GTA Online: The Cargo Ship Robbery (Full Walkthrough 2024)

The Cargo Ship Robbery is one of five Salvage Yard robberies in GTA Online.

Yusuf Amir’s exotic taste in cars leads you to a daring offshore heist involving a big name in the Los Santos movie production industry, Solomon Richards. Infiltrate the massive La’oub Princess ship, eliminate the guards, and take the vehicle to the mainland.

Since the Cargo Ship Robbery in GTA Online requires careful preparation, we’ll help you with this comprehensive guide. You’re also guaranteed to obtain all bonus challenges to profit from your initial $20,000 investment!

The Cargo Ship Robbery Setup

From our weekly Salvage Yard update, choosing the designated vehicle lets you commence the Cargo Ship Robbery in GTA Online for $20,000.

The heist consists of the following parts:

  • Scoping task
  • Three robbery tasks
  • Two planning work missions
  • Two optional missions
  • Robbery finale
The Planning Wall for the Cargo Ship Robbery, consisting of all necessary plans.

After completing the scoping task, you can start other missions in any order (except the finale).

Scope Out: Docks

Before heading straight to the actual heist, you must help Jamal gather intel. Go to the Elysian Island and use your Snapmatic app in GTA Online to capture the following photos:

  • Container Lock
  • Shipping Manifest
  • Docked Cargo Ship

Warning: Stealth is useless in this mission despite the org member’s cones of view present. However, they only attack with melee. Feel free to knock them down or scare them off with a gun.

The Shipping Manifest’s location:

The clipboard on a desk and its location in an island in GTA Online.

The Container Lock’s location:

Multiple containers near the La'oub Princess ship in a secluded island in GTA Online.

The Docked Cargo Ship’s location:

The La'oub Princess ship in first-person view.

Once done, return to your Salvage Yard to unlock branching tasks. Otherwise, you can skip this part.

Robbery Tasks in GTA Online

After registering as a SecuroServ CEO/MC Club President, three duffle bag icons will appear across the map. The location for each task changes per session, but the objectives remain consistent.

Jamal Amir will contact you after pressing your interact button inside a green halo.

Robbery Task #1: Bolt Cutters

Since the target vehicle is in one of three containers during the finale, you’ll need Bolt Cutters to pry them open.

A factory with several men working.

The robbery task is simple. Go to the designated location (could be at Elysian Island/Galilee). Afterward, find and retrieve the item from the Salvage Yard.

The bolt cutters near a cement mixer and two construction workers.

Robbery Task #2: Boat

Infiltrating the La’oub Princess needs to be executed carefully and stealthily. Since boarding the ship is necessary, you’ll need a boat.

Go to the marked location (could be at Del Perro/Downtown Vinewood).

Inside are gang members you should eliminate. Bring tons of Snack and Armor as there are a lot of hostiles.

Two Dinghys and Seasharks highlighted in a blue arrow inside a Warehouse in GTA Online.

Once you find a boat, two gang members will spawn. 

If you’re doing the Cargo Ship Robbery solo or with a friend, we recommend choosing the Seasharks. Otherwise, steal the Dinghy to accommodate three to four GTA Online protagonists.

Choose between Vapid Bobcat XL and Bravado Bison to transport the boat. Important: Two armed hostiles will spawn. Take them out.

A Vapid Bobcat XL and Bravado Bison models inside a Warehouse in GTA Online.

Attach the car’s rear at the boat of your liking, then exit the garage.

Return to the Salvage Yard and fend off pursuing enemies on the way.

The player driving the Vapid Bobcat XL while dragging a Red Dinghy.

Robbery Task #3: Flares

You’re not alone in the ocean, as that’s where the Skylift operator comes in!

Flares are essential later in the finale as you soon finalize the heist. You can find them at Elysian Island/Vespucci Beach.

As for our guide, the one in Vespucci Beach can be located at a boat or the Lifeguard Station building (railings).

A box of Flares at the top of the lifeguard station near a beach in GTA Online.

Picking up the item will alert cops. We recommend heading back to the Salvage Yard while avoiding pursuing officers.

Planning Work: Sabotage and Disguise

Go to the marked LSPA location (could be at Del Perro Pier/Elysian Island/Paleto Bay).

The LSPA office with a security camera, two trash bins, and one Seasharks motorboat nearby.

Before entering the office, we recommend turning off the security camera to avoid detection.

Since our playthrough in GTA Online is located at Del Perro Pier, there are three possible locations for the circuit box:

1. Hidden behind blue stairs near two LSPA officers talking.

Three small storage rooms next to two LSPA officers, with the Power Box highlighted.

2. Outside a cafeteria, near the stairs.

A coffee shop and the Power Box highlighted.

3. At the back of the cafeteria, overseeing the Pacific Ocean.

A Power Box next to a stairs in a stormy day in GTA Online.

Press your interact button to turn off the security camera and head inside the office. Afterward, go to the computer and initiate the BruteForce.exe mini-game. Just follow the instructions in-game.

Once done, plant three explosives. Grab the Coast Guard disguise (yellow duffle bag). Stay away from the building and choose “Detonate Bomb” from your Phone.

An iFruit computer inside the LSPA office, the BruteForce.exe mini-game, and a yellow dufflebag.

