A Day in the Life… Working on a Superyacht.

Joe Robinson, 21, did his Professional Yachtmaster training at UKSA on the Isle of Wight.

“I work on a 33m charter motoryacht, so we are not the biggest boat out there by any means, but that also means we are not the biggest crew. I was employed fresh out of UKSA as First Mate, an unbelievable stroke of luck, and right place right time meant I was fortunate to be offered such a position.

“On a normal charter morning, I will wake up at around 7 am, of course, this depends on the routine of our guests, if they like to wake up at 5.30am and go for a run, the morning chammy must be done before! After checking the fly bridge and the aft deck to ensure they are presentable, I will do the first tender run of the day. Maybe the chef and I will go ashore on a quest to find fresh bread and produce for the day’s food. If we are in a familiar port this can be a simple trip to the shops, however, if it is a new place then it can be quite a task to find the necessary items. Once I am back it is time to start preparing the watersports. First to go in is the swimming ladder and all the snorkelling equipment so guests do not have to wait if they would like a morning swim before breakfast. After everything for swimming is ready, including nice fresh towels from our laundry, folded and rolled in the correct manner (which I am still mastering despite countless lessons!) it is time to inflate the towable water toys and put out the wakeboard, waterskis and kneeboard. Then we can launch the Jet Ski.

“For the rest of the day and into the evening I shall be at the disposal of our guests. The deck (keeping the yacht looking presentable), tender driving and watersports are my responsibility. Tender trips ashore are a common occurrence and fall within my responsibilities. If we have a full house of 11 guests as there is always someone wanting to swim, jetski, wakeboard or go ashore. I usually spend a few hours each day with guests doing all manner of watersports, which I thoroughly enjoy.

“Depending on our schedule and itinerary we will often cruise during the night so guests can enjoy the daytime in each place we are visiting. We usually leave around 10.30pm after guests have eaten dinner and the stewardesses have had chance to finish dinner service and clear up the majority of the mess! While cruising, the Captain and I share watches, four hours on and four hours off. If we are navigating a lot during the charter then a passage plan will have been prepared on the paper charts beforehand, and I am then able to use all the skills I learnt at UKSA. If we are not cruising at night, then we do a four hour anchor watch each.

Things are different each day, each charter, and each hour. It certainly is not a job for those unsure of hard work. It is also beneficial to have a goal, as having some direction is a massive bonus when looking for a job.

OK, time to get back to my chammy!

Find out more about how UKSA can help you along the path to working on a superyacht