How can you get a "Seaman's Book"? What countries issue them?


#1

I read somewhere that this “seaman’s book” comes in handy in a lot of places overseas, particularly going through customs, etc. Are there any EU countries that issue them aside from Britain? I’m looking for the German version of it, and the name of that, if it exists. The U.S. doesn’t issue this type of document.


#2

A “seaman’s book” by itself won’t do you all that much good these days. Why do you want one? Having a discharge book or seaman’s book doesn’t make you a seafarer or provide a doorway to maritime employment.

A book from one country is as good as from another so just apply for one from one of the maritime authorities you can find by Googling “Zamboogyland maritime authority” or some such and see what they want you to do to apply for one. Some require you are employed on one of their ships, others don’t.


#3

[QUOTE=Steamer;59266]A “seaman’s book” by itself won’t do you all that much good these days. Why do you want one? Having a discharge book or seaman’s book doesn’t make you a seafarer or provide a doorway to maritime employment.

A book from one country is as good as from another so just apply for one from one of the maritime authorities you can find by Googling “Zamboogyland maritime authority” or some such and see what they want you to do to apply for one. Some require you are employed on one of their ships, others don’t.[/QUOTE]

I wish I could remember where I saw the conversation, but someone was posting how their crew had all kinds of trouble going to different countries in Europe and the Middle East until they got these books, and that a lot of the authorities in those ports don’t even look at the other documents, and prefer the books. I think I saw this on some kind of professional yachting forum.


#4

check ya inbox


#5

I found the article! http://www.dockwalk.com/Essentials/HotTopics.aspx?id=30028

A quote: "Queen of Visa Applications” Laurence Thary, yacht agent at Catalano Shipping, Monaco, insists a Seaman’s Book helps her when she is negotiating with the authorities. “Seaman’s Books are absolutely essential for crew who do not form part of the EU and they help our work enormously. In most cases we are dealing with difficult or exceptional cases to try and help arrange visas, so all documentation you can lay your hands on is important.”

also: [LEFT]In addition to their purpose of recording sea time and the benefit of helping with visa applications, Seaman’s Books also allow for crew to travel on marine fare tickets which are often heavily discounted and fully refundable with additional luggage allowance. In addition, Thary warns that recent administrative changes in the Mediterranean now mean that customs (Les Douanes) rather than police officials are in charge of passport control at Nice airport and the “douaniers” insist on Seaman’s Books for crew seeking entry.[/LEFT]


#6

MariaW, in other posts you mentioned your experence aboard sailboats on the Great Lakes. The Great Lakes are a great place to start entry level and earn seatime for an AB endorsement.
First, 65 American Flag ships operate there. These vessels usually employ between 3 to 6 entry level postions, most of whom serve as OS. The money is great, a fulltime Deckhand (OS) working 6 to 7 months should make at least $40,000 a year. Most ABs working on “Lakers” or “Ore Boats” make at least $50,000 a year. All you need to work there is your TWIC and MMC, and a decent set of Carharts for the snow & ice.
The SIU has 15 to 20 Lakers under contract (American Sreamship Company is their largest employer). The SIU office for the Great Lakes is located in Algonac Michigan (40 miles North of Detroit).


#7

MariaW,

Copied from the Lake Carriers Association site: http://www.lcaships.com/recruit.htm

If you have your TWIC & MMC and want to work Winter Relief over the Holidays, you should be able to get some short term work.

[B]UNLICENSED PERSONNEL[/B]
Some companies are contracted with the Seafarers’ International Union (SIU) for their unlicensed personnel. Call (810) 794-4988.

Following companies are contracted with Steelworkers Local 5000, but hire unlicensed personnel directly.
Central Marine Logistics, Inc. – Lori Johnston (219) 922-2644
Great Lakes Fleet / Key Lakes, Inc. - Rachel Romich (1-800-535-2321)
The Interlake Steamship Company – (800-327-3855, ext. 1140)
Liberty Steamship Company (a subsidiary of American Steamship Company) - Mary Banks (800) 828-7230

Grand River Navigation Company is contracted with Masters, Mates and Pilots (MMP), but hires directly. Contact Rick Turman, Sr. (440-930-2024).


