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12 Best Paying Jobs in Marine Transportation (2022 Updated)

If the ocean and the ocean are calling out to you, you’re probably the sort of one that would pursue a career in marine transportation. The traveler in you will see that the career in marine transportation to be exciting and full of adventure.

This industry’s task is transporting people or goods over vast waterways with cruisers, cargo ships, and ferries. To find a way to meet its task it needs naval architects, marine, ocean, and port engineers, ship and boat builders, cargo ship workers, captains, electricians and pipefitters, welders, and mechanical engineers. Many marine transportation jobs to select from should you’re in search of a very good salary with all its benefits.

Working in marine transportation might be fulfilling and rewarding at the identical time. The marine industry offers many professions where you’ll have the chance to work on ships or off ships if you select a land-based job. Either way, you need to be aware of the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation, and those in demand.

This text will take you on an introduction cruise to the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation. Take a look at these great options if you propose to follow a career path within the marine transportation industry. That way you’ll find both a well-paid job and a job you like doing!

12 Best Paying Jobs in Marine Transportation

In the event you’re keen on a career on the water, there are a number of high paying options available to you. A few of the most effective paying jobs within the marine transportation industry are:

  1. Port engineer- $92,722 average salary
  2. Marine engineer- $91,250 average salary
  3. Sailing master- $79,931 average salary
  4. Marine superintendent- $84,100 average salary
  5. Marine surveyor- $74 448 average salary
  6. Dock worker-$42,375 average salary
  7. Diving supervisor- $68,341 average salary
  8. Ship pilots-$89,740 average salary
  9. Cargo ship workers- $70,609 average salary
  10. Maritime lawyers- $86,514 average salary
  11. Commercial divers- $60,000 to $148,000
  12. Admirals- $110,000+

Each of those positions has its own set of skill requirements, certification and education requirements, risk factors, and salary ranges, but all of them pay way above the typical salary in the USA. We’ve tried to make sure you get all this information in this text and help you discover which of those best paying jobs in marine transportation suits you best. Read on and discover each job’s particularities.

1. Port engineer

In accordance with Payscale’s research, the typical salary of a port engineer within the US is $92,722. The typical salary in accordance with a port engineer’s experience is as follows:

  • Average total pay (including tips, bonus, and overtime pay) of $87,519, for one to four years of experience (based on 13 salaries)
  • Average total pay of $86,739, for five to nine years of experience (based on 35 salaries)
  • Average total pay of $85,219, for ten to nineteen years of experience (based on 13 salaries)
  • Average total pay of $104,228 for greater than twenty years of experience

Not bad, not bad in any respect! These data place the port engineer profession on the list of best paying jobs in marine transportation. If a port engineer is something you aspire to become you need to be in a position to:

  • Provide engineering assistance
  • Complete engineering tasks
  • Manage a bunch of port specialists
  • Identify potential engineering flaws and repair them on time
  • Conclude maintenance tasks regularly
  • Follow precise marine and safety procedures to stop accidents
  • Work well in a team and on your personal
  • Help define schedules and priorities when cargo is included
  • Register your progress to the port supervisor
  • Keep records of repair activities and expenses
  • Read technical drawings, blueprints, and repair manuals
  • Be proficient with office software programs
  • Perform monthly inspections to fulfill government regulations

To fill within the position of port engineer you’ll need an engineering degree in marine operations or a similar field. As in every other job previous experience in a port engineering capacity is usually welcomed. To extend your possibilities of getting the job, try submitting additional certifications.

2. Marine engineer

The data on states that the averagemarine engineersalary in theUSis$91,250. Marine engineers’ salary with only a few years of experience starts at$72,269 while essentially the most experienced marine engineers could make as much as$116,500per year.

