Visitor spending and arrivals for Hawaii both increased in May when compared to the same period in 2017.
There were a total of 804,125 visitors to the Aloha State for the month, 7% more than May 2017, who spent $1.42 billion, an 11% increase, according to statistics released by the Hawaii Tourism Authority.
Visitors spent roughly 4% more on a daily basis in May 2018 than last year, and increased traffic was led by double-digit percentage increases in arrivals from the U.S. East, U.S. West and increased international visitation.
"May was the fourth straight month that Hawaii's tourism industry realized double-digit increases in air seat capacity and visitor spending, two key categories that are interrelated and vital to the state's economic health," HTA CEO and president George Szigeti said in a statement. "The growth in both categories is especially noteworthy as May has historically been an off-peak shoulder month for travel to the Hawaiian Islands. It's encouraging to know that both air carriers and travel consumers expressed such confidence in Hawaii as a travel destination during May."
Visitor spending on the four most visited islands grew in the month of May, with double-digit percentage increases on Kauai (13%), Oahu (11%) and Maui (14%). The Island of Hawaii, which has been coping with disruptions from the continued eruption of Kilauea, also saw an increase in spending for May 2018 over May 2017, but a more modest 3% bump. The growth in spending came despite a 1.6% drop in total visitors to Hawaii Island for the month. During the month of May cruise ships skipped scheduled stops on the Island of Hawaii, a loss of 6,600 visitors, according to the HTA.
Overall air seat capacity to the state is up 13% in May compared to the same period last year.
Year to date, statewide visitor spending is up 11%, to $7.66 billion, and arrivals are up 8%, to nearly 4.1 million, through the end of May.