The modern self-image of this tradition-steeped profession
"And who might you be?" enquired the guest. Ulf Wolter smiles as he recounts this recent experience while on board. Wolter was welcoming the arriving guests onto the ship with his fellow crew members - shaking hands, exchanging pleasantries and the like. Then came the surprise question. Wolter answered truthfully: "I'm your captain." The guest's face betrayed their shock at his response. "I imagined the captain of such a ship to look, well, different."
Ulf Wolter represents the modern image of the profession as a firmly established decision maker within a team. He uses daily meetings to ensure that he is abreast of the current situation on board. This occasionally involves resolving issues and, often enough, that in turn means mediating conflicts within the crew. After all, wherever you have this many members of staff working alongside each other for weeks on end, disagreements cannot be ruled out. Other than that, the duties of the modern captain are remarkably similar to those of a corporation's chairperson of the board: communication, responsibility and representation.
The captain cultivates his image as a contemporary manager rather than as the cliche of a man dressed to the nines in his parade uniform. Aboard the EUROPA 2, there is no captain's table; the captain instead opts to eat in the same restaurants as the guests, often pulling up a chair to join them for a conversation. This modern interpretation of the captain's position reflects the innovation that is so central to Hapag-Lloyd Cruises even now, 125 years since its inception. We set standards whilst ensuring that we are never too proud to part with antiquated customs. You could call that sovereignty.
A key part of this is the Hapag-Lloyd Cruises tradition of captains inviting interested guests to the bridge in order to exchange thoughts and ideas, further opening up the fascinating world of cruises. Ulf Wolter encountered the aforementioned guest from the entrance at one of these get-togethers. They shook hands once again, and the guest thanked Wolter for an enjoyable cruise. "Not a problem," responded the captain, "the pleasure is all ours."
Cruising on board MS EUROPA 2
A casual lifestyle for a maximum of 500 guests - enjoy plenty of personal space and the freedom to be yourself. Find out for yourself what makes the EUROPA 2 so unique and join one these cruises.