Shane Nelson
Shane Nelson

InsightTotal visitor spending exceeded $1.28 billion across the state of Hawaii in July, a jump of nearly 18% over the same month in 2011, as the state saw arrivals grow 7.8%, to more than 720,000 travelers.

“Hawaii’s tourism economy continues to be on pace for a record year through July as the state welcomed 1,800 more visitors each day and an additional $17 per person in daily spending compared to 2011,” Mike McCartney, president and CEO for the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA), said in a statement. “We anticipate that the momentum from the positive increase in visitor arrivals and spending will continue through the second half of the year.”

Spending by visitors traveling to Hawaii from the U.S. West jumped 10.3%, and arrivals climbed 3.4% year over year, according to statistics released by the HTA in late August.

Although visitor totals from the U.S. East were essentially flat in July, travelers coming from that market spent 15% more during their vacations in July of this year, and Japanese arrivals surged 21.5% during the month, continuing to recover following the devastating earthquake and tsunami that struck the country in March of last year.

Travelers from Canada, Hawaii’s fourth-largest source market, were essentially unchanged year over year but spending improved by nearly 2%.

Meetings, conventions and incentives business was up 5.8% in July across the destination, while the number of couples traveling to the Islands for weddings surged 17.1%, and honeymoons jumped 20%.

Total air seats to the Islands during the month showed significant growth, climbing 10.3% over the same period last year; no visitors traveled to the state onboard cruise ships in July 2012.

Through the first seven months of this year, total visitor spending to Hawaii soared 20.8%, to $8.39 billion, while the state welcomed more than 4.6 million people, an increase of nearly 10% over the same period in 2011.
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