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Little too young ..... maybe

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  • Little too young ..... maybe

    Hi,
    I'm sixteen (17 in December) and reading through some of these forums, i'm most likely not to be accepted due to laws about under 18's at sea. I went to an open day and some sponsoring companies said its fine. I'm slightly confused of whether my age will limit me in company choices. I have had a few responses from my applications and just want to double check its fine for me to go down this route now before I give up sixth form.

  • #2
    My first question would be "Why do you want to give up the sixth Form?"
    "Any damn fool can navigate the world sober. It takes a really good sailor to do it drunk." - Sir Francis Chichester.
    "Waves are not measured in feet or inches, they are measured in increments of fear." - Buzzy Trent

    "Careers at Sea" Ambassador - Experience of General Cargo, Combo ships, Tanker, Product Carrier, Gas Carrier, Ro-Ro, Reefer Container, Anchor Handlers.

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    • #3
      I would say finish 6th form get some A levels so you have some sort of qualification in case you find that a life at sea is not for you, and start your cadetship at 18.

      I think that the age limit for starting a cadetship should be 18 really. As a cadet you can be placed in some quite difficult situations which I'm sure many 16 year olds could deal with fine, but I'm sure many would struggle with them.

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      • #4
        I started my cadetship when I was 16 although I did turn 17 a week after I started. The only limit it may do will be cruise companies and some of them have a policy of not employing staff under 21. I would say it was the best thing I done as it made me grow up really fast at become very independant at a young age. You get put on a ship at 17 and told you have to look after yourself.

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        • #5
          well I only chose to do a first year in college as my dad is in the army and I wanted to stop moving around. But I know this is what I want to do, so I will give up sixth form if I am approved a place. I already am quite independent as I sail regularly and am currently known for it quite well.

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          • #6
            Hi!!

            I'm 16 (17 in November) and have applied to many different companies (most of which I have gained a reply). I would say if you're definitely looking for a career at sea, then you really need to broaden your horizons. In the beginning I had my mind set straight on passenger ships but then I came back down to reality, realizing that the competition is so high, the likelihood of gaining a sponsorship with a cruise company at 16 and indeed at any age is extremely challenging not saying that it can't happen but hay!

            I have been invited for an interview with Clyde Marine in a few days time and they seem to have no troubles with a candidate being 16! Only thing that I have learnt from a mate and also from the forums on here is that with Clyde you have no way of knowing who you are going to be sent with to complete your sea phases until you start your first day of college! Both annoying and stressful!! Even with a sponsor option sheet 9/10 people don't get their choices...including my cousin that completed a sponsorship with Clyde last year.

            I'm guessing you haven't started Sixth form yet (as your 17 in December) so when you say 'give up' sixth form do you mean withdraw your application/acceptance? If you do mean that I would say DONT withdraw your application or acceptance otherwise if all does go take an unplanned turn then your stuck with no applications and no offers anywhere! Thing to keep in mind At the moment I'm sitting on a college offer where I'm going to study Biology, Chemistry, Law and History! Couldn't be further away from the MN but then if the Merch doesn't work out for me I'm being shipped off to medical school (providing I get the grades)

            With the law can anyone name it and also provide the year it was commissioned? Would like to have a look into it!

            Cheers and hope this helps!
            Tom.

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            • #7
              Legally you only have to be 16 to work on a ship, but I believe there are some restrictions on the hours you can work before you are 18.

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              • #8
                I've heard there are some aspects of MLC that makes it iffy for under 18's but I haven't read it myself

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                • #9
                  I started at 16 and tend to agree that you may be better of waiting until you're 18, but if you are confident that it is right for you, why not try now and see if you get accepted, if not you can wait until after your A-Levels and hopefully take some valuable experience away from what you do now.
                  As for companies, these days you won't get into Carnival at 16, but several of the other smaller companies will consider you.
                  Just be sure that you really read up on what you are getting yourself into and be prepared for a serious culture shock.
                  Cruise ship Captain with experience on-board Passenger Vessels ranging from 5500-150000 GRT.

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                  • #10
                    Yeh, I take night class at my local college in economics, that's what I mean A-levels. May I ask when you applied as I haven't received any interview times or anythink like that. I only applied a week ago though. Thanks it has been helpful. I assume as your a 16 year old your taking the HND course??

