Working aboard a cruise liner definitely has its advantages, but sometimes there are the little things that get you down. Every time I finish a contract, I can’t wait for my vacation; here are some of the reasons why working on a cruise ship was hard.

1. The time that my room key didn’t work for a week, and nobody did anything about it.

I bounced around from department to department, getting the door reprogrammed, getting new keycards made. The crew member responsible for it told me she “didn’t know what to do”, passenger services had no answer, and security blamed me for breaking the door.

2. The time I got lectured a foot outside my room for forgetting my name tag.

Not wearing your name tag on the ship isn’t a good thing, but some people don’t recognize that everyone makes mistakes sometimes.

3. Getting yelled at in the elevator for having a water bottle in my backpack.

I really had no idea that taking a sealed bottle of water in one of the elevators was considered a “breach of public health”. God forbid the youth staff take a drink of water when running around with the children.

4. Being told that I couldn’t wear headphones while working out.

I get it’s a safety issue, but I even asked about just wearing one. Security asked me how I would hear the general emergency alarm. I told them “with my other ear…”. They weren’t impressed.

5. When the ship puts another roommate in my room, despite having a contractual agreement not to.

“It’s only for a few months…”

6. The time my pay on my contract was wrong, and I was forced to sign it anyways.

Finishing my first contract I was promised a raise. Signing my second contract, that raise was missing. When I inquired about it, I was given the option not to sign, however I wouldn’t be paid, or receive any medical insurance… Great. I waited 3 months with the promise of the raise coming, when I signed off, I was emailed saying that I “did not deserve it”.

7. The time my manager got an email from the chief of security because I was wearing a hat on my time off.

You’re not allowed to wear a hat in the crew bar. Apparently it’s against ship regulation. I think they just didn’t like the Habs.

8. Having a supervisor get angry with us for alighting a public bus, away the ship, before other people.

Passengers come first. Apparently even when you’re on a public bus, far away from the ship, without any passengers in sight. Yes, customer service or anything, but these few hours are the only time we get to be actual people – let us have that at least.

9. Paying full price (passenger price) at a ship restaurant, and having our food take 2 hours to prepare.

I could understand if it were a full course meal, but we ordered fried rice in an empty restaurant. Did we tip? You bet, because the ship doesn’t give you a choice.

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