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Recruitment Process

Excited for an adventure? Ready to take on something new? Looking for a little more fun in your work? If your answer is "YES," then you are ready to get started with a Carnival career! Check out our process and FAQ below to know what to expect at every step.

  1. Start an
    Application
    Learn More about starting an application

    Start an Online Application

    • Use our online application tool and set the pace of your application.
    • Review and acknowledge position requirements.
    • Complete your personal profile, educational background and work experience.
    • Submit supporting documents, such as:
      • A cover letter and resume
      • Certified copies of your professional qualifications and certificates
      • Details of specific skills
  2. Interviews Learn More about Interviews

    Interviews

    • Allow us to share more detail through pre-recorded virtual introductions to our shore-side and shipboard teams.
    • Participate in an online screening interview in your own time.
    • Listening, comprehension, English language skills for the position will be assessed.
    • Successful applicants will receive a provisional offer, subject to review of references and recommendations for employment.
  3. References Learn More about References

    References

    Your current and recent employers (in supervising capacities) will be contacted for references.

  4. Employment
    Offer
    Learn More about Employment

    Employment Offer

    Accepting a formal offer of employment, and all terms and conditions, will allow us to start the “manning” or “administration” process to get you ready as a seafarer. This is also known as “onboarding”. As these next steps typically take place locally in your country of residence, your application will be handled administratively by our fabulous recruiting teams!

  5. Onboarding Learn More about Onboarding

    Onboarding

    Our local administration offices will contact you with guidance on the next steps. These include, but are not limited to:

    • Validation of references (review of your educational background and employment history).
    • Pass a Seafarer Medical Fitness examination.
    • Obtain the necessary travel documents and visas (including C1/D visas for non-American or Canadian applicants).
    • Criminal background checks or Police Clearance.
    • Personal preparation and consideration of notice period.
    • Additional requirements may be imposed by certain countries, flag states or regulatory bodies, dependent on your nationality and country of residence.
  6. Joining
    a Ship
    Learn More about joining a ship

    Joining a Ship

    • Your employment will only be confirmed once you pass all onboarding steps and accept a contract for your first shipboard assignment.
    • Onboarding may take several days or even weeks, although we will always try to assign you to one of our vessels as soon as possible!
    • Always wait for precise instructions before engaging in any professional or personal arrangements in anticipation of joining a ship.
    • Depending on our operational needs, you may need to wait several weeks for assignment to become available.

Got the job! What’s next?

Onboarding

A member of our Onboarding Team will reach out to you with guidance on the next steps to prepare you for your new career at sea. These next steps include, but are not limited to:

  • Validation of references (review of your educational background and employment history).
  • Pass a Seafarer Medical Fitness examination.
  • Obtain the necessary travel documents and visas (including C1/D visas for non-American or Canadian applicants).
  • Criminal background checks or Police clearance.
  • Personal preparation and consideration of notice period.
  • Additional requirements may be imposed by certain countries, flag states or regulatory bodies, dependent on your nationality and country of residence.

Joining a ship

  • Your employment will only be confirmed once you complete all of the onboarding steps and accept a contract to join your first shipboard assignment.
  • Onboarding may take weeks or even months to complete depending on visa processing times etc. We will always try to assign you to one of our vessels as soon as your onboarding process and paperwork is completed.
  • Always wait for precise instructions before engaging in any professional or personal arrangements in anticipation of joining a ship.
  • Depending on our operational needs, you may need to wait several weeks for assignment to become available.

Meet our fun partners

You’ve got questions, we’ve got answers!

What are the requirements to work on board?

The requirements may differ depending on the specific role that you are interested in. There are, however, some general requirements for working on board:

  • Be at least 21 years old (unless applying for a cadet role, where the minimum is 18 years old).
  • Be able to pass a criminal background check.
  • Hold a valid passport.
  • Be able to obtain a US C1D visa unless you are a US or Canadian citizen or resident.
  • Pass a Carnival Cruise Line seafarers medical examination.
  • Meet the required standard of English for the position you are interested in.
  • Be able to work for up to 14 hours per day 7 days a week for up to 9 months.

Do I need to pay to work on board?

No, you will not be charged anything to work on board our ships. You will have to pay around $160, although this will vary by country and your local embassy or consulate can provide further details. You will be liable for the cost of your seafarers medical, which cannot be reimbursed, and is charged by your medical facility, not Carnival Cruise Line (CCL). You will, in most cases, be liable for the cost of your flight to the ship for your first contract; after that, all flights are paid for by Carnival.

What is a C1D visa?

A C1D visa is a visa issued by the United States that permits Crew Members to work on ships that sail out of US ports. It enables the Crew Member to join the ship in a US port and to get off the ship in a US port while the ship is docked there. It does not permit the crew member to live and work on land in the US.

How do I get a medical certificate?

Our onboarding team will give you the information for approved medical facilities in your country and you will be responsible for making an appointment. Your medical certificate is comprised of an extensive set of tests to determine if you are fit to work at sea. You are liable for the cost of this medical certificate. Once you have the certificate confirming you are fit for duty it is valid for two years from the date you receive it. You must carry all the pages or your original medical certificate with you to the ship. When you are traveling, please keep the documents safe in your hand luggage as you will not be allowed to join the ship without it.

