After completing at least 18 months sea service as a qualified Deck Officer holding Officer of the Watch certification, further education and training can be taken which will qualify the candidate to hold a position as Chief Mate.
A similar pattern of experience needs to be undertaken including a further 18 months service before the candidate can qualify as Master (or Captain).
In addition to qualifying for more senior roles you will also have to demonstrate the required personal qualities for promotion as vacancies arise.
Many seafarers consider following a career ashore later in their maritime working life. Many opportunities are available to enable seafarers to utilise their skills and experience gained at sea in employment ashore.
Updated: October 2017.