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Visitor arrivals and spending in Hawaii hit records for May

By Dave Segal

LAST UPDATED: 10:18 a.m. HST, Jun 28, 2012


Hawaii visitor arrivals and spending hit record levels for the month of May as tourism continued fueling the state’s economic recovery.

The number of visitors to the state jumped 12.5 percent to 622,899 to top the previous high for the month of 599,842 in May 2007, according to preliminary data released today by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. Spending surged 17.5 percent to $1.1 billion from $912.3 million during the same month a year ago.

All of the state’s major visitor markets showed gains in arrivals and spending with Japan maintaining its rebound from the devastating earthquake and tsunami disasters of March 2011. Japan arrivals soared 31.4 percent to 106,569 but remained below the 1997 record for May at 169,402. Japanese visitor spending increased 36.4 percent to $188.1 million, fueled by a 6.6 percent gain in daily spending of $307 per person.

U.S. West, the state’s top tourism market, had an 8.7 percent increase in visitor arrivals to 264,158 while spending rose 15.1 percent to $383.1 million. U.S. East arrivals gained 6.8 percent to 140,739 and spending was up 3.2 percent to $243.9 million. Canadian arrivals edged up 0.2 percent to 23,630 with spending increasing 2.5 percent to $42 million.

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