Container Ships are non-bulk, dry cargo ships that help global commerce to relocate cargo from the place of manufacture to the point of export. They have become the most common commercial seaborne vessel rivaling the popularity of oil tankers and bulk carriers.
The crew on board of Container Ships remains the same as that of other dry cargo ships, but may vary in number. Collectively, the entire crew works together to ensure proper the functioning of the vessel including the deck, the engine, and the service departments.
What is it like to work on a Container cargo ship?
Working on a Container ship is tough, but not as overwhelming as working on tankers. Due to the rising demand for a global container fleet for moving cargo, there has been a hike in marine employment opportunities. However, jobs abroad on cargo ships are physically demanding and require staying at sea for extended periods of time. Subsequently, sailors are compensated marginally well for their hard labor but salaries for each rank are also conditioned on the size of the vessel.
There are around 20 crew members on a Container ship designated in each department for the effective functioning of the vessel, each spearheaded by a captain including Chief Deck Officer, Chief Engineer Officer, and a Boatswain who supervises the deckhand crew. Entry-level merchants including cadets, Ordinary Seamen, and Messman have plenty of opportunities to progress on-shore and are paid reasonably well.
There is always a requirement for a cadet, deckhand trainee, or wipers and Messman to conduct general cleaning, take patrols, and assist the officers and engineers in performing their duties effectively. The officers and engineers that work in the middle ranks have the scope to train and advance to the higher rank based on their credentials and experience.
The presence of Cooks and Stewards make up the entire merchant crew. Chefs who can work at ship and love to travel can take up the job at sea.
Finding a job on Container ship
The first credential that you require to work on a U.S Container ship is a Transportation Worker Identification Credential (TWIC) issued by Transportation Security Administration (TSA). Candidates can apply online for TWIC and submit immigration documents by visiting a TSA office.
Based on the qualifications, experience, grade, and endorsement, a Merchant Mariner’s Credential (MMC) by U.S Coast Guard is another requisite to dictate the kind of jobs a seafarer is eligible to apply for.
Similarly, a certificate in Standards of Training Certification & Watchkeeping (STCW) is required to work on vessels that operate worldwide. Without an STCW, mariners with MMC can only perform duties on inland waters of the United States.
Aspiring seafarers can obtain a four-year Bachelor’s degree from a marine academy to qualify and get licensed for Third Engineer or Third Officer right after graduation. Training under seniors and working for years on various vessel types can assist them to upgrade to the rank of Chief Officers or Captain/Master who earns an average salary of $90,000 per annum.
If you’re looking to kickstart your maritime career, browse through the expansive inventory of worldwide seafaring vacancies at NauticsJob for getting started.
|Container Ship||Rank||Average salaries|
|Deck||Captain / Master||$ 9,850|
|Deck||Chief Officer||$ 7,000|
|Deck||Second Officer||$ 3,200|
|Deck||Third Officer||$ 2,550|
|Deck||Able Seaman||$ 1,486|
|Deck||Ordinary Seaman||$ 1,097|
|Engine||Chief Engineer||$ 9,600|
|Engine||Second Engineer||$ 7,000|
|Engine||Third Engineer||$ 3,500|
|Engine||4th (Junior) Engineer||$ 2,600|
|Engine||Electrical Officer (ETO)||$ 4,200|
|Steward||Chief Cook||$ 1,766|