Crew fees maximize our impact and help to ensure that 79% of donations made to Mercy Ships go directly into the medical programs that transform lives in Africa. Crew fees are paid monthly and cover your food, accommodations, and evacuation & repatriation insurance while serving. Crew fees are currently $700 USD per month, however; discounts are given to alumni, those whose country of citizenship is not in Tier I, those who are accepted into Position Commitment Levels 2-4, and those who take On Boarding. Refer to tables below.

For more information regarding the discounts available, refer to Crew Development and Tenure page.

Please note: Mercy Ships is committed to keeping crew fees as low as possible, however, crew should expect fees to increase 2-5% each year. 

How funds are processed on board

Mercy Ships maintains a Crew Bank on board the ship for your use. Your Crew Bank account on the ship is internal to Mercy Ships and is not connected to any outside banking network. It simply provides a safe and convenient place to deposit your money while you are on the ship.

Funds can be deposited in your Crew Bank account via cash, personal checks, credit card cash advance (with a 3% service fee added) or traveler’s checks. The accepted credit cards are Visa, MasterCard, American Express and Discover. Debit cards are only accepted if they are backed by one of the major credit card issuers mentioned above. Only USD, British Pound, Euro and Canadian checks or traveler’s checks are accepted. Unless another account is specified, the funds you raise may also be deposited into your Crew Bank account.

You may withdraw funds from your account for personal expenses or outings, and you may request automatic payment of crew fees. When visiting the Starbucks Café, the Snack Bar or the Ship Shop, funds can be automatically deducted from your crew bank account (provided there is a sufficient balance in your account), by scanning your Mercy Ships-issued ID badge. You may also set up an automatic withdrawal for offerings, transfer funds to another crew member or buy currency of the local country when requested in advance.

If you wish to deposit cash to your Crew Bank account, it has to be in USD, British Pounds, Euros or the local currency. If you have other currencies, you may wish to convert them prior to arrival. You may also use the Crew Bank safe to store your valuables such as credit cards or your driver’s license.

Shortly after arrival on the ship, you need to go by the ship’s bank to set up your account. When you depart Mercy Ships you can take the balance of your Crew Bank account with you as cash or check. US dollars are the only currency used for purchases on the ship.

Payment of crew fees

Depending on the length of your stay, crew fees may be paid all at once or each month. Credit cards and personal checks are accepted for crew fees, as well as payments from your Crew Bank account. Mercy Ships does not charge any fees for the use of credit cards for Crew Fees.

Processing funds through Mercy Ships

As a Mercy Ships’ volunteer you will personally finance your own travel, room and board costs. Volunteers have the privilege of including friends and family in this effort by inviting them to donate funds in support of their service.

Once you have been accepted for a position with Mercy Ships, you will be contacted by the FinACE Department (Financial Accountability, Coaching and Encouragement).They will offer advice on how to raise your support as well as processing the support you are raising through Mercy Ships.

Processing your support through Mercy Ships is the most convenient way to assure that funds reach you while serving on the ship. A Designation Code which serves as your account number will be set up for you and should be provided to donors/potential donors so that gifts are properly credited to your account. While each country with a Mercy Ships office may process funds differently, it is most important that this number accompany all gifts coming to any Mercy Ships location.

When a donation for you is received, Mercy Ships will place these funds in an account accessible to you when you arrive onboard the ship. Gifts received at the International Support Center in Texas (ISC) by the end of the month will be processed and transferred to your Crew Bank account on the ship by the 7th of the following month. Gifts received by the 15th of each month will be deposited by the 22nd. Each 7th and 22nd you will receive an e-mail report showing your donor activity.

If your gifts are made through the Mercy Ships international web site, your code is already programmed in with your name, so donors don’t need the code for donations processed in this way. Please keep in mind that any gifts made through the International web site are processed at the International Support Center (ISC) in the United States and are converted to US dollars. It should be noted that the ISC is unable issue tax receipts to donors from countries other than the United States per US tax laws.

Please contact your local Mercy Ships office for information about web donations and tax benefits.

Charges associated with funds processed by Mercy Ships

Mercy Ships charges an administrative fee of 3%, up to a maximum of US $15.00 per pay period, for funds that it processes on your behalf. Mercy Ships also charges a 3% fee for credit and debit transactions processed through the U.S. and Canadian offices. There is no cap on the fee for credit card transactions. Mercy Ships does not, however, charge any fees for crew fees paid via a credit card.

Checks from supporters made payable to you may be deposited into your Crew Bank account on the ship. There are no bank charges or administrative charges for these checks, but your supporter will not be able to receive a tax receipt for the gift.

Further, Mercy Ships does not charge any fees to cash a personal check. However, the check must first be deposited into your Crew Bank account and then withdrawn as cash.