Finances for Volunteers
Volunteers with Mercy Ships are responsible for paying all costs associated with their service, including Crew Fees, travel expenses, passports, immunisations, insurance and personal expenses. Because of this commitment, Mercy Ships is able to use direct contributions from its supporters to bring hope and healing to those who need it most.
The two largest expenses you can expect to incur while serving with Mercy Ships are your travel to and from the ship and your Crew Fee (room and board). Crew Fees are paid monthly by every adult crew member. The current Crew Fee chart is listed below.
Monthly Crew Fee Chart
|Level||Commitment||Tier I||Tier II|
|1 & 2||2 weeks to 12 months||$400 USD||$200 USD|
|3 & 4||12+ months||$200 USD||$200 USD|
Discounts are given to crew who:
- Make longer commitments
- Have completed the On Boarding training program previously
- Those from Tier II countries (countries with an average income of lower than 25K annually)
Crew fees have been waived through 30 June 2023.
Tier I Countries
Any nation not on this list is considered Tier II.
|Europe||Asia||Americas / Africa / South Pacific|
|Denmark||Netherlands||Hong Kong||New Zealand|
|Finland||San Marino||Japan||United states|
|United Arab Emirates|
Budgets & Fundraising
Are you trying to wrap your head around budgeting, Crew Fees, and fundraising? We have a special team dedicated to helping you sort through these details.
The goal of our Financial Support Team is to ensure each volunteer is financially prepared for their service on board. If you have any questions as you think through volunteering, or if you’ve already applied, please contact our Financial Support Team at [email protected]
All applicants are required to provide or raise their own funds to cover crew fees, insurance, transportation to and from the ship, and personal expenses. Below is a sample budget that should help you forecast your finances during your time onboard.
|MONTHLY BUDGET CALCULATOR|
|CREW FEES||YOUR CREW FEES|
|12+ months||$200 USD per adult|
|2 weeks to 12 months||$400 USD per adult|
|TRAVEL||YOUR TRAVEL COSTS|
|Calcualate the cost of travel to/from the ship’s location and divide it by the number of months you will be serving: Example: $1500 ÷ 12 months = $125 per month.||$|
|Estimate depending on travel insurance provider and coverage selection.||$|
|PERSONAL EXPENSES||YOUR EXPENSES|
|Personal expenses might include toiletries, clothes, entertainment, outings, prescriptions, meals, snacks and souvenirs. Remember to budget for tithes/offerings, Christmas and birthdays. We recommend budgeting around $250 USD per month per person, but this is dependent on your needs and spending habits.|
|ESTIMATED MONTHLY BUDGET TOTAL||$|
Who pays Crew Fees?
Every adult crewmember is required to pay Crew Fees. Minors (ages 0-18) on board with their families are not charged Crew Fees.
How often do Crew Fees change?
We are committed to keeping Crew Fees as low as possible, but crew can expect fees to increase 2-5% each year.
Keeping Our Crew Safe
A couple of common questions that we get from those interested in volunteering with us focuses on the safety of our crew. Specifically, “is it safe to live on board ships in African nations? What security measures are in place?”
We think these are great questions!