Police will be notified, but we recommend returning to the Salvage Yard fast.

The GTA Online Protagonist holding a phone with the contact "Detonate Bomb" highlighted.

Planning Work: Skylift

The Skylift is indispensable during the Cargo Ship Robbery Finale to reach the mainland with your stolen car.

A Sniper Rifle's crosshair highlighting the Skylift helicopter in a military base in GTA Online.

Before proceeding to the mission, remember to:

  • Bring tons of Snacks and Armor.
  • Use an Armored Vehicle to tank enemy missiles and bullets

Head to the location marked by Jamal Amir on your map. The destination is always random per session:

  • Fort Zancudo
  • Sandy Shores Airfield
  • LSIA

For this guide, we’re using Fort Zancudo. But the mission objective remains the same: steal the Skylift.

The player driving a Brickade 6x6 truck at the entrance of Fort Zancudo military base.

You’ll receive three Wanted Level stars once you’re near the target aircraft. You won’t be able to use the CEO ability or Lester’s “remove cops” option. 

Instead, head straight with your armored vehicle near the Anti-Aircraft trailer. We used the Brickade 6×6 (Acid Lab), but you can also use the Mobile Operations Center or Terrorbyte.

Go near the Skylift to make the Merryweather attack choppers appear. Run to the nearest Anti-Aircraft trailer and destroy them all.

The player using the Anti-Aircraft artillery with an enemy attack helicopter overhead.

It’s alright to get wasted, but we highly recommend surviving. Should you not destroy all choppers before dying, you’ll likely be spammed by homing missiles.

Clear the hostiles as you board the Skylift necessary for the Cargo Ship Robbery in GTA Online. Fly towards the mountain and wait for your three Wanted Level stars to disappear. Afterward, head to the marked location and safely park it.

A scenic view of Blaine County with the GTA Online protagonist flying the Skylift.

Leave the area to conclude the mission.

Optional Work: Disrupt Air Support

While optional, we encourage you to take this quest seriously for two reasons:

  • Fewer enemy helicopters will appear during the escape (finale).
  • Completing the bonus challenge becomes easier (explanation later).

After confirming from the Planning Wall, head to the marked location.

Enter the property and eliminate the pilot.

The GTA Online Protagonist eliminating a hostile inside a hotel and using a laptop.

Check his laptop to locate three other pilots. Then, go outside and start hunting Maverick choppers. 

Unlike all four Salvage Yard heists, there will be no pursuers in this optional mission. However, each target is located farther away, so we recommend using the Oppressor Mk II or Sparrow for guaranteed success.

The GTA Online Protagonist destroying a flying Maverick in Banham Canyon Coast.

Also, the time limit is ten minutes, and restarting it is a no-go.

Finale: The Cargo Ship Robbery

Once everything is set, go to Elysian Island and enter the boat. Avoid patrolling guards and head straight to the La’oub Princess. Three hostile patrols will go separate ways. Go in the middle.

The GTA Online Protagonist riding a Dinghy  at the sea and climbing the La'oub Princess ship in the Cargo Ship Robbery.

Use your interact button to climb the anchor chain towards the boat.

The GTA Online Protagonist firing a suppressed AP Pistol at enemy hostiles while aboard the La'oub Princess ship.

Sneaking proves challenging, but follow our step-by-step guide here, with a complementary video:

Explanation: The GTA Online protagonist draws out a suppressor. If you’re used to playing shooter games, you may switch to first-person view. Otherwise, the third-person view will also do.

Timing is everything, but so are your skills. Aim for the head and shoot fast. Otherwise, you’ll alert the whole crew, and enemy choppers and boats will chase you.

After following the tutorial video, eliminate the captain and his crew without alerting them.

The ship captain's expired body lying on the floor next to a Combat Shotgun.

Search for the terminal codes to determine the target vehicle’s potential container. You’ll be greeted by a Sea Sparrow. Take him out and the rest of the crew.

The GTA Online Protagonist using the computer and finding containers overhead.

One of the three containers has the target car. Cut the chains open using your Bolt Cutters. Use your interact button to place a Flare so the Skylift can transport your vehicle.

The GTA Online Protagonist using the Bolt Cutters to break container chains and using the Flare.

As soon as your Salvage Yard staff is there, board the Sea Sparrow.

Assuming you’ve taken out all four pilots during the Optional Planning Work, you’ll only have to take out two enemy choppers. The Skylift should be protected, with its health not falling below 80% for the bonus challenge!

After defeating the remaining air support, the pilot will drop your target vehicle. Break the chains and drive it to the Salvage Yard to conclude the Cargo Ship Robbery. You can ignore pursuers at this point.

The GTA Online Protagonist flying the Sea Sparrow next to the Skylift and opening the container.

Bonus Challenges (Tips)

  • No Lives Lost ($10,000). Bring Snacks and Armor. Always aim for the head and check corners.
  • Reached the Bridge Undetected ($10,000). Follow our video guide above as it details a thorough explanation.
  • Skylift’s Health Over 80% ($10,000). If you fail the Optional Planning Work, use your Sea Sparrow’s homing missiles to take down aerial pursuers.
  • All Challenges Complete ($20,000).

Completing all bonus challenges will grant you $50,000.

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