Whether you’re sailing aboard one of our boats or working shoreside, hanging your hat at Sightsailing may be one of the coolest sailing jobs you’ll ever have. With spectacular sailing grounds and a legendary history, Newport is considered by many to be the sailing capital of the world. Nowhere will you find a better place to sail, or a town full of like-minded people passionate about what they do.
We invite you to consider the challenge of working in an outdoor environment as part of a team. Our positions require professionalism and commitment, yet offer fun and recreation, friendships that often last a lifetime, personal achievements, life skills and a valuable work experience.
Our success has been the direct result of great individuals who work here now and those who have worked here in the past. Our standards are high: we want reliable, enthusiastic organized and positive team players who will represent Sightsailing and themselves well. Great attitudes, good work ethics and friendly personalities are a must when working with the public and other employees.
Please read the job descriptions below for more detailed descriptions of our sailing jobs and if you think you may have what we’re looking, please complete an online application for the respective position. Management and office applicants should submit a resume.
You should have flexible availability and be able to work weekdays, weekends and holidays. Regardless of the job you perform, your punctuality and attendance is essential to our operation. More details below:
Aquidneck has the longest season and sails 7 days a week from May until the end of October. Crew on Aquidneck typically work a full day rotating 4/3 week schedule. Aquidneck crew should be available to sail from May through the end of the season in late October and help before and after the season with getting the boat ready and downrigging/winterizing her.
Sightsailer sails from Memorial Day weekend at the end of May, weekends only in June, 5 days a week in July and August, then weekends only in September. Crew on Sightsailer sail 5 days/week and should be available from May until the end of her season in late September (weekends only in September) and then help put the boat to bed.
Front desk staff work morning, mid day and closing shifts. Front desk staff usually work 4-5 shifts/week. We hire front desk staff for both the entire season as well as students returning to school, however if you’re leaving early you should be able to commit to working at least through Labor Day. Students returning to college in the area who are available to work a couple shifts once school starts, or help out with office work over the winter are a big help!
Bowen’s Wharf is a highly visible, upscale area with many high caliber restaurants and merchants. Our Appearance and Dress Code standards are similar to many service oriented businesses. They have been established to present the image of a friendly, professional and hospitality oriented staff.
Appearance Code: We love you for your energetic and unique personality, however no Mohawks, multicolored hair, lip jewelry, giant nose rings, ear gauges, etc. You get the idea.
Dress Code: We have a basic dress code for captains, crew and front desk described in more detail in our Employee Manual.
We accept applications for our sailing jobs year round. After you submit your application, we will review it. If we’re interested in you we will contact you to arrange an interview. A Skype or in-person interview is required for all positions. Feel free to rattle our cage if you think you’re perfect for the position and we haven’t contacted you. We’re human and sometimes things fall through the cracks!
Job Descriptions and Online Applications for Front Desk, Captains and Crew are in their respective sections below. Crew, captains and front desk applicants should complete an online application. Management and office positions should submit a resume in addition to the Front Desk Application.
If you're applying to work at our Front Desk, we need some team members who are available for our entire season from May through the end of October, as well as others who can work from May through at least Labor Day and ideally, an occasional day once or twice a week until we're done sailing at the end of October. Additional part time off-season marketing and administrative work is often available for interested and qualified individuals with the right experience.
We operate 7 days a week. You usually work 4-5 days per week approximately 30-35 hours, sometimes a little more, per week. You should be able to work a variety of shifts including morning, mid-day and evening shifts. You should be available to work on weekends and holidays and not require any large blocks of time off.
The Front Desk sales and marketing positions are at our dockside office on Bowen's Wharf with one of the best views in Newport! Our office can be very busy at times. Our business come from our website, repeat visitors, referrals and other sources, however because we're located in a high pedestrian traffic area, a good amount of business comes from people who stop, look and have questions which are then answered by our knowledgeable staff. That's where you come in! Prospective customers often buy tickets for a sailing cruise or book a private charter on impulse, based on your conversation with them.
Sometimes you're simply inviting curious onlookers out for the next sail, at other times you're explaining their private charter options. Being able to cheerfully engage and confidently explain our sails to people is an everyday and large part of the job.
An analogy we can make is that at times it can be similar to working a trade show booth in that you may be giving out literature, answering questions, inviting people to come for sail as well as handling administrative and marketing tasks.
We will train you about our sails, boats, booking policies and reservation system. You'll also respond to email inquiries, check-in in guests who have already purchased tickets or charters, run a cash register, balance the cash drawer, reconcile and complete end of day reports, etc. Additionally you may be asked to help out with various other office tasks. Sometimes we will send you out on the boats to take photos for social media and when you're off, you can often come out for a sail!
Qualifications & Requirements
*You should have excellent written and verbal communication skills. You should be someone who can cheerfully engage with people and who enjoys educating, explaining, answering questions and selling. You should be organized, have excellent attention to detail and be capable of working both alone and with a team. Good computer skills and fast typing skills helpful. Skilled in Microsoft Office software.
