Visitor spending in Hawaii rose 8.7 percent year over year in May for a total of $1.3 billion, according to the latest statistics from the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA).
Total visitor arrivals also rose 4.5 percent, fueled by growth in air arrivals (up 3.9%) and cruise arrivals (up 49.1%).
Hawaii’s four largest visitor markets -- the western United States, eastern United States, Japan and Canada -- all reported year-over-year increases in visitor spending and arrivals for the third straight month in May. Spending from the western U.S. rose 9 percent, while spending from the eastern U.S. was up 16.4 percent. Visitor spending from Japan rose 9.7 percent, buoyed by the introduction of direct air service to Kona and increased air service to Honolulu, while the Canada market continued to rebound with an increase in visitor spending of 19.2 percent. Visitor spending from all other international markets combined declined in May by 3.9 percent due to a drop in visitor arrivals and lower daily spending.
All four larger Hawaiian Islands saw growth in visitor spending and arrivals in May, and Kauai and the island of Hawaii both recorded double-digit growth in visitor spending for each of the first five months of 2017.
Total air seats serving Hawaii in May dropped slightly, by 0.7 percent, versus last year, as seat growth from the eastern U.S. (+10.6%) and Japan (+6.5%) was offset by declines from Other Asia (-17.3%), Oceania (-13.1%) and the western U.S. (-1.6%).
Year to date, visitor spending statewide increased by 9.8 percent, bolstered by growth in arrivals (+4.2%) and daily spending (+5.2%). Year to date, Hawaii’s four largest visitor markets all reported strong growth in visitor spending: western U.S. (+14.9%), eastern U.S. (+11.4%), Japan (+14.6%) and Canada (+9.9%).
Visitor spending from all other international markets combined declined year to date by 4.5 percent as a result of a 5 percent decrease in arrivals and a 3.9 percent drop in daily spending.