Hawai‘i Tourism Industry Set New Record Totals in 2017
$16.78 Billion in Visitor Spending; $1.96 Billion in Generated Tax Revenue; 9.38 Million Visitor Arrivals; 12.23 Million Air Seats Serving Hawai‘i; 204,000 Jobs Supported Statewide
News Release from HTA, January 31, 2018
HONOLULU – For the sixth consecutive year, Hawai‘i’s tourism industry in 2017 achieved new annual record totals in five key categories, visitor spending, generated tax revenue, visitor arrivals, trans-Pacific air seats serving Hawai‘i and jobs supported statewide, according to preliminary yearend statistics released today by the Hawai‘i Tourism Authority.
Visitors to the Hawaiian Islands spent $16.78 billion1 in 2017, an increase of 6.2 percent from the previous record in 2016. Spending by visitors generated a record $1.96 billion in state tax revenue in 2017, an increase of $114.76 million (+6.2%) over 2016.
Additionally, a record 204,000 jobs2 statewide were supported by Hawai‘i’s tourism industry in 2017 an increase of 5.2 percent over 2016.
A total of 9,382,986 visitors came to Hawai‘i in 2017, surpassing the 2016 record of 8,934,277 visitors by 5 percent. Total visitor days3 rose 4.7 percent from a year ago. On average, there were 230,113 visitors in the Hawaiian Islands on any given day in 2017, up 5 percent versus 2016.
Arrivals by air rose 4.9 percent to 9,256,761 visitors in 2017, driven by growth from U.S. West, U.S. East, Japan and Canada. Arrivals by cruise ships also increased (+12.2% to 126,225 visitors) with 12 more tours from out-of-state cruise ships compared to 2016.
All four larger Hawaiian Islands realized growth in visitor spending, visitor days and arrivals in 2017 compared to last year. The island of Hawai‘i recorded the largest increases of all the islands in visitor spending (+14.7% to $2.40 billion), visitor days (+11.2%) and arrivals (+13.7% to 1,762,914) in 2017 compared to 2016, supported by increases in direct air service from U.S. and Japan markets. Visitor spending on O‘ahu rose 3.9 percent to $7.63 billion, boosted by the growth in visitor days (+3.6%) and arrivals (+4.1% to 5,672,123). Visitor spending on Maui gained 5.2 percent to $4.76 billion, visitor days rose 2.9 percent, and arrivals were up 4.1 percent to 2,742,108 visitors. Visitor spending on Kaua‘i grew 9.6 percent to $1.83 billion, bolstered by growth in visitor days (+5.5%) and arrivals (+7.5% to 1,276,803).
A record total of 12,235,608 trans-Pacific air seats (+1.8%) serviced the Hawaiian Islands in 2017. Growth in air seats from U.S. East (+9.2%), Japan (+8.3%) and Other Asia (+0.7%) offset fewer seats from Oceania (-6.1%). Total air seats from U.S. West and Canada were similar to 2016.
For the month of December 2017, visitor spending rose 2.9 percent to $1.63 billion. Total visitor days (+4.9%) and arrivals increased (+6.3% to 880,441) but the average daily spending by each visitor was lower (-2% to $196 per person) than in December 2016.