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Is 51 years old too old to start a career as a Yacht stewardess?

Discussion in 'Yacht Crews' started by KateAdventure, Aug 25, 2015.

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  1. Jamie Somers

    Jamie Somers New Member

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    If I give up without even trying, I will probably regret it, so I will approach this like I have with anything in my life thus far, give it my best shot and see where it takes me, who knows maybe this effort will open another door I never even considered for myself.[/QUOTE]

    Dear Kate, I had the same question only please substitute “54” for “51.” I have a stable and successful career as a CPA who works in taxation, but crave a life shift for many of the same reasons you expressed.
    I have a strong work ethic and would be willing to be an entry level stewardess,. It is the change and experience I am wanting, not necessarily very practical. However being sensible and practical your entire life does not necessarily lead to joy. With the proper training and certifications is a low level superyacht job possible? Thank you.
  2. K1W1

    K1W1 Senior Member

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    If your a CPA you might be better off to aim for a pursers job or a Project Assistant for a build that leads to one.

    Keeping track of things and managing accounts is a big part of both roles.
  3. Jamie Somers

    Jamie Somers New Member

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    Thank you for the suggestion! Details and follow up are my life!
  4. Clou

    Clou New Member

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    I know this post is so old but couldn’t help myself but to respond!
    Since when is it common for 50 year olds to have grey hair and dentures? I’m 49, wear a size 6, have all my real teeth (which are super white), and not one grey hair (my mother didn’t have a grey until 70) I’ve had 2 kids and zero stretch marks. No...I am not embellishing. I am posting this reply simply so people can start to debunk this theory that 50 is elderly, and options are gone. But, I will get old and probably have dentures...but not anytime soon. And remember-nobody is aging in reverse and nor are you Capt Ralph. I have zero issues getting a job on a yacht at my age. Some owners are looking for someone like me who is attractive, but not a juicy 25 year old for someone’s husband to drool over and ruin a vacation. P Diddy isn’t looking to hire me, but Tom Hanks his wife are all about it. Get it?
  5. Fishtigua

    Fishtigua Senior Member

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    I know of one steward who worked with his Owner well into his 70's. They were almost best friends. But one of them wore white gloves.
  6. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    Are you looking for a job on a yacht?

    When you do land the job cold and last a few months on board, Then you can file this and I'll recall my note.

    Good luck
    ,rc
  7. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Our chief stew just turned 53 in June. She spent her career on megayachts and is enjoying working a lighter schedule with us, leaving her time to travel the world and enjoy her own home and boat. She's still gorgeous, born in the US to Colombian parents and looks 15 years younger. However, looks isn't the point, but she's in excellent condition to handle any and all work. She always worked out regularly and continues to do so. We also have a close friend who is 55 years old and people sometimes believe she must just be her daughter's older sister. She was born in Spain. Then we have a couple who are captains, he is 62 and she is 59. Their biggest form of exercise other than working is fishing as they spent the first half of their careers running charter fishing boats off the coast of NC. He is amazingly strong and she can keep up with anyone. She doesn't normally go for the glamourous look and has that tough, strong woman look, until you see her dressed up for a trip to a fancy restaurant and suddenly are shocked at her beauty.

    Most I've talked to like having maturity in their chief stews. Now, that said, there is a hesitancy toward hiring a new stew who is 50 years old. They have to sell themselves like any worker that age. Primarily they have to convince the often younger chief stew and captain that they're willing and eager to learn and have no problem taking orders from those younger than themselves. They also have to show they are up for the hard physical labor involved.

    I think the grey hair and dentures comments was inappropriate, but then guess it came from someone with grey hair and dentures. Like you, I'll turn 50 next year and still have all my teeth. My wife has decided neither of us will ever be grey. I recognize though the challenges anyone 50 years old faces in the workplace. The words so often used are "overqualified" but the real resistance is concerns over pay and over health. It's no more a challenge on a yacht than anywhere else. To add to that, one seeking to make a career change at 50, better be prepared to beg and grovel and still take a lot of disappointment in rejections as they try to get an opportunity to prove themselves. However, I remind them that it's a bit like telemarketing in that it doesn't matter how many times you get turned down, you just need one person to say "yes." Work the numbers and you'll find that person.

    I've witnessed every form of hiring prejudice imaginable during my career. There are plenty of chief stews who won't hire young, inexperienced too, won't give someone new a chance. I've seen department heads in business who wouldn't hire young, attractive girls just as I've seen store owners who only hired those who looked like models. I've seen managers who wouldn't hire single persons. Then the illegal prejudices which I always used to my benefit as those who rejected females or rejected handicapped or rejected immigrants or rejected gays or rejected blacks left those of us who just looked for the best candidates a larger available group. We have a tremendous group of young people working for us, but then we have a few older ones who we continue to do whatever we can to get them to stay. Just last week we talked to a division head who had retired before he came to work for us 6 years ago. He loves his job but we've told him, we want you on whatever basis you want to work as long as you do. You just tell us how many days each year you'd like to work. Even if it becomes only 60 days a year, your knowledge and expertise will still be invaluable.

