superyacht deckhand course

How to be a Deckhand – Superyacht Deckhand Course

Superyacht Deckhand CourseSuperyacht Deckhand Course

What qualifications do I need to be a Deckhand?



Becoming a Deckhand can lead to a fantastic career where you can see amazing parts of the world and progress a career path. Its not always like Below Decks and can be very long hours but the rewards are incredible.

There are lots of different boats, different sizes, charter yachts, private yachts all offering different experiences.

Salaries can range from € 2800 per month to in excess of € 5000 per months plus tips and benefits. If you live onboard, then you food and lodgings are free of charge too.


To become a Deckhand you will need two mandatory qualifications/certificates before you can start work:

These are needed if you want to work on any ship or yacht. It is worth doing your medical certificate first to ensure that you pass this before investing any funds in further training.

An ENG1 Medical [or other medical] is required to work on a yacht, this is usually valid for 2 years available from Doctor’s approved by the MCA [Maritime Coastguard Agency]

In Mallorca there are two approved centres:


STCW Basic Safety Training Course is a legal requirement for all crew who want to work at sea on any commercial vessels including yachts

This is a 5-day course covering

Fire Fighting and Fire Prevention
Personal Safety and Social Responsibilities (PSSR)
Proficiency in Security Awareness (PSA)
Sea Survival
Elementary First Aid

STCW stands for Standards of Training, Certification, and Watchkeeping. STCW Basic Safety Training was introduced by countries around the world to formally agreed to standardise training around the world. STCW was introduced in 1978, amended in 2010.

Once you have completed this essential training you have a number of options to consider to become a deckhand:

In Palma you can do this at

There are also other options around the world:




What additional qualifications do you need?

To become a Deckhand you will need some minimum basic training to show prospective employers that you have some experience, most employers will expect you to hold a minimum of RYA Powerboat Level 2.

However, if you are new to the industry then you should consider an additional Superyacht Deckhand Course to show employers that you are competent in other areas of Deckhand training. No other course in gives you the broad based training you need to cover all aspects of becoming a Deckhand.

Our Superyacht Deckhand Course will provide you with all the knowledge you need to start your career in the yachting industry.

Our Competent Deckhand course includes the following modules:


See Course Dates and Book here – Superyacht Deckhand Course


What is covered on the 14 day Competent Deckhand Course:

RYA Powerboat level 2        

The industry standard for all deckhand and a prerequisite for entry into the yachting industry. This certification will allow you to drive ribs and tenders up to 10m long.

This will include tuition on Williams Jet Tenders which are very different to driving propeller driven power boats and used as tenders on smaller superyachts.

No other training organisation provides this training                  

RYA Advanced Powerboat Course [Night Operation]

Covering advanced handling skills, night operations and pilotage allowing Operations in the hours of darkness.

Handling guests and difficult situations.

of RYA Personal Watercraft [Jetski] Certificate

Essential certification in many countries to allow you to legally operate a PWC. 

VHF Short Range Radio Certificate

An essential part of any marine qualification is to be legal and competent on the VHF radio. This allows effective and clear communication between vessels, ports and marinas 

RYA Yachtmaster Offshore Theory

An essential requirement for anyone looking to work in the industry allowing knowledge of collision regulations, Safety, Weather, Navigation and Tides etc. This is an essential part of your SuperYacht Deckhand Course.

The requirements for you to pass your Yachtmaster Practical includes having completed 2500 logged sea miles and being a competent Skipper, however, the completion of the RYA

Yachtmaster Offshore Theory shows any prospective employer that you are capable of carrying out watch duties and assisting with navigation and passage planning.

PPR – Professional Practices and Responsibilities

How you fit into the professional maritime world, importance of correct manning, keeping skills up to date, safe management of commercial vessels, the compulsory carriage and maintenance of safety equipment and how to create and implement risk control.

Toys and Water Sports training

Many Yachts are looking for Deckhands with experience with water toys and towing skiers, wakeboards and inflatable toys.

This includes Tender towing training, towing skiers and wakeboards, operation of Seabobs, Electric Foils, Stand up Paddle Boards etc.

No other Superyacht Deckhand Course gives you this training.

Docking Skills

The role of a Deckhand is critical when arriving or leaving a dock, understanding the correct preparation, organisation, your positioning and effective communication

Including practical time of a motor yacht gaining real knowledge 

Rope Work

Learn to tie all the necessary knots and understand their uses. Understand the different types of ropes and their benefits.

Rope coiling and storage


Understand fender positions, heights, and use of roving fenders

Fender storage and preparation

Tender Launch and Recovery

Launching and recovery of tenders form an important part of any deckhand role, and there are many different configurations, including stern platform, garage, and crane options

Cleaning and Preparation

The yachting industry requires a totally different level of cleanliness and attention to detail.

Learn about daily deck routines

How to effectively clean GRP/fibreglass, teak, windows, upholstery

Tricks of the trade for removing stains and marks

Guest and Crew Interaction and Etiquette

Learn about correct guest interaction and understanding your customers’ needs.

Dealing with difficult customers

Living in confined areas with other crew

Personal presentation

Career Advice and CV Workshop

The Superyacht Deckhand Course gives you an understanding the different yacht types and how roles on yacht types differ

Understanding private and charter yachts

Making your CV stand out in a crowd


Upon completion of the Superyacht Deckhand course candidates will have the confidence to join any yacht with the training and knowledge that will allow them to fulfil their role and continue to develop their career path

Each candidate will receive a credit card style Competent Crew ID card with QR code that allows prospective employers to scan via an app and see all your current certification and CV.

Competent Deckhand Card

No other Superyacht Deckhand Course offers you a complete package of Deckhand Training.


For more information click here to see availability on our Superyacht Deckhand Course