Besides having one among the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation, as a marine engineer, you need to be skilled to:

  • Research, design, create, and build new naval vessels (naval ships, passenger boats, submarines, military battleships, aircraft carriers, or cruise ships)
  • Maintain and restore existing marine vessels
  • Create blueprints and design engines and thrust systems
  • Create and test prototypes of various vessels
  • Work in a team environment
  • Supervise the development of full-size ships
  • Travel within the US or overseas

In the event you’d wish to work as a marine engineer for the military you’ll have to acquire military school training. If not you’ll need a bachelor’s degree in engineering, computer science, math, or other relevant fields. Besides the required education, to be competitive within the labor market and become a marine engineer you’ll also need great computer and communication skills, and former experience is usually a plus.

3. Sailing master

If we analyze statistics the typical salary of a sailing master within the US is $79,931. Sailing masters’ salaries within the US range from $38,310 to $134,950 with the highest 80% earning $134,950.

In accordance with the International, Sailing School Association becoming a sailing master is way from easy. Before you apply for the sailing master training it is advisable have prior experience and certification. You’ll need:

  • 60 days at sea as captain or watch leader
  • At the very least 5 sails in 3 different sea areas
  • 2 routes over 100 nautical miles as captain
  • First aid and sea survival certificates

When you meet these conditions and also you’re not less than 18 years old you can begin your 40 hours of coaching which covers the exam preparation. If you think that that’s enough, it’s not! You wish the entire package:

  • Proper appearance
  • Confidence
  • Calmness in every situation which will occur or escalate
  • Great communicational skills along with your crew

If you could have all the necessities and skills for a sailing master you’ll be applying for one among the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation. Good luck!

4. Marine superintendent

In accordance with Salary Research, the typical salary of a marine superintendent is$84,100, while the salary range is between$71,558and$103,304. Salary ranges rely upon the extent ofeducation, certifications, additional skills,and experience in the sphere.

The required requirements and qualifications to become a marine superintendent are:

  • Bachelor’s degree in marine administration or a correlated field
  • Command experience (not less than 5 years)
  • Certificate of competency- class 1, from a whitelisted country within the International Maritime Organization (IMO)
  • Understanding of the Classification Society rules and Flag State obligations
  • Familiarity with procedures for ship repair and safety
  • Computer skills and marine operations knowhow

As a marine superintendent, you’ll be acting as a supervisor and also you’ll have the next dockside and office responsibilities:

  • Coordinate procedures and maintain vessels in a shipyard
  • Contact each ship, including ship-owners and commercial operators
  • Perform dockside inspections, dry-docking, organizing repair and maintenance, applying safety procedures
  • Manage the ships’ budgets in your purview

If a marine superintendent is one among the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation you’re after, you’d better start fulfilling all of the qualifications and requirements to perform your goal.

5. Marine surveyor

The typical salary of a marine surveyor within the US in accordance with Payscale is $74,448 per year. In accordance with the years of experience, the salary varies. For instance:

  • With one to four years of experience as a marine surveyor, you’ll earn a mean of $65,000 (based on 22 salaries)
  • With five to nine years of experience as a marine surveyor, you’ll earn a mean of $79,765 (based on 22 salaries)
  • With ten to nineteen years of experience as a marine surveyor, you’ll earn a mean of $80,000 (based on 20 salaries)
  • Marine surveyor with a career of over twenty years earns a mean of $82,424.

Now, because you’re acquainted with the payment rates listed here are the tasks performed by a marine surveyor:

  • Check ship’s condition and goods
  • Be certain that marine vessels are safe, seaworthy, and in compliance with regulations
  • Observe cargo loading and unloading
  • Conduct inspection reports
  • Disseminate findings to managers and ship owners
  • Apply statutory safety and quality control

In the event you enjoy working in an out of doors setting and you like traveling, you’ll surely find the job of a marine surveyor exciting. Teamwork and interpersonal skills are essential on this work post. You need to also produce other skills like attention to detail and the capacity to exactly describe and categorize information. Usually, it’s necessary to know the industry and have a previous experience in the sphere of not less than 3 years. Last but not least it’s important to be proficient in writing and electronic communication.

