Saturday, 20th April 2019


Fishing vessel skippers are in charge of leading a crew on a sea-going fishing boat. Their job is to plan a fishing voyage with a suitable crew and come back with a successful catch. Team work is vital on a fishing boat, which the skipper must make sure of, so that health and safety regulations are met, and good amounts of fish are caught.

Fishing vessels can range from small boats with five or so people, to large factory ships with up to five times that amount. Skippers still have to do a number of practical and physical tasks, but will have a lot more responsibility.

Tasks of a skipper might include:

  • Planning a fishing voyage
  • Selecting a crew
  • Navigating the boat
  • Maintaining standards of health and safety onboard the vessel
  • Operating the equipment and working for a good catch
  • Ensuring that the company makes a profit
  • Dealing with clients and onshore agents, arranging the sale of fish

The work of a fishing vessel skipper can be quite arduous, as they are responsible for their crew of workers and their safety whilst on the boat, as well as bringing back a profitable catch. There are a number of fishing and maritime laws that they must adhere to, so skippers must keep up-to-date with these.

Skippers must be good team leaders, organised and technically proficient enough to operate electronic navigation systems or high tech equipment. More modern ships use more electronic equipment, especially on larger industrial vessels.