Work Permits

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Work Visa for Cruise Ship Jobs

Most staff on cruise ships do not come from the country where the ship is registered. Therefore many of them need valid visa and/or work permit to work on a cruise ship legally.

Cruise Work Visa


Firstly, to be able to travel abroad, you will need a valid passport. Apart from the passport, it is recommended to have other ID documents with you all the time, such as a driving license. Once you get to the ship the purser will file your passport and other documents and keep them in a safe, since you won't need them during the cruise.

US Work Visa

If your ship embarks from a port in the USA or you have a stopover in one of the US ports, you will need the appropriate visa. You do not need to apply for a Green Card. All you need is your letter of employment (from your employer) and apply for C1 Transit, D1 Seamen and B2 Visitor visa at the US embassy in your country. These visas allow you to enter the USA for a limited time (usually 30 days) only when your ship calls to a US port.

If you choose to stay in the USA, you will need to return to your home country to apply for the work permit - you cannot stay in the USA with C1/D1/B2 visa. Contact the US embassy in your country for more information.

Cruise Work Visa

UK Work Permit

If your cruise ship is registered in the UK, you will need to apply for the appropriate work permit at the British embassy in your country, unless you come from a country of the European Economic Area (EEA): Austria, Belgium, Cyprus, Czech Republic, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Liechtenstein, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, United Kingdom.

European (EU/EEA) Work Permits

If your ship cruises the waters under the Italian, Greek, Norwegian, German, or French flag, you need to apply for the appropriate work visa unless you are a national of one of the old EU countries.

Help with Work Visa

Cruise ship companies are used to employing staff from all over the world. They know how to obtain necessary visas and work permits. They will assist you and guide you through the process of applying for all the work visas and permits once they give you a job offer and you accept it.

More about cruise ship jobs.