I have a deckhand who is also a captain on dinner boats and sail boats. He is seeking a raise in grade to master 500 tons so he can steer tugs with a TOAR. He already has a 100 ton with sail.
I have seen many people try, my last deckhand was killed in an accident before he could complete this raise in grade.
I am telling him that there is a significant expense in time and money to make this happen, so far I have:
Medical exam $55
basic firefighting $350
advanced firefighting $700
TOAR at a school $1300
First Aid $75
USCG fees $150
This path makes many assumptions ie, he already has a cpr card, he already has the sea time etc. So far he will be close to $3000 without factoring in travel, lodging, and lost wages for school and exam days.
I have already counselled him on the fact that just because you have a license, doesn’t mean anyone is going to hire you, especially as master on a tug and it will certainly not get you any more money in the dinner boat community. I do believe that there is 1 dinner boat in NYC over 100 tons, so in theory it could get you on that,
Am I am missing any training requirements? Does he have to do able seaman and lifeboatman?
Is there a more economical way? I have another co worker on another boat that is going the master 200 tons + TOAR + Apprentice Steersman exam route, and he seems have kind of stalled out. What I do know for sure is that nobody seems to be interested in the just pass the apprentice steersman exam and wait your time route.