#8

Thanks for the suggestions.

However, my questions aren’t just about my personal career goals immediately ahead of me, so I kinda want to get back to the subject of this thread. Has no one heard of this “seaman’s book”? According to the quote I posted above from an online article, it seems to confer lots of advantages. Does anyone want to confirm or dispute this? Thanks.


#9

It’s not a US thing.


#10

Check with either MPT or QMT in Ft. Lauderdale. They handle applications for CoE’s and seaman’s books for countries like Vanuatu, Bahama’s, UK, Panama, etc. If anyone could fill you in it would be them.


#11

[QUOTE=MariaW;59495] Does anyone want to confirm or dispute this? Thanks.[/QUOTE]

For someone who is not a mariner but just wants to get a “seamans book” for grins, it is not worth squat. If you are not traveling on ship’s business, or have a letter of employment then you are just another backpacker who needs the same documentation as your cousin’s grandmother.

The yachtie who lead you to believe a “seaman’s book” is some kind of passport to the magic kingdom is one of those itinerant yachties who follow the seasonal migration of yachts between the Med and the US and Caribbean. “Negotiations” is a code word for pleading not to be thrown out on the next flight because they got caught entering the country under false pretences to look for work illegaly. Those folks hold visas from several countries including business visas for the US. They sometimes hold fraudulent employment letters supplied by friendly captains and they have learned how to massage the system in many of the major yachting centers. They often get booted out as well for trying to scam the immigration laws and are banned from reentry for an extended period.

You can apply for a book from any number of maritime authorities, you don’t need permission from anyone here and I doubt if anyone here is going to bother going online and downloading an application for you. Do your own homework. If you can’t even do that much I doubt if you will be able to convince an immigration officer in a port city or elsewhere that you are a mariner. If you want to travel and chase jobs around the world go for it but first you have to have more to offer than a document that has very little value for anythng other than recording sea time.


#12

I am a Romanian citizen living in the UK about to work on a US registered ship that will be going through Asia and I need a Seaman’s book. The UK wouldn’t issue one as I’m not a UK citizen or the ship isn’t registered in the UK. I also can’t fly back to my home country to apply for one either. Does anyone have any ideas how I could get one without having to fly back home?


#13

Where is the ship registered? To get my Bahamian book I had to send away to London, UK. It could be that your ship’s flag state has an office in UK.


#14

We’re you able to get a Bahamian seamen’s book, and presumably a Bahamian CeC, yourself, or did you have to get it through your shipowners?


#15

I got it myself. I didn’t try for the CeC, yet though.


#16

The ship is part of Royal Caribbean Cruise Line and it’s called Celebrity Millennium, it’s registered in US and I don’t know if they have an office in UK. Not that I know of. And my agency is doing their best but they don’t know much about this seaman’s book either. So we’re stuck


#17

Maltese, isn’t she?


#18

The US does not issue Seamen’s books. It hasn’t for a very long time.

Secondly, the US only issues Merchant Mariner Credentials and STCW certifications to US citizens and permanent residents with a US “green card.”

Normally, US ships can only hire seamen with US certificates, but there are some exceptions.

Royal Caribbean maybe an American company and it may be owned and managed by a very wealthy American family, but my understanding has always been that all of their ships are foreign flag.

Which is probably why they are able to hire you. I would think that the manning agency hiring you would be taking care of getting whatever paper’s you my need from the Flag State.


#19

Sadly I’ve had to take care of pretty much everything. I’ve done my medical check, C1D visa, STCW certificate, now I just need the seaman’s book and I should be ready to board on the ship in January. I didn’t know that the ships could have a foreign flag. I will have to look into that. Thank you!


#20

I just found this:
https://www.google.co.uk/amp/s/www.cruisemapper.com/amp/wiki/758-cruise-ship-registry-flags-of-convenience-flag-state-control . I guess it’s Maltese. Now I just need to figure out how to apply and get my seaman’s book. Thank you guys so much!