HONOLULU, Hawai’i – Hawai’i’s tourism economy continues to fare well despite global economic uncertainty, with an increase in arrivals and visitors who are staying longer and spending more than they did in 2010.
Total expenditures by visitors who came to Hawai’i in the first seven months of 2011 increased 16.1 percent, compared to the same period last year, to US$7.2 billion. Total visitor days for all visitors rose 5.3 percent, and total arrivals maintained a 3.6 percent lead over last year at 4,234,156 visitors, according to preliminary statistics released today by the Hawai’i Tourism Authority.
For the month of July 2011, total visitor expenditures rose 5.2 percent (US$55.8 million) from July 2010 to US$1.1 billion. Contributing to the increase was higher daily spending by all visitors (US$177 per person, up from US$164 per person in July 2010), despite a decline in total arrivals (-1.9%) to 668,193 visitors.
Said Mike McCartney, President and CEO of the Hawai’i Tourism Authority: “We anticipate continued growth through the fourth quarter and into 2012 with the continuation of China Eastern Airlines’ direct service from Shanghai and additional airlift and up-gauging of aircraft form Korea and Japan, Australia’s Strategic Airlines launching of service from Brisbane and Melbourne. With continued interest in new routes to Hawai’i, the HTA is working with airlines to maintain and grow airlift to our islands to meet demand.”
Arrivals by air only in July 2011 fell 1.9 percent from last July to 667,707 visitors. Arrivals from Canada jumped 28.6 percent compared to July 2010, the thirteenth consecutive month of double-digit growth. US East arrivals decreased 6 percent from July 2010. Japanese arrivals dropped 9.2 percent compared to July 2010 after four consecutive months of double-digit losses. Arrivals from US West (-1%) declined for a second month.
A total of 486 visitors arrived by cruise ship in July 2011, an off-season month for Hawai’i’s international cruise industry. No visitors came by cruise ship last July.
There continued to be double-digit growth in total spending by US West (+10.2%), US.East (+11.9%) and Canadian (+31.7%) visitors in the first seven months of 2011, boosted by higher average daily spending and increased arrivals. Total Japanese visitor spending also rose (+5.3%), even though Japanese arrivals declined 9.2 percent compared to year-to-date 2010.
“Working in partnership with our visitor industry, the HTA remains committed to aggressively marketing Hawai’i to build on the momentum in the first half of the year to drive our state’s economy to recovery,” McCartney concluded.