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  • College Accomodation and Aus MCV help

    I've just been sent a few emails from my sponsor with numerous documents relating to joining STC and choosing the accomodation that I'd prefer. The prices are as follows:

    . Standard at £539
    . Ensuite non-catered at £462
    .Ensuite catered at £686

    I was thinking on going for the ensuite rooms, but can't decide if the catered option is worth the extra £224. Anyone here know if it's a good option for a £11,500 allowance, or would I be better off making my own food and storing it to eat over a few days? Also, it would be great to share your experiences of the quality of these rooms.

    Was also told to apply for an Australian Merchant Crew Visa on their website. Surprisingly, and thankfully, this process appears to be free of charge. What I'd love to know is the reason for the American visa costing £130+. Any differences between the two visas and what they allow crewmembers to do?

  • #2
    The US C1/D allows you to join / leave a vessel in the United States.

    The Australian visa does the same.
    “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn’t do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines, sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

    – Mark Twain
    myBlog | @alistairuk | flickr | youtube Views and opinions expressed are those of myself and not representative of any employer or other associated party.

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    • #3
      It really depends about the catering. If you are likely to eat there every meal then it would be worth it but if you end up going out more often than not then its an extra expense. I'm not sure if the halls had a kitchen/kitchenette as I've only seen STC halls once. I think they had a microwave so you could live on ramen if it worse comes to worts.

      Visas are the same thing but they have different application processes. The aussie MCV you will barely even remember you have once you've got it as its just a silly little online thing. The US visa consists of an embassy visit which lasts all day while they take fingerprints and ask you if you're a terrorist. Are sponsors making cadets pay for that these days??

      Don't flash the C1/D if you go to America for a holiday though.

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      • #4
        En-suite, non-catered!!!

        Canteen food is absolutely abysmal, and the fact you're paying through-the-roof for a 'standard' room, which is tiny with the addition of communal shower and toilet facilities- queuing is a practised national sport at halls!

        With the £462 option, you can please yourself in terms of cooking/catering for yourself- a lot easier to budget and determine what you want to do with your money overall.
        "We have encountered an enemy square! The most deadly of all the quadrilaterals!" ~ EfffingController
        First of all, I'm not Scottish! I'm Drunk!

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        • #5
          Hi Groot, I presume im with the Same Sponsor as I have just been organising the same stuff, I went for En Suite Self Catered, things to note about the Booking Form: You will need a departure date, i put June 29th which is like 21 weeks from when we start, you need to put a departure date (I tried with out and they asked me for one) and you can change it once you know it exactly as long as you give them 4 weeks notice. You also may have to provide proof of who is paying the first months rent, i contacted the sponsor who said they would send an email to the halls to clarify this .

          The AUS visa is quick and simple, you fill it out and get it approved in minutes!
          Hope the above information helps

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          • #6
            Thats a very generous sponorship allowance

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            • #7
              Originally posted by Joshva View Post
              Hi Groot, I presume im with the Same Sponsor as I have just been organising the same stuff, I went for En Suite Self Catered, things to note about the Booking Form: You will need a departure date, i put June 29th which is like 21 weeks from when we start, you need to put a departure date (I tried with out and they asked me for one) and you can change it once you know it exactly as long as you give them 4 weeks notice. You also may have to provide proof of who is paying the first months rent, i contacted the sponsor who said they would send an email to the halls to clarify this .

              The AUS visa is quick and simple, you fill it out and get it approved in minutes!
              Hope the above information helps
              Hi Josh, yeah I'm with BP as well. I'm probably going to email IOM tomorrow morning about clarifying my start date. It says I should report to reception on the 9th, and arrive on the 8th. Do you know if this means the course starts then and that's us moved into the accomodation? Little confused given she's said that we either start on the 9th or 30th.

              Thanks for the advice as well, much appreciated.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by groot View Post
                Hi Josh, yeah I'm with BP as well. I'm probably going to email IOM tomorrow morning about clarifying my start date. It says I should report to reception on the 9th, and arrive on the 8th. Do you know if this means the course starts then and that's us moved into the accomodation? Little confused given she's said that we either start on the 9th or 30th.

                Thanks for the advice as well, much appreciated.
                Hi Groot,

                One of the emails I got was personal to what I was doing so it had the Deck information on there, its the one with like 7 attachments, I know that Deck Degree starts on the 30th and we move in on the 29th however I presume from your sponsorship allowance you are engine so I haven't got a clue. xD
                Im pretty sure the course starts on the day where we have to report to reception.

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by Mr_Nicoll View Post
                  En-suite, non-catered!!!

                  Canteen food is absolutely abysmal, and the fact you're paying through-the-roof for a 'standard' room, which is tiny with the addition of communal shower and toilet facilities- queuing is a practised national sport at halls!

                  With the £462 option, you can please yourself in terms of cooking/catering for yourself- a lot easier to budget and determine what you want to do with your money overall.
                  The food is fine at the canteen, but I wouldn't go for the catered option. Main reason being that the extra money is basically put on your student card as "credit", the idea being that you simply swipe the card at the canteen/Costa. However, it's nigh on impossible to actually spend it all and you won't be given any refunds when you move out (or change to a non-catered option).

                  Personally I wouldn't stay at the halls if I didn't have to. Better accommodation is available privately for ~£100 less per month. The standard rooms are really grim, and that kind of "standard" can be had for as little as £45 per week elsewhere.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by Maritimer View Post
                    The food is fine at the canteen, but I wouldn't go for the catered option. Main reason being that the extra money is basically put on your student card as "credit", the idea being that you simply swipe the card at the canteen/Costa. However, it's nigh on impossible to actually spend it all and you won't be given any refunds when you move out (or change to a non-catered option).

                    Personally I wouldn't stay at the halls if I didn't have to. Better accommodation is available privately for ~£100 less per month. The standard rooms are really grim, and that kind of "standard" can be had for as little as £45 per week elsewhere.
                    Agreed, accommodation prices at the colleges (and most others) are ridiculous. Unfortunately my sponsor preferably wants us all to stay there, so I guess it's choosing the best of the worst.

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                    • #11
                      From what I've gathered is that we move into the halls on the 8th and have to be at the marine school reception on the 9th at the time stated on the joining instructions which I think is 09:00

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