Which ship will I be assigned to?

You will be assigned to join a ship based on company needs. This means that you you will be assigned to a ship where there is a need for your position. We’ve got a fleet of fun ships, where our guests and team members enjoy each other’s company and create a lifetime of memories. You will receive a Letter of Employment (LOE) which will advise you of the ship, date and port you will join in. This letter also has instructions on the hotel you will stay at the night before you join the ship.

When you are in the hotel, you will need to confirm with the receptionist the time that transportation will take you to the ship. It is not common, but you may get to the hotel and find out that your ship assignment has changed. If this happens, a member of our Crew Operations team will make arrangements for you to get to the Port that the new ships you have been assigned to sails from. Do not worry, everything will be arranged and communicated to you.

How do I get to and from the ship I am assigned to?

There will be a shuttle from the hotel to the port on the morning you are joining the ship. Please confirm with the hotel reception the time of the shuttle. They should provide you a letter with this information at the front desk – if they do not, please ask for it.

Do I need travel insurance?

You may wish to purchase travel insurance for your journey, but you are covered medically while you are on board the ship and looked after by our onboard medical team if you are not feeling well.

How long will I be on board?

The length of time you are on board depends on your position and varies from 3 months to 9 months. This will be explained to you during the recruitment process.

Can I get off and go home during the contract?

No, you are not able to get time off during your contract. When you join the ship, we expect you to be there until your sign-off date. We do, of course, understand that emergencies happen. If you do need to leave the ship due to an emergency, you are able to; however, this is considered a breach of contract and you will be responsible for all associated costs.

In some circumstances, depending on your position and department, you may be permitted to take a work break for up to two weeks during your contract. This must be approved by your Head of Department and you must have a practical reason – for example to attend a Wedding or Special Event in your home country.

Will I have my own room?

As you can imagine, cabins on board are limited, so most Team Members do not have their own cabin. Cabin assignments depend on your position and will be explained during the recruitment process. If you are sharing a cabin, it will be with one other person who is the same gender as you – you will never be asked to share a cabin with more than one other person or with someone of a different gender.

What is the power voltage in my cabin?

All ships have 120V US power outlets.

Can I drink alcohol on board?

We want our Team Members to have fun on board but safety is our number one priority. Alcohol is available for purchase and all of our ships have a crew lounge; however, there is an alcohol policy that must be adhered to at all times. The permitted blood alcohol level on board is 0.04 ABV on duty – please note that this is residual as you are not permitted to drink in the 4 hours prior to your shift starting or during your shift. While off duty, the permitted blood alcohol level is 0.08% ABV. Disciplinary action is taken against Team Members who are found to be in breach of the alcohol policy.

Is there a drug policy?

Carnival Cruise Line has a zero-tolerance policy on drugs – all Crew Members are subject to random drug screening and alcohol testing. Violation of the drug or alcohol policy will result in termination of employment.

Is there a curfew?

No, we do not impose a curfew on our Team Members; however, we do have quiet hours in our crew accommodation areas which must be respected as a courtesy to your fellow Team Members.

Can I bring a family member or friend on board?

Carnival offers discounted cruise rates for family and friends of our Team Members once they have been employed for at least 6 months. Some restrictions apply. If you are interested, the Onboard HR team will be able to assist when you are on board the ship.

Will I have access to guest areas and amenities during my time off?

While some positions but not all do have guest area privilege and are able to access guest areas on their time off – our guests always come first and are given priority. We do have crew only areas, which include a Crew Open Deck, Crew lounge and Crew Gym.

Once on board, how do I stay in touch with my friends and family back home?

All of our ships have Wi-Fi that is available for purchase by Team Members at a discounted rate. There is a $4 Social Media plan that gives Team Members access to Messenger, WhatsApp and other social media applications which most Team Members used to stay in contact with their families. Telephone cards are also available and many Team Members purchase a US prepaid sim card, which allows them to call their families when in Port. Team Members are not permitted to carry their cell phones with them when on duty; contacting your family should be done in your free time.

Can I have mail delivered to the ship?

It is possible for mail to be delivered to the ship, but it must go through the main office in Miami, Florida first and then be sent out to the ship. Alternatively, if you need an item quickly, many of the Crew Centers in the Home ports our ships sail from have a mail and package receiving service for a nominal fee. Our Onboard HR Team will be able to give you the addresses you can use.

Is there an ATM onboard to use?

Yes there are ATMs in the Crew Areas which dispense US Dollars and when sailing in Australia AUD and in Europe EURO also. If you are using your Team pay card (Ocean pay) then you receive 2 free withdrawals per month from the ATM, any additional withdrawals will incur a fee. You can use any card at our onboard ATMs but they will be subject to withdrawal fees.

Will I have to pay taxes?

US citizens will have federal taxes automatically deducted from their checks and may be required to also pay State Taxes, depending on where you live. All other nationalities are required to comply with the tax regulations in their home countries and file a tax return if they are required to do so.