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                    • #11
                      Right chaps, MLC2006 states NO UNDER 16's on board, thats it.

                      HOWEVER

                      Most flags are "gold plating" thier version / interpretation to make that no under 17's (oh the joy of internationally agreed rules)

                      HOURS OF REST state that under 18 may not work at night and must have more time of than over 18's....currently on leave so can recall teh exact wording, however thats the basics.


                      As for not hearing back after a week...pppfffffttttt, some people have waitied months for repliesother are in in weeks, it depends on so many things that you may as well ask how long is a piece of string ;-)

                      Now mister / missus OP please join and stop being anon, so me and the rest of the mods dont have to hand aprove all your posts to keep this thread going ;-)
                      Trust me I'm a Chief.

                      Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
                      Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
                      No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


                      Twitter:- @DeeChief

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                      • #12
                        Here's some relevant rules regarding the issue ( I attended a presentation by the UKCS a few months back regarding MLC)

                        1.1.1—(1) No person may be a seafarer on a United Kingdom ship unless that person is of at least 16 years of age.
                        (2) No person may employ or engage another person as a seafarer on a United Kingdom ship unless that other person is of at least 16 years of age.
                        1.1.2.—(1) Subject to paragraph (3), no person under the age of 18 may work as a seafarer at night on a United Kingdom ship.
                        (2) Subject to paragraph (3), no person may employ a person under the age of 18 to work as a seafarer at night on a United Kingdom ship.
                        (3) Paragraphs (1) and (2) do not apply where—
                        (a) the effective training of the seafarer, in accordance with established programmes and schedules, would be impaired by their application, and
                        (b) the specific nature of the duty of the seafarer or of a recognised training programme requires that the seafarer performs duties at night and the work to be carried out is specified below as not being detrimental to the health and well-being of seafarers under the age of 18
                        So in my mind paragrapgh 3 means a cadet following an approved MNTB scheme can work at night, assuming it isn't detrimental to health And if anyone is curious, the training which is deemed to be excepted is......

                        any Deck Officer training under STCW Regulations II/1, II/2 and II/3;
                         any Engineer Officer training under STCW Regulations III/1, III/2 and III/3;
                         any Navigational watch Rating training under STCW Regulation II/4;
                         any Engine Room watch Rating training under STCW Regulation III/4 ;
                         any training of Ratings as AB, Deck or Engine;
                         any training of Electro-technical Officers under STCW Regulation III/6;
                         any training of Electro-technical Ratings under STCW Regulation III/7;
                         any training of Radio personnel under STCW Regulation IV/2;
                         any training for alternative certification under STCW Regulation VII.
                        So, I don't think being under 18 would cause any real issues with being accepted for a cadetship, although as previously stated, some companies do just prefer more mature cadets.

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                        • #13
                          but again bear in mind this is the UK interpretation.......if you are on other flags then other rules WILL apply however them main one is people deciding that 16 should be 17 ;-)

                          Oh and some flags dont even count cadets as seafarers, but with luck that wont be an issue for you
                          Trust me I'm a Chief.

                          Views expressed by me are mine and mine alone.
                          Yes I work for the big blue canoe company.
                          No I do not report things from here to them as they are quite able to come and read this stuff for themselves.


                          Twitter:- @DeeChief

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by Chiefy View Post
                            but again bear in mind this is the UK interpretation.......if you are on other flags then other rules WILL apply however them main one is people deciding that 16 should be 17 ;-)
                            That's one thing I forget to point out sometimes, UK MGN, MIN and MSN's mean nowt to other flagged vessels! They'll usually have their own version, but not always...
                            I love deadlines. I like the whooshing sound they make as they fly by.....

                            All posts here represent my own opinion and not that of my employer.

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                            • #15
                              Hi there, I actually started straight from school in 2012.. My 16th birthday was in the July and I started the same September! Went on my first ship at age 16 and turned 17 onboard and won't be turning 18 until phase 4! My point is that you can join at age 16 fine with certain companies. In my opinion I think it's the best thing I did, comparing what I do with what my friends do at ordinary college...I know which i would choose...going on a ship traveling around the world having a great time in ports or getting the bus to college every day...

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