Merchant Navy

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Jun 11, 2024 11:16AM IST

Merchant Navy Course Overview

Merchant Navy is a shipping sector and is in charge of transporting freight and passengers along marine routes. Candidates can pursue Merchant Navy courses after completing their Class 10+2 and apply for bachelor's degrees like B Tech marine, B Tech naval architecture, ocean engineering, BBA in shipping, etc. Candidates also pursue Pre-sea Nautical diploma courses after Class 10th. Merchant Navy Admission is done based on merit basis via entrance exams like IMU CET, JEE Main, TMI-BITS-EE, etc. In the Merchant Navy syllabus candidates are taught about shipping management, cargo machine and marine communication, and principles of navigation. 

By pursuing this course you can find Merchant Navy job opportunities in companies like the Shipping Corporation of India, Great Eastern Shipping and Essar, Chowgule Shipping, etc. The merchant navy courses are available in offline and offline modes. Some of the top merchant navy colleges in India are Tolani Maritime Institute, Samundra Institute of Maritime Studies, Vels Academy of Maritime Studies, etc. The average starting Merchant Navy salary at the officers level in India ranges from INR 7,50,000 - INR 9,50,000 Per Annum. Regardless, with incremental experience and modernized skills along with appropriate knowledge, the Merchant Navy Salary after 5 years can go up to as much as INR 37,00,000 Per Annum for a senior officer and above INR 2,00,00,000 for Chief Engineers. 

Quick Facts about the Merchant Navy

  • The job of a Merchant Navy officer is good for both men and women. 
  • It used to be a job only for men, but now women can also do it. 
  • It is fair for everyone now. However, if someone has a disability, they cannot do this job. 
  • This job needs someone very strong and healthy both mentally and physically. 
  • The person must have good eyesight and must be able to do difficult tasks every day. 
  • A Merchant Navy officer must spend many months on a ship in the sea. So, it is very important to be healthy and strong.
  • Someone with a disability cannot do this job.
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Merchant Navy Course Highlights

The Merchant Navy course is pursued by those who are interested in working on ships and want to travel via ocean. A candidate who enrolls in a merchant navy course will learn about a specialization that helps them comprehend how a ship's fundamental workings operate. If you are planning to pursue this course and make a career in a merchant navy, go through the highlights table given below to get important details of this course.

Profession Merchant Navy
Industry Maritime industry
Merchant Navy Course EligibilityCandidate should have passed class 12th with physics, chemistry, and mathematics as a compulsory subject.
Merchant Navy Entrance examIndian Maritime University Common Entrance Test (IMU CET), JEE Advanced, All India Merchant Navy Entrance Test (AIMNET)
Merchant Navy Age limit 
  • Minimum: 17 years
  • Maximum: 25 years
Specialization B.Tech Marine Engineering, B.Tech Ship Building, Diploma in Nautical science
Merchant Navy Top colleges in IndiaTolani Maritime Institute (TMI), Samundra Institute of Maritime Studies, International Maritime Institute (IMI), Chennai School of Ship Management, AMET university
Merchant Navy salary
  • Starting level: INR 4.50 - 5.50 LPA
  • With experience: INR 37 LPA
Top recruiters in IndiaShipping Corporation of India, Essar. Chowgule Shipping, Great Eastern Shipping

Also Check - NIT vs IIIT

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Why Choose Merchant Navy degree?

In today's world, there is a growing demand for Merchant Navy officers. Countries are interfacing with overseas trade in the globalization period, which is largely carried out by shipping corporations. Pursuing a Merchant Navy degree would provide you with several job prospects both in India and overseas. Check the perks of choosing a merchant navy degree given below. 

Earn Handsome Salary

The merchant navy is not a career for everyone and requires dedication. Therefore, professionals who studied the merchant navy course and became merchant navy officers earn a lucrative salary. An experienced merchant navy officer can earn up to 37 LPA and in addition also get various tax benefits. 

In-Demand Profession 

Becoming a merchant navy is a very unconventional choice and not everyone studies this course and rather goes after engineering and medicine. Therefore, this field has various career opportunities available that you can take benefit of by studying this course. 

Opportunity to Travel the World

The job profile of the merchant navy includes traveling across the globe. So, if you are someone who wants to experience the world, visit various countries, and explore different cultures and cuisines then the merchant navy is the career for you. 

Get Job Security

As a merchant navy officer, you will be in charge of exporting and importing goods from various countries' borders which ultimately contribute to global trade and country development. Since global trade is an ongoing activity, there is always a need for qualified experts in the merchant marine. Job stability is generally good in this industry, and prospects for advancement are available. 

Contributing to Global Trade

By moving commodities and resources across the world's oceans, the merchant navy plays an important role in promoting global trade. By pursuing a profession in this sector, you become an important component of the global economy, helping to transport commodities and resources that support industries and communities.

Why Choose Merchant Navy as a Career?

Also Check -List of NIT Colleges in India 2024

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Is Merchant Navy a Good Career Option?

The Merchant Navy is one of the greatest career options to pursue if you want to earn a solid living while traveling the world for free. You will earn good money and get cultural exposure. There is not much competition in the merchant navy career like for engineering and medicine so it became easy to get into a good college and kick start your career with a high-paying job. Especially, if you love seat, and traveling and are a wanderer you will love this career. It’s not a typical 9 to 5 desk job rather a adventaruous job. Sailing is not a lonely activity. You can make your spouse join you on the ship as per the duration of your contract. (However, just a few firms offer this service.) 

