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Assistant Expedition Leader / Purser


In addition to managing the shipboard accounting, administrative and clerical duties, the Asst. Expedition Leader/Purser is the key liaison between guests, field staff, officers and crew. As directed by the Expedition Leader, the Asst. Expedition Leader/Purser assists with the coordination of shipboard and land operations for guests.


Field Staff Support

- Under direction of Expedition Leader, types, copies and distributes daily programs and other information as requested.

- Verifies all crew and guests return to ship after each excursion (snorkeling, kayaking, hiking, bus tours, town visits, Zodiac cruises).

- Attends and participates in daily Field Staff meetings.

- Assists with orienting new Field Staff to vessel, staff, officers and crew.

- Creates and updates bulletin boards for guests to reflect trip itinerary and wildlife/conservation concerns.

- Makes announcements over P.A. system when necessary.

- Tracks and updates fund-raising efforts (e.g. AK- AWF fund)

- Takes inventory of all equipment and supplies for office, library, expedition staff, expedition leader, guest expedition gear (such as binoculars, wetsuits, snorkel gear), and submits inventories to Captain, Expedition Leader, Field Staff Manager and other appropriate shore personnel.

- Creates numerous sign-up sheets and explanation sheets for guest activities and disembarkation.

- Under the direction of the Expedition Leader makes and confirms arrangements with shore based providers (flightseeing, embarkation, disembarkation, zipline, etc.)

Guest Services

- Assists in greeting guests at the beginning of a voyage, verifies passport information and collects ship’s tickets from guests upon embarkation.

- Responds to guest requests, arrangements and problems on a daily basis. Must be able to satisfy in a positive and efficient manner, all requests from guests for assistance. (May include escorting a guest to a doctor or hospital, leading guests on nature hikes, working with the Expedition Leader to secure alternative arrangements in the event of a schedule change, or directing problems and requests to others as appropriate.)

- Dines with guests on a regular basis as the schedule will permit.

- Hand-writes notes to returning guests.

- Works with Hotel Manager to set-up, run and break down gift shop at least twice per trip. Assists with gift shop inventory when feasible.

- Assists the officer on watch in monitoring the operation of the AEI music system.

- Answers questions and responds to guests’ concerns throughout the day.

- Coordinates crew entertainment activities.

Shipboard Accounting

- Administers ship's vessel fund, including accounting for all monies spent and received.

- Prepares and submits accounting reports after every trip. Assures accuracy of reports.

- Projects ships’ cash and checking needs at least two weeks in advance and requests funds.

- Tracks charges for all guests, staff and crew including bar, gift shop, postage or optional shore excursions during a voyage.

- Continually updates crew payroll records and makes tip adjustments.

- Updates VAMS ship pack each trip. Creates necessary worksheets in Excel for each trip.

- Initiates paperwork for each trip; coordinates appropriate communication with Hotel Manager, galley crew, Expedition Leader, Captain, ship’s doctor and/or Chief Mate. Works closely with the Seattle-based Land Manager, the New York-based Expedition Specialists, as well as the Seattle HR and Field Staff departments to make sure information is current and attends to guests’ needs.

- Collects credit card information from guests.

- Coordinates all crew travel requests and vacation addresses and communicates them to the Human Resources Department in Seattle.

- Updates all ships’ manifests to reflect status of crew, staff and guests on board. Sends these lists to the Safety Department in Seattle.

- Helps crew and staff with computers and office equipment.

- Orders supplies for office equipment, office consumables, expedition equipment, expedition consumables and library books.

Customs and Immigrations

- Prepares all paperwork necessary for customs and immigration clearance for the vessel in various ports, and for directly dealing, in conjunction with the Captain and the ship's agent, with necessary officials in securing clearance for the vessel in various ports.

- Small Boat Operations

- Assists with loading guests in inflatable boats for shore excursions and assists with kayak operations, and acts as Zodiac driver when appropriate.

Safety and Security

- Participates in on board safety training, meetings and drills, as directed by the Captain, including fire, abandon ship, man overboard, flooding and medical emergencies.

- Participates in shore side training as required by the company.

- Maintains familiarity with the ISM requirements.

- Familiar with all duties under the company Safety Management System including Emergency Response activities.



To perform this job successfully, an individual must be able to perform each essential duty satisfactorily. The requirements listed below are representative of the knowledge, skill and/or ability required. Reasonable accommodations may be made to enable individuals with disabilities to perform the essential functions.

Desired Qualifications

- Excellent customer service skills; professional demeanor, ability to use necessary levels of tact and courtesy.

- 2+ years experience in bookkeeping and accounting.

- Strong time management skills; able to handle multiple tasks, set priorities, and meet deadlines.

- Comfortable with public speaking.

- Shipboard employment experience, preferably in the capacity of Purser or Asst. Expedition Leader.

- Proficient user or computer systems, with the ability to utilize MS software applications in a Windows environment

- Excellent verbal and written English language skills. Spanish language skills strongly preferred.

- Ability to troubleshoot, act quickly with confidence, and make sound decisions while exercising good judgement

- Detail oriented and thorough; able to follow through on assigned tasks.

- Ability to work independently using initiative and creativity to complete assigned tasks.

- Ability to work well under pressure.

- Ability to get along well with co-workers and support a team environment.


- Current First Aid/CPR certification required.

- Valid US Passport required.

- STCW Basic Safety Training required.

- STCW Crowd Management preferred

- LEX Zodiac Operator's License preferred.


The physical demands are described in the Asst. Expedition Leader/Purser Job Analysis sheet is available to all applicants.


The Asst. Expedition Leader/Purser works 12 hours per day of varied hours; approximately 8 weeks on, 4 weeks off, rotational schedule.