While the workplace may occasionally be on the docks of various cities around the world, more often than not, a cargo loader will be on the vessel performing whatever duties are necessary to keep the ship running. Cargo loaders can be expected to spend an extended amount of time with co-workers due to the fact that many voyages last multiple days. The workplace may involve associating with passengers, but in general the workplace will be with other loaders or solitary work.
Work locations will nonetheless vary quite a bit based on ship types. A small percentage of cargo loaders work on cruise ships and other sightseeing boats, and the environment will thusly be much more focused on the passengers rather than any particular cargo. Cargo loaders are also needed on government ships as well as general transportation needs, so the workplace may vary greatly from job to job.
One final thing to note about the workplace is that it can be a potentially dangerous environment. Weather, heavy machinery and cargo are just a few potentially hazardous elements that can cause problems. However, many enhancements in training procedures and technology have helped to minimize the risks to workers in this occupation. With proper preparation, many dangers can be completely avoided.