10/03/2011 10:16 EDT | Updated 12/03/2011 05:12 EST

More booths, extra time, help boost numbers at Manitoba election advance polls

WINNIPEG - An increase in the number of voting booths is being credited for a vastly bigger advance poll turnout than there was the last time Manitobans voted early in a provincial election.

About 78,600 people took advantage of advance polls last week to cast ballots prior to voting day Tuesday.

Upwards of 43,000 people showed up to vote early in the May 2007 election.

Mary Skanderbeg, a spokeswoman for Elections Manitoba, says setting up polling stations at shopping malls and universities and extending advance polling by one day helped boost the numbers.

About 300 voting booths were set up across the province.

Polls on election day will open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. (CJOB)