If 2020 was the year of survival for yacht crew, due to the pandemic collapsing recruiting early on, then 2021 was the year of revival. That’s what YPI Crew’s president, Laurence Lewis, says. Her company’s latest report on yacht crew salaries shows stability has re-emerged. Additionally, it reveals average pay rates for senior-level positions, junior-level hospitality, and everyone in between.
YPI Crew conducts this analysis each year, as a reference tool for the yachting industry and crew interested in landing jobs. Naturally it’s helpful for owners and advisors, too. The report examines the company’s own data, since it’s a yacht recruitment agency. Specifically, the team pulls figures for captains, engineers, deck crew, chefs, and interior staff. Salaries in the YIP Crew report do depend on qualifications, experience, and even whether a yacht is strictly private or charters. Notably, the size of a yacht only impacts select earnings.
One of the biggest discoveries in 2021, YPI Crew finds, is that crew are negotiating some of the same things as corporate employees are in the Great Resignation. That is, salaries and benefits like scheduled leave are crucial conversation and decision-making topics, especially for yacht chefs. In fact, Lewis says, “due to a smaller number of junior-level hospitality, service, and galley staff entering the market due to Covid-19 travel restrictions, essentially from the Southern Hemisphere, there has been tension on salaries in these departments.” Furthermore, she adds, to find and especially to retain the best chefs, owners and their advisors face “increased competition for the best all-around package.”
So, what should those salaries be? The report reveals that on sub-98-foot (30-meter) megayachts, chefs earn 4,000 to 4,500 euros ($4,400 to $4,900) per month. These chefs tend to have no yachting experience, too, and handle all tasks solo. The biggest megayachts, meanwhile, exceeding 328 feet (100 meters) pay about 8,000 euros ($8,700) per month. Plus, the chefs have assistance from sous chefs and sometimes third chefs.
Yacht crew salaries for interior departments saw mixed results. Junior stews typically earned the same regardless of yacht size, 2,500 to 3,500 euros ($2,700 to $3,800). Chief stews aboard superyachts exceeding 262 feet (80 meters) earned double their counterparts aboard sub-98 feet (30 meters), interestingly. Specifically, the salaries were 7,000 to 8,000 euros ($7,600 to $8,700) vs. 3,500 to 4,000 euros ($3,800 to $4,400).
Since on-deck positions range from captains to entry-level deckhands, yacht crew salaries here span a wide range. Notably, captains for 328-foot-plus (100-meter-plus) megayachts can get bonuses on top of an average 18,000 euros ($19,600) per month. Of course, that comes with managerial responsibility for dozens of crewmembers. Those in charge of the above-mentioned small superyachts tend to earn closer to 3,500 to 6,000 euros ($3,800 to $6,550) monthly. As for junior deckhands, their pay remained steady regardless of yacht size. They earned 2,700 to 2,800 euros ($2,950 to $3,056) monthly. But, if they specialize in extra duties like teaching kite surfing or carpentry, they could earn 4,000 euros ($4,400) per month.
The full report is available from YPI Crew.
YPI Crew ypicrew.com
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