Treating Crew with Respect

Understanding what you have invested in your career

Crew FAQs

What kind of crew do you recruit?

The best term is - Professional.  Our clients are seeking crew with a proven history of working on yachts, appropriate documents (training, licenses, references, etc..  We recruit for every position aboard the yachts.  
We do not recruit for crew seeking temporary or freelance work.  
Please note - we only consider candidates who are brought to us by people we already know - referrals only.

What do your clients request?

Qualifications – the legal right to work in the position. This may include licenses appropriate for the position, STCW Basic Training, current Medical Fit for Duty, and an unrestricted passport.

History – almost without exception our clients will only consider candidates who have a history of making commitments and sticking with them. They also require verifiable references. They will at times also require drug tests, criminal background checks, etc. Please note that although we do not conduct the drug tests or the criminal background check, if you register with us you are accepting the fact that the client may.

Does Preferred Crew have other expectations?

We need you to be completely honest with us. Our mission is to introduce you to programs where your long term goals are being met. The only way for us to do this is to listen to what you are seeking and to bring those introductions to you.

Do you work with new or “green” crew?

Only if the green crew are referred in by yacht crew we already know.. 

Our best advise to green crew - get yourself to a yachting hot-spot, work very, very hard and make a great impression.  This will serve you better than any other option.

What about teams? Other people are telling me that I have to split from my partner to get a job.

We will never promise you a job – we don’t own any yachts and therefore cannot offer any jobs – and team positions are much less common than they used to be, but if you have a history of working together well, and at least one of you is an officer, we may be able to assist you.

What about smoking and tattoos?

You already know this answer. If you smoke – STOP. It is not healthy and there has never, ever in the history of our recruiting, been a program that asked for smokers. If you do smoke, just be honest – there are some programs that do accept it, but none encourage or require it.

Tattoos – most yachting programs are ok with tattoos that are completely, 100%, under a t-shirt and shorts line. Some are not. If a white polo gets wet and you have a dark tattoo on your skin it may be visible and some programs will not accept that. Tattoos outside of the t-shirt and short line may very well be a problem.

What about rotation positions?

We don’t speak for the entire industry – we are a small agency with a particular client base. We see very, very few rotation positions.

I see that Preferred Crew is based in Fort Lauderdale – are most of your jobs in South Florida?

No. Our jobs are located on yachts truly around the world. In fact, the vast majority of the programs that we service spend little or no time in South Florida.

I heard that you actually call my references, will you tell me what they say about me?

We do call them. Our actual process is to send them an email asking permission to call and when they give us the permission we call and ask a few questions about your time working with their program. No matter what they tell us, good or bad, we do not share with the candidate. We treat this information with great confidentiality.
Candidates who are not comfortable with this procedure should not send us their CV.  If you decide at any time you are not comfortable with our policy - you can always request that we delete all documents from your file.  Send an email to asking us to do so and we will delete your CV, Documents, References, Interview Notes, etc. We will only maintain your name and DOB - please note, we will be unable to open another file for you in the future.   If a future Candidate asks us to contact you as a reference for them, we may reach out to you, but will not open a file - you may always refuse our reference request.

I’ve seen that other agencies post the wages for jobs – you don’t. Why not?

We don’t share wages as we do not believe a crew agent adds any value to the negotiation process. AFTER both sides have met, discussed the position, the requirements, the expectations, etc., then they should have a discussion regarding fair and appropriate wages. From our side, we require both candidates and programs to give us their expectations as we will not bring the two sides together if there is no chance of them coming to an agreement on wages. If a client requests that we post the wage for the position (sometimes happens for deckhand or stew positions) then we will.

But what if the wages are good enough – how do you know what I want?

We ask you what you are seeking. You should remember that you are not negotiating with us when you answer our questions – you are telling us your true expectations.

If you send me a job and I don’t like the sound of it – do I have to go on the interview to stay in your good graces?

You do not. It is not your job to stay in our good graces. If we send a job that does not appeal to you, then we are either pushing you too hard, or we have misunderstood something about your career path. Please tell us “no” but also please tell us why so we can learn from our mistakes.

And if I go on an interview and after the interview don’t want the job?

If they offer the job, just turn them down politely and professionally – and tell us why. The entire point of the interview is so that both sides can see if the fit will be a good one. Trust us when we tell you that if the Captain or Owner does not think you are a good fit, they will have no problem telling you “no”.

If I turn down a bunch of jobs from you, will you stop contacting me?

Only if we are bringing you jobs that are what you claim to want, but you still turn them all down. It indicates either we are not understanding your needs…or that you are not confident in what you are seeking.

How do I get you to stop contacting me?

Just ask us to stop. We’d hate to see you leave our group, but we get it that we are not for everybody. And please know that we are only going to contact you a few times a year to check in with you or to bring you opportunities, or to ask you for references on people who give us your name as a references. We will not bombard you with useless email or phone calls. We all hate SPAM.

I am a great crewmember – but not such a good CV writer. Will you write my CV for me?

No. We’ll give you tips that we’ve gleaned over the years – go to our TIPS page, but we will not write your CV. In fact, it is important that your CV be in your voice, so we will not correct spelling or grammar either.

How do I check in with you?

You don’t. As far as we are concerned, as long as you don’t tell us to remove your file, you are interested in our bringing you options that are in line with your career goals.

But what if I’m working?

When we check in with you, or when we send you a potential spot, just tell us. We’ll mark you happy but we will still want to bring you things that make sense….maybe touching base with you the next season. We really do want to hear about your success even if they are not from us and we always want to know if you get promoted or score a new license! 

Will you bring me jobs even after you place me?

No. That is just not right. If we place you, we collect a fee from that owner. It would not be honest for us to bring you a job until after you give notice to that program. We will stay in contact, but not bring you jobs until you give notice.

Why won’t you tell me the name of the boat that you are presenting me?

There are a number of reasons we keep the name confidential. First, if the Captain or Owner wants us to keep the name confidential – then we do. There are a number of reasons why the program will want to keep the name under wraps and there is no way to cover them all here. We will give you a decent description of the job. If it turns out that you have already been presented by another source, don’t worry about it – that is part of our business. 

I don't see any Seasonal or Temporary jobs on your site

The truth is we get maybe one or two of these a season - at most.  So when we get a short term spot, we bring it to full time crew who might be looking for some fill in work.  We don't work with part time or seasonal jobs or crew.

What happens after I send you my documents?

We read your CV completely, examine and confirm your documents then, if we believe we can represent you to clients, we will either accept you application as complete or we may ask you for additional information and request a time to chat.

Ok - so exactly what documents do you need?

1. A Yachting CV
2. STCW  First Aid
3.STCW  Fire Fighting
6. Security Training
7. Medical Fit for Duty
8. Your Largest Deck and/or Engine License
9. Any written references you want us to have.
 Nothing else - please nothing else.....
Each document must be under 2 MB and for the love of all that is holy, please scan them so that they are right-side up.

I'm in Fort Lauderdale right now, can I just stop in?

Unfortunately no. As we are such a small agency, we do require an appointment for any meeting. We don’t accept walk-ins.