As we come out of the peak summer travel season, visitor arrivals and spending for the year continue to surpass 2012 in Hawaii, says Mike McCartney, president and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority.
"While the growth in August was not as robust as in previous months, it is important to note that due to continued efforts to increase distribution statewide, we have been successful in increasing total expenditures on the neighbor islands," he says. "Year-to-date tourism has contributed $1.04 billion in state tax revenue, $50 million more than same period last year."
McCartney says, however, he anticipates seeing a slowing in arrivals and expenditures as the fall shoulder season approaches. The Hawaii Tourism Authority will continue to monitor the fluctuating fuel costs, strengthening of the dollar against international currencies and other economic conditions, which have been impacting visitor length of stay, he says.
"It is important that we recognize that the volatility of the market and competition could hinder the growth of our state’s lead economic driver and resource, which currently supports 170,000 jobs statewide, one Hawaii job for every 47 visitors," says McCartney.
He says the Hawaii Tourism Authority will continue to work with its airline partners to expand direct service and frequency to the Hawaiian Islands.
"We want to extend a sincere mahalo to the community for their support and for playing a crucial role in our tourism industry’s success," he says. "Our people, place and culture is our competitive advantage and make the Hawaiian Islands a one-of-a-kind destination. Tourism benefits us all, and it is important that we work together to ensure its sustainability and success."