Working on a superyacht is perhaps every seafarer’s dream. The lavish environment, an opportunity to provide 5-star services, and meeting guests and making impressions on the elites from all over the world. Not to mention the hefty amount of salary and tips that come with the job is indeed a motivational factor too. So, how can you work on a yacht? In this article, we will focus on the basic requirements for working on yachts in South Africa.

The Yachting Scene in South Africa

While South Africa does not experience a superyacht scene as often, there are plenty of luxury yacht cruises available around South African coasts. South Africa has been a popular destination for a scenic gateway in the southern hemisphere, flourishing with marine tourism.

The yacht scene of South Africa allows for a great learning and experience buildup for seafarers dreaming of working on a superyacht someday. What’s more? South Africa is also a famous destination for superyacht training schools, attracting local South African and international talent alike.

There are many superyacht training schools in South Africa. But make sure you go for the RYA-accredited and MCA-approved training schools only, like Skippers Training SA.

The Basic Requirements for Working on Yachts in South Africa

Simply put, a superyacht crew consists of four major classifications: Deckhand, Stewardess, and Chef. And then there’s the team of officers in a hierarchy that maintains the order of operations on the yacht. Depending on your choice, you may choose to work as a Deckhand, Steward/ess, or Engineer. Click on the links to learn more about these roles.

But first things first…

We should focus on the basic requirements for working on yachts in South Africa.

Every seagoing marine worker has to fulfil certain requirements before they can work on any vessel, not just a yacht. Let us take a glance at them.

The ENG1 Medical Certificate

To work on any ship, you must be fit for working in the environment. The ENG1 Medical Certificate will determine whether you are fit for the task. Any MCA-Approved doctor in South Africa can provide you with the ENG1 Medical Certificate of Fitness.

More: What is an ENG1 Certificate and Why do I need one?

The STCW Certificates

The basic mandatory STCW certificate contains five modules.

Personal Survival Techniques

The Personal Survival Techniques (PST, A-VI/1-1) aims at providing basic survival training to equip candidates with useful skills in dire situations, such as ship abandonment.

Fire Fighting and Fire Prevention

The Fire Fighting and Fire Prevention (FF&FP, A-VI/1-2) module focuses on identifying flammable objects, potential causes of fire, and how to deal with a fire outbreak on the ship.

Elementary First Aid

This module (A-VI/1-3) equips a candidate with a basic knowledge of first aid and how to deal with certain medical emergencies to help and stabilise the patient until real help arrives.

Personal Safety and Social Responsibility

The Personal Safety and Social Responsibility module (A-VI/1-4) focuses on making the candidate aware of different regulations and guidelines, the importance of safety and work ethics, and understanding your social responsibilities for your and others’ safety.

Proficiency in Security Awareness

This module (PSA, A-VI/6-1) focuses on making the candidates aware of international threats, the ISPS code, introduction to marine security, and more. If required by a yacht’s safety plan, you may have to take the Proficiency in Designated Security Duties instead. If you are unsure, it is safer to take a PDSD course rather than a PSA course.

More: STCW / Safety – Skipper Training SA

The RYA Powerboat Level 2 License

Superyacht crews often use yacht toys, such as tenders or jet skis for various purposes. That’s why, to operate such vessels, the RYA Powerboat Level 2 license is a minimum requirement. In South Africa, you can procure the license via an RYA-accredited institution easily. It is about a 2-day course and the final examination to receive your license.

More: RYA Powerboat Training Courses and certificates of competence

From here onwards…

You get to decide what you want to work on as a yacht, or on a superyacht. These certificates are internationally recognised, thus opening your career doors to the international scene as well. South Africa provides a proper foundation to accumulate the necessary experience. As long as your experience is relevant to your career goal on a superyacht, you should pursue it.

To become a deckhand or a stewardess, you do not necessarily need a course to find employment. However, if you are new to the industry, the courses will help you advance faster. For more information, please visit our Yacht Crew Section.

This article aimed to provide the most basic requirements for working on yachts in South Africa and more. Of course, each type of vessel has its own different regulations and certification requirements. However, these basic requirements stay consistent across all types of vessels. If you have further questions about the superyacht industry, feel free to browse our website or connect with us today.

The Basic Requirements for Working on Yachts in South Africa