So, overall to conclude merchant navy is a very good career choice in current times.

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Steps to Join Merchant Navy

The step-by-step procedure to join the merchant navy has been listed below. 

  1. Candidates must complete class 12th or equivalent exams with a compulsory subject combination of Chemistry, Physics, and Mathematics along with 60% aggregate marks or an equivalent CGPA.
  2. They have to register for the JEE Main and IMU CET, clear them followed by an interview and medical test round.
  3. Candidates must pursue a BSc nautical science program from any of the top colleges across the country.
  4. After completing their 18-month cadet onboard training, individuals must register for the competency exam offered by the Indian government.
  5. Join as the Third Officer and then for rank advancements and promotions after starting as the third officer, can appear for yearly exams and clear them.
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Merchant Navy Eligibility Criteria

Candidates with a strong passion for marine experiences and a desire to participate in several sea voyages should pursue this career. You mustn't get seasick because you will go on long sea voyages as a naval merchant officer. It is a fantastic job option in today's world. In addition, you must meet the Merchant Navy qualifying conditions and be physically fit. 

Check the Merchant Navy eligibility criteria given below. 

LevelEligibility Criteria
Eligibility Criteria for Bachelor's Degree
  • Candidates must have completed class 12th with at least 60% marks with physics, chemistry, and mathematics as compulsory subjects. 
  • To fulfill the Merchant Navy age limit for bachelor courses candidates must be between 17 to 25 years. 
Eligibility Criteria for Master's Degree
  • For GME, a candidate must have a B E degree in Naval Architecture or Mechanical Engineering.
  • To pursue an MBA in the Merchant Navy, a candidate must have a bachelor's degree from a recognized university.
  • MBA and GME have maximum age limits of 25 and 28 years, respectively.
Eligibility Criteria for 6 Months Merchant Navy Courses
  • The age should be between 17.5 to 25 years. 
  • Candidates who have passed Class 10 with Science, English, and Maths as main subjects and at least 40 percent marks are considered eligible. 
Eligibility Criteria for Diploma Courses
  • Candidates for one-year diploma courses must have completed their 12th-grade exams with PCM and English.
  • Candidates for two-year diploma courses must have a diploma in Electrical Engineering, Mechanical Engineering, Marine Engineering, Electronics Engineering, or Shipbuilding Engineering with a minimum aggregate score of 50%.
  • The age limit of a candidate should be between 25 and 28 years old.

Medical fitness for Merchant Navy

  • Candidates must have normal vision (6/6) in both eyes and medically fit hearing capabilities.
  • Candidates should hold relevant physical fitness certificates. 
  • Candidates applying for any of the Merchant Navy courses must meet the medical fitness requirements. 
  • Candidates must be medically fit including hearing and eyesight. 
  • They must have normal vision (6/6) in each eye separately. 
  • It is required that the candidates produce a certificate for medical fitness by authorized authorities

Are tattoos allowed in the Merchant Navy?

Tattoos and piercings are not prohibited in the Merchant Navy field. Sailors are the forefathers of nautical tattoo culture. The maritime academies, on the other hand, have strict disciplinary requirements and demand officers to have certain attributes. Therefore, if a candidate has unusual piercings and tattoos it may be seen as objectionable.

Required Skillset for Merchant Navy 

Apart from academic qualifications, a candidate who wants to become a successful Merchant Navy officer should have certain interpersonal skills that will make him or her efficient in their job. These skills are as follows:

  • Physical Strength: A Merchant Navy officer's job involves traveling in the sea for a long period, and hence, they should be physically strong and fit so that they can sustain themselves in the sea and not get affected by seasickness.
  • Mental Ability: A Merchant Navy officer may have to stay in the sea for a long time without ever seeing land, which can be challenging for those who are not mentally strong enough. Therefore, a Merchant Navy officer must have strong mental abilities.
    Leadership and Decision Making: A Merchant Navy officer must possess good leadership qualities. They may be in charge and crew members will look up to them for major and effective decisions. With leadership qualities, they will be able to manage their job responsibilities and crew members well.
  • Decision-making Ability: One of the most useful talents for making rapid judgments in tight situations. On a ship, even a little mistake may be disastrous to the entire crew and ship, which is why it is critical to guide the crew in the proper path by making the appropriate judgments.
  • Mathematical Ability: Many individuals underestimate the importance of soft skills. However, without mathematical understanding, you cannot operate the ship, but you may calculate bunkering and cargo handling. Overall, it provides the foundation for a strong and successful seafaring career.
  • Technical Knowledge of Machinery: You can't be a competent Captain or Chief Engineer if you don't understand the task you're accountable for. You must be knowledgeable about your work and the various apparatus under your supervision.
  • Management Skills: Once you reach a particular level in the Merchant Navy or elsewhere, this is a talent that you must possess if you want to be a successful leader. A good captain always considers his men before himself.
  • Teamwork: Merchant Navy is all on teamwork; if you can work in a group, you will learn and advance at a rapid pace. Employers also search for those who can manage and collaborate in a team setting.
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Merchant Navy Entrance Exams

There are numerous entrance exams for Merchant Navy courses available in India. To get admission to a top Merchant Navy college in India, candidates are required to pass the entrance exam of that particular college. The basic eligibility requirement for these Merchant Navy entrance exams, you need to pass Class 10+ 12 from a recognized institution with a minimum of 50% marks. 