*Prior sales, retail, restaurant, hospitality, customer service, or administrative experience helpful.
Hourly Wage plus commissions and bonuses.
If you're applying to crew on Aquidneck, you should be available to sail our entire season, from May through the end of October.
If you're applying to crew on Sightsailer the season is shorter, however you still need to be available weekends from late May, all summer and weekends through September.
Students returning to school out of the area leave us in the lurch, so unless you meet the above availability requirements, please do not apply.
You should be available to work weekdays, weekends and/or holidays. You should not require any long vacations or large blocks of time off.
Crew and captains have the largest impact on our guests' experience. We like to hire people who have a winning attitude, enjoy meeting others, are engaging and know how to sail. It's important to realize that we're in the hospitality AND sailing business, so your appearance and behavior are important.
Many of the people we take sailing have never sailed before. It's your job to sail the boat and behave in such a way that they have a good time. Lots of your time will often be spent talking with people about all sorts of things. The more informed you keep yourself, the better. Being able to talk with and give guests a positive experience is important. We want them to come back next year, tell their friends or rave to the concierge at the hotel what a great time they had!
While these jobs are fun, offer a great learning experience and allow you to "bank" some great money, they are also physically demanding.
You will be crewing on sailboats that offer public sails and private charters. We take out many people and typically offer 4-5 trips a day. Add up setup/breakdown time and at the peak of the season, it's a long day! You need the energy and endurance for that. You may be scrubbing decks, hauling up sails, grinding sheets and handling dock lines, all while engaging guests in casual conversation and pointing out sights.
Crewing on a big schooner like Aquidneck is very different than racing a dinghy. The sails are big and heavy and things happen more slowly. Due to her displacement and size of her sails, crewing on Aquidneck requires a good amount of strength and stamina. Women can do it, but need to be strong and in good condition. You also need to be surefooted and have no stability, balance or vertigo issues. Crewing on Sightsailer is much less physically demanding, still you need a fair amount of strength and stamina, as well as good social and decent sailing skills. You don't need to be a rock-star racer but we like to hire people that at a minimum know their way around a sailboat, sailing basics and terminology.
It's tough to soar with the eagles in the morning if you want to hoot with the owls every night, so if you're the type that wants to regularly be the last out of the bar, these positions are not for you! For the right individuals, these jobs are a lot of fun. It can be hard work however you get paid to meet people from all over the world, show them a good time and sail all day in the sailing capital of the United States!
*Crew must pass a Pre-Employment drug test and participate in a mandatory USCG Random Drug Testing Program.
*Crew need to adhere to Appearance & Dress Code Standards
*Since we serve alcohol, you must be over 18.
* Must be a team player with a positive attitude and sunny disposition. Willingness to take direction and initiative, get one's hands dirty, jump willingly into cleaning tasks and demonstrate a desire to learn.
*Should be strong and surefooted to handle flaking/raising sails, scrambling out on bowsprit, balancing on stern davit, handling docklines, carrying/lifting heavy coolers etc.
* Prepare Aquidneck or Sightsailer for sailing each day including cleaning decks, preparing sailing gear, stowing supplies, etc.
• Take active role in sailing vessel including raising, trimming, flaking sails, taking helm etc.
* Interact with guests, engage in casual conversation. Learn about the sights we sail by and be able to speak about them casually. No fear of talking in front of large groups!
• Ensure guests safely embark and disembark vessel.
• Handle dock lines.
•Pay attention to sail trim. Demonstrate awareness of what's happening both on boat and vessels nearby.
• Serve drinks on sunset cruises. Stow beverages in coolers.
*Put boat to bed after sailing.
• Assist in performing daily, weekly and monthly safety, & maintenance tasks.
• Crew are paid a flat day rate of $100-120/day plus tips. Tips alone can range from $60 to well over $200/day. Many of our crew have spent a season or two as crew and returned as captains. License assistance available for qualified candidates.
Captains and crew have the largest impact on our guests' experience. While these jobs are fun, challenging and financially rewarding, they are also physically demanding.
We work hard. You will be captaining sailboats that offer public sails and private charters. We take out many people and typically offer four to five, 1 3/4 hour trips a day with 25-30 minutes between sails. Add in setup/breakdown time and at the peak of the season, it's a long day. You need the energy and stamina for that.
If you're sailing aboard Aquidneck, we need help in the yard with uprigging and maintenance in the spring and fall, so the work season is typically from April through mid November
We like to hire people who enjoy meeting others, are well-spoken and good sailors. It's important to realize that we're in the hospitality business as well the sailing business so you really need to not just like to sail, but thoroughly enjoy working with the public and the camraderie and teamwork of working with the crew.
