It will soon be easier for people interested in visiting Nova Scotia to make reservations and plan their vacations. Rodney MacDonald, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Heritage, announced today, Oct. 12, that the department is calling for proposals for a redesigned system that will bring together the province’s reservation booking service and tourism website. “We want to provide tourists with the best experience possible, even before they arrive in Nova Scotia,” said Mr. MacDonald. “This new system will ensure people have access to the most up-to-date information regardless of how they choose to book their vacation.” The Check In call centre contract is currently held by Corporatel, a division of The CCL Group. The new system will consolidate the Check In database and the novascotia.com database to create a state-of-the-art customer contact system. Once in place, the system will offer a seamless service to visitors and to tourism staff who provide information and assist with reservations. The reservation booking service and tourism website represent important components of the province’s tourism marketing efforts. Improving these services through enhanced technology is one of the recommendations of the Tourism Industry Vision and the long-term marketing plan developed by the Tourism Partnership Council. “This enhanced system will offer some exciting possibilities for Nova Scotia’s tourism industry,” said Mr. MacDonald. “It will allow us to create a more streamlined, interactive service for visitors and tourism operators. It will also reinforce our position as a world-class destination.” The request for proposals will close on Wednesday, Nov. 2. Responses will be reviewed and evaluated in November and the contract is expected to be awarded in early December. Copies of the request for proposals are available at the Public Tenders Office, 6176 Young St., Halifax; by calling 902-424-3333; or by visiting the website at www.gov.ns.ca/tran/tour/ . Tourism is a $1.3-billion industry in Nova Scotia, generating more than 33,000 direct and indirect jobs.
As well as upsetting the betting markets, the unseasonal heat is also wrong-footing some animals’ reproductive rhythms.Three hundred baby hedgehogs were handed to a sanctuary in Rochdale after warm temperatures appeared to trick the species into thinking it was the spring mating season.“At this time of year we are used to punters placing their bets on a white Christmas, but this year it is the complete opposite as bets pour in on the hottest one ever,” said Coral’s Nicola McGeady.The firm is offering odds of 16/1 for the record high temperature for December being broken this month.That currently stands as 18.3, recorded in Scotland in 1948.According to the Met Office, a White Christmas is defined as a single snowflake being spotted falling somewhere in the UK during the 25 hours of Christmas Day.Aberdeen appears to have the greatest chance of snow on December 25, according to Coral, which is offering 3/1 odds on the possibility. Want the best of The Telegraph direct to your email and WhatsApp? Sign up to our free twice-daily Front Page newsletter and new audio briefings. Show more At this time of year we are used to punters placing their bets on a white Christmas, but this year it is the complete oppositeNicola McGeady, Coral Last year’s Christmas Day currently holds the record for being the mildest, with temperatures of 16C recorded in Devon, beating 15.6 in 1920.Globally, 2016 is predicted to be the warmest since temperatures began being measured in the 1950s.The latest balmy patch is due to southwesterly winds dragging warm air across Britain from the Atlantic.UK weather forecast: Sunday December 11 Bookmakers are cutting their odds for Christmas Day being the warmest ever this year after December temperatures in parts of the UK hit 17C.A flurry of seasonal punting prompted Ladbrokes to halve its price for a record-breaking December 25 from 16/1 to 8/1.Festive flutters are more commonly placed on the chances of a white Christmas, however odds for snow continue to drift, with rival firm Coral offering 7/1 for London and 8/1 for Cardiff.