Can I send money home from on board?

Yes, you can send money directly from your pay card via Western Union, or you can transfer it directly from your pay card to your home bank account. Alternatively, Western Union and Money Gram have locations in most of the Crew Centers in the Home Ports of the ships.

How do I pay for items on board?

Our ships are cashless so when you join the ship you will be issued a green Sail and Sign card (our guests have different colors of Sail and Sign Cards depending on the number of cruises they have been on with us). All Team Member cards are green. This card is to be presented every time you want to make purchases; it contains a number that is unique to you. We have kiosks that allow you to add cash to the card at any time to enable you to make purchases such as internet, crew lounge, coffee shop, etc.

How do I do laundry?

All of our ships have a Crew Laundry facility with washers and dryers for Team Members to use free of charge, the main laundry will also provide you with washing power. There is the option to have the main laundry wash your clothes for you for a small fee.

What if I miss the ship in port?

It is expected that all Team Members return to the ship by the requested time; however, if you do miss the ship, the Port Agent will assist you to make arrangements to go to the ships next port of call. The Team Member is responsible for all associated costs of getting to the next port. Additionally, any Team Member who misses the ship risks their visa being cancelled.

What happens if I get sick while working on board?

All of our ships are equipped with a Medical Center that is available for our guests and Team Members. If you do not feel well on board you can visit the Medical Center with your concerns. If you need to be medically disembarked during your contract, Carnival will arrange your care in the hospital and ensure that once you have been discharged you are flown home to recover. We have a Care Team who will contact you if you are disembarked in one of the ports to go to the hospital; they will arrange for you to be brought items such as toiletries and snacks.

Can I visit the ports while working on board?

If you are not scheduled to be on duty, you can by all means go out and enjoy our wonderful ports of call. There is usually a gangway specifically for Team Members to use to exit and enter the ship. The time that you have to be back on board is posted by the gangway – this must be adhered to and is usually 1 hour prior to the ship sailing. It is the Team Members’ responsibility to ensure that they are back in time for their scheduled work duty and before the advertised back on board time.

Where do Carnival ships sail?

Carnival ships sail itineraries in the Caribbean, Alaska, Hawaii, Australia and Europe.

What languages are required to work on board?

The language used on board is English. All safety announcements and announcements for our guests are in English.

Does Carnival hire couples?

We have many couples working for Carnival. While we do try to accommodate couples on the same ship, the needs of the business do come first. We do, however permit Personal Vessel transfer requests for couples who have been assigned to different ships once there is availability for one of the positions to transfer. Any transfer for personal reasons is at the team members own expense.

Do I have to wear a uniform?

Yes. Team Members are required to wear a uniform, and it is provided for you – you will be issued it on your first day on board, and you are required to look after it and bring it with you on your next contract. Additional items can be purchased, and replacements will be issued to you if your current one is worn out.

What should I pack?

Our onboarding team will give you a list of items that are recommended to be packed. Remember, you are reimbursed for only 2 x 23 kg pieces of luggage – any excess weight or baggage charges will not be paid by the company.

Where will I have my meals?

All meals are provided for Team Members, and we have specially dedicated Employee Dining rooms located on the I-95 main corridor in the Crew Areas. There are lots of food options available to suit Team Members from all around the world, and the menu is rotated on a 27-day cycle.

Would my cell phone work on board?

Your cell phone may work in the ports and on board; however, you will be subject to roaming charges and these can be very costly. It is recommended that you use the WIFI available on the ship and keep your cell phone on Airplane mode to avoid such charges. Additionally, you can purchase a prepaid US or Australian Sim card which will work in a number of our ports of call.

Would I be able to buy some necessities (i.e. toiletries) on board?

We do not have a crew store on board but you can purchase items ashore while in Port. There are supermarkets, such as Wal-Mart and Target, in most of our home ports. The Crew Centers also usually have small shops for Team Members to purchase necessities. There is also the option of ordering online and having items delivered to the ship (this does, however, take longer).

Can I participate in Shore Excursions?

There are often Shore Excursions or Crew Tours run specifically for Team Members – these Crew Tours are discounted and for Crew Members only. Crew Members who wish to take one of the guest Shore Excursions can request to do so. If these excursions are available the Crew Member is offered a 30% discount in the price; however, tours in Alaska and Hawaii are not able to be discounted and Team Members must pay full price for these excursions.

Is there a hair salon on board?

There is a Hair Salon on board all of our ships located in the Spa. Team Members are able to use this service when there is availability – guests take priority. Team Members receive a discount on services in the Spa on Port days.

Do I have safety responsibilities?

All of our Team Members have a responsibility for Safety – most have Safety Duty. Safety duty is your role in the event of an emergency situation – you will be given training and take part in regular drills so you are prepared and know exactly what to do in the event of an emergency situation.

Will I always work on the same ship?

We’ve got a fleet of fun ships, where our guests and team members enjoy each other’s company and create a lifetime of memories. You will not always be assigned to the same ship. Team Members are rotated to give them the opportunity to see different itineraries and different classes of ship.

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