Check the list of popular merchant navy entrance exams given below. 

Entrance ExamDetails
IMU CETThe Indian Maritime University administers the Indian Maritime University Common Entrance Test (IMUCET) for admission to undergraduate and postgraduate marine courses. It takes place in May, and registration opens at the end of March. Only unmarried candidates are permitted to take the exam.
AIMNETAll India Merchant Navy Entrance Test (AIMENT) is administered by the AIMNET Examination Board, which is overseen by the Offshore Shipping Academy. For admission to, B Tech Naval Architecture,  B Sc Nautical Science, G P Ratings,  Diploma of Applied Science (deck watchkeeper) by AMSA, B Tech Marine, and MBA (Shipping and Logistic Management) programs, this Merchant Navy entrance exam is held. This academy has been approved by the Government of India's Ministry of Corporate Affairs.
JEE AdvancedCandidates who wish to apply for technical courses to join the Merchant Navy should apply for JEE Advanced exam. To be eligible for JEE Advanced candidates should clear JEE Main. 

Other Merchant Navy entrance exams that candidates can take after graduating from high school include the MERI Entrance Exam and the TMISAT Entrance Exam.

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List of popular Merchant Navy Specializations

Check the list of popular Merchant Navy specializations given in the table below.

GP Rating course6 months
Saloon Rating Course6 months
Deck Rating course6 months
NCV course6 months
Engine Rating course6 months
Diploma in Nautical Science1 year
STCW Basic Safety Training5 days
Electro-Technical Officer Course4 months
Commercial Diving Course6 months
General Purpose Rating Course6 months
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Merchant Navy Admission Process in India

Are you wondering how to join the merchant navy? After passing class 10 exams and finishing a Pre-sea Nautical diploma program, candidates can join any company associated with the merchant navy. If you complete your basic bachelor's degree or course in Merchant Navy you easily find employment through various consultants and placement agencies. Along with the Merchant Navy qualifications, candidates should also be physically fit. Go through the points given below to learn how to become a merchant navy. The Admission Process of Merchant Navy has been explained below.

Step 1: Pass Class 10 & Class 12

Candidates need to clear Class 10 and Class 12 from a recognized board with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics with minimum marks to sit for an entrance exam or take admission in a Merchant Navy short-term course. 

Step 2: Sit for a Merchant Navy entrance exam

If you want to get a well-recognized degree in the Merchant Navy, you need to pass entrance exams. Many colleges and universities offer admission to candidates based on a 12th-grade passing percentage cut-off. The entrance exam for the Merchant Navy is-

Exam Name
TMI-BITS-EE: Tolani Maritime Institute- Birla Institute of Technology and Science Entrance ExaminationIMU-CET: Indian Maritime University Common Entrance Test
JEE Main 2024JEE Advanced 2024: Joint Entrance Examination Advanced
HIMT-OET: Hindustan Institute of Maritime Online Entrance Test

Step 3: Pursue Merchant Navy bachelors program 

To pursue a successful career in the Merchant Navy, one must first complete a bachelor's degree program in a related specialization. The duration of a Merchant Navy bachelor's program varies from 3 years to 4 years. Some of the Merchant Navy bachelor programs that you can enroll has been listed below.

BTech & BE Courses
B Tech in marine engineeringB tech in civil engineering
B E in offshore engineeringB E in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering

Also Check - List of GFTI Colleges in India

Step 4: Enroll in the Merchant Navy Masters Program 

If the candidate has completed his bachelor's degree, they can apply for a job directly or pursue masters if they wants.

Also Check - NIT Placements 2024

Lateral Admission in Merchant Navy

Lateral Entry (LE) into the second year of Marine Engineering Direct Admission is also available for marine design projects approved by the Directorate General of Shipping. There are two methods for ensuring LE places in Marine Engineering programmes:

  • Having finished the first year of Mechanical or Electrical Engineering.
  • A diploma in comparable engineering courses with a minimum score of around 60% is required.

Admission to Merchant Navy Through Sponsorship

Students who apply to well-known institutes for marine studies may be eligible for sponsored admission to Merchant Navy courses. They can seek support from large maritime groups. If these organizations recognize potential in students, they will support their education as well as their participation in the shipper naval force.

Merchant Navy Admission Process in India

Also Check - How to Join Merchant Navy After 10th, 12th in India 2024?

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How to Join Merchant Navy After Class 10th?

If you want to join the merchant navy early after completing class 10th only, then you must have passed high school with 40%. Admission is determined by a series of tests and evaluations. First, the candidate must pass one exam, which is followed by a screening test and a written examination. After completing class 10th, a candidate must study one of the following merchant navy courses -

  • Deck Rating Course
  • Engine Rating Course
  • NCV Course
  • Diploma in Marine Engineering (follow it up with DME pre-sea training).
  • Saloon Rating Course
  • GP Rating Course

Career Path to Becoming Merchant Navy After 10th

The complete guide on how to join the merchant navy after Class 10th has been given below. 

Step 1: After graduation from high school, a person can choose a career route that begins with six months of pre-sea training. 

Step 2: Then join the commercial fleet as a trainee. 

Step 3: After that, aim for the rank of able-bodied seaman. 

