Kristina Cruises Interview

Kristina Cruises is a top Finnish cruise company which is family owned and was founded in 1985. They operate sea cruises to the Caribbean and about 30 other areas, as well as offer popular river cruises throughout Europe.

About the company.

We offer special cruises to various areas around Europe, with our larger vessel the Kristina Katarina boasting three restaurants, a spa, a club, a café and kids area. We then also offer river cruises around Europe on our smaller river vessels.

How many vessels does your company operate?

We have the M/S Kristina Katarina and then we have our river ships.

Describe a typical ‘cruise’ if there is such a thing. What would the shipboard experience be like for a typical employee?

Our employees are able to experience a different kind of cruise to those offered on the larger vessels. They get to meet more people and see all the interesting sights of Europe. They must work hard, sure, but not as hard as you would on one of those mega cruise liners. It is a little more relaxed with a family friendly atmosphere.

What are some of the common job titles you advertise for?

We frequently look for wait staff, housekeeping staff, and other hospitality employees.

Are some types of jobs more difficult to fill than others?

We find that the most difficult jobs to fill are those of Captain or any other position where a high level of experience and special qualifications are needed.

What are some of the selling points you use to get people onboard to work with your company?

We offer a great working environment that is always exciting and constantly changing. We offer flexibility and the chance to travel and get paid at the same time.

Do you have a ‘season’ or ‘seasons’ where you’re busiest?

Summer is the busiest.

How many seasonal staff do you typically hire, and for which positions?

We hire a fair amount, usually for the housekeeping and dining departments where it can get very busy.

Regarding seasonal or temporary staff…What percentage of your staff are returning from the previous year vs. new hires?

We have a few people that return, but usually new students and other young adults who want to try out cruise work for a while.

Do you have a lot of college kids/students working for you? If yes, then what attracts them to your jobs?

Yes we do, the general nature of the work attracts them. It is exciting, they get to meet new people, the work is somewhat flexible, and they can travel.

During what times of the year are you recruiting the most?

Just before the summer season gets under way.

Describe your perfect candidate. How can someone best make a great first impression with you?

We look for people who are passionate and interested in this line of work. We don’t want people working for us who don’t really want to be there, because this attitude will be noticed by the passengers and negatively affect their whole experience.

We also want to see that you have good service skills and that you have some experience in a customer service related environment.

Lastly, we require that our employees all speak English and Finnish.

What advice can you offer about CVs? What are the qualities of a great CV? And what are the most common mistakes you see in CVs?

Resumes must be easy to read and list all your previous work experience so we can see if you are a good match for the jobs we have open. Common mistakes are that people leave out information including their contact info, so we cannot get hold of them or make an accurate assessment of them. Make sure you done leave anything out.

Are there any common traits people should have in order to get hired, and then to succeed in the cruise industry?

Yes, the cruise industry requires people who are skilled at communicating and serving others. It is important to be friendly and welcoming. You must be an outgoing person, who takes the initiative and is determined to succeed. Cruise industry employees must be hard working and physically as well as mentally fit.

What are the typical terms of employment offered?

We have week-long cruises, but temporary staff are hired for a season, so about 3 months.

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