    As to the employer who wouldn't hire a 50 year old, probably not an employer one wants to work for.
  8. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    While I agree with OBs more proper comments, were not in a perfect world as he did hint to.
    Affirmative Action reads well on paper but a cold female of age will have a very hard if not next to impossible finding job and still pay bills on a large charter yacht.

    It's what's proper and real life in a boxing ring.
  9. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Clou doesn't find it hard. What is a "cold female of age?"

    At to paying bills, if she has a full time job on a mega yacht, then all bills will go away. I suggest to get such a job, one gets good stew training and also some extra skills or emphasizes their current unique skills. Personal trainers, masseuses, crew cooks are in demand.

    If our 53 year old Chief Stew wanted to work full time on a megayacht she could basically write her own deal any day.
  10. Capt Ralph

    Capt Ralph Senior Member

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    I's sorry, Cold or new to the job.
    No experience and trying to get hired on as crew.
  11. Capt J

    Capt J Senior Member

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    Dear Kate, I had the same question only please substitute “54” for “51.” I have a stable and successful career as a CPA who works in taxation, but crave a life shift for many of the same reasons you expressed.
    I have a strong work ethic and would be willing to be an entry level stewardess,. It is the change and experience I am wanting, not necessarily very practical. However being sensible and practical your entire life does not necessarily lead to joy. With the proper training and certifications is a low level superyacht job possible? Thank you.[/QUOTE]

    If you're a CPA and 54, why don't you own your own yacht?
  12. Norseman

    Norseman Senior Member

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    The opposite of Hot and Young?
  13. FlyingGolfer

    FlyingGolfer Member

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    We will definitely consider a stew in her 50s when we get our boat. The maturity, hopefully including wisdom about alcohol and carousing, would be a benefit to us.
  14. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    Would you consider a beginning stew in her 50's?

    My bet is you would.

    My bet is charter boats would not.

    However, two of our stews would not likely have been hired by most larger boats doing charters or even by many owner used boats and they are incredible. They lacked the polish and sophistication desired at that time. They still have been trained in but haven't practiced formal five star, white linen levels of service as we don't do that.
    Last edited: Nov 11, 2019
  15. CaptPKilbride

    CaptPKilbride Senior Member

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    Wow.
    Really?
    Wow.
  16. rtrafford

    rtrafford Senior Member

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    This whole thread got weird in a hurry. Weird and a bit ugly.
  17. FlyingGolfer

    FlyingGolfer Member

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    We won’t charter out our boat, so we can hire whom we please. Maturity and wisdom would be a welcome addition to the mix.
  18. Alicia Port

    Alicia Port New Member

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    Hi. I'm reading your post and I can be a new Kate case. I want to write thank you because the written words are helpful in my decision. I also love sailing and attended some courses to get my SEAMAN'S book and i have my STCW and ENG1 updated. Anyway, I see now my young and inexperienced colleagues sailing to Caribbeans and I'm still receiving a NO as answer despite my short experience of two seasons sailing for leisure, my captain's reference letter, my sailing certifications and my wide experience in hospitality, management and education in land and some experience on shore.
    I have also send my application for cruise companies and I received the same answer. I agree with the Captain who said that there is no jobs for older than 40's at yacht industry if your intention is to put your leg onboard for the first time as professional. Anyway, seniors need a place to keep working. Fifties are not so old as 30 years ago. All companies include a non discrimination clause in their policies but they ask keep asking about your age and gender when you sign-up.
    I am still curious, hands-on and hardworking person. I'm a cyclist and fit person and I need to keep working. So?
  19. olderboater

    olderboater Senior Member

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    So....you just need one to say yes. That's what you have to hope for. The break through job. It may be a charter where a stew didn't show up. Make friends with some stews and chief stews who might at least think of you in those times. I would also say the problem is likely greater even in Europe than here in the US. In the US it is illegal to put any age question or birth date or anything else to imply age on an application. However, it's so easy to determine age when you attach resume or work history. The reality is those who want to discriminate will likely always do so. In business, the primary way they ever get prosecuted is statistical data builds a prima facie case against them.

    I will add this too. Stewing on a sailing vessel vs a Motor Yacht are often extremely different, especially as you consider larger motor yachts as they tend to be more formal and involve more pressure from the guests.