Many of the people we take sailing have never been sailing before. It's your job to sail the boat well, interact casually with guests and help to ensure they have a nice experience. We want them to write us an excellent online review, tell their friends or rave to the concierge at the hotel what a great time they had!
It's tough to soar with the eagles in the morning if you want to hoot with the owls every night, so if you're the type that wants to stay out as late as possible at the bars every night, these jobs are not for you!
For the right individuals, these jobs are a lot of fun. It can be hard work however you get paid well to meet people from all over the world, show them a good time and sail all day in the sailing capital of the United States!
Captains need to have excellent sailing skills as well as outstanding boat-handling skills, docking sailboats under power. Our boats are docked in a highly visible marina surrounded by million dollar yachts and historic wooden boats. Aquidneck is 80 foot long with a beam of 17 feet and needs to be consistently backed out of and returned to her slip unscathed. She has a bow thruster but still, you need confidence and experience in tight quarters. Starlight and Sightsailer are easier to handle but your boat handling skills still need to be razor sharp!
You should be comfortable talking in front of large groups as well as individuals.
Captains are responsible for performing routine daily, weekly and monthly maintenance checks as well as supervising and working side-by-side with crew in various maintenance tasks. Prima Donna captains who aren't willing to get their hands dirty and lead by example and always say, "That's the crew's job", should not apply.
If you are captaining Aquidneck or Sightsailer, you will be working with crew so you need to have the leadership skills, willingness and desire to show crew the ropes and turn your ship into a well-oiled machine.
Captains must learn and be able to adhere to arrival and departure schedule.
Must adhere to Appearance and Dress Code Standards.
All captains must pass a Pre-Employment drug test and be enrolled in our company's Random Drug Testing Program.
Aquidneck: USCG Master's License, Inland or Near Coastal, minimum 50 tons, with Aux Sail endorsement. FCC MROP.
Sightsailer: USCG Master's License, Inland or Near Coastal, minimum 25 tons with Aux Sail endorsement. FCC MROP.
Starlight: USCG OUPV/six-pax license. FCC MROP.
*Knowledge of diesel engines and electrical systems helpful.
Due to the nature of our business, we sail 7 days a week. Captains typically work 3-4 days a week. You should be prepared and available to work weekdays, weekends and holidays.
Captains are paid a flat day rate, plus tips when sailing. On Aquidneck & Sightsailer tips are pooled equally with crew. Tips are frequently very good. Boatyard and maintenance work is paid hourly.
Job Description: You are an enthusiastic, energetic, positive, highly organized, detail-oriented leader, who enjoys sales and marketing. You enjoy engaging, talking with and educating prospective guests about our boats and sails. You're confident and a good problem solver. You're friendly and develop a rapport with your coworkers and work together as a team. You're experienced in sales and able to provide basic coaching and feedback to the front desk staff. Working side by side with your front desk sales team members, you sell and help drive business toward overall sales goals for our daily ticketed sailing cruises and private charters.
Responsibilities: After training about our boats, sails, booking policies and sales process, responsibilities include learning our online ticketing system and helping train new hires on it, learning our online scheduling program, answering phone inquiries, selling tickets and charters both in person to walk-up business and over the phone, responding to email inquiries, balancing the cash register, running end of day reports, etc.
In addition to helping lead sales efforts at our waterfront dockside office, you're responsible for helping manage a weekly online schedule for 15 employees, compiling and reporting payroll, delegating and monitoring various duties assigned to others.
Three analogies we can make for these positions are that it's similar to a combination of: working at a busy trade show booth i.e. giving out literature, inviting people out for sails, educating people about our cruises; it's also similar to a hotel front desk staff or concierge, in that you're checking-in people who have already purchased tickets or charters and answering general information questions; and lastly it's general employee management and management tasks, including helping oversee the staff schedule and payroll. In addition, you're sometimes tasked out on special projects. You'll frequently be working with the owner, John Hirschler, who is actively involved in the business.
Job Qualifications: Previous retail, hospitality, customer service, event marketing or administrative experience necessary. Must enjoy selling, educating and cheerfully engaging with the public. Highly organized and detail-oriented. Excellent verbal and written communication skills. Having a bit of competitive drive is helpful. Skilled with MS Word/Excel and Google Docs. Basic math skills. Quick and accurate typing skills. Creative, with good social media skills. Sailing and/ or local knowledge helpful, but not required.
Schedule & Compensation: For Managers, positions are full time, 5 days per week during our sailing season from May-October and a flexible schedule with office work in the off-season. Availability to work various open, mid day and evening shifts, weekends and holidays during sailing season.
To apply: Please complete the Online Manager Application and send a resume along with a cover letter to firstname.lastname@example.org.
If you've read this far and what you lack in experience you make up for with enthusiasm and smarts, you may be a good fit for a Front Desk Sales & Marketing Administrative position. To apply for a Front Desk Position, please read the job description in the Front Desk section and complete an Online Front Desk Application.