In its fourth-quarter forecast, the Hawaii Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism projected that total spending by visitors to the state will be just under $10 billion in 2009, declining $1.4 billion from last year.

The state's visitor expenditures forecast for 2009 is off more than $2.8 billion from the record-breaking spending totals seen in 2007.

The DBEDT projects a 4.5% decline in visitor arrivals when compared with 2008's figures. Total visitor days are expected to drop 4.6% year over year.

According to the state forecast, visitor arrivals in 2010 are likely to increase by 2%, while total spending will remain essentially unchanged. Arrivals in 2011 are projected to climb 4.1%, with spending jumping 8.8%.

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