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Merchant navy to cruise ship

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  • Merchant navy to cruise ship

    Hello everyone,
    I am currently sailing as an ETO on a chemical tanker and getting 5k$ monthly as wages.
    I am just about to complete my 6th contract at sea and I dont see my salary or my rank increasing further in the future.
    The thought of joining a cruise vessel came to my mind and after a few hours of looking here and there I came to know that there's a whole different electrical department and I presumably would get the opportunity to become chief ETO and from what I have heard they make more than 10k$ monthly (just heared from 2 - 3 guys, not sure about the info).
    So if someone experienced can shed some light on the following questions:
    1.) Assuming a good performance report, how many contracts/years will it take to make 2nd ETO/chief ETO?
    2.) The rumors about the salary are true or are they just rumors?
    3.) Is this move wise considering I dont want to be stuck in a operational level job and want to move to management level.?
    I received one offer to join as junior 3rd eto for royal carribean from a recruiter in UK, subject to the condition I clear their online test and interview.
    4.) A general idea of how's the test going to be and what kind of question will be asked, will be really appreciated.

    ps: I know the post is too long but I am really confused and getting frustrated with my current job.

    pps: I already know, I won't be doing anything new apart from troubleshooting on cruise also, so the job responsibility part is crystal clear to me.

    Any help/guidance is highly appreciated. CHEERS.

  • #2
    I'm not an ETO but from what I have seen I would say it would take many years to get up to Chief ETO level. Most of the Chief ETOs I have sailed with have been 50+. If you start off at 3ETO level you then have to go through 2ETO, 1ETO then eventually get to Chief, if you spend 3-4 years in each rank then you can see how it would take a few years to get to that level. Salary for 3ETOs I would imagine would be around £30k, maybe a bit more once you are experienced. Other companies may of course be different.


    • #3

      I’m not an ETO so can’t comment on what your test will be like for RCL. But as an ex-RCL engineer I can give you these answers:

      1) our chief ETOs at Royal Caribbean were always over the age of 55, so I assume you require that much experience to be in command of the electrical department. 2nd/1st ETOs were mostly between 30-45 years old.

      2) the Chief ETO was taking home around £8000 per month, so yes they earn over $10,000per month. A second ETO I knew was on the same rank pay as a third engineer (then first ETO is same rank pay as second engineer, Chief ETO just below Chief engineer pay), and the 2nd ETO salary for him, he was Croatian, was £2500 per month so $3100. This is considered a good wage for cruise ships, so your move from Chem tankers might make it a considerable wage drop for a while.

      3) if you’re good, you’re keen and you’re willing then you will climb ETO ranks fast on a cruise ship if you have a good among. I believe there was junior and senior 2ETO/1ETO too, so another way to increase your money there. Royal Caribbean are also building ships at the moment, and they like current crew members to move onto build projects.

      4) I don’t know, there was no entry test for engineers.

      Good luck whatever happens!


      • #4
        Thank you for your valuable inputs...