George D. Szigeti, president and CEO of the Hawaii Tourism Authority (HTA), issued the following statement regarding Hawaii’s visitor statistics for May 2016.
“Visitor arrivals and expenditures year-to-date show that Hawaii is still ahead of last year’s record-setting pace with total arrivals up 3.1 percent and spending up 1 percent. Visitors from our two largest markets, the U.S. West and East, led arrivals in May and continues its positive course of year-over-year growth, despite a slight drop in arrivals last month due to travel around Easter holiday falling in March instead of April this year.
“On the international side, arrivals from Korea were strong in May seeing a double digit increase year-over-year. However, declines in arrivals and expenditures from the Japan and Canada markets can be attributed to a weaker exchange rate and the fact that Golden Week in Japan shifted travel to late April this year versus the first week of May in 2015.
“We are also closely monitoring the situation in Europe and how that may affect travel. It’s too early to know precisely how the situation there will affect the global economy, including tourism related impacts. In 2015, 143,434 visitors from Europe came to Hawaii, with 50,469 of that total coming from the United Kingdom. This represents less than 2 percent of the 8.6 million visitors who came to Hawaii last year.”