Visitor spending in Hawaii decreased in April 2019

Visitor spending in Hawaii decreased in April 2019

Visitors to the Hawaiian Islands spent a total of $1.33 billion in April 2019, a decrease of 6.2 percent compared to the same month last year, according to preliminary statistics released by the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA).

Tourism dollars from the Transient Accommodations Tax (TAT) also helped to fund events and initiatives statewide in April, including the Merrie Monarch Festival, Celebration of the Arts Festival, Kaū Coffee Festival, Honolulu Biennial, and the LEI (Leadership, Exploration, and Inspiration) Program, which encourages Hawaii high school students to pursue careers in travel and hospitality.

In April, visitor spending increased slightly from the U.S. West (+1.0% to $553.3 million) and Japan (+0.4% to $156.5 million) but declined from U.S. East (-7.9% to $285.8 million), Canada (-2.4% to $97.1 million) and All Other International Markets (-22.9% to $229.5 million) versus last year.

On a statewide level, average daily visitor spending was down (-9.2% to $188 per person) in April year-over-year. Visitors from U.S. East (-7.6% to $201), U.S. West (-6.4% to $172), Canada (-4.0% to $153) and All Other International Markets (-18.1% to $229) spent less per day, while daily spending by visitors from Japan (-0.1% to $232) was similar to a year ago.

Total visitor arrivals rose 6.6 percent to 856,250 visitors in April, supported by growth in arrivals from both air service (+5.8% to 831,445) and cruise ships (+46.3% to 24,805). Total visitor days[1] increased 3.4 percent. The average daily census[2], or the number of visitors on any given day in April, was 227,768, up 3.4 percent compared to last year.

Visitor arrivals by air service increased in April from U.S. West (+12.4% to 390,802), U.S. East (+2.4% to 157,256), Japan (+2.1% to 115,078) and Canada (+6.9% to 55,690), but declined from All Other International Markets (-6.1% to 112,620).

Among the four larger islands, visitor spending on Oahu decreased (-1.2% to $626.8 million) in April despite growth in visitor arrivals (+8.7% to 494,192) compared to a year ago. This was also true for Maui, as visitor spending declined (-4.6% to $394.4 million) while arrivals increased (+5.2% to 249,076). The island of Hawaii recorded decreases in both visitor spending (-20.5% to $154.8 million) and visitor arrivals (-14.2% to 131,499), as did Kauai with its visitor spending (-14.8% to $134.2 million) and visitor arrivals (-4.8% to 106,009).

A total of 1,112,200 trans-Pacific air seats serviced the Hawaiian Islands in April, up 2.5 percent from a year ago. Growth in air seats from U.S. West (+4.3%), U.S. East (+2.5%) and Japan (+0.7%) offset declines from Other Asia Markets (-12.5%) and Oceania (-6.5%). Seats from Canada (+0.3%) were comparable to April 2018.
[1] Aggregate number of days stayed by all visitors.
[2] Average daily census is the average number of visitors present on a single day.

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