As a cruiser for over 20 years aboard ships of all sizes from The Black Prince to the Giants of 100,000 plus tons.I believe I am able to take an honest and balanced view of the Marco Polo.
EMBARKING/DISEMBARKING. Was as efficient as I have come across, both at Tilbury and when tendering. The system is excellent and ensures a speedy and efficient operation.
ACCOMMODATION. Perfect. Plenty of wardrobe and drawer space and cabin kept in tip-top condition by a very attentive lady steward.
MEALS. Food a little disappointing in both restaurants. In the Bistro self service restaurant staff worked very hard to make certain tables were cleared, cleaned and sanitized quickly. The opening hours were very generous so most of the time it was easy to find a table.
SHOP/BOUTIQUE. Disappointing. I have noticed as the years pass this is one area that has become increasingly poor on all ships.
INFECTION CONTROL. I was extremely impressed with the very thorough efforts put in place to reduce the risk of infection, without doubt the best I have encountered.
Sanitation points were numerous and plenty of staff available to ensure passengers did not enter areas where food was served without proper basic precautions.
STAFF. I have read comments that some members of staff are either rude or unsmiling. Many staff on the Marco Polo come from Russia, unlike those from the Philippines, smiling is not a natural thing,however I found if you take the effort to talk to them they will respond accordingly. To me they were very friendly, indeed the staff at all levels were helpful, polite and attentive and a credit to the Cruise Line.
The ship itself was in a very good condition: despite having a cabin towards the rear I heard little engine noise compared to other ships. Taking into consideration the basic price, and comparing it to other ships on a like-for-like basis this cruise was excellent value for money. At 76 years of age I can still remember my Mother teaching me that there is a big difference between being 'cheap' and 'inexpensive' The Marco Polo is certainly the latter.
Given the opportunity I will certainly travel on this ship again.
One last comment. I heard several passengers comparing the Marco Polo with another cruise line that offers cruises for the 'older generation'. I have been there and done that. My advice is if you can afford the price? The choice is yours.!! -- Happy Cruising.