Friday, August 28, 2015

Survey: Many Mariners Dread Port Calls

By Mark Edward Nero

Seafarers sometimes dread port calls because of the increase in workload caused by audits and inspections when a ship is in dock, according to a new survey by Crewtoo, an online social network for seafarers.

The quarterly Crewtoo Seafarers Happiness Index report is designed to monitor and benchmark seafarer satisfaction levels via 10 key questions. The results of the second quarterly report were revealed Aug. 26. They show a seafarer satisfaction level of 6.44 on a scale of one to 10, up 0.02 from the inaugural survey published in May.

According to the latest survey results, the increase in workload at port also caused a drop in satisfaction levels toward shore leave, as the amount of work often eats into the time available for relaxation.

“I am happy at sea but when our vessel enters port, it is a very hard time,” one respondent stated.
Increased stress during port visits and either reduced or non-existent shore leave gives seafarers very few opportunities to relax and unwind away from their vessels.

However, the latest quarterly Crewtoo Seafarers Happiness Index also shows several areas where satisfaction improved versus the first report.

For example, there was an improvement in crew satisfaction with salary levels and an improvement in their feelings about the standard of food available onboard. The availability of exercising onboard was also viewed more positively, as was the satisfaction derived from crew interaction and team building, which increased from 6.96 to 7.16 and became the highest score in the survey.

Answers to the survey were received from across all ranks and nationalities including seafarers from the US, Canada, United Kingdom, Philippines, Poland, Croatia, Germany, India, and Turkey, as well as a number of African nations.

The age of the respondents ranged from 16 to late 60s. Masters made up the largest proportion of responses by rank; 11 percent of respondents stated that they were currently serving in the role of captain. The majority of responses were from seafarers working on bulk carriers and container vessels.

Full results of the latest survey can be downloaded at