Travel Weekly's Hawaii E-letter: June 9, 2008

THE HOTEL OCCUPANCY RATE for Hawaii in April dropped to 69.5%, the lowest percentage for any April since 2003. Room revenue also declined in April, according to a report from industry consultants Smith Travel Research and Hospitality Advisors. The average daily rate declined 1.2% to $197.07, and, combined with reduced occupancy, led to a 3.2% drop in revenue per available room, to $137.03. There was a 7.6% drop in visitor arrivals in April, to 538,428, primarily due to the lower number of available seats to Hawaii following the closure of Aloha Airlines and ATA. Though a shortfall was anticipated in the second quarter, it's more pronounced given the drop in airlift, said Joseph Toy, Hospitality Advisors' president and CEO.

HAWAII'S DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH will begin a voluntary checkpoint screening process for international visitors at Honolulu International Airport to detect flu-like illness. The one-year program is a cooperative agreement between the Hawaii Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The Department of Health will work with U.S. Customs and Border Protection, CDC, the Hawaii Department of Transportation and Hawaiian Airlines. The screening process includes a questionnaire, which includes basic demographic information, travel and illness history. Feverish travelers will be asked to go through a voluntary checkpoint process. If they have a fever, the traveler will be tested voluntarily for the flu. The program is similar to the illness surveillance procedures that the Department of Health began at the Honolulu airport in 2005, which was designed to detect influenza-like illnesses and identify infection by new flu strains, including avian flu.

HAWAIIAN AIRLINES is adding four Boeing 717-200s to its interisland fleet to meet growing demand after the shutdown of Aloha Airlines earlier this year. Two planes begin service in September and the other two will be in service by the end of the year. The four planes increase Hawaiian's interisland fleet of Boeing 717s to 15 aircraft. The airline has started recruiting flight crew and additional ground staff to support the expanded operations.

THE GRAND HYATT Kauai Resort & Spa is installing an 18,500 square-foot, 280-kilowatt photovoltaic system at the 602-room hotel that's expected to generate 438,000-kilowatt hours of power annually. The system will be powerful enough to reduce the hotel's carbon dioxide emissions by more than 237,000 tons. The amount of electricity generated by the system is equivalent to what's needed to power 300 homes. Solar manufacturer SunPower Corp. is designing and installing the system, which will be completed in July.

Hawaii Editor: Tim Ryan
Phone:
(808) 373-8809
[email protected]
For promotional opportunities in the Hawaii E-letter, contact Debbie Joseph at [email protected].

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