Mariner shortage

Its hard for me to post sine gCaptain wont work on my computer and so have to use the phone.

Ive been working at sea from a young age. All kinds of vessels, worldwide except tugs. Ive worked up the hawsepipe to earn unlimited master and dpo.

Got laid off late 2015, so working temp agencies. That was fine til the shots came out.

Knowing what we know now- that they do not prevent transmission or any of the other things they promised- why are employers still insisting on people risking their health by taking them? Even the cdc has sad vaxed and unvaxed should be treated the same!

Ive always had great evals from every employer but now none will even consider talking to me because im one of the few who did my homework beforehand. I wil never take a covid shot. I have not had covid. I did nothing different during the entire panic- still ongoing in too many places. I never wore masks except forced to on planes.

Companies keep complaining they cant find employees. I know for a fact there are plenty more good qualified mariners out here who want to get back out to sea. Why wont companies look at the reality of covid and not the fearmongering of the last 3 years?

Theyd have all the good people they need. Or do they only want sheep, who will follow any stupid ‘orders’ without question (risking their own lives to do so)?

Just as an add on- i tried to add this to a previous thread where a specific question was asked but it has been closed. So.

Masks do not work, they never have, they never will, against any virus. There has never been any real science that prooves they do. I have collected 100s of studies that show they dont. Here is just the latest. I cant copy and paste or wouldve done that in the earlier thread.


There are still lots of companies out there not asking for the jab or masks. If you’re having trouble finding something you should shoot 32 Points Manning an email. They seem to have a steady constant flow of job opportunities, especially for someone with your credentials. I’m sure at least some of those jobs must come jab-free.

Send your resumé and credentials here:

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Having been sailing over seas during this clusterfuck let me assure you that covid is still a monumental pain in the ass. Being unvaccinated you become a liability incase some country you might go to decides to changes their rules. I’ve been restricted to the ship because of Monkey pox, I don’t give a hoot what you think about the vaccine, if you’re going to cause more paperwork or problems, the companies are better without. It doesn’t matter what “facts” and “studies” you pull out of your ass, the angry Korean man doesn’t give a fuck, and is going to fuck over the whole ship. Ships can sail short, they can not sail quarantined, so best of luck in your endeavors.


Have you ever been wrong?

It’s difficult to admit it.

Have a little compassion and a little patience.

If your financial situation won’t accommodate patience then exemptions are easy as hell to get. I personally wouldn’t lower myself to sailing under one but I won’t judge a man that has to.

It’s pretty sad to see people still mindbroken by the vaccine. I don’t think this is the place to get into a fight about whether or not masks and mandates and vaccines work though, so I’ll just tell you this once and then I’ll leave your pity party thread.

You are very similar to one of those new age flat earthers who acts superior to everyone else, because he smugly believes his viewpoint couldn’t possibly be wrong. This attitude is why your family, friends, and employers have alienated you.


I haven’t seen vax mandate come up most union jobs…said another way, I don’t think most companies deep sea require the covid vax (though many require yellow fever, etc).

Hornbeck Offshore has dropped the jab requirement.


Mariner shortage ending?

Where I work we were desperate for mates last year. But this year we have never had so many. Perspective: we legally need second mates on only one of our boats, which accounts for only 10% of our voyages. But nearly 100% of our voyages for the rest of the year will have two mates. A few will even have three mates. Unheard of here.

These new mates are all ages. I have even turned down a couple of mate-applicants, because of no room, who I would have quickly snapped-up last year. And we are nearly full-up on the other positions too. Better in fact than in previous springs/summers in non-pandemic years.

That’s only one company. Maybe a fluke. But I’ve spoken with two other port captains I know. They report the same thing. There might be a position still hard to fill. Maybe QMED, or cook. But no widespread shortage.

One dynamic: during the Great Resignation we lost some experienced people here, like everyone else. Guys who had been here several years left in 2020-2021. This year all but one have returned.

Anyone else seeing something similar?

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Not at all. My company is currently short at least half a dozen mates of towing (possibly more), and has been for most of the past year at least. A recent pay increase targeted to the deck side may help, but there still seems to be plenty of opportunity for wheelhouse folks in NY.

It’s weird. For the longest time it was engineers that were hard to find.


I would say the dynamic of a lot of people leaving the company then quickly returning is very unique.

From the unlimited license vessel perspective, during COVID a lot of people left because they were worried about getting stuck on a ship or sick.
I feel a lot of middle age men who were worried about being stuck away from their families had to still earn income and found shore jobs with comparable income. I feel many of those individuals have not come back. Older men who were worried about getting sick and didn’t retire have returned to finish up their time but intended to retire in the next 5 years. And therefore have filled back some of the gaps for the time being.

I don’t have any specific “evidence” other than looking at birthdays of everyone on the crew lists for the past couple of voyages and talking to others.
It seems like licensed crew is either in their 60s or 20s there is barely any in between.

I’m seeing plenty of AB and QMED openings. I think the need for officers has slowed down a bit.


When I was looking last fall for something to do during the winter. There were plenty of low paying jobs, but very few good paying jobs, and it seems like many potential employers were hamstrung by dysfunctional HR processes.

I worked all winter and I’m still at it. I’m now getting about one call a week from prospective employers.

$900 plus good benefits is the best day rate I’ve heard.

My sense is the the maritime job market for captains and mates is in balance. There is no shortage, but there is no longer much of a surplus sitting on the sidelines.

Companies that are having difficulty hiring are not paying enough, and/or do not know how to hire when there is not a long line of applicants at the door.

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From the grapevine but apparently Tidewater is now paying almost what Hornbeck is for AB’s and QMED’s with changes to their travel allotment as well.

Regarding Deep Sea Mariner Shortages; For the most part, seasonal events usually influenced mariner availability to ship. The beginning of Holiday Season (between 11/20 and 01/05) there’s usually a surplus of jobs as most career mariners like to be home for the holidays. The same would be true for the Summer Season (between 05/15 and 09/05). That’s when I caught a few good “open board” shipping jobs- both as unlicensed and licensed. This goes as far back as the late 1970’s…

That said- I think there will be a large deep sea shortfall in certain positions this Summer. Absent, of course, without any major shipping breakouts- if that happens there will be a large amount of jobs available. Rotary shipping on permanent jobs not withstanding- unless someone medical’s out or leaves the job.

Unfortunately- the old adage of “it’s either a feast or a famine” would still seem to hold true. MSC would be a different story; anytime that shipping picked up commercially- there was always a “suitcase parade” leaving MSC- that’s just the way things have always went…Heaven Help those poor sods waiting for a relief on those ships. Except in the mid-1980’s one could almost certainly pick up an MSC job in the mainline MSC fleet.