As we come out of the peak summer travel season, visitor arrivals and spending for the year continue to surpass 2012. 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. Year-to-date tourism has contributed $1.04 billion in state tax revenue, $50 million more than same period last year.
We anticipate seeing a slowing in arrivals and expenditures as we enter the fall shoulder season. We 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.
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.
Our visitor industry connects the Hawaiian Islands to 50 gateway cities from around the world, and we will continue to work with our airline partners to expand direct service and frequency to the Hawaiian Islands. Diversifying and increasing access from growing and emerging markets like Beijing, Shanghai, Taipei, Auckland and secondary U.S. cities help us to maintain and grow market share for Hawaii.
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. 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.
Hawaii Tourism Authority