Visitor Spending Increased in First Half of 2018
Visitors to the Hawaiian Islands spent a total of $9.26 billion in the first half of 2018, an increase of 10.8% compared to the first half of last year, according to preliminary statistics released by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority (HTA).
“Hawaii’s tourism industry did extremely well in the first half of 2018 in all key categories. Most significantly, visitor spending and the state tax revenue that tourism generated were both up by 10.8% to $9.26 billion and $1.08 billion, respectively. These totals represent increases of $901 million in visitor spending and $105 million in state tax revenue compared to the first half of 2017,” said George D. Szigeti, president and CEO of HTA.
Hawai‘i’s four largest visitor markets, U.S. West (+10.5% to $3.38 billion), U.S. East (+11% to $2.46 billion), Japan (+7.1% to $1.14 billion) and Canada (+6.8% to $650 million) all reported gains in visitor spending in the first half versus the same period last year. Combined visitor spending from all other international markets also increased (+15.5% to $1.61 billion).
Total visitor arrivals in the first half grew 8.2% to 4,982,843 visitors compared to a year ago comprised of arrivals by air service (+8.4% to 4,916,841) and cruise ships (-5.8% to 66,003). Visitor arrivals by air increased from U.S. West (+11.3% to 2,065,554), U.S. East (+8.3% to 1,130,783), Japan (+1.2% to 746,584), Canada (+5.7% to 305,138) and from all other International Markets (+10% to 668,782).
All four larger Hawaiian Islands realized growth in visitor spending and arrivals in the first half compared to last year.
June 2018 Visitor Results
In June 2018, total visitor spending rose 10.3 percent to $1.60 billion compared to June of last year. Visitor spending increased from U.S. West (+14.9% to $640 million), U.S. East (+9.4% to $467.2 million), Japan (+6% to $194.5 million) and from All Other International Markets (+6.4% to $258.5 million), but declined from Canada (-1.4% to $36.7 million).
Statewide average daily spending rose to $196 per person (+1.6%) in June year-over-year. Visitors from U.S. West (+4.7% to $169 per person), U.S. East (+1.5% to $207 per person) and Japan (+0.5% to $252 per person) spent more per day, while visitors from Canada (-4.7% to $165 per person) and from All Other International Markets (-3.1% to $230 per person) spent less.
Total visitor arrivals grew 7.3 percent to 897,099 visitors in June, with more visitors coming by both air service (+7.2%) and cruise ships (+1,137 visitors). Total visitor days grew 8.6 percent in June. The average daily census, or number of visitors on any given day in June, was 272,020, up 8.6 percent compared to June of last year.
More visitors arrived via air service in June from U.S. West (+9.8% to 408,751), U.S. East (+7.7% to 221,319) and Japan (+3.2% to 130,456) but fewer came from Canada (-1.4% to 18,894). Arrivals from All Other International Markets (+3.5% to 116,543) increased versus a year ago.
In June, Oahu recorded increases in both visitor spending (+12.3% to $760.6 million) and arrivals (+5.5% to 542,951) compared to June of last year. Maui also saw growth in visitor spending (+10.1% to $433.5 million) and arrivals (+11.5% to 280,561), as did Kauai with gains in visitor spending (+13.1% to $195.3 million) and arrivals (+9.1% to 135,484). However, the island of Hawaii recorded a slight drop in visitor spending (-0.9% to $194.3 million) and decreased arrivals (-4.8% to 149,817) compared to a year ago.
A total of 1,142,020 trans-Pacific air seats serviced the Hawaiian Islands in June, up 7.1 percent from last year. Air seat capacity increased from Oceania (+13.5%), U.S. East (+10.9%), U.S. West (+8.4%), Japan (+2.2%) and Canada (+1%), offsetting fewer seats from Other Asia (-14.4%).
U.S. West: In the first half of 2018, visitor arrivals were up from both the Mountain (+13.9%) and Pacific (+10.8%) regions year-over-year. Stays in condominiums (+9.8%), hotels (+9%) and timeshares (+4.2%) increased, and significantly more visitors stayed in rental homes (+24.4%) and bed and breakfast properties (+24.1%). Visitors spent $182 per person (+0.8%). Visitors spent more for transportation and food and beverage, and about the same for lodging, shopping and entertainment and recreation.
In June, the growth in visitor arrivals from the Mountain region (+14.9%) was driven by the increase in visitors from Colorado (+20.4%), Nevada (+16.8%), Utah (+16.4%) and Arizona (+11%). The increase in visitors from the Pacific region (+8.7%) was supported by more arrivals from Oregon (+13.4%), California (+8.6%) and Washington (+6.8%).
U.S. East: In the first half of 2018, visitor arrivals increased from all regions highlighted by growth from the two largest regions, East North Central (+10.5%) and South Atlantic (+8.9%) versus a year ago. Stays in condominiums (+8.6%), timeshares (+6.3%) and hotels (+5.9%) increased, and there was considerable growth in rental home stays (+25.8%) compared to the first half of last year. Average daily spending by visitors rose to $216 per person (+4.2%). Spending was higher for lodging, transportation, entertainment and recreation, and food and beverage, while shopping expenses were about the same as last year.
In June, visitor arrivals increased from all regions except the New England region (-4.6%).
Japan: There was moderate growth in condominium (+4.9%) and hotel (+1.4%) usage by visitors in the first half of 2018, while stays in rental homes (+37.3%) rose substantially compared to a year ago. Fewer visitors purchased package trips (-7%) and group tours (-1%), while more visitors made their own travel arrangements (+15.8%).
Average daily spending rose to $258 per person (+5.4%) in the first half year-over-year. Lodging and transportation expenses increased while spending on shopping and food and beverage declined. Entertainment and recreation expenses were similar to a year ago.
Canada: In the first half of 2018, visitor stays in hotels (+5.3%) increased but usage of timeshares (-5.8%) and condominiums (-0.5%) declined compared to a year ago. Significantly more visitors stayed in rental homes (+28.9%). Average daily spending by visitors increased to $170 per person (+3.4%). Lodging, transportation and shopping expenses were higher, while spending on entertainment and recreation was lower. Food and beverage expenses were about the same compared to the first half of last year.
MCI: In the first half of 2018, a total of 289,101 visitors came to Hawai‘i for meetings, conventions and incentives (MCI) events, up slightly (+0.7%) from a year ago. In June, total MCI visitors decreased (-9.6% to 41,501), as fewer visitors attended conventions (-2.5%) and corporate meetings (-7.4%) or traveled on incentive trips (-16.3%) compared to June of last year.
Honeymoon: In the first half of 2018, total honeymoon visitors declined (-3.2% to 258,608) versus a year ago. In June, honeymoon visitors decreased (-6.1% to 54,189) compared to last year, marked by fewer arrivals from Japan (-7.5% to 21,747) and Korea (-30% to 6,446).
Get Married: A total of 49,770 visitors came to Hawai‘i to get married in the first half of 2018, down 3.7% from last year. In June, the number of visitors getting married in Hawai‘i declined (-14.3% to 10,082), with fewer visitors from U.S. West (-25%) and Japan (-18.8%) compared to last June.