Step 4: Following that, strive to get promoted to bosun after passing the COC test. 

Step 5: Following that, applicants are prepared to become the ship's captain, chief officer, and second officer, and eventually attempt to pass the DG shipping tests and become deck officers.

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How to Join Merchant Navy in India After 12th Class?

If your goal is to become a merchant navy in India you must have a set plan from class 12th only. Go through the details given below to understand how to join the merchant navy in India

Step 1: To join the merchant navy in India, applicants must have a minimum of 60% or comparable CGPA in their class 12 board exams, as well as a required academic mix of Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics.

Step 2: Students can then apply for and pass the JEE and IMU CET merchant navy entrance exams, which are followed by an interview and a medical exam.

Step 3: Applicants must then enroll in a B.Sc. nautical science program at one of the nation's top nautical science universities or a related merchant navy course

Step 4: After completing their 18-month cadet aboard training, students must apply for the Indian government's competency exam.

Step 5: Then, a candidate can join as a Third Officer, then submit applications for promotions and rank increases. Candidates can take and successfully pass examinations after they reach the rank of Third Officer.

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Merchant Navy Subject and Syllabus

Candidates pursuing the Merchant Navy course need to have a good understanding related to a wide range of subjects. The merchant navy sub & syllabus that are covered in the Merchant Navy programs are as follows:

  • Naval Architecture
  • Ship Operation Technology
  • Marine Machines and System Design
  • Mechanics of Fluids
  • Marine Boiler and System Engineering
  • Maritime Law
  • Voyage Planning and Collision Prevention
  • Electrical Machines
  • Environmental Science
  • Marine Electrical Technology
  • Nautical Physics and Electronics Paper
  • STCW and Ship Fire Prevention
  • Marine IC Engineering
  • Shipping Management
  • Cargo Machine and Marine Communication
  • Marine Auxiliary Machine
  • Principles of Navigation
  • Marine Heat Engines and Air Conditioning

Popular Merchant Navy Subjects

Mechanics of FluidsVoyage Planning and Collision PreventionMarine Electrical Technology
Nautical Physics and Electronics PaperElectrical MachinesShip Operation Technology
Marine Auxiliary MachinePrinciples of NavigationMarine IC Engineering
Shipping ManagementMarine Boiler and System EngineeringMaritime Law
Naval ArchitectureCargo Machine and Marine CommunicationMarine Heat Engines and Air Conditioning
Marine Machines and System DesignEnvironmental ScienceSTCW and Ship Fire Prevention

Merchant Navy Training

After completing the respective programmes in the merchant navy, all candidates must undergo pre-sea training conducted by the Maritime Training Institute. Be it marine engineering or simply a maritime catering programme, all candidates have to undergo this training before they start working as interns on the ship. The duration of the training can vary from six months to one year depending on the programme that the candidate has pursued.

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What is the Difference Between Merchant Navy and Indian Navy?

Many candidates while selecting a career as a Merchant Navy officer get confused with the Indian Navy. There is a vast difference between these two professions. The Merchant Navy officer's job profile revolves around the commercial journey of import-export of goods through sea shipments, Whereas the Indian Navy officer is on national duty to protect the nation from seaside enemies. To get a clear idea go through the table given below that differentiates between the Merchant Navy and the Indian Navy. 

Factor Merchant Navy Indian navy
MeaningMerchant Navy refers to commercial marine services. Such commercial activities include both cargo and people shipping to and from various locations around the world. Defense Navy refers to a country's naval military wing. A career in the defense navy would entail serving the country by serving on warships.
Eligibility Candidates must have a minimum of 60% aggregate in Class 10 and 12, as well as a minimum of 60% in English in Class 10 or 12.Candidate should have at least a 60% in Science (Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics) in your 12th grade. The candidate should also have a minimum of 50% in English and must be unmarried at the time of application.
PayscaleThe pay scales in the navy merchant are determined by international institutions such as  the International Transport Workers' Federation (ITF) and the International Labour Organization (ILO). The pay scale in the Indian navy is determined by the candidate's position and total work experience. Adding to that, the pay scale is set as per the country's laws and varies with countries. 

Also read: Indian navy posts for class 10 and class 12

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List of Top 10 Merchant Navy Colleges in India

Merchant Navy colleges are located throughout the country and are designed to provide training to those interested in joining this non-combatant commercial force. Some of the Top Merchant Navy colleges in India 2024 are listed below. The Directorate of Shipping has accredited these colleges, and the Ministry of Surface Transport of the Government of India has approved them for personnel training. 

These colleges offer merchant navy courses in diploma, UG, and PG level. 

