Marco Polo Cruise Review by Esta
- Sail Date: May 2017
- Destination: Europe
This was our only holiday of the year and quite frankly the cruise was terrible – full of disappointments. Not worth the money at all. The cruise destinations included the Azores, Caribbean, Cuba, Cayman Island, Dominican Republic, Jamaica and Mexico. We sailed for 35 days and were only let ashore a measly 9 times - even then we were only given 5-6 hours on land. The main reason for this was because the ship refused to pay the docking fees and we had to disembark onto rocky tender boats which took us from the ship to the docks. My husband struggled to climb into the boats as he is a little unsteady on his feet. This is not an idea way to disembark for disabled passengers.
Also the itinerary changed at least 3 times –the ship was meant to stop at the Cayman Islands but did not, we only spent 1 day in Cuba when we were promised 2 days and the ship was meant to stop at Nassau but stopped in the Bahamas instead.
The Cruise excursions are also a complete rip – off especially the Tropicana show in Havana. We were promised the best tickets in the house so we paid £119 each but we were dismayed to find that we were given side seats with a very restricted view. The show itself was wonderful – what little we could see of it!
During the course of the cruise we discovered that all passengers are expected to pay a gratuity fee, 70% of which is retained by the CMV and only 30% goes to the staff. We thought that this was appalling and that all of it should go to lower ranking but extremely hard working staff.
Also, it was not made clear how much passengers were allowed to buy in terms of cigarettes from duty free. When we disembarked at Bristol, I witnessed several passengers having their tobacco confiscated.
If you enjoy sailing then this cruise would be perfect for you. But if you actually want to explore the islands listed on the cruise itinerary, then I would avoid CMV cruises on the Marco Polo!
I was happier getting off the ship than I was getting on!
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