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Glacier Tours provides short tours from a visitor center up the mountain to a site on the glacier. They use a specialized, six-wheel-drive vehicle to move up the steep and icy trail to an area where visitors are allowed to take a walk, drink glacier water, and take pictures. The tour usually takes about 60 minutes with about fifteen minutes to unload and load passengers at the visitor center. Hence, the total time is seventy-five minutes. During the relatively longer days in the Canadian summer, they are able to have a tour schedule of about nine hours, but could stretch it up to ten hours by opening earlier and staying open a little later than their current working hours. One problem with this could be the tour bus schedules that they have tried to accommodate. They currently have seven of the very expensive vehicles which can seat 14 visitors, and a driver/tour guide.
They want to try to increase their capacity. They are considering two approaches to increase their capacity. One is to add one or two more vehicles (an eighth and ninth) to the seven they already have. Using this option, they would keep the tour time at 60 minutes per trip plus 15 minutes to unload and load. The second option is to shorten the tour trips to forty-five minutes each (with the additional fifteen minute loading and unloading times) and stay open an additional hour each day (hence be open ten hours instead of nine hours per day). The second option to shorten the tour does not include adding more vehicles. They believe that most visitors would be equally satisfied with a forty-five minute tour as they are with the current sixty minute tour.
a. What is their current capacity in passengers per day?
b. Based on the information provided, which option should they choose to increase capacity for the summer?
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