Recommended Time In Role

Ideally, a Sole Chef should stay in their role for more than two years if considering advancing their career. This is the length of time needed to perfect the skills to be a strong Sole Chef and the minimum amount of experience needed for more senior roles.

Mandatory Qualifications

To be eligible to be a Sole Chef, all candidates must have STCW Basic Safety Training A-VI/I and Food Safety (Catering) Level 2.
The MLC Ship’s Cook CoC is mandatory for vessels carrying more than ten crew members.

Recommended Qualifications

  • Trained Chef (Culinary Certificate, Apprenticeship, Cookery School) or Qualified Chef (formal Quals/ apprenticeship)
  • GUEST Introduction to Yacht Galley Operations for Chefs 
  • GUEST Advanced Leadership
  • GUEST Account Budgeting and Bookkeeping
  • Full driver’s license is expected

Recommended Experience

Sole Chefs should have over four years of previous Chef experience, either shoreside or onboard with culinary qualifications.

They should also have experience with provisioning,
the ability to create menus, a good understanding of dietary requirements, and galley management.


Vocational Chefs may take this route into the industry. In addition, cooks, dual roles, and Sous Chefs may choose the role of Sole Chef as a means of progression.

Character Attributes

  • Self-motivated
  • Confident
  • Self Aware
  • Proactive
  • Positive
  • Flexible
  • Can take direction
  • Organised
  • Excellent time management skills
  • Strong work ethic
  • Honest
  • Trustworthy
  • Good communicator
  • Discreet
  • Resilient
  • Ability to work well under pressure
  • Good listener
  • Well presented
  • Personable
  • Collaborative