Colleges Fees
Maharashtra Academy of Naval Education and Training (MANET)INR 1,37,000
Samundra Institute of Maritime StudiesINR 6,25,000
Tolani Maritime Institute (TMI)INR 6,00,000
International Maritime Institute (IMI) INR 10,00,000
Vels Academy of Maritime StudiesINR 12,00,000
B.P. Marine Academy NaviINR 1,35,000
Coimbatore Marine College (CMC)INR 2,00,000
Institute of Technology & Marine Engineering (ITME)NA
Indian Maritime University (IMU)INR 11,00,000
TS RahamanINR 7,45,000

Also Check - Top 10 Private Engineering Colleges with Best Placements

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Top Merchant Navy Colleges Offering Direct Admission in India

Merchant Navy admission processes and criteria for Merchant Navy colleges in India can vary. The term "direct admission" may have different implications depending on the institute. Some institutes may have a merit-based admission system, while others may conduct entrance exams or interviews. Here are some prominent Merchant Navy colleges in India:

College NameCollege Details
Training Ship Chanakya, Mumbai
  • It is one of the premier maritime training institutes in India.
  • Affiliated with the Indian Maritime University (IMU).
  • Offers various undergraduate and postgraduate programs.
Marine Engineering Research Institute (MERI), Kolkata
  • Another leading institute under the Indian Maritime University.
  • Offers programs in marine engineering and nautical science.
Indian Maritime University (IMU), Chennai
  • A central university that offers a range of maritime programs.
  • It has affiliated institutes across India.
Tolani Maritime Institute (TMI), Pune
  • Known for its quality education in maritime studies.
  • Offers programs in marine engineering and nautical technology.
Samundra Institute of Maritime Studies, Mumbai
  • Offers various pre-sea and post-sea courses.
  • Known for its state-of-the-art facilities and training.
International Maritime Institute (IMI), Greater Noida
  • Offers courses in marine engineering and nautical science.
  • Known for its academic and training excellence
Great Eastern Institute of Maritime Studies (GEIMS), MumbaiProvides courses in marine engineering and nautical science.
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Career Options After Merchant Navy

Merchant Navy officers are classified into many kinds. Engineering officers and deck officers are the two main categories of Merchant Navy officers. Go through the details about these positions given below.

Merchant Navy PositionsDetails
Trainee Cadet
  • Job Profile: Trainee Cadets are responsible for the charge of disposing of the basic duties of a Deck Officer during the full onboarding of a ship.
  • Eligibility Criteria: Candidates have to be 10+2 qualified with a mandatory subject combination of Physics, Chemistry & Mathematics, with not less than 65% marks or an equivalent CGPA.
  • Salary: The Average Annual Salary Trainee Cadet salary in India is INR 10,20,000 Per Annum.
Deck Cadet
  • Job Profile: The people responsible for navigating a ship and planning its journey are called deck officers, also known as navigation officers. The captain, who is the highest-ranking deck officer, is in charge of the ship.
  • Eligibility Criteria: The candidates are required to be 10+2 qualified with a mandatory subject combination of Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics. They need to score a minimum of 60% aggregate or equivalent CGPA in the last qualifying exam.
  • Salary: The Average Annual Salary Deck Cadet salary in India is INR 14,00,000 Per Annum.
Chief Officer
  • Job Profile: Chief Officers also known as Ship Security Officers are primarily in charge of the safety of the passengers along with the crew on board. Chief Officers are accountable for conducting watch duties related to vessel navigation. 
  • Eligibility Criteria: Candidates should have passed class 10+2 with at least 60 to 65% marks in the last qualifying examination containing physics, chemistry, and mathematics as the compulsory subjects.
  • Salary: The Average Annual Salary of the Chief Officer is INR 72,00,000 Per Annum. 
  • Job Profile: A Captain is responsible for leading a merchant ship and overseeing its day-to-day operations.  They also handle legal matters related to maritime issues.
  • Eligibility Criteria: If you want to pursue a course or apply for a job that requires a 10+2 qualification, you need to have passed your 10th and 12th class exams with a minimum of 50% marks in English and have studied Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and English as separate subjects.
  • Similarly, if you want to apply for certain courses or jobs that require a diploma or degree in engineering, you need to have a 3-year diploma with a minimum of 60% marks or a 4-year degree, including lateral entry, with a minimum of 50% marks in B.E/B.Tech.
  • Salary: The Average Annual Salary of a Captain is INR 2,40,00,000 Per Annum.
  • Job Profile: Engineers in the Merchant Navy are responsible for keeping the ship's engine, engine room, and related equipment in good working condition. 
  • Eligibility Criteria: To become an engineer in the Merchant Navy, you need to have completed high school with Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and English as separate subjects and scored at least 50% marks in English in either class 10th or 12th. 
  • Alternatively, you can also complete a 3-year diploma with at least 60% marks or a 4-year degree with at least 50% marks in Mechanical, Marine, or a related field.
  • Salary: The  Average Annual Salary of an Engineer is INR 50,00,000 Per Annum.
Catering and Hospitality Crew
  • Job Profile: The catering and hospitality crew are responsible for the catering and hospitality of the passengers and other crew members on board. The Catering Crew is in charge of storing, preparing, and cooking wholesome dishes for all the guests on board along with the rest of the crew members on board. 
  • Eligibility Criteria: Candidates should be qualified 10+2 with aggregate 40% marks in 12th from Government recognized board English as subjects.
  • Candidates should have passed their 10th or 10+2 with a minimum of 40% in English. 
  • Candidates should have passed from vernacular medium with a minimum of 50% in English.
  • Candidates should be in the age group of 17.5 years to 25 years before entry into the training.
  • Salary: The Average Annual Salary of Catering and Hospitality Crew is INR 24,00,000 Per Annum.

Also Check - B.E/ B.Tech Admission 2024

Career in the Merchant Navy Engine Department 

Following are the career options in the Merchant Navy Engine Department. 

