Tourisme Îles de la Madeleine and Groupe CTMA have jointly announced that they have added new features to their websites that make it even easier to reserve lodging and ferry crossings. Here is a list of some of these new features:
This last feature is particularly useful to the visitor during the planning stages of a stay. It is now possible to do an online check of availabilities on the NM Madeleine ferry while doing the search for available lodging. On the Tourisme Îles de la Madeleine website, the search engine registers the specified dates of the stay and Step 2 "Transportation" guides the user to the ferry calendar.
An online video tutorial available on the Tourisme Îles de la Madeleine website summarizes the search and reservation procedure for lodging and ferry crossings. The short video is available in both English and French and it introduces the tool kit available to the visitor who is planning a visit to the archipelago.
It is worth noting that the lodging search engine of the Association touristique régionale (ATR) website registered over 46,000 visits (hits) during the six-month period from July to December 2011. This represents a 159 % increase over the same period of the previous year. As well, data compiled from survey filled by visitors in 2010 and 2011 show that most of the stays are reserved during February-March (23 %) and April-May (28 %).
Michel Bonato, the general manager of the ATR says that the availability of an online tutorial is most timely. "Ten years ago, Îles de la Madeleine was among the first regions of Québec to offer a website with a search engine for lodging which showed availabilities at hotels, B&Bs and tourist residences," said Mr. Bonato. "This second phase is the result of an integrated vision and of ongoing improvement of the reservation process for the destination, as well as a benefit that accrues from our strategic partnership with CTMA."
"The online availability of the tutorial coincides with the introduction of our new corporate image and it will surely improve access for visitors," said Ariane Bérubé, Marketing and Customer Service Assistant for the Groupe CTMA.
"This development as a whole represents substantial value added for the lodging establishments that are members of the tourist association. In particular, one of the objectives of the project was to generate a positive perception of the destination, and to show prospective clients how simple it was to make a reservation on Les Îles," said Jason Bent, the project coordinator.
According to Isabelle Poirier, who is in charge of the tourist information bureau, "Many visitors who used the search engine, before arriving on Les Îles, will use it again after they get off the boat. Regular updates of the availability calendars by the lodging establishment operators is the cornerstone of a quality service for the visitors."
This project is part of the five-year (2009-2014) marketing plan of the tourist region of Îles de la Madeleine, as well as a part of the five-year (2007-2011) action plan for excellence in tourism and recreation under the ACCORD project (Action concertée de coopération régionale de développement). Financial assistance in the amount of 12,000 dollars was provided by the Fonds de soutien au développement des créneaux d'excellence.
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Marketing and Communications Agent
Tourisme Îles de la Madeleine
418 986-2245, ext 227