Every massage therapist has a niche they prefer within the profession. Some therapists prefer to join the sports therapy field, while others prefer to become a medical therapist.
Choosing your career wisely is very important because some careers may seem enticing from the outside, but pose many challenges when you actually get into it.
If you take up such a career in therapy, you may have to compromise a great deal.
Of course, it is important to love what you do.
But it is more important to make sure that you are able to deal with the negatives of the career you choose as well.
One option is to become a massage therapist in a cruise ship.
Just the sound of it makes the job seem astonishing.
You will be able to travel the world and see different places.
It seems like a posh lifestyle which you could be proud of.
While these aspects of a massage career onboard a cruise are true, there is a lot more to it.
This is why you should consider all the pros and cons before delving into this career.
There is Extensive Travelling Involved
Before you begin your career onboard a cruise ship, you should consider this factor before anything else.
When you sign-up for a job opportunity, you will have to sign a contract.
The typical length of the contract varies depending on the cruise.
However, the average length you may need to serve on a cruise ship is anywhere between 6 to 10 months.
Some cruise ships may also require you to serve for longer.
One of the worst aspects of being on a cruise is that you will not be able to come home.
You will be on the cruise for the entire duration of your contract and you will be provided with living accommodations onboard the vessel.
What are the Living Accommodations Like
A common assumption is that living aboard a cruise ship is luxurious.
Most massage therapists assume that they will have a separate room and they will live comfortably.
Unfortunately, this cannot be further from the truth.
The accommodations in a cruise trip are often dorm styled and you will be living separately from the rest of the ship.
All of the employees may be living together and the quarters could cramp.
The dorms or quarters for the crew are towards the bottom of the ship.
Of course, you are provided with food. This is where another popular misconception arises.
It is believed that the crew gets to eat the same food as the passengers. However, this is not the case.
The food for the crew is prepared separately.
The crew does not get to eat the same food as the passengers do.
In addition to this, the food that is served to the crew is not as fancy as what the guests get to eat.
This is quite contrary to the life most massage therapists assume they will have onboard the cruise.
Unfortunately, many massage therapists do not realize this until after they sign the contract.
Be Ready to Spend Time Away From Family
If you have a family that you are attached to and cannot leave, then this is one career you should avoid.
A massage therapy career on board a cruise ship requires extensive time away from home.
Moreover, you cannot come back for even a brief while until your contract is completed.
This means that you will have to stay away from your family for 6 to 10 months at a stretch.
This can be stressful for everyone involved.
Of course, this lifestyle may work for you if you are single and have no responsibilities.
However, therapists who have responsibilities and, most importantly, kids cannot adapt to this career.
Some individuals find it extremely stressful to be away from their families through the important events in their life. This stress can take a serious toll on one’s health. This is why you should think long and hard before signing up for a cruise ship.
You Must Find a Relaxation Period for Yourself
Massage therapists spend long hours relaxing others.
This is why they require relaxation time for themselves as well.
A typical massage therapist needs to relax and maintain a proper diet.
This ensures that he/she is able to perform to their full potential.
In most cases, a therapist can simply take an off from work if they are not feeling well.
This is not possible when you are on a cruise ship.
Since you are onboard the ship 24/7 you cannot allow time for yourself to rest.
Even if you are not feeling well, you may have to work, depending on the number of clients.
In situations where there are a lot of clients to deal with, a massage therapist may have to work for as much as 10 to 12 hours.
This is why most massage therapists who have a career in cruise ships burn out more often.
The stress induced upon the therapists on board a cruise quite often becomes too much for the body to handle.
What is the Pay Scale Like?
If you consider the pay scale of a massage therapist on a ship, it is not much considering the workload.
However, many people prefer this pay scale since they do not have to worry about living expenses.
Of course, the therapists have to live with the crew and the food is not very fancy.
But, the accommodation and food are free.
However, there are quite a few cruise ships that will pay you a good amount.
This depends on many factors including your experience and expertise in massage therapy.
In addition to your pay, you can also secure tips, which is always a plus point.
The Reality of Traveling the World
As a massage therapist on board a cruise, you will most definitely travel around the world.
The ship will stop at different ports all around the world.
Unfortunately, you may not get a chance to go sightseeing for the greater part of your career.
In some cases, you may be too busy with your job.
There are people aboard even when the ship is docked.
Moreover, there are some cruises which do not allow massage therapists to leave the ship.
When you do get to leave, it may only be for a brief while. Different rules apply to employees.
If you want to begin a career on board a cruise ship as a massage therapist, be sure to consider the above-mentioned aspects.
This type of career, while good in many ways, is not for everyone.
Take extra care when researching this career option and making a decision to ensure you are aware of everything involved in/with it and are willing and able to do it.
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