The UK's official graduate careers website

Not signed up?

 
 

Merchant navy officer: Salary and conditions

  • Starting salaries upon qualification for junior officers are: £25,000 - £27,000.
  • Training salaries for cadets are: £7,000 - £15,000 with all tuition and on-board food and accommodation included. Shore-based accommodation costs are deducted.
  • Progression up to the rank of captain or chief engineer can lead to salaries ranging from £36,000 to £80,000+, depending upon the type and size of ship. Salaries on foreign-going ships (i.e. at least 183 days per year out of the UK) may be tax free.
  • Qualification as a Merchant Navy officer can lead to opportunities throughout the marine industry.
  • Work is based at sea, on board ships that operate year-round. Shifts are usually four hours 'on' watch/duty and eight hours 'off'. Although extensive travel is part of the job, opportunities to go onshore can be limited due to ship-board responsibilities and rapid turnaround times in port.
  • Onboard living conditions are usually of a high standard, with good leisure and other facilities. Due to such close living and working conditions, being able to work well within a team is important.
  • Weather conditions may make working uncomfortable, for instance the heat of the Persian Gulf in summer or the North Atlantic in a winter gale.
  • An increasing number of female officers are working in the Merchant Navy at all levels.
  • The long periods of time spent away at sea can have a major impact on family life, hobbies and interests. However, most companies provide a generous holiday allowance on a one-for-one basis, for example two-months' paid leave after a two-month voyage. Tour lengths vary from company to company.
  • Merchant Navy officers are subject to the Merchant Shipping Act. The Act sets strict limits on blood-alcohol levels, and drugs are forbidden. Random testing for alcohol or drug abuse is common.

Salary figures are intended as a guide only.

Have you considered these other jobs?

 
 
AGCAS
Written by AGCAS editors
Date: 
July 2013
 

Graduate jobs

 

Spotlight on...

Sponsored links

 
 
 

This website is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with CSS enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets if you are able to do so.