HAL job lead

<o:smarttagtype namespaceuri=“urn:schemas-microsoft-com<img src=” images="" smilies="" redface.gif="" border=“0” alt="" title=“Embarrassment” smilieid=“2” class=“inlineimg”></o:smarttagtype> [FONT=Arial]All,[/FONT]

Came upon this Holland America site seeking mariners for Alaska.

[FONT=Arial]I am new to the list, a lurker and a maritime retread. Still have a MMD & now have a TWIC.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]I sailed deep sea, steward’s <st1:address w:st=“on”><st1:street w:st=“on”>dept 1967</st1:street> –</st1:address> 1969 on NMU crewed pax ships, <st1:city w:st=“on”><st1>INDEPENDENCE</st1></st1:city>, UNITED STATES, etc and from reading the post here, nothing much has changed. It’s the same paper chase with USCG & the companies, only the acronyms have changed.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]I got my first Z card in June 1966 and registered with SIU Baltimore as a “c-card”, then got to sit in the union hall for 90 days, during which time, to my knowledge, not one “c” card shipped stewards…not a snowball’s chance in hell of getting an entry level berth. Went back to college for the winter.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]Summer of 67, my father pulled some strings with the NMU New York and I sailed on American Export’s INDEPENDENCE, 24 June for the Med. As a crew porter, rerated to tourist class waiter after 2 days at sea. Was aboard for three 21 day trips as crew porter, always rerated to waiter @ sea. End of my 3<sup>rd</sup>, the union got wise and I was booted off so a Group 1 mariner could fill the berth. Tried to ship again, no go, so back to school, but much wiser in union hiring practices.<o></o>>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]In spring 68, I registered @ Savannah and by summer I had a killer card, which I used at NYC to get on <st1:city w:st=“on”><st1>INDEPENDENCE</st1></st1:city> until early August, one weekers to San Juan/St Thomas…Then bang, I was to be booted again by NMU seniority or lack thereof. On arrival, Pier 84, saw that the UNITED STATES was @ Pier 86 and was to sail c. noon.

[FONT=Arial]Taxied to NMU and got a pierhead jump to the Big U as a bell boy and got to the ship as the gangway was being pulled. On return to NYC, booted again…packed it in and back to school [/FONT][FONT=Arial]
[FONT=Arial] Then came the announcement that AEIL was withdrawing INDEPENDENCE & CONSTITUTION, not good news for the industry…congress in its pinheaded wisdom had cut the subsidies for the ships at the same time DOD had decided that all military transferees, a good portion of the pax trade then, would go by air.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]In spring 69 I registered for shipping in NMU’s <st1:city w:st=“on”><st1>Baltimore</st1></st1:city> hall…not much chance of a job, but it started the clock ticking on my union Group 2 card. Came June I Iucked out (very very lucked out!) with a pier head jump to MooreMac’s SS BRASIL, one weekers to Bermuda & the <st1:country-region w:st=“on”><st1>Bahamas</st1></st1:country-region>. 3 trips again, and booted, as BRASIL was to go c/wise to NYC and then transatlantic to the North Cape & Leningrad…the steadies wanted their jobs back. <o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial] <o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]Registered immediately @ NYC and gave the union patrolman $50 for the fighting fund stamps that were used ostensibly for PAC pressure on Congress. A good investment, as the 10 little stamps were pasted next to my shipping card…any ties would go to the one with the most stamps. Shipping was slow, no more AEIL liners and the BIG U had just sailed so I was going to head home to <st1><st1:city w:st=“on”>Washington</st1:city>, <st1:state w:st=“on”>DC</st1:state></st1>. The agent, John (whose last name I do not recall now had seen me buy the fighting fund stamps) called me aside and told me to be in the hall that Sat or Sunday AM ( Don’t recall which) if I wanted a ship…showed up as directed and was the only stewards dept mariner in the hall when one waiter job, medical relief, was called for Grace’s SANTA MERCEDES, 100 pax combo, to <st1><st1:city w:st=“on”>Guyaquil</st1:city>, <st1:country-region w:st=“on”>Ecuador</st1:country-region></st1>, 30 days. I got the job and off to Port Newark, another pierhead jump. 30 days later, mid August, the steadyman was healed and I was ashore, but the Big U was in port. For reasons unknown to me, USL emptied the hall by hiring 30 plus galley utilities, probably for cleanup as she was due to go into the yard c. late September. As luck would have it I was rerated to First Class purser’s bells, great voyage in an office, but very rough weather w/b, with green seas over the bow. On return to NYC, Labor Day weekend, I paid off and (unknown at that time) I would never sail as crew again.<o></o>[/FONT][FONT=Arial]<o></o>

