MMP Info/Thoughts For Someone Thinking of Joining

Hello all, I know this topic is generally a dead horse in these parts, but I hope my questions have enough uniqueness to warrant your help/attention.

I’m thinking of joining MMP and am hoping for some info to help me decide before I make the plunge. I have my Chief Mate Unlimited and my Tankerman PIC. Experience thus far is as a junior mate on coastal tankers, though I was a cadet on an MLL container ship so I have a vague idea of how those operate.

What’s the ballpark income from the various contracts through MMP?

I live in Maine. Is the Boston hall worth my time or should I go straight to New York (or elsewhere)?

How tough is is for an applicant with my sort of credentials to find work?

What’re your recommendations for finding a place to stay near halls while looking for work? (excluding the obvious staying with friends and family)

Thank you for your time and responses.

Go sign up. Summer is a great time to get out. Chief Mates are in very high demand. Last week I saw more open jobs than I had ever seen. Boston is not a great spot to sit if you are trying to ship off the board, but so many cm jobs go open you wont have much trouble getting something. NY is a better option if you work off the board. Keep on mind most of the cm jobs require some company specific training but you can sort that out once you sign up. Get your first job then get to mitags for training. The gov ships. Ould be an easy way to secure 5 years of employment as cm. You just need to get the training. Shoot me a pm for more info.

There are a lot of open jobs right now. My advice to you though is to take a Second or Third Mate job to get the lay of the land on a container ship if it has been a while. We always need Chief Mates but if you are a fish out of water it won’t be good for anyone. I started out on tankers and know that a tanker Chief Mate can do just about anything successfully if they put their mind to it but the two sectors are very different. Get some time refreshing yourself with container ship operations, shadow the Chief Mate a bit during cargo, and then go ahead and start bidding on relief C/M jobs.
Just my two cents as an MM&P member.

Why are there a lot of MMP open deep sea jobs right now?

There are a lot of open tugboat jobs now, both Union and non-union. Wages are finally rising. Tugboat jobs usually don’t require company specific training, but they often require local knowledge and specialized skills.

I’m not sure why there are a lot of tugboat jobs now. I think it’s mostly that fewer people are interested in doing it, especially long voyages. Maybe there is a wave of retirements? Licenses are a bit harder to get? The glut of licensed offshore oil refugees has finally been worked off? I don’t know.

Easing off of Covid restrictions, easing into the lazy hazy crazy days of summer.

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So this is a temporary availability of deep sea jobs that will pass when the leaves fall?

Happens every year. Never underestimate the desire of mates to stay home for the summer. It is one of the reasons they choose MM&P. Work when you want for who you want.

Was always focused on steady work, regardless of what union or company. Did ok with the unions I chose to join.

But there must be more competition for jobs, especially the better jobs, in the fall. It sounds like there is a cost to taking the summer off.

The only way that I can get time off in the summer is to quit.

Everyone is hiring in the GOM right now, and wages for licensed engineers are competitive with the towing industry again (at least for engineers.) Can’t speak for other ratings/licenses.

I think that a lot of licensed and experienced mariners are at, if not well over, retirement age.

Many older mariners are retiring, have health problems, or are dying (especially smokers).

Many people are finding competitive shore jobs, especially engineers.

There are not that many young people in this era of keyboard jobs and legalized pot that are interested in a career that requires evermore stringent drug testing, and that has very limited internet access. Much less months away from home.

I’m glad to hear that the oil patch is hiring again.

I hope wages are going to make a big jump to catch up for the last few years

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Ahhh but there you have the MM&P and MEBA’s best recruiting tool staring you in the face. For those that do not want a schedule or regular employment, the option is there to take large amounts of time off, possibly to run your own business, or just loaf around on some beach somewhere. All that time off means that your shipping card is aging and the older your shipping card is the more competitive you are for that “better job”.

Then there are the rest of us who moved up to senior officer positions and don’t get that option but we do have steady employment. Something that is more important to those of us with families.

You can really have it any way you want with these two unions.


Some years ago we use to get starving mates working as ABs on non union tugs while they aged their shipping cards. But for some reason we don’t get them anymore