Read the Triton Survey on time off for captains and crew. And read a few more thoughts about the primary means of ensuring time off: rotations:
It is a solution if it is well-managed by the captain. The captain needs to have enough time to manage this aspect also, in addition to everything else.
For full-time crew, a bi-yearly rotation would be awesome.
Money shouldn’t even be part of this. Owners should know that crew come and go. Money should never be a factor.
Rotations that don’t always fall with the same crew would be optimum, so it’s almost like working on a new yacht from time to time.
I’ve been working rotational positions for five years now. On my current vessel, all senior crew rotate 3-3 and junior crew 5-1.
It’s the cormorant theory: Japanese fisherman throws cormorant overboard with ring around neck and line around foot. Bird instinctively and enthusiastically catches and swallows fish as far as ring allows. Fisherman retrieves bird, who regurgitates fish into hold. Process repeated until bird gets discouraged. Must remove ring often enough to keep bird interested in fishing. Otherwise you have to continuously replace bird (breakdown maintenance). This option is ideal for light bulbs, but not so much for cormorants or engineers.
Great crew would stay longer aboard yachts if they felt they were valued and got the time off they deserve.
You need time off to recharge the batteries and stop thinking about the yacht 24-7.
Keeping the crew happy is the best way to retain them. If you can’t keep them happy you will have constant turnover, which costs the boat much more in the long run.
Captains need to make time, especially on private boats, for crew to have time off, regardless of whether you are in management’s “back yard.” We work hard and deserve our time off.
We work hard and long hours. Schedules should be smart. This isn’t a typical job, therefore we should be allowed time off when schedules allow.
Yachting has become less appealing with all of the commercial work now available for both captain and engineer that offer better schedules, more time off, better pay, and better benefits packages.
It’s good to get away from boats and the boating crowd to see how the rest of the world live their lives.
Most captains and crew don’t get enough quality time off. Captains have a difficult time taking time off because of the 24/7 responsibilities, even if they are on vacation.
Crew having time off is great for crew morals. No one wants to just work every day or every month without personal time off.
It is of vital importance for a safe and quality service.
People leave the industry because unlike the commercial industry there is never enough time off. We deserve to have a life also.
Holidays, rotations, perhaps flexible time all sounds wonderful but when you get down to it a sailor’s life is a life at sea.