Alaska Travel – Offshore Processing Jobs Packing

If you’re working offshore you don’t have the luxury of popping into your local general or convenience store when supplies run out. You might occasionally make it to shore, where you can buy necessities, but it’s best to be prepared. Why spend what little free time you have chasing down rain gear?

Offshore workers are typically impacted by the weather, and they enjoy smaller living quarters than their onshore counterparts.

You won’t have much room for recreational equipment, if any, so leave what you can behind. Don’t forget your entertainment – off hours can be boring and slow, even if you’re likely to spend them asleep! Remember, however, that keeping your items secure while you’re working is sometimes a challenge. If you bring an expensive DVD player or handheld gaming device, think: “where will I hide that when I’m workin’?”

We suggest adding the following to your list of packed items if you’ve booked a job as an offshore processor:

  • T-shirts. About a week’s supply. You will need enough to last you through your shifts, but not too much that you are doing the wash every day. Expect to throw these out or donate after your work is done.
  • Long underwear (both tops and bottoms). About a week’s supply. This will help you stay warm, and to some degree, dry.
  • Plenty of warm (preferably wool) socks. Uncomfortable feet will make very a miserable shift. We highly suggest wool socks, since they can keep you warm even when wet. For warmer days at sea, have some normal cotton socks as well.
  • Three old sweat suits. Three is of course just an estimation. You can likely reuse these from shift to shift before doing the wash, and they take up a lot of space, so only carry on a few.
  • Duffel bags. Put everything except your carry-on luggage in one or two heavy-duty duffel bags. Military surplus bags work great. This is important because storage space is at a premium. If you can find a waterproof duffle, all the better.
  • Work boots. They should go at least half way up to your knee and they must be waterproof. If you find employment before heading up north, your job may suggest a specific brand from an outfitter. Many workers wait until Alaska to purchase their boots from outfitters up north.
  • Rain gear. This is absolutely crucial, especially in Southeast Alaska.
  • Oil skins. These are rain-proof bib-style pants that can be bought in Alaska. Helly Hanson makes a great pair, but imitations can usually be found at half the price.

These days it’s so easy to find this type of stuff online. It’s not like the ‘olden days’ when fisheries workers had to find gear at outdoors shops.

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