top of page

How to Get Started in Yachting …

Updated: Jul 30, 2023

Hello !

A little change of topic on today's blog, people ask me frequently on socials, "how did you get started in yachting?"

I was lucky to have known someone already working in the industry who gave me great advise and guidance on what I needed to do to join the industry. This person is now the Captian of a 33m high performance Sail Yacht, great friend and Graduate of the UKSA Cadetship Programe. He put me in touch with the Maritime training organisation UKSA based in the Isle of Wight. I knew that I would be joining the industry to make it a career not just for a few seasons, this meant that making an investment in my future and signing up for the UKSA cadet ship programme was right for me.

Fécamp- December 2019

This is an extensive Yacht Master course along with all of the extra qaulifications you need to stand out from the sea of "green" yacht crew. "Green" is what the industry calls inexperienced crew looking for their first big job on a yacht.

The Cadetship Programme;

This is a four year programme, A career path to STCW II/1 Officer of the Watch (Yacht<3000GT).

Over the four years you spend your time between working onboard a yacht building your sea time and returning to study the modules to eventually when ready take the Oral exam for OOW.

The first part of the journey is moving to Cowes, (the sailing capital of Europe) in the Isle of Wight which truly is a wonderful place. You'll spend the next 7 months here doing your training towards your Yacht master and you can accompany that with an HND in Operatinoal Yacht Science with Falmouth marine school in Partnership with UKSA. I did this and honestly it was totally worth the late night essay writing and extra study sessions and I continued it whilst working and made it a foundation degree with Plymouth University. I believe that having an academic background along-side your sailing qaulfications is a great security plan for th future and if you decided to move shore side but stay within yachting its worth investing in your future.

Now the thing that really enabled to be where I am write now sitting on the amalfi coast writing this blog post on a stunning Saturday afternoon... is the FUNDING UKSA offer cadets to get started in yachting. This is an expensive journey to get started in yachting, they offer a range of different bursaries , sponsorships that allow cadets to do their training and graduate debt-free, launching a career into a great industry . See UKSA's website for all of the details on funding and the cadetship programme.

Yachting for a Few Years...

If you plan to do yachting for a summer or a Gap year from uni that's fine but you don't need the same qaulifications and extensive training you'd get from a cadetship programme. Really all you need to get started for a short period in Yachting is :

  1. An STCW 95- this is a 5 day course that covers safety onboard a vessel, fire-fighting, first aid, seasurvival, personal safety and social responsibility and security awareness. This lasts 5 years before renewal. This is around 700-800 Pounds depending on the training school.

  2. An ENG1 medical Certificate- this can be restricted or unrestricted, this is issued for 2 years if unrestricted. On the MCA website there is a list of qualified MCA doctors that can issue this certificate. This around 100-120 Pounds.

  3. A Power Boat Level 2- for an aspiring deckhand this is an essential that you can do at any RYA Training centre.

These are the very basic must haves to even be considered for a job on a Yacht.

If you want to make yachting your career plan for the future. Then you'll need to do a lot more that the basics.I highly reccomend doing your Yacht Master Offshore qaulification, this is a commercial qualification that allows you to skipper a yacht up to 24m. Now in reality this isn't an easy qaulifcation and you should be a competent sailor before considering doing this course. This course is part of the UKSA cadetship programme.

There is so much more information I want to share on starting out in the industry; to follow the next blogs; like, comment and subscribe to @shapedbythesea.

As always keep smiling, laughing and loving the sea 🤍🌊

Shaped by the Sea xo

331 views2 comments

2 comentarios

Matt Kipping
Matt Kipping
20 jul 2023

Great intro to yachting Mellisa, hope your having fun on the Amalfi coast!

next time we’re in the same port we need to meet up for a drink and share Stories.


Me gusta
Melissa  Ramm
Melissa Ramm
20 jul 2023
Contestando a

Hey Matt,

Thanks for reading the blog, hope your keeping well! Yes for sure beers and a catch up soon!

Me gusta
bottom of page