RankJob Profile
2nd EngineerA 2nd Engineer's primary role is to monitor the daily operation and maintenance of all machinery on board, including the ballast system and firefighting equipment.
Chief EngineerThe Chief Engineer's primary role is to ensure the engine department operates safely and efficiently.
3rd EngineerThe 3rd Engineer is the 2nd Engineer's assistant and is responsible for sea and port watchkeeping, boiler maintenance and cooler water testing, engine logbook maintenance, and other technical records.
4th EngineerThe 4th engineer is in charge of the purifier, compressor, and machinery other than the main engine, auxiliary engine, and boilers.
5th EngineerThe 5th Engineer is a trainee under the 2nd Engineer; he or she aids the senior engineers in their various responsibilities as well as the 2nd Engineer.

Career in Merchant Navy Deck Department 

Candidates can check out the merchant navy career options in the deck department below. 

RankJob Profile
Chief OfficerA Chief Officer oversees cargo operations, as well as deck crew management, safety and firefighting operations, environmental protection, and vessel security. In addition to this, he works as a bridge watchkeeper.
Captain A Captain, sometimes known as a Master, is in charge of a vessel's general operation and has ultimate command over it.
Deck CadetA Deck Cadet reports directly to the chief officer and aids him with all of his tasks and responsibilities, such as cargo operations, mooring operations, ballasting/de-ballasting, navigation watch, etc.
2nd OfficerA 2nd officer serves as the ship's navigator and, on occasion, medical officer; he is also the bridge watchkeeper and designated communication officer.
3rd OfficerThe 3rd officer is in charge of the firefighting gear and lifesaving appliances, and he is also known as the ship's safety officer. He also serves as a bridge watchkeeper.

Also Read- Merchant Navy Salary after 10th & 12th for all Officer Posts in India 2024

Types of Ships Merchant Navy Works On

Professionals in the merchant navy work mostly on cargo ships and commercial vessels. The types of ships the merchant navy works on are:

  • Tanker ships
  • Passenger ships
  • Cruise ships
  • Container ships
  • Bulk carriers
  • Offshore vessels
  • Ro-R0 ships (Roll-On Roll-Off vessels)
  • Ferries

Also read:  Indian Navy B Tech admission

Merchant Navy Salary in India After Class 10

Beginnings of the merchant navy salary after class 10th varies between INR 25,000 and INR 30,000, and it is subject to change based on examinations and achievements.

Merchant Navy Salary in India After Class 12

The merchant navy salary in India after 12th class is INR 25,000 per month minimum, and the highest salary is INR 10 lakhs per month. Following is the salary scope after pursuing a career in the merchant navy:

Merchant Navy JobsQualificationField RequisiteAverage Merchant Navy Salary (approx.)
G P RatingClass 104 + 2 months of pre-sea courseRs. 25,000 to 60,000 per month
Trainee CadetClass 12 along with pre-sea Nautical Diploma1 year pre-sea courseRs. 25,000 to 85,000 per month
Deck CadetClass 12 along with a pre-sea Nautical Diploma18 months of service at sea as deck cadetRs. 25,000 to 85,000 per month
3rd Officer/ 2ndOfficer2nd Mate (FG) Certificate of Competency18 months of service at sea as 2nd or 3rdofficerRs. 1,50,000 to 3,00,000 per month
Chief Officer1st Mate (FG) Certificate of Competency18 months of service at sea as chief officerRs. 4,00,000 to 6,00,000 per month
CaptainMaster (FG) Certificate of Competency4 to 5 years of experience in the industryRs. 8,65,000 to 20,00,000 per month

Sailors serving in the merchant navy get tax-free salaries if they spend 183 days of a year in international waters else the salary is taxable as per the laws of the Government of India.

Merchant Navy, being a field that requires exhaustive traveling, there are well-paying off-shore options as well that one can look into after taking early retirement from the job or on completion of the contract.

Top Recruiting Companies of Merchant Navy

Boston Putford Offshore Safety Ltd.Carisbrooke ShippingCarnival UK
Jubilee Sailing TrustCondor FerriesRio Tinto Marine
Global MarineP&O CruisesSaga Cruises
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Merchant Navy Vacancy

Merchant navy vacancies are posted online by various companies. There are around 4000 vacancies posted every year. You must keep track of the merchant navy vacancies and fill out the application form before the deadline. Before filling out the merchant navy recruitment form check out the eligiblity requirements. There are several organizations in India that post merchant navy vacancies so you will find ample opportunities for employment. The government of India also posts merchant navy vacancies every year that you can apply. 

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Merchant Navy Life Style, Working Environment & Uniform

Working as a merchant navy officer can be tough, especially when having to face harsh weather conditions. Sometimes, the sea can get rough and despite this, the officers must work tirelessly to make sure that the cargo is delivered safely and on time. The cold weather can also take a toll on their health, making it even more challenging.

Does the Merchant Navy Require Travelling?

A career as a merchant navy officer allows you to travel the world and get paid for it, which is the main attraction of this job. In India, merchant navy officers are involved in transporting cargo from one place to another, which means they get to travel a lot. They spend weeks and even months traveling around the globe. Although they do dock at ports, they don't necessarily leave the ship. The average starting salary of the Merchant Navy in India varies from INR 7,50,000 to INR 9,50,000 Per Annum. 

How is the Workplace of the Merchant Navy?

The workplace of the Merchant Navy has been listed in the following content.

