Crew Shore ExcursionOne of the most well said beliefs within the cruise industry is “happy crew, happy guests,” and Celebrity Cruises has been working tirelessly to promote crew welfare.

They have gone the extra mile for their crew to engage them on a daily basis and promote a happy and healthy lifestyle while working onboard. One of the persons responsible for this is a dedicated crew welfare officer, part of the HR team, who is constantly looking to make improvements and host and create events for the crew.

One of the key programs is a dedicated shore excursion program for crew. Almost every cruise offers one or two excursions to port highlights, which can range from culture and history tours, such as visiting the Leaning Tower of Pisa, to the extreme, such as white water rapid rafting. Always affordable and always in consideration of working hours almost all crewmembers have the opportunity to enjoy these excursions.

No cruise will go without at least one karaoke or movie night and special events such as helipad barbeque afternoons and midnight bingo in the theater where a huge range of prizes can be won. These include MacBooks, iPads, speakers and cold hard cash (not surprisingly, the most popular).

 For many long-term employees one of the most important concerns is the standard of healthcare received onboard.

Regardless of how serious or minor the condition the medical team treats the patient to the best of its ability. If specialist medical attention is needed the crewmember is signed off the ship and medically debarked to the nearest available hospital or facility to receive necessary treatment. If the treatment is long term and requires the crewmember to return home, Celebrity continues to provide and pay for the treatment in addition to paying a sick pay percentage in most cases.

Improvements have been made regarding crewmembers’ medical certificates. In the past, every two years a crewmember would have to undergo a medical exam in their home country to prove they are medically fit to work on a cruise vessel. This would often require the crewmember to travel long distances to designated medical facilities in their country, paying up to $700 each time and to sometimes be faced with problems when they arrived onboard.

Now Celebrity is going in-house with bi-annual medical exams. So if a crewmember’s medical certificate is due to expire before their next contract starts, they simply visit the medical facility onboard and take the exam in a couple of hours for the minimum price that the exam costs the company. This new process gives confidence to both crew and the company that genuine and trustworthy medical exams can be carried out and that crew will always have a certificate in hand for their next ship.

Excerpt from Cruise Industry News Quarterly Magazine: Winter 2015/2016