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How to Teach Yoga on a Cruise Ship (The Ultimate Guide)

Learn the ins and of how to teach yoga on a cruise ship. This ultimate guide gives the advantages, where to find jobs, and your responsibilities onboard.

A woman doing a yoga pose on a bright blue yoga mat on a cruise deck.

Is it your dream to get paid while traveling around the world? If so, you should consider teaching yoga on a cruise ship.

Most yoga teachers don’t work nine to five jobs. They mostly work independently and move from one yoga studio to another. In the yoga industry, working 20 to 25 hours a week is considered full-time. They have the freedom and time to do other things such as traveling. But many yoga teachers are not paid well. 

So, how can you afford to travel while being a yoga teacher? Many have cracked the code by leading yoga retreats and workshops around the world. However, there’s another way to get paid to teach yoga while traveling—teaching yoga on a cruise ship.

Cruise ships aim to give passengers a relaxing vacation onboard. They come with many facilities and amenities such as bars, spas, and even fitness centers and yoga studios. They employ many workers, including yoga instructors. 

As a yoga teacher, you can work on a cruise ship. Most of the time, fitness centers and yoga studios are part of the spa and operate independently. One example is the Vitality Fitness Center at Royal Caribbean.

When you apply as a yoga instructor for cruise ships, you have to use the company that operates the spa or fitness center instead of directly at the cruise ship.

Why Teach Yoga on a Cruise Ship?

A woman in a gray top doing a sun salutation right by a cruise deck.

You Get a Salary

Fitness and yoga instructors working on cruise ships are on contract. Usually, the contracts last for six weeks, but they can go longer than that. The salary ranges from $1800 to $2400 per month depending on the experience, cruise ship, and contract length. You will typically get a commission when you book private classes. It doesn’t sound much, but you get free boarding and accommodation.

Along with that, you won’t have to pay for your electricity, water, gas, internet connection, and other living expenses that you usually have at home. So, you can save money while onboard. Moreover, your salary is tax-free, so your take-home pay is higher. 

You Get to Travel

Probably the most significant benefit of working on a cruise ship is that you get to travel. Most cruise ships travel internationally, but even if it’s just local, you can still get to travel for free. You can debark and visit cities and take tours. So, you get to travel while working in a field you love doing.

You Get to Meet Many People and Experience Different Cultures

Crew members are usually tight since they work and live together on board. So you’ll get to meet people who can become your friends for life. And as a yoga instructor, you also get to meet clients from different cultures and be friends with them. 

You Get Free Medical Care

People who work on cruise ships get free medical care. So, if you will be teaching yoga classes on a cruise ship, you don’t have to worry about how much it would cost to see your doctor.

Where to Find Yoga Teacher Cruise Ship Jobs

A woman in an orange top and black leggings with arms outstretched toward the sky, standing by a cruise deck.

Recruiters

Applying through a recruiter is the easiest way to get a job as a yoga teacher on a cruise ship. 

Cruise lines usually use recruitment agencies to find workers for them. Recruitment agencies will be in charge of screening yoga teachers, fitness instructors, and other positions they want to fill on the cruise ship. 

When you apply through a recruiter, make sure they work with multiple cruise ships. This way, you have more chances of getting hired. You can find recruiters for cruise ship jobs here.

Job Marketplaces

There are many job marketplaces online where you can find yoga teaching jobs on cruise ships. Here are some of them:

Yoga Trade

Yoga Trade has yoga jobs all around the world, including teaching on cruise ships. While many job postings are work exchanges, you can still earn money while teaching on cruise ships. Most of the cruise lines you can find here are small, but they offer complimentary food, free accommodation, and most of your living expenses.

Canyon Ranch

Canyon Ranch operates spas and fitness centers in cruise lines. They are an exclusive partner of Celebrity Cruises and operate their SpaClub at Sea. They are the company that hires yoga instructors and fitness instructors for Celebrity Cruises. 

All Cruise Jobs

All Cruise Jobs is the biggest cruise job marketplace in the world. They also claim to have the most current jobs in the cruise ship industry. You can do all types of jobs for cruise ships, including yoga instructors. They also feature multiple recruiters.

Cruise Ship Job

Cruise Ship Job has been helping cruise lines find crew members since 1998. They help cruise ships find crews for the kitchen, rooms, and fitness gyms, such as yoga teachers. It is free to make a profile on their platform and upload your resume.

Cruise Job Finder

Another platform you can look for a cruise ship job as a yoga teacher is Cruise Job Finder. Their headquarter is in Seattle and they have been helping individuals find jobs in cruise lines for 17 years.

Direct to the Cruise Line

The best way to look for a job to lead yoga classes on a cruise ship is to contact the cruise line directly. Cruise lines such as Carnival, Royal Caribbean, and Norwegian Cruises have big human resource departments. They are hiring crew members most of the time. 

Even if they employ another company to operate their spa, gym, or yoga studio, the human resource person can still put in a good word for you.

Qualifications of a Yoga Teacher on a Cruise Ship

A woman in a white top and black leggings doing a yoga pose right by the calm blue sea.

To teach yoga on a cruise ship, you need to have the basic 200-hour Yoga Teacher Training certificate and teaching experience. For positions that require you to teach other than yoga, such as spinning or aerobics, they may require you to have the training and teaching experience. 

You also need to complete an STCW Basic Safety Training (BST). This training is usually paid for by the cruise line that hires you. But if you already have it, most recruiters and human resource officers from cruise ships will prioritize you. Cruise lines also require crew members to pass a medical examination. Lastly, you need to get visas if the ship embarks on ports requiring permits before entering.

Cruise companies and recruiters usually hire crew members from around the world. They know how to obtain necessary work permits and visas and will guide you through the process once they hire you.

Responsibilities

The responsibilities of yoga teachers on a cruise ship vary by the cruise line. Most of the time, these cruise lines hire a yoga teacher as a fitness instructor. You will be responsible for teaching yoga and stretch classes, spinning classes, Zumba, and even Pilates. 

There will be cruise lines that will hire yoga instructors to teach yoga classes and give workshops on pranayama and lectures about mindfulness. The responsibility may or may not include managing the fitness center and preparing everything in the gym. Some small cruise ships or fitness centers may also require you to sell the classes and other products.

Schedule of Yoga Teachers on a Cruise Ship

Yoga teachers working on a cruise ship have no typical schedule. The responsibilities and schedules depend on the cruise line and the company that operates their spa or fitness center. Here’s the work schedule of a fitness trainer for the Royal Caribbean.

6:00 AM – Gym Opening

7:30 AM – Free Vitality Stretch Class

8:00 AM – Yoga/Pilates/Spinning Class

9:00 AM – Free Class

10:00 AM – Free Seminar

11:00 AM – 1:00 PM – Consultations

1:00 PM – 2:00 PM – Lunch Break

2:00 PM – Free Seminar

3:00 PM – Consultations

4:00 PM – Yoga/Pilates/Spinning Class

5:00 PM – Bootcamp

6:00 PM – 7:00 PM – Consultations

A wide view of a cruise ship from the top deck.

Teaching yoga on a cruise ship has its perks. You get to travel around the world while getting paid to work on a job you love doing. But since it is still a job, you’ll still have responsibilities to perform.

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