I have to fix cronos many times because “Miami” was complain. With no guest consuming, just to stay in the lounge empty with around 6 bar severs.
    Anyway, I was working well, no warnings, some months I did not receive the minimum wage.
    During brazilian carnival, I went with 5 people to someone else’s cabin. And the guy whom opened the door, slapped my face with no reason. They isolate him and made alcohol test in both of us. By the Royal Caribbean law the maximum alcohol consuming is 0.05 while off duty. Everyone can pass this easily just takin more than one glass.
    What happened is the security said the alcohol would be out my blood till I start to work.
    After 3 days they called me to fired me and the guy. What I got angry is that something similar happened before and the Captain leave both of the people.
    I report to miami and they kept the decision.
    Can you instruct me?

  • security rccl

    I was security onboard and it was the most horrible experience of slavery I can imagine, they treat you horrible, the food for crew is more horrible than in prision, they don’t care about their people.

    They abuse Indians and Phillipinos because of their situation at home. If some body can do something good, but so far I don’t recommend anybody to work for this company especially because they lie to you and when you get there anything is like it was a bad picture. And you can end up depressed, or even worst suicide.

  • Inge

    My husband was a crew member at Royal Caribbean on the first ship we struggled to get the money home, that’s why he went to work on the ships he could not find work in our country. Some of the crew members even told him to have an affair and because he refused he was the odd one out!!! Sitting and eating alone for 6 months. He had a contract for 6 months. Worked like a slave. He came home for 2 months without pay and went back to a different ship. His contract was only for 6 months, but was extend to 9 months. The sleeping corters is not bigger than a bathroom (2 sleeping in one cabin). The food of the crew members are not the same of the guests. He worked like a slave!! for only 1200$ a month if he worked for 15 hours a day he got paid ±1500$. For any married couple I will not approve this, because while he was on the ship he had an affair with one of the crew members although Royal Caribbean states in there manual that crew members may not have any sexual contact with guests, but they do not state that the crew members may not have any affairs. It seems that the crew members and senior staff helped the crew members on with this. Now me as the partner and kids have to struggle emotionally through this!! I lost all my respect for any cruise liner!!!!! My marriage is on the rocks and my husband don’t want to go back!!! Why can’t they make the contract 3 months and treat their crew members with respect then they will all the the loyalty off their staff and their partners. That’s why people go for Cruise Liners to work for their families, but it looks and sounds more like a brothal!!

  • Jason

    Rcl pays shit too much long working hrs treat employees so badly

  • Vanrose Malem

    I read one of our fellows about the Indian community,,I believe that there are still some good Indians like my fellows before,, but when there are too much of one race on one ship they become dominant and they closed eyes on each other for mistakes and blame other nations..reminds me of my previous manager vijay chippa.
    F&B manager was also Indian in 2011 on freedom of the seas rccl. I worked with good rating but they hide my good performance on Captain’s hearing.. but the captain and other superior just believed and only listened high ranked officers without prior investigation and check the performance record. Their way is to frighten people by firing them from their job if they don’t want to testify against their co workers…next it’s their turn to get fired for the one who testified. .This people don’t care if we have good performance, they just want to have bonus by the good guest comments from the comment card…well they succeeded cause they intimidated crew to seduce guest to write good comments they don’t care about our physic and mental condition. .it is good to be able to work under pressure but not excessive one..They need to consider about our psychological condition too especially due to intimidation…more or less you can conclude the point of contains what it’s might called race discrimination

  • Ion

    Just came from Serenade Of The Seas. Horrible place, work 7 days a week, 10 hours a day, no break, horrible people, you have no rights, i have no idea how this is even legal. No human rights on the seas? horrible place to work in, little money, little sleep, hard work, crap food, little water to drink, worse than prison. I have no idea how can that even be possible in 2015 on a vessel that prouds itself as american. Never again and i feel sorry that i do not have money at the moment to sue them. I will contact USA Human Rights to see what i can get. Those months on board were very tough and i would surely like money from them. They treat the crew members horrible and they should pay for it.

  • amena

    Hi Ion, what were you working as? I have been offered a job as youth staff worker. I am a bit scared as to how tough it will be.

