New to Merchant Marines need Advice/Help


I recently received my MMC, TWIC and Passport. I have been searching the internet and reached out to friends and family but have had no luck. I have no sea time experience but I have Culinary experience that I hope to continue but I am willing to learn new career paths. Any help would be greatly appreciated.


You’re probably in the right place. What’s your question?


i think the question is where he can get a job?


I am not part of a Union which seems to be an issue so how can I get a job without being a part of a Union?


Inland companies are hiring right now. You would only need a Twic card to start as a deckhand. I would recommend looking at Savage Services, Canal Barge, lebeouf Bros Towing, Florida Marine, etc etc if you want to go that route.


Inland towing is very hard work though so be prepared.


This is true, but I’ve seen guys go from deckhand to holding watch as Mate in 5 years. That work is hard too, but not physically like deck work. Wheelhouse pay inland would start $500/day.


talk to UnCruise Adventures in Seattle. They would love to hire you to work on one of their small cruise vessels sailing in Alaska. You would need to work in the galley in your first season but if you tell then you want to transition to the deck, you should be able to in subsequent years and start earning seatime to becoming a mate and then a master eventually…it has been done before.

as an aside, I know these people and know they do not treat their people like chattel…you can go far with them and see some spectacular places while you do


:wow: who are you and what have you done with the real c.captain?!

Seriously though… to the OP, I’ve been on the forum a long time, and I think that’s the first time I’ve ever heard the “lovable curmudgeon” (John’s description not mine) give such high praise for a company. They must be a pretty amazing group of folks, and I’d probably hit them up fast if I were you.


I only have a TWIC, passport and about 100 days of sea time.

I just had an interview with an inland towing company. This place has a 50/50 schedule and pay starts at $150/day with benefits. During the interview, they did stress how physically demanding the work is. You can move up relatively quick and eventually earn six figures. I’m going to go with another opportunity, but inland towing can be a really nice career.

Interesting to see UnCruise Adventures mentioned. A captain I’ve worked for also recommended them.

Right now is also a good time to find seasonal work. It doesn’t sound like anything special, but the jobs are easy to get and you can build sea time in some nice places. Many of these jobs also offer incredibly cheap employee housing. My plan is to do this until next fall, save almost everything I earn, then look into things like yachts, OSVs, catamarans/ferries, etc. STCW and an MMC with OS or AB OSV should really help.

Finding work on anything less than 100 gt isn’t too difficult in general, especially since you already have the MMC.


Depending on what you are calling culinary experience, companies are sometimes willing to overlook the lack of experience on deck and hire you as cook-deckhand. It’s a little more difficult with the requirements in the tug industry for ABs now but still possible.
Just remember it doesn’t matter how good your food is if you can’t get a meal out on time. Good luck