Going from brown to blue water


I’m a 2nd Mate with a Tankerman PIC on a brown water towboat. Would it be worth switching to blue water? I have zero knowledge about it but I hear whispers that it’s definitely a better route to go. Could someone educate me on career paths? Would you guys recommend making a switch? I work 28 on 28 off, what are the schedules like? What is it like? Everyone out here always talks about it, but no one seems to have much information. I’m curious.

The money will probably be better if you have a 2nd mate unlimited and a pic, and actually experience using your pic.

When you say blue water you mean ships, atbs or tugs? All the above? Big difference between working inland and offshore is no cell service sometimes and untimely crew changes. This will vary company to company.

If you wanna stay doing 28/28 tugs/atbs are the way to go. Its tough out there right now finding a job because of the current events obviously. Doesn’t hurt to apply though. Check out centerline logistics, crowley, vane, sause to name a few.


Thanks for the advice!

Just remember, it’s easier to get a job if you already have one. You have already been vetted and a proven employee. HR at other companies will usually look at that as a positive.

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I think you need to decide what your goal is in 5 years? Saying you want to switch from one sector to another, there should be a goal that you want to obtain or accomplish, and money should not be the deciding factor. Sit down and ask yourself what you want out of your maritime career, where do you see your self in 5, 10, 20 years. When you think about that, it will help you understand the best options for you. Again, do not worry with money (unless you are struggling to support you and your family).