How Much Does a DJ Make on a Cruise Ship?

By Alice Nichols

Cruise ships are renowned for their lively entertainment, and DJs play a major role in providing the best experience for passengers. But how much do DJs make on cruise ships? The answer depends on the type of DJ and their contract.

The most common type of DJ seen on cruise ships is an independent contractor. These DJs usually have to bring their own equipment and music library, and they are paid an hourly rate that can range from $100 to $400 per hour.

They may also receive tips from passengers, which can add up over time. In addition, they may receive additional compensation for special events such as weddings or parties.

Other types of DJs seen on cruise ships include those employed directly by the cruise line or a third-party booking agency. These DJs typically have access to high-end equipment, a large music library, and more opportunities for special events.

They are typically paid a salary, with bonuses based on performance or event bookings. Salaries can range from $20,000 to $50,000 per year depending on experience and qualifications.

In addition to their salary or hourly rate, DJs may be eligible for benefits such as free onboard accommodation, meals and drinks while working onboard the ship. They may also be able to take advantage of discounts on shore excursions or other activities during their time off the ship.


DJs working aboard cruise ships have the potential to earn a great living depending on their experience level and contracts with either the cruise line or third-party booking agency they work with. The average hourly rate for independent contractors ranges from $100 to $400 per hour plus tips from passengers while those employed directly by a cruise line typically receive salaries ranging from $20,000 to $50,000 annually plus bonuses based on performance or event bookings plus benefits such as free onboard accommodation and meals while working onboard the ship.