[/FONT] [FONT=Arial]In Nov, UNITED STATES was laid up and the bottom fell out of shipping…she was the NMU’s pressure relief valve, she always needed stewards dept crew.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]Within a decade AEIL was to croak, Grace Lines gave up the ghost, MooreMac foundered and USL lines hemorrhaged money until the mid 80’s, killed by its fast container ships which were fuel guzzlers, the stupidity of their senior management, and the failure of leadership by the NMU.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]Hindsight…the late 60s were not the time to begin a career under the <st1:country-region w:st=“on”><st1>US</st1></st1:country-region> flag. WWII had seen a lot of young men make master or other senior ratings and they were still around. I remember one old bosun, shipping in that rate, who had a master’s ticket and could not find a ship as master…he was shipping as boats until he was pension eligible.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]Very similar is going on today, too many US mariners for the industry to support (partially due to the open door policy, i.e. pay the govt fee and get a MMD—when I shipped you had to have pull to get a document) not enough ships under the US flag, and many US held companies flagging their vessels overseas…case in point Carnival.<o></o>[/FONT]
[FONT=Arial]But it was fun while it lasted, Northern Europe, the UK, the Med, Caribbean, Panama Canal, west coast South America, Caribbean, places for which I would shell out a lot of money today…saw them all for free and was paid to do so. Would I do it again…you bet cha’.[/FONT]

Happy New Year to all.


good sea stories, old timer! so you got to ship on the SS United States: NICE ONE YOU LUCKY BASTARD!!
thanks for the big picture update: yeah, nothing changes even though it seems like it does to us caught in the day to day.

Happy New Year!!!

What a great story, thanks for sharing and putting things in perspective. Taking the glow off the “good old days” brings us back to reality. Happy New Year to you!

In that job for AK there is an intersting caveat concerning working on a vessel that crosses into Canada wrt having ever commited ANY crime.

Canada is very strict about that. If you’ve had a DUI they won’t let you in unless you fork over some major $$, eh.

<input id=“gwProxy” type=“hidden”><!–Session data–><input onclick=“jsCall();” id=“jsProxy” type=“hidden”>

My father, God rest him, shipped out as a merchant seaman in 1942. When I got my MMD many years ago he looked at it and asked me ‘what the hell’s the Coast Guard got to do with merchant marines don’t you boys still come under the Maritime Administration? The CG is supposed to be out there saving lives, putting in buoys and watching the coast. They don’t know nothing about a ship, hell they ain’t got but a couple themselves and they don’t do nothing but bust up ice. You got your papers issued by a bunch of knee deep sailors from the Treasury Department? Good God boy why didn’t you just open up a box of Cracker Jacks or a box of cereal to get your Z?’

tengineer: that is GOLD. thanks. happy new year.



Thanks for the story- and the lead!:slight_smile:

I applied- and did an interview via email… thanks again:)


I wish you the best in the selection process.

I was aboard HAL’s RYNDAM, 13 - 20 Dec 2009 and pleasantly surprised at the number of US citizens in the Steward’s Department holding mid-level positions. I surmise the parent company, Carnival is becoming more sensitive to the issue of US owned foreign flagged vessels operating out of US ports, especially in the passenger trade.

Happy New Year to all.



While the above is a funny ancedote and without wishing to start a dogfight, I think the following adds a different perspective to the USCG & the seamansip of its members. It bears consideration that managing documentation, licensing, etc, was forced on the USCG by Congress.

[B]BOSLEY, David A., Boatswain’s Mate Second Class (Posthumous Award)[/B]

 [LEFT][LEFT]Date     of Action:  12 February 1997
Date of Award:  18 February 1997

Petty Officer BOSLEY is cited for extraordinary heroism on 12 February 1997 while serving as a crew member aboard Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat [I]44363[/I], attached to Coast Guard Station Quillayute River. Shortly before 1 o’clock in the morning, responding to a distress call from the sailing vessel [I]GALE RUNNER[/I], Station Quillayute River launched two rescue boats. The operator of [I]GALE RUNNER[/I] reported that the vessel was dismasted, taking on water, and in danger of sinking, 2 miles south of the Quillayute River entrance. Seas of up to 25 feet, combined with high winds and driving rain, created a situation of imminent danger for the two people aboard the [I]GALE RUNNER[/I]. Soon after crossing the treacherous bar in an attempt to reach the stricken sailboat, the motor lifeboat suddenly rolled over several times in the surf and confused seas. As a result of the repeated roll-overs, Petty Officer BOSLEY was forcibly separated from his rescue craft and thrown into the churning ocean. A Coast Guard HH-65 helicopter from Air Station Port Angeles was able to hoist to safety the two people from the [I]GALE RUNNER[/I] as it crashed onto rocks. As a crew member of Coast Guard [I]44363[/I], Petty Officer BOSLEY willingly entered extreme ocean storm conditions and sacrificed his life while attempting to save the lives of the two people from the [I]GALE RUNNER[/I]. Petty Officer BOSLEY demonstrated remarkable initiative, exceptional fortitude, and daring in spite of imminent personal danger in this rescue. His courage and devotion to duty are most heartily commended and are in keeping with the highest traditions of the United States Coast Guard.

