Working on Cruise Ships: Your Questions Answered part 2

February 20, 2020


What’s life on board like for a hairstylist on a contract with Steiner? How are you paid, what are the biggest challenges work-wise, what are the hours like? 


Here are some FAQ, together with their answers, to help you learn more about the adventure of a lifetime.


Q: Working on board, do you get to experience the perks and amenities of the ship?

A: Yes, hairstylists have full deck privileges and may use all the amenities onboard, from nightclubs, discos, Bingo, movies, going to restaurants or attending the shows. 


Q: How are you paid?

A: You are paid in American dollars and earnings are tax-free for South Africans. The commission structure is excellent and you may also receive generous tips from some of your clients!


Q: Is it easy to fit in and make friends on board?

A: It is very easy, because everyone you meet who works on the ship is in the same situation and is looking to make new friends. The friends you make on board will become friends for life. At work, you will also find that you learn a huge amount from hairstylists from other countries, as each country has their own great tips and techniques.


Q: What is your working environment like?

A: You work in a luxury environment and the spa usually has an incredible sea view. You work with some of the best products on the market which will ensure great results and happy clients. Because on board is a tax-free environment, clients are willing to buy retail as they can obtain the products more cheaply. Outside of your working hours, the cruise ships sail to dream destinations and you will have numerous adventures, sightseeing opportunities and “bucket list” experiences on your days off.



Q: What are the biggest challenges for an onboard hairstylist?

A: You must be confident promoting yourself and suggesting additional services as well as product recommendations to your guests. This will help you grow and benefit you for the rest of your career. On a busy day you will have to work under pressure, and will soon learn to work very fast, although the spa manager will be aware if a hairstylist is slightly slower and will book you accordingly.


Q: What additional services can you perform in the on board salon?

A: You are trained in teeth whitening, advanced barbering, keratin smoothing, the LVL lash lift, and lash extensions, which gives you a wide repertoire of services to offer your guests.


Q: How about your working hours?

A: Working hours are regulated by maritime law. The longest hours you will work is a 14 hour shift, but this includes two one-hour breaks for meals. You have no travelling time as the salon is a few minutes away from your cabin, and all the ship’s amenities are available for you to have fun and socialise as soon as your shift ends.


Q: What are your career options after completing a contract?

A: They are unlimited! You can apply for any dream job in hairdressing with an extremely good chance of being accepted, as employers know the calibre and standard of Steiner hairstylists. In terms of experience a contract at sea is equivalent to two years’ experience on land, so it is extremely valuable career-wise. Most hairstylists will return for another contract and will usually complete three or more, and this will give you a nestegg of savings to use to further your career or even start up on your own, when back on land.


Does travel, adventure, great money, and new horizons every day sound like your dream job?


To apply to work on board ship, sign up using the online form HERE.

A recruitment consultant will be in touch asap to set up a confidential interview.



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Working on Cruise Ships: Your questions answered part 1



Q&A with Steiner Recruitment Manager Nadine Brits



My Cruise Ship Hairdressing Career with Baylee Strike, Grant Harper, Umhlanga

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