6. Dock worker

In accordance with the Economic Research Institute a dock worker within the US earns a mean pay of$42,375a year and$20an hour. Dock workers’ average salary range is between$31,061and$50,468 a year.

On average, the very best level of education for a dock worker is a highschool degree. Nevertheless, a dock worker has many responsibilities including:

  • Unmooring ships upon leaving
  • Keeping a precise record of damaged or misplaced cargo
  • Examining the unloaded cargo
  • Detecting cargo damages or irregularities
  • Obeying loading plans
  • Participating in training programs if necessary
  • Securing cargo before leaving using ropes and lashings

In the event you aspire to become successful as a dock worker, you need to be able to speak with other dock workers well to evade accidents and injuries. In the case of physical strength you must have excellent physical stamina and the flexibility to securely operate heavy machineries like forklifts, hand trucks, pallet jacks, cranes, power winches, and grain trimmers.

7. Diving supervisor

The typical diving supervisor’s salary within the US in accordance with Salary expert is $68,341 and a mean bonus of $1,326. In the case of salary and experience there are two categories:

  • A diving supervisor with one to 3 years of experience earns a mean salary of $49,293
  • A diving supervisor with over eight years earns a mean salary of $84,124

If a diving supervisor is a perfect profession for you, you need to be skillful with different power and hand tools. As a diving supervisor, you need to be prepared to handle drills, sledgehammers, torches, and welding equipment. When you become a diving supervisor will:

  • Work below the water surface
  • Ensure the protection of the diving operation
  • Manage any accidents which will happen through the diving operation
  • Plan and oversee all the dive
  • Use scuba gear to look at, repair, and install equipment and constructions
  • Perform tests, set explosives, and photograph structures or marine life

8. Ship pilots

Based on the Recruiter’s data a ship pilot’s salary within the US is somewhere between $36,810 and $153,070 a year. As in other professions, the salary relies on education and experience, so you’ll be able to expect a mean salary of $89,740 a year.

No wonder ship pilots made it to our list of best paying jobs in marine transportation. If ship pilot is your future vocation you must obtain a US Coastguard license to have the ability to work. Once the license is obtained you’ll have the ability to command ships, and guide them out and in of harbors, lakes, bays, and other areas. Also, a ship pilot’s position requires vocational training or above, and as much as two years of formal training before you begin working.

If you acquire all requirements as a ship pilot you must:

  • Supervise a crew and make sure the ship safely reaches its destination
  • Command and navigate marine vessels (transport personnel and goods)
  • Prepare crew and ship for crises
  • Track and assess records for cargo, crew, and ship maintenance
  • Organize crews for all ship duties within the harbor and at sea

If that is something you’ll be able to see yourself doing then being a ship pilot could possibly be your future job.

9. Cargo ship workers

In accordance with Simply hired the typical annual salary of cargo ship workers is $70,609. In the event you’re wondering what positions are included in cargo ship jobs it’s good to know they include any positions included in helping container ships move cargo from one port to a different.

Captain, officers of the watch, engineers, electricians, and other skilled workers are a few of the several cargo ship positions chances are you’ll land. Each position has its specific duties you need to be aware of. For instance:

  • Deckhands keep a clean and safe deck, paint the ship, and tow cargo
  • Deck officers supervise the deck, organize watch, and report any problems which will occur to the captain or other deck masters
  • Captains oversee all the ship’s operation

If you must fill one among these high paying positions you’ll need marine certification that features age requirements, proven sea skills, and competency in numerous areas of ship protocol and maintenance

Usually, you begin as an able seaman to know the trade and study for exams. When you complete the exams along along with your experience on the ship you’ll find a way to maneuver up the ranks and have more responsibilities. Along with the certification engineers and other machinery or electrical operators need a background and training of their field.

10. Maritime lawyers

Maritime lawyer’s salary on ranges from $18,053 to $481,665, with a mean salary of $86,514 a year. 57% of maritime lawyers earn between $86,515 and $218,218, with the highest 86% earning $481,665.

