Cruise and Maritime Voyages (CMW) is to operate All Leisure Holidays’ ship Discovery under a new long-term partnership between the two cruiselines.

The 700 passenger ship will operate under the CMV brand from February 2013, sailing a merged programme of itineraries to the Mediterranean and the Black Sea.

All Leisure Group chairman Roger Allard said the move means prices will be signfiicantly lower.

“Prices have been reduced quite a bit and they will stay that way until October 31, so customers have two months in which to book.We are still in a challenging environment and people are looking for good value.”

Allard said the two companies would share the total revenue. “We are both financially responsible so there will be no point-scoring.”

Letters have been sent to existing customers and a new CMV brochure has been published and is being sent to agents this week. Customers with existing bookings on Discovery can continue their cruise at a reduced price, opt to change on to another cruise or obtain a refund.

Cruises on Discovery will be in line with the CMV offering, which means tips and transfers are not included. Entertainment will be in the form of broadway-style shows rather than academic lectures.

Christopher Coates, commercial director of CMV, said: “Discovery has a huge following and will make a good partner for Marco Polo.

“I can’t think of this happening in the cruise industry before, but the more we thought about it the more it made sense.”

Discovery will replace CMV’s Ocean Countess, which is going out of service in October.