P&O Cruises, life on board

Living and working on board a ship with people from all over the world is a unique and exciting experience. Working hard to create unforgettable holiday happiness for guests, it’s a busy and rewarding way of life.  


Your crew pass

The Laminex Crew Pass is everyone’s ID, cabin key and payment card for on-board purchases – cash or credit/debit cards can be used to top-up onboard accounts via kiosks in crew areas.    

A taste of home

All meals are provided for free on board in the ‘mess’ dining room, with a crew shop open to buy sweet and savoury snacks plus other essentials. There are also free beverage stations serving water, fruit juice and hot drinks. Mess dining is buffet-style so to help us reduce food waste, please eat what’s on your plate before returning for more.

With teams from all over the world, menus regularly feature national dishes for colleagues to enjoy. A taste of home for many, it’s also an opportunity to experience food from other cultures – just one advantage of being part of a multi-national team. 

Staying connected

We know that being connected is an important part of daily life and we’re always working hard to help make sure our crew internet service enables people to stay in touch with loved ones at home.

Through heavily subsidising the cost of internet to crew, we’re committed to giving all colleagues a level of connectivity for free, as well as making sure that essential services are readily available and affordable for everyone. You can also order online items to be delivered to your ship and send/receive mail from home. 

Respecting and Protecting our technology
Please only ever use WiFi you’ve paid for. It’s also important to know that accessing or transferring personal files or illegal material using company devices or on our network creates significant security issues and should not be done.

Your cabin

Most people share an ensuite cabin with someone of the same gender and where possible, same  nationality.

Everyone needs to keep their own cabin clean and tidy by vacuuming, sorting garbage in the Recycling Centre and changing sheets and towels – these and uniforms are provided and washed by the laundry team. There’s also a crew laundry on board for personal items.

Social spaces 

There are crew-only decks on every ship – guests aren’t allowed into any of these spaces so there’s no need to wear uniforms when on rest breaks. Designed for relaxation, to unwind and to spend time with friends, they include comfy seating, space for games and activities, a bar serving snacks and drinks, group spaces and smoking areas.  

Some roles/ranks include access to guest areas (known as Deck Privileges) but most colleagues have to apply for a Deck Privilege Pass before using guest facilities. These are issued regularly and a wonderful way to enjoy the ship’s amazing venues.

Each ship also has a Seafarers Welfare Committee (SWC), a team of people who organise fun events and activities for everyone to enjoy. These include live entertainment shows, BBQs, discos, movie nights, raffles, bingo, karaoke, quizzes, cultural celebrations and much more. 

Alcohol is only allowed in small measures with lots of non-alcoholic alternatives available in the bar and mess. Everyone must remain under the port’s blood alcohol limit to carry out their safety duties – breath tests are randomly carried out on board to keep everyone safe and well. 

Fresh air and fitness

On board there’s crew-only deck areas to enjoy the wide-open space of the ocean and spend time with friends. All ships have a crew pool and most have a sports area for games like basketball or football. There’s a gym on every ship with exercise machines and free weights, plus organised fitness classes.  

Exploring ashore 

Travelling the world and visiting new places is a brilliant benefit of a career at sea. Our ships usually dock in port so it’s quick and easy to go ashore during rest time. There are free crew bikes to borrow for exploring further away, and organised crew shore experiences that are excellent value for money. Check the AOB (all onboard) time before you disembark as all colleagues need to be back on board at a certain time ready for ship’s departure.

IPAM (in Port/Anchor Manning)
In every port there must be enough colleagues on board to support in the event of an emergency. Everyone is part of the IPAM rota and must stay onboard when on duty. 

The diversity of our people is one of the things that makes us great. But as humans we naturally find it easier to connect with some people more than others, usually because they are similar to us. Being curious and learning about each other is a great way to be more open-minded and play your part in helping everyone to feel respected and included.

We’ve got a range of learning tools and activities to help build your knowledge and play your part in building a more inclusive culture. Click here to find out more.


Watch to learn more about what to expect when living and working at sea


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