When it comes to working on a luxurious superyacht, there is no official upper age limit. You may have heard about the opportunity of working on a superyacht, the hefty salary, the lavish environment and the high profile people, and of course, a chance to travel the world like no other. So, are you really too old to work on a superyacht in South Africa? What exactly is ‘too old’? Let’s find out.

Good News! You’re not too old to work on a Superyacht

There is no upper limit to the age factor when it comes to working on a superyacht in South Africa. In fact, the superyacht industry welcomes older applicants as enthusiastically as young applicants. As an older person who has experienced more life than a young one, you bring valuable experience and refined maturity to the table. Moreover, with relevant experience, you may directly climb the ladder from the beginning and will not have to necessarily take an entry-level position. All it takes is to have the necessary requirements before you start applying.

You would at least need the following before you start applying for positions on a superyacht.

  • The ENG1 Medical Certificate is a certificate of fitness. Only doctors appointed by the RYA in South Africa may provide you with this fitness certificate.
  • The STCW course is mandatory for every seafarer. In South Africa, you can easily obtain one via a reputed marine institution such as Sail and Power SA.
  • The RYA Powerboat Level 2 course is also a minimum standard to find employment. Any RYA-accredited marine institution in South Africa can help you with the certificate.

In the media, you may have seen young and energetic candidates being chosen to work on a superyacht in South Africa. The average working age on a superyacht is between 22 to 35. While it is somewhat true, it is also true that this is a stereotype. The yacht industry equally respects older, experienced candidates. Let’s elaborate on that.

1. You bring the experience to the table

As an older candidate, you have lived your own life working different kinds of jobs. If you have experience in management, hospitality, engineering, or any other relevant experience, you might be just the perfect candidate. The superyacht industry offers a luxurious experience to old and young candidates alike.

2. Work Ethics

As a person with more experience, your behaviour and professionalism are refined. You would especially be a valuable asset if you have a hospitality background. With your age and maturity, you bring strong work ethics and professionalism to the table; a perfect concoction to gracefully handle high-profile individuals.

3. Life Skills

With your age and experience, you are likely to have developed problem-solving skills. Your adaptability towards problems and refined communication and demeanour will help you stand out in the crowd.

Knowing the Limitations that come with Age

With your age and experience, you are likely to jumpstart your career in the superyacht industry. A superyacht is a lively place during the season. For such times, the superyacht employers are always looking for a more mature figure with a keen eye for details and wits to handle extreme pressure. For example, an experienced cook would know how to ration the portions, manage provisions, coordinate their team, and deliver services effectively according to demands.

However, just because you bring maturity and experience to the table, it does not mean you will definitely secure a job. It is never too late to start working on a superyacht if you can handle your responsibilities. But it is also equally important to know your limitations. It is no secret that with age, your physical abilities may decline. Responsibilities on a superyacht are arduously demanding and may prove extremely challenging for older people. If you have no relevant experience, then your superyacht career will start from an entry-level position. While securing certain positions, such as kitchen staff, could be well within your reach, starting your career as a deckhand may prove extremely challenging. It is not uncommon for employers to turn away older candidates due to the age factor.

This is why it is crucial for you to assess your experience and whether the superyacht industry is really for you.

Final Word

Age is just a number and there are no legal upper limits. If you have an undying passion for a career on a superyacht regardless of your age and have relevant experience to comfortably change your career, then this might be just for you. You are never too old to work on a superyacht in South Africa. However, the question is: can you handle it? You should let that question sit for a while and then make a decision. Working on a superyacht is a very big lifestyle decision, not just a career one. Thus, it is crucial for you to consider all the aspects before making a decision.

However, if you are certain about working on a superyacht, consider giving us a call. Sail and Power SA is an RYA-accredited marine institution in South Africa. We would be glad to help you out.