Employment Shifts & Nature

A career in the merchant navy offers two types of shifts - full-time and contract basis. If you work in an office environment, it's a full-time job. But if you're on a ship, you may have to stay there for months on end. In such cases, you'll be compensated with a leave allowance for those months. Usually, if you spend eight months on the ship, you'll get a four-month compensatory leave. People who work on ships are generally hired on a contract basis.

The career of the merchant navy demands the candidates to work on contractual wages. Here, the merchant navy salary is paid when the candidates serve onboard. The salaries of the officers are credited to their bank account in the first week of every month. for instance, if the contract is for 6 months, then the candidate will have to stay on board for six months straight till the contract ends. once the officer signs off on the contract, the salaries stop.

Geographical Area

If you're interested in a career as a merchant navy officer, you should know that these jobs involve working on ships that transport goods. Most of these ships are either freighters or tankers. Please note that you may have to spend long periods away from home if you choose this career path. The majority of merchant navy job opportunities are located in cities that are close to the coast, such as Chennai, Kochi, Goa, and Mumbai because these areas are where most of the shipping business takes place.

Time Pressure

If you choose to pursue a career in the merchant navy, you should know that it can be quite challenging in terms of time pressure. Merchant navy officers usually spend several months at a time on the ship, and they receive compensatory leave allowance for the same duration. Typically, a merchant navy officer's work schedule involves staying on the ship for eight months and then taking a four-month break. Keep in mind that merchant navy officers are usually hired on a contract basis.

Weekly Duration

Candidates working in the merchant navy work on a contractual basis and have to dedicate all their time on deck, which can last for 6 or 9 months depending on the terms of the contract. Once the contract is over, they might look for other job opportunities. Those who work permanently get to take 2 to 3 months off after serving on deck for 6 to 8 months.

Merchant Navy Uniform

The Merchant Navy uniform is, without a doubt, a source of great pride, and maritime personnel is required to keep it up to date and tidy at all times. Officers in the Merchant Navy often wear a white shirt and black pants, with epaulets depending on the ship's rank. During cold weather, the outfit is worn with black formal shoes and a pullover or hoodie. The P-cap is a black hood with a white top that has an anchor symbol on it.

When working on ships, however, the crew typically wears a boiler suit as well as personal protection equipment (PPE). Personal Protection Equipment (PPE) will vary depending on the type of ship and the sort of job to be done. Officers are required to wear the uniform when on the bridge, in the mess room, or when the captain requests it.

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Courses After Merchant Navy Degree

Several course options are available after the conclusion of Merchant Navy undergraduate programs. Some of them have been listed below.

Merchant Navy PG CoursesDegrees
Postgraduate Merchant Navy Courses
  • Master's in Logistics and Supply Chain Management
  • Master's in Naval Architecture and Ocean Engineering
  • Master's in Maritime Management
  • Master's in Port Management
Merchant Navy Professional Certifications
  • Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) qualifications
  • Chartered Shipbroker (ICS)
  • Certification in Maritime Law
  • Certified Marine Surveyor
MBA in Shipping/Logistics
Dynamic Positioning (DP) Training:
  • DP training courses are essential for operating vessels with dynamic positioning systems. This is important for those interested in offshore jobs.

Also Check: Best Career Options after Polytechnic

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FAQs about Merchant Navy

What are the skills required to ace merchant navy?

Decision making, Teamwork, Practical knowledge of physics, chemistry, and mathematics, leadership, and effective communication are some of the skills required to ace the merchant navy.

Which are the top merchant navy colleges abroad?

Some of the top merchant navy colleges abroad are Massachusetts Maritime Academy, the U.S. Merchant Marine Academy, and The University Of New Orleans.

Who are the top recruiters of merchant navy?

Shipping Corporation of India, Essar. Chowgule Shipping, Great Eastern Shipping, Chevron and Mobil of the United States, K-Line, Wallem Ship Management of Hong Kong, and Bibby Ship Management are some of the top recruiters of the merchant navy.

How to join the merchant navy?

To join the Merchant Navy, individuals typically pursue a Bachelor's degree in Nautical Science or Marine Engineering from recognized institutions. After completing the degree, candidates undergo mandatory training at maritime academies, gaining hands-on experience on ships. They then appear for competency exams conducted by the Directorate General of Shipping. Successful candidates obtain Certificates of Competency, essential for officer positions. Additionally, meeting medical and physical fitness standards is crucial. Candidates can apply directly to shipping companies or seek placement through campus recruitment. Continuous learning and compliance with international maritime regulations are imperative for a successful career in the Merchant Navy.

What medical fitness necessities should I meet to join the Merchant Navy?

Physical health is very important in the maritime industry because the work can be very demanding. People who want to work in this industry have to get a medical check-up from a doctor or clinic that is approved by maritime authorities. This is to make sure they are healthy enough to do the job safely and meet the specific health requirements.

What are the career growth opportunities in the Merchant Navy?

Working in the Merchant Navy is a great way to build a successful career. You can start at the bottom and gradually work your way up to higher positions with more responsibility. With the right training and experience, you could even become a ship captain or a chief engineer. If you prefer to work on land, there are also management positions available within the maritime industry.

Can I join the Merchant Navy after completing my graduation?

Yes, you can join the merchant navy after completing your graduation. If you have graduated from courses like Nautical Science or Marine Engineering, you can pursue a career in the Merchant Navy as an officer in a higher position. However, depending on the role, you may need to undergo further training and obtain additional certifications.

