Cruise crew member exposes the ‘dark side’ of working as staff on a cruise holiday

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A mega cruise normally has a huge team of crew to build a great experience for its guests. From entertainers to cleaners and chefs, cruise crew have to work long hours.

While there’s a lot to enjoy about life onboard a cruise ship, one crew member has exposed the darker side to the job.

On Reddit, ‘more-morae’ posted: “Homesickness. We were understaffed and I had a leadership position at that time.

“I could not go home. What was supposed to be a six month contract became a 10 month contract.

“My return to home plans were cancelled three times in the last minute, I was told once I already had my bags packed, imagine the frustration.

“I was super tired, brokenhearted, sick and alone in a place where my language was very rarely spoken, at least in the crew area.

“I rarely had days off and I had to be smiley and jolly while on duty.”

Customer service is key for all crew but it can be hard for staff to keep their spirits up if they’re feeling homesick.

The crew member added: “Working on cruise ships is a very special experience, it’s fun and rewarding.

“But its dark side is very heavy and difficult to cope with, it’s such a heavy homesickness covered with a smile.

“Everything is so fast paced, personal life is mixed with work, you don’t really have privacy but you feel so alone.

“When you feel close to someone then he/she is going home, or it’s you who is going home and alcohol is kind of a lifestyle.

“Being a crew member is something I don’t regret, it’s one of the best experiences of my life, but also gave me one of the saddest moments ever.”

Crew members will often have to be away from home for long periods of time and work on back to back cruises.

They also have to work long hours across many shifts, including overnight, which can be very draining.

During Covid 19, staff have had to change procedures and introduce more cleaning to their routine.

Despite the difficulties, many crew members enjoy the job and make lifelong friendships with fellow staff.

Crew members are often the reason that cruise guests have such a great time on their holiday.

One said: “Thank you for giving so much of yourself so others could have a memorable experience.”

Passengers who want to show their crew team appreciation could bring care packages with useful items such as toiletries.

Tips can also give crew members a boost and show them that all their hard work is appreciated.

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