Affordability is focus of new Hawaii ad campaign

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Hawaii tourism officials have launched a $4.5 million marketing campaign designed to persuade travelers that the total price of a Hawaii vacation can cost much less than last year, even after the increase in airfares this year.

The theme of the campaign is "Discover More of Hawaii for Less Than You Imagined."

The promotion is part of a joint effort by state and tourism executives from the private sector hoping to slow a decline in tourism in the last several months.

In August, visitor arrivals plummeted 17.3%, including a 24.2% drop from the U.S. West Coast, a traditionally strong source of Hawaii visitors, according to the August report by the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism.

The new campaign is geared to various markets through Sunday newspaper travel sections, network TV websites and Kayak.com and other travel-related websites, said John Monahan, president and CEO of the Hawaii Visitors and Convention Bureau.

The campaign will roll out targeted marketing, primarily in cities with the most potential visitors, including Los Angeles, San Francisco, Seattle, Phoenix, Dallas, Chicago and New York.

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