Cruise crew member shares ‘weird’ behind the scenes secrets from the ship – ‘got fired’

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Ezra Freeman works as a ship entertainer. She shared some cruise secrets on her TikTok @ezrafreeman.

She said: “I still find this so weird. On cruise ships the crew communicate with each other using pagers.”

A pager, sometimes known as a bleeper, is a wireless device that can transmit alphanumeric or voice messages.

Although pagers were common during the 1980s, they have been phased out as mobile phones took over.

However, there are a few industries that still use pagers, including the emergency services and cruise ship crew.

Freeman said: “I had to ask how to use one. Also this is a thing trying to hit on someone or get to know someone in a suggestive way.

“The first thing you would do is add them on Facebook.

“The second thing you would do if you’re like really going for it is to ask for their Whatsapp.

“And if they ask for your pager number, that’s a red flag and I would say run for the hills. But good luck with that because we’re on a cruise ship.”

She said paging someone to contact them for a romantic reason could be seen as “tricking” them.

She commented: “It’s like tricking someone into answering you because it might be work related and you don’t always know who is paging you!”

Freeman said pretty much all the officers and the guest facing team members have pagers on the ship.

Another staff member said: “It’s reliable. You can use the ship radio signal for it to get you all over the ship. There are no dead spots.”

He added: “If you get paged at two in the morning, it’s not a good sign.”

Freeman then said: “On my first contract somebody got fired. This person got very intoxicated.

“No one is allowed to do that, you’re not actually allowed to be drunk because everyone has safety duties.

“Somebody decided to tell them off and then at 3am, they paged 911, which pages every single person on board.

“You’re paging your boss, you’re paging your boss’s boss.”

She said the person was breathalysed and was then sent home the following day for their nighttime page.

Not all cruise ship crew will use pagers to communicate, some ships use walkie talkies or mobiles instead.

However, if guests hear a beeping or vibrate sound when they’re near a crew member, they could be using a pager.

Pagers are also sometimes used by care staff or in hospitals although they are being phased out.

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