Although a cruise ship is operated like a giant hotel or resort, there’s one thing to always remember, it’s still a cruise ship. In addition to the typical positions that make a hotel run smoothly, there are also the marine and technical positions to consider. At the helm (literally) of the floating resort is the Captain. All heads of department are accountable to the Captain.
Most cruise ships divide the ships departments into a couple of main categories. First, the marine and technical departments, then second the hotel and entertainment departments. The department heads make up the ship’s top management.
On most, if not all cruise ships, the department heads are standard. For example, the Staff Captain is in charge of the Deck Department. The Chief Engineer is in charge of the Engine Department. On the hotel side, the Hotel Director is responsible for the whole hotel operations including food and beverage and housekeeping. Alternatively, the Cruise Director is the head of the entertainment department.
Each department is further broken down with more managers, staff, and crew jobs. Keep in mind that there are plenty of differences between the cruise lines when it comes to the actual titles of the cruise job positions. The Cruise Job Positions section will cover as many of the jobs that are in the cruise industry as well as pointing out which cruise lines use which titles.