What is a Bosun on a Yacht? Job Description & Salary

The Bosun on a yacht is the leader of the Deckhands. They will have worked on yachts for at least 2-3 years and are now in a position to be given more responsibilities onboard.

A Yacht Bosun works under the Chief officer onboard and is responsible for managing the Deckhands, among other duties.

Additionally, depending on the size of the yacht, there may be a 2nd and 3rd Officer above the Bosun. There could also be anywhere from 2 to 10 deckhands that the Bosun needs to manage.  

Salary of a Yacht Bosun

A Bosun salary can range anywhere from $3500 to $6000 for more experienced Bosuns on larger superyachts.

Additional skills such as scuba diving instructor, fishing guide, or kiteboarding instructor can also increase a Bosun’s salary.

a bosun on a yacht driving a small tender with another crew member
The Bosun should have excellent tender driving skills

Roles and Responsibilities of a Bosun on a Yacht

After a few years of experience in the industry, a Yacht Bosun should be able to coordinate daily maintenance and work duties onboard. They are also required to handle watersports during guest activities and liaise with the guests.

Bosuns are required to have:

  • sound knowledge in tasks such as varnishing, painting, caulking, sanding
  • product knowledge for what is used on the vessel for cleaning and maintenance
  • strong tender driving experience
  • the ability to lead and manage the deck team
  • confidence to manage crane operations and launching of water sport toys
  • confidence with anchor operations
  • the ability to manage water sports with guests

Qualifications Required to Become a Bosun on a Yacht

There are no official mandatory qualifications required to become a Bosun. However, as you will be handling tenders, water sports, and bridge watches, you will require the respective licenses depending on the size of the vessel.

  • STCW95
  • ENG1
  • Proficiency in Designated Security Duties
  • RYA Power Boat Level 1
  • Efficient Deckhand Course
  • Yacht Master Offshore
  • GMDSS VHF/SRC Radio Operators Certificate

Climbing the Ranks in the Yachting Industry

If you are new to the yachting industry and interested in becoming a yachtie, my goal is to equip you with the necessary knowledge and tools to ensure you land your first job.

You will need to start with the basics of becoming a deckhand, and then work your way up the ranks to becoming a Bosun on a Yacht. Ultimately one day you will hopefully become a Captain of your own vessel.

Getting into the yachting industry may seem daunting, but the rewards of joining this elite industry and traveling the world are well worth it. Good luck on your journey!

Hi, my name is Lisa, a Chief Stewardess in the yachting industry with 10 years of experience, as well as 8 years of hospitality experience prior to that. Being in the yachting industry has been a whirlwind of adventure, growth, challenges and some of the best experiences of my life, and I am excited to share my knowledge and experiences with all of you.