Is Merchant Navy a government job?

Working in the merchant navy can either be a government or private job. If you work for the Shipping Corporation of India (SCI), you would be considered a government employee. However, most other companies in this field are run by private entities.

What is Merchant Navy salary?

The starting salary for a Merchant Navy job is around INR 4,80,000 - INR 6,00,000 Per Annum, which means you can earn about INR 40,000 - 50,000 each month. If you have over 10 years of experience in this field, you can earn an average monthly salary of INR 1,64,0000 per month.

What is qualification for Merchant Navy?

To pursue Merchant Navy you need to complete your 12th standard with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics as mandatory subjects. You should score at least 60% marks in these subjects. After completing your 12th standard, you need to apply and appear for admission exams like JEE and IMU CET. Once you clear these exams, you will be invited for an interview round, and you need to pass a medical examination before getting admitted to the course.

What is the Merchant Navy do?

The Merchant Navy is a group of ships that move things like food, clothes, and electronics from one place to another. This is really important for the world because over 90% of the things we use every day are moved around the world on ships.

What is the qualification for Merchant Navy?

The qualification for Merchant Navy varies depending on the position or job role within the industry. Generally, for entry-level positions, candidates must have completed their 10+2 education with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics as compulsory subjects. They must also meet the age and health requirements set by the industry.

Is Merchant Navy exam difficult?

The difficulty level of exams for the Merchant Navy depends on the position and job role for which one is applying. For entry-level positions, the exams are generally based on the 10+2 curriculum and may test the candidates' knowledge. However, for officer-level positions, the exams are more specialized and may test the candidates' knowledge of marine engineering, navigation, and related fields.

What is the lowest salary in Merchant Navy?

The lowest salary in merchant navy is around INR 25,000 to INR 60,000.

What is Merchant Navy salary in India?

The average merchant navy salary in India for freshers is around INR 4.5 LPA to INR 5.5 LPA. Once candidates gain experience the average merchant navy salary can hike up to INR 37 LPA or even more.

What is a qualification for Merchant Navy?

A candidate must have completed a Class 10+2 or equivalent examination from a recognized board with physics, chemistry, and math with an aggregate score of 50% or above.

Is Merchant Navy A rich job?

Yes, the merchant navy is a rich job as it offers handsome salary packages, numerous career options, and opportunities to travel the world.

What are the job profiles offered to the candidates concluding merchant navy?

The job profiles offered to the candidates completing merchant navy course are Deck officer (navigation officer), Electro-technical officer (ETO), Engineer, Ratings, Catering & hospitality crew (pursers, stewards, chef, housekeeper, etc.)

What are the required skill sets in order to succeed in a career in Merchant Navy?

Candidates who want to succeed in a merchant navy course will have to excel in skill sets that include the willingness to take up short-term courses, ready for any emergency, mental strength to fight homesickness, energetic personality, desire to travel, adventure, and adapting to sea life.

Who are the top recruiters of the Merchant Navy?

Some of the top recruiters who hire the candidates concluding the Merchant Navy course have been listed in the following pointers:
The Shipping Corporation of India Ltd
Essar Shipping Ltd,
The Great Eastern Shipping Companies
Bharati Shipyard, Mercator Ltd
Gujarat Pipavav, Evergreen Marine Corporation

Which exam is for the merchant navy?

 The Indian Maritime University administers the Merchant Navy admission exam, known as the CET - common entry examination, which is a test that may be taken to enter any shipping-related programme, such as a deck, engine, or naval architecture. Apart from CET, there are other entrance exams for the merchant navy like JEE Main, TMI-BITS- EE, AIMENT, JEE Advanced, etc. 



Can the merchant navy have tattoos?

Yes, the merchant navy certainly can have tattoos. Tattoos and piercings are not prohibited in the merchant fleet. 


Is a phone allowed in the merchant navy?

 "From now on, all social networking sites, including Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp, and other messengers, would be prohibited at navy facilities and ships," stated a senior Indian Navy commander. Furthermore, no smartphones were permitted onboard ships or naval sites, according to the officer. Therefore, phones are not allowed in the merchant navy. 


What is the disadvantage of the merchant navy?

The major disadvantage of working as a merchant navy officer is sailing for long months and getting cut off from the world. And another major drawback of Merchant Marine is being apart from loved ones for an extended length of time. It is undeniably stressful, and above all, it places people in a position where balancing work and a long-distance relationship becomes quite difficult.


Is Merchant Navy a temporary job?

The merchant navy job is neither permanent nor temporary, as the majority of shipping businesses operate on a contract basis. However, your job type depends on your employer's contract and conditions. 


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Related Questions


Biswajit Chakra, Student / Alumni

-Answered on Oct-05-2023
Hello Sir/Madam can you please explain what is Electro-Technical Officer Course

Ashfak maksud Miya shaikh, Student / Alumni

-Answered on May-17-2023
Gp rating

Diksha Sharma, Student / Alumni

-Answered on Feb-22-2021

Dear Student,

The age limit for joining the merchant navy after completing B.Tech Mechanical is 28 years. You can also read the following articles to learn more:

Merchant Navy Course Details

How to Become a Chief Officer in Merchant Navy: Eligibility, Job Roles, Salary, Top Colleges

You can also fill the Common Application Form on our website for admission-related assistance. You can also reach us through our IVRS Number - 1800-572-9877.

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