In case your goal is to have one among the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation chances are you’ll be after the position of a maritime lawyer. Take a look at the set of necessities essential to become a maritime lawyer:

  • Education-wise, it is advisable graduate from a recognized law school
  • Acquire a Juris Doctorate (J.D.) degree
  • Pass state bar association exams
  • Obtain a license to practice law in that state

Hence, should you’re keen on the position of a maritime lawyer, your first step could be to use to a maritime law school or enroll in a law school that gives maritime law courses and internship opportunities. That way you’ll have the ability to receive wide education in maritime legal subjects like maritime insurance and liability, international treaties, shipping industry policies, cargo damage, personal injury, and environmental law.

Maritime lawyers with experience earn far more than those right out of law school who usually earn less. At first, the inexperienced maritime attorneys work as associates under the guidance of more knowledgeable attorneys with expertise in admiralty law. After proving themselves on the job, they might become partners in a firm and charge higher fees. In the event you’re as much as it proper maritime law education, experience and ambition can land you the job of a maritime lawyer.

11. Commercial Divers

The official data of the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics percentile wage estimates for commercial divers to be $160,110 (90%), $115,330 (75%), and $60,360 (50%) a year.

In accordance with Commercial Diving Academy, a commercial diver could possibly be an exciting and profitable career for veterans, ex-military, and any person seeking adventure, and wanting more than simply a mean nine-to-five job.As a commercial diver, it will probably be expected of you to perform work under essentially the most challenging circumstances, so it is advisable be highly trained, certified, and to be in top physical and mental condition to:

  • Dive and perform other duties upon supervisor’s directive
  • Inform about any medical problems during or after the dive
  • Be well aware of the routine and emergency methods
  • Guarantee full understanding of the dive plan
  • Perform planned tasks
  • Be certain that diving equipment is working correctly and is suitable for the planned dive

Besides the tasks, you must know that the salary of the commercial diver is normally determined by four factors: experience, employer, location, and depth of the dive. So counting on these factors, you could possibly earn much more should you’re experienced and work in a difficult underwater environment. Only the sky is the limit for this job that proudly stands on our list of best paying jobs in marine transportation.

12. Admirals

The starting pay for an admiral on Federalpay is $16,974.90 monthly and $203,699 per year. Admirals’ duty and responsibility are to carry the very best major navy commands, just like the chief and vice-chief of naval operations, director of a naval nuclear program, fleet forces command and national security administration, and US cyber command.

A commandant of the coast guard is the equivalent rank to a navy admiral. The rank of admiral appointed to the commandant of the coast guard is a four-star flag officer rank that entails many responsibilities:

  • Be in control of Coast Guard operations
  • Oversee active-duty military employees, reserves, full-time civilian employees, and civilian volunteers
  • Provide safe, secure, and environmentally thorough use of the waterways around the USA

There are three active commands outside the USA along with the Pacific and Atlantic area commands, covering the Far East, Europe, and Southwest Asia. The commandant’s mandate is four years, and while active he/she reports on to the President of the USA. Being an Admiral is definitely one among the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation and one among essentially the most demanding.


We are able to say with certainty that whether you’re just starting your career in marine transportation otherwise you’re in search of a change, there are various great options to contemplate. Review the list of the most effective paying jobs in marine transportation carefully, and make your personal list of pros and cons. That way you’ll have a transparent picture of the salary ranges, requirements, and skill sets necessary for the career you’ve envisaged.

One thing’s needless to say working in marine transportation is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. It’s a kind of career paths which are both rewarding and full of many opportunities and benefits. Choose one of many many available jobs within the marine transportation industry, and find the role you like best.

In the tip, in case your goal is a stable, high-paying job with great benefits, then a job in marine transportation is likely to be the precise fit for you!

Also Read: Which Military Branch Has the Best Pay and Benefits?

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