Visitors from the U.S. mainland are pushing the Aloha State's tourism industry toward another record-breaking year.
Visitor arrivals from Hawaii's largest source market, U.S. states west of the Rockies, increased 4.3% during the first half of this year, to more than 1.7 million travelers. Visitor totals also grew from the U.S. East, where arrivals climbed 4.1% year over year to more than 929,000 people, according to preliminary estimates released by the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA) July 28.
Meanwhile, total visitor spending by U.S. West travelers increased 5% during the quarter, to more than $2.7 billion, and U.S. East expenditures improved by 3.3%, to just over $1.9 billion.
"Hawaii's tourism industry achieved record totals for the first two quarters, attracting more visitors at 4.4 million, and generating more spending at $7.7 billion, than any previous year," George Szigeti, the HTA's president and CEO, said in a statement.
Arrivals from Japan, Hawaii's largest international market, inched up 1.6% to more than 693,000 travelers, but spending by Japanese visitors dropped 4.3%, to $936 million.
Canadian arrivals, meanwhile, sunk more than 11% year over year as expenditures from the market plunged more than 17%, to $551 million.