  • hemant sooroojbally

    hi,i hav work for celestial cruise on louis aura cruise ship,i can tell u zat it was worst than hell,the cabin is like animal house,bathroom n toilet so dirty as if we r animal using it,food horrible,n the supervisor,manager,maitre d’hotel r so rude n inhuman,they treat u like slave,there’s nothing like rules n regulations,u get warning like nothing,u hav to keep quiet if something is wrong,they threat u if u want to work so keep ur mouth shut n do wat u r ask to.wen u complain they fired u,wen u r sick they dont let u go to z doctor,they always insult u humiliate u.i had a gurlfren which z manager proposed for sex if she want to work,she had to resign herself.wen the ship is not cruising they dont pay u full,the recruiters fool job seekers showing u fake dreams of good life on ship,especially mr eddley elliah who take Rs 25000 in advance as he know he sending u in hell

  • iwan

    Hii my name iwan,all the fellow crew member speak up about thing was just happen in the ship are 100 % correct. I also crew member was just working in the quantum of the seas (asian tour),and decided to sign off this month coz to much pressure and a very small salary a way beyond my expectation. When the time i resign, I don’t know why my bos always stay beside me when i have to speak with HR manager. I work as galley steward, this department has really bad management. As crew member we have to watch our own cronos, if we already have more time of work (over time) our supervisor will be mad. But the funny thing, is it supposse to be their job to warn us about rulo of ILO (10 hour) of work. The big question is what the supervisor do beside eat n sleep?? If we take care our on duty, even for chemical they say some time there is out of stock. Only when the time of USPH they provide all chemicals for cleaning. Also before I join this company, there is some process in my agency that i have to spend a lot of money if i want to join to royal carribean international. Even if i only join in Tian Jin, China. I have to spend IDR 18,500,000 only for plane ticket, from what i heard that company give ticket for free to galley steward even for the first time they join. I thing still a lot of home work to Royal Carribean to be International Company. Hope there is some one listen to this letter .Thank you, God Bless.

  • jill gascon

    I’m on a Royal Carribean cruise the very moment. Strange before I read this I noticed the long hours and the tired faces of the staff. Reading this I’m not sure I will ever cruise again. Royal Carribean you ought to be ashamed of yourself. I will tip in cash..

  • 70257280

    Most of the crew members join the vessels with the minimum knowledge of the work are hired for, but having in mind ‘great stories’ about the savings can make while onboard the ship.
    If any would pay attention to the details of all affected, disappeared or abandoned, it would discover that most of them were qualified, strong background in the working area before embarking or several years of work experience offshore on similar position, the language meaning changes onboard as there could be more than 10 – 15 languages spoken at the same time around an individual and only one to have a chat with in a common language, lucky or unlucky if native language, the education and interest may differ but no where to hide, no where to run (offshore such ambiance of 10 – 15 languages at the same time 24 hours daily 7 days per week would close any potential business as no common term to promote a business but just personal interest, it happens and it happened in some part of the world).
    The common language may have an impact for changes, individual future, including accidents, obviously no trainings are provided to be ignored by any individual that’s trained.

  • Vicky

    I would like to mention Princess Cruise! The worst company to work with, discrimination on the salary, very long working hours ! No time to have dinner, lunch or breakfast! And supervisor always give hardtime, with lots of abuse on crewmembers. Salary is very less specially for galley (kitchen) team, for restaurant and bar they earn very high salary because of tipping system but what 4 the galley team, the one who works more harder get very less!

  • Anon

    One thing I know RCL do, since they now mainly recruit themselves and dont use hiring partners, is give people false contracts. They are given contracts that state they will receive X amount pm along with their Letter Of Employment. However once the crew member has paid for their flights and visas to join the ship, they get given a revised contract onboard with different conditions and pay. Since they know most crew members cant afford to pay for flights home and are in probably in dept, they will accept the contrat.

  • Passenger

    You can tell from the horrible grammar used here that most of the contributors do not have English as their native language. I read about this before I cruised on Norwegian. One afternoon I walked into the cabin while it was being cleaned. When I gave the girl a $5 bill I thought that she was going to faint.

  • prabhu

    Sir,I was selected for bar utility for RCCl.I had applied from hiren international Mumbai I passed online interview I got a offer letter from rccl. I have visa C1/D now its been 6 months no respond from the company to join the ship..

  • Vector

    Hi, i just signed in for employment for RCC and assistant waiter and could use some information, if there is willing person to help me with some information on work hours, contracts, payments, work descriptions. Agent from agency i signed in mentioned long hours, but spoke about minimal wage… First time here i see “revised” contracts and not paying wages to people so how common is that and is there some protection from it?

    All the best…

  • Dawn E Bavaro

    I’ll be on a RC cruise soon.
    After reading this page, I will make an extra
    trip to the bank and get even more 5.00 bills
    than I’d originally planned on tipping, over and
    above the ‘automatic tip’ which will be placed on
    my bill.
    These cruise employees are in dire need of a union !

    • WiseOwl

      They are unable to form a union because the ships are registered in foreign countries like Bahamas, where U.S. labor laws do not apply.