Royal Caribbean Group major recruitment drive in Antigua and Barbuda


Antigua and Barbuda Minister of Tourism and Investment The Honourable Charles ‘Max’ Fernandez was joined by Royal Caribbean Group, Vice President of Government Relations, Americas, Russell Benford to sign a Memorandum of Understanding between the Government of Antigua and Barbuda and Royal Caribbean Group to bring thousands of job opportunities to the people of Antigua and Barbuda in June.

In making the announcement, Minister Fernandez said, “Royal Caribbean is one of the iconic brands that is part of the foundation of cruise tourism in the Caribbean, and this initiative will not only see a huge cadre of our tourism professionals become gainfully employed while being ambassadors for our country, but it will further strengthen the partnership between the Government of Antigua and Barbuda and Royal Caribbean. It’s a win-win solution for all of us.”

The Minister also spoke of the Government’s careful and successful management of the coronavirus pandemic that gave Royal Caribbean the confidence they could hire the services of citizens of Antigua and Barbuda, knowing our people are vaccinated, fully trained and possess the skills needed to add value to Royal Caribbean’s operations.

“The relationship between Royal Caribbean and the Government of Antigua and Barbuda goes back well over 30 years,” said Benford. “We have supported each other through the most challenging times and signing this agreement demonstrates the strength of our partnership and will result in boosting the tourism economy.”

He added, “I take this opportunity to congratulate Minister Fernandez as well as our entire team involved in moving negotiations forward that will benefit the people of Antigua and Barbuda. This is a good day for the travel industry.”

In congratulating Royal Caribbean for its service to Caribbean tourism, Antigua and Barbuda Tourism Authority CEO, Colin C. James remarked, “Antigua and Barbuda have enjoyed a strong rebound in cruise arrivals in January and March of this year and Royal Caribbean has been a major part of that. This new partnership will impact hospitality employment opportunities for the destination in a positive way that goes beyond just welcoming cruise passengers to our shores.”

The employment initiative on Royal Caribbean’s ships will commence with a major job fair in St. John’s in June open to nationals and residents of Antigua and Barbuda. Opportunities for employment are in a number of positions such as the Marine sector which include junior seaman, junior engine man, assistant electricians; in the Operations Sector including storekeepers, cruise staff, youth staff, sports staff, laundry and restaurant attendants, bar waiters, wait staff, bakers, and butchers. In the specialty sector, vacancies are available for all positions in the casino, entertainers, photographers, and the list goes on. “This is the tourism industry performing at its finest”, James concluded.

Antigua and Barbuda will also receive the bonus of showcasing the talent of its people in a range of services.  The new employees will be Antigua and Barbuda’s cruise guest ambassadors and further strengthen the existing Royal Caribbean partnership.

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  1. Travel on a cruise ship and discuss the working conditions. The workers will tell you they are away from their families for months. They are constantly working while at sea and only get time off to sleep. Even when they dock, they are too busy to go ashore. They receive minimum wages.
    If you were ever on a cruise, you would notice the majority of the staff are from Eastern Europe, India, and Asia and a small number from the Caribbean. I guess covid has left a shortage.
    I know my people and we will see how long they last on a cruise ship.

  2. This is a great opportunity for especially our young people that are willing to go for the adventure of sailing the world and learning and earning at the same time. When I came out of college my first job with some of my school friends was going to work on the farms in Spain and help pick fruits. It was a great experience for us young people. We ended up all over up in Italy. All you have is a knapsack with some jeans and jerseys in it. Our youth can do with some of the experience. Once on a cruise I met people from Jamaica and from Barbados. And of course, lots of Filipinos.

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