VisitScotland to add booking function to site

NEW YORK -- VisitScotland entered into a joint-venture partnership to create a company called eTourism Ltd. and vastly redevelop the Web site.

Partners in the $15 million project include VisitScotland; several regional tourist boards in Scotland; Partnerships U.K., a company that facilitates public-private partnerships; and SchlumbergerSema, a technology firm.

An enhanced Web site with on-line booking capability for hotels, events and transportation is slated for a fall rollout.

A call center also will be established, VisitScotland said. The partnership is aiming to book 500,000 hotel nights per year on line by 2005, and said its call center will be able to handle 1 million calls per year. Its Web site currently is informational only.

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