 [B](Related     Coast Guard Medal citations: Miniken, Clinton P., Schlimme, Matthew E., and     Wingo, Benjamin F.  In addition,     AM3 Neal W. Amos, USCG, was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for his     role in this rescue)&lt;o&gt; 

</o>[/B]<o>Further information can be found </o><o>by an I-net search for: </o><o>CG 44363

The sea does not care if you only sail knee deep or deep water…it will still drown you if given the chance

“If the Jamaican pirates don’ get you,
it will be the cold embrace of the sea,
and that’s no lover’s kiss”

Rgds to all,


I commend Bosun Bosley for risking & very sadly losing his life to save others. but this story doesn’t make me think any higher of his or the USCG seamanship abilities. in fact, the opposite.
whoops. did I just start a dogfight?

Howdy folks!:slight_smile:

just did a phone interview for a deck position- and was told that they also have an (un-advertised) engineering position- thought I’d pass the info along. The lady with whom I spoke wasn’t sure as to the particulars- license/pay/etc. I told her I’d let everyone here know.

Apparently- gcaptain has been sending her lots of applicants:D

If interested- either PM me- or check their website above in a week or two for the job announcement.

One potential plus about this job- it’s 5 days on/2 off- so you have time for hiking, going to the casino (if you gamble) or just hanging out. Lots of cool history, nature, fishing…

The company provides hared housing in Dawson City Canada for $180 a month.

Housing before and after the season ( in Eagle Alaska) is free.

Dawson City is a frontier town turned tourist town- with dirt roads and no stoplights or fast food.

I’m told it’s like Skagway (Alaska) but larger.

So if you like to travel- this might be for you.

site on Dawson City- www.dawsoncity.ca

:rolleyes:Thanks again for the lead Paul:)


Do you know what positions they were hiring?


there’s a link up at the top.

I’m interviewing for deckhand. I understand there might (maybe) be one more opening for this. They are waiting to hear from past crew.

They are also looking for an engineer- as previously stated.

Other than that- not sure. Captain and relief captain (mate) are already spoken for.

I know that there is a 6 person cruise staff- bartender- gift shop- etc.

In addition- HAL and Princess Cruise Lines have NUMEROUS land jobs- drivers,tour guides, train personnel (sounds cool:)) and lodge workers.

Cruisewest has similar openings in Southeast Alaska.

I’ve worked with several sailors who have worked at Princess lodges- they all recommended it. No seatime though…

If anyone gets this gig, Dawson City is a big party, lots of fun.

As far as interviewing for this job, I’d first recommend reading ‘Klondike’ by Pierre Berton. I asked a National Park Service Ranger in Skagway what book they would recommend as a definitive history of the Alaskan Gold Rush. Its highly readable and very entertaining.


Also, if anyone gets through Dawson, make sure you head over to the Downtown Hotel and join the exclusive Sourtoe Cocktail Club. There’s a big long poem read out, and the last line goes something like: “…drink it fast, or drink it slow, but your lips must touch the toe.” Yes, its a real toe. If you put 5 in your drink, you get a special ‘Sourfoot’ certificate. A buddy of mine has a picture of himself with 5 toes in his mouth…


Thanks for the recommendations:)

If I get hired- and if they have non-alcoholic drinks- I’ll send you all a picture:D

:rolleyes:I think I might just be the world’s only non drinking, non smoking, non cussing (usually) sailor:)

And- NO- I’m not Mormon- I get asked that on EVERY ship!:smiley:


There’s no requirement for the toe to be in an alcoholic drink. Traditionally, its done with a drink called a ‘Double Jack’ - a single shot thats half Jack Daniels, half Yukon Jack.

Well Tony, maybe we can get you a tattoo…

A good friend of mine was a deckhand on the YQ II last season. It wasn’t all that great. I almost went over there to run relief captain for them because the tug I was on was a major POS with even bigger crew problems. Turns out I was right to stick it out on the POS tug when it was all said and done…

TXkingfisher- I’d be curious to hear specifics of crew problems to which you refer… shoot me a pm.:slight_smile: