How Does Josiah Carter’s ‘Below Deck’ Stew Salary Compare to What He Makes as a Butler?

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Josiah Carter from Below Deck brought his formal training as a butler to his role as the second stew on the show. His background often shined through on the series as it was obvious he is a trained professional who understands how to deliver five-star service but still remains unobtrusive to the guests.

Carter has been working on yachts since 2013 in both the interior and exterior areas. When the My Seanna team was down a deckhand, Carter was seen pitching in to help dock the boat. Since he’s done both on land and at sea service, where could he make more money? And how does a butler salary compare to what a stew might make?

Butlers make more money than people may think

Like with any job, professionally trained butlers have a wide-ranging payscale. According to, the average butler salary is about $$58,516. The range of pay can start at about $30,398, up to $98,503. Bonuses can also be wide-ranging. On the low end, a butler could receive $495 to $16,768.

Of course, if you want to make the big bucks you should be properly trained. The International Butler Academy offers a 10-week course for about 14,500 Euros or about $17,000 in U.S. dollars. What do you get for your investment? This particular program offers hands-on training at a lavish mansion in the Netherlands, plus a complete uniform, lodging, food and, of course, training in Interior Management Systems.

How does butler pay compare to being a stew?

Depending on where you are on the butler pay scale, yachting may (or may not) be more lucrative. According to yacht resource, Crewfinders, stews can make anywhere from  $62,00 to $75,000. Generally, you get paid closer to $65,000 for a smaller boat, but more like $80,000 for larger yachts. My Seanna is pretty large at 185 feet so chances are, Carter is pulling in a salary on a higher scale.

But the money doesn’t stop with the salary. The all-important tip is also a big deal. Usually, (but not always) tip money is divided evenly among the crew. And tips can range anywhere from 5% to 15% of the charter cost. Often, Below Deck crew members are seen receiving tips from $12,000 to $15,000. Or even $20,000 during one show.

As far as the certification outlay to become a stew, the STCW BST certification is vital. This is where the crew member saves more money than what it costs to become a professional butler. Basic safety training courses cost about $900 to $1,000 in the U.S. or $900 to $1,880 abroad.

Here’s the bonus being a stew

Unlike being a professional butler, stews get to travel and see the world. Sure you have to sleep in an area that resembles a coffin and deal with the intensities from both the crew and guests. But at the same time, you are able to see parts of the world you may not be able to explore otherwise.

Of course though, if you are a homebody, you may be more suited for butler life. But if you are motivated by money and want to travel, becoming a stew on a superyacht sounds like the best deal.

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