Monthly Archives: March 2016

Smart Cooking To Keep Guests Satisfied

Cruise Control: Smart Cooking To Keep Guests Satisfied

Cruise ship chefs lead a complex life – they must make food that looks good and tastes good from a variety of ingredients available to them on board. Most guests would like to taste a little bit of everything but also not feel hungry even after they’ve eaten.

It’s important to try and incorporate dishes that will give them energy to sustain themselves through the hundreds of activities on board and in port without feeling like they haven’t eaten at all. One key to main meals is to ensure they are balanced – carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Proteins like fish, poultry and meat keep stomachs full and can sustain even the very active guest comfortably. For those with dietary restrictions, beans and legumes are healthy and equally filling substitutes.

Nori or seaweed is known to make people feel fuller after a meal and less likely to indulge in between, so Japanese dishes such as sushi incorporating this wonder food can help slow down binge eating. Potatoes – baked, steamed and boiled – are healthy alternatives to fries and chips that keep the stomach happy.

To make soups and salads more filling, add some chia seeds to bulk up the fibre and protein content. They are so versatile they make a delicious addition to breakfast cereals, vegetable and rice dishes, or even as toppings for smoothies, yogurts, sauces, drinks and baked items.

Another wonder food that can help guests curb hunger pangs is avocado. From the dipping sauce alongside nachos or salad additions or even as a vegetarian or low-calorie substitute for mayonnaise in burgers, avocados do a lot of good.

One of the best ways to ensure your guest’s day gets off to a fulfilling start is to offer a variety of eggs. This is easily one of the most common requests for breakfast on board and can be incorporated into snacks or salads to add some weight to the dish.

Soups are also the perfect way for guests to ensure they fill up and don’t go overboard on the eating. Boosting it with fibre-rich vegetables or beans could even turn it into a meal substitute for older folk and little children, while ensuring those in-between have the choice to take it easy on some nights without waking up with midnight munchies.

Nuts are a quick-fix hunger management system. Throwing in a handful into salads, garnishing main dishes or smoothies, offering nut bread or spreads, and even simply using them in desserts helps keep guests full and satisfied.

For those who are also watching their weight, it is ideal to offer filling grains through the day, such as oats for breakfast and brown rice for meals. Some nutritionists even suggest swapping brown rice for black rice, which can be added to wraps such as burritos too. Green vegetables and fresh fruit are excellent options for low-calorie snacks that keep guests full.

One way to ensure that guests don’t leave a cruise feeling unhappy about weight gain is to ensure you serve delicious food that keeps them full for longer.

cruise ship

Top 5 Myths About Cruise Ship Jobs

There are many things that cruise ship jobs are and are not, and most of the notions we believe come from rumours or stories passed between friends and family. Some of these might be true, and some not. Let’s look at the top five myths about working on a cruise line.

  1. Working on a cruise line is quick, easy money

While it is true that employees on a cruise ship receive higher pay than those in land-based jobs, the pay does not come easy. In general, you are paid for the entire length of your contract, but not during your months off. And labour laws require cruise companies to ensure that each employee gets a minimum number of days off. Contracts vary between six and eight months, with full-time contracts ending with about two months off. For many on the lower rung, seasonal contracts apply, and getting called back is dependent on how soon a vacancy opens up. It’s generally a smooth, regular rotation, but in no instance should you take it lightly.

  1. Life on board is a constant party

It is easy to see why so many are drawn to the attraction of cruise ship life – social media posts and engaging stories from working friends and family can make it seem like a hell of a ride. But there’s a lot of work involved. Crew have their own bars with alcohol and food at reduced rates, and also take every opportunity to enjoy their time off in port, but they work very hard when they need to show up for duty.

  1. Cruise ship jobs are just regular jobs at sea

It is true that nearly every hospitality job imaginable on land is also up for grabs at sea. What you must remember, however, is that it is only natural for cruise companies to want to be able to accommodate the economically optimum number of crew to guests allowed by law. So while all your friends back home enjoy eight or nine hour work days, depending on which department you are in, your shift might stagger throughout the day and could last between 10-12 hours. You also work seven days a week.

  1. You should avoid cruise ship jobs if you get seasick

Cruise ships are not the heaving hunks of metal you see on choppy seas in the movies. Most cruise lines choose to visit regions and ports of call during the best weather conditions there, so it’s quite unlikely that you might hit a storm. Even so, most ships are fitted with stabilisers which help ensure smooth sailing, and most of the time you might not even know the ship is moving. If at all you do feel slightly ill, medication for seasickness is easily available over the counter at the cruise pharmacy. So it’s no reason at all to avoid pursuing your passion on board!

  1. You are out of touch with your friends and family for months at a time

This really only depends on you. Most cruise ships today offer on board internet. While this can be a little expensive, it is important to note that cruise lines touch port very often, unless it is a transatlantic voyage, which is rare. This means, you can top up your phone card or visit an internet café during your time off work to telephone the people you love, send mail or even couriers, and perhaps video call too. When in port and connected to the internet, you can still make everyone jealous of your job that pays you to travel to exotic places with picture postcard updates on your favourite social media!