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Hawaii tourist arrivals and spending continue to soar in July

By Allison Schaefers

LAST UPDATED: 12:31 p.m. HST, Aug 29, 2012

Hawaii's visitor industry continued to heat up in July with arrivals and spending gains contributing to what continues to be one of the hottest summers ever. 

Total visitor spending in July rose by 17.8 percent to $1.28 billion, according to statistics released today by the Hawaii Tourism Authority. The $193.8 million gain from the same period in 2011 helped push spending during the first seven months of the year to $8.4 billion, an increase of 20.8 percent.

Higher daily spending and 7.8 percent growth in total arrivals were behind the increase. In July, the state welcomed 720,355 visitors. During the first seven months, arrivals rose 9.8 percent to 4,652,621 visitors.

Arrivals from Hawaii's top U.S. West market grew for the ninth consecutive month. Arrivals from this core market were up 3.4 percent from July 2011 to 299,072 visitors. Likewise, U.S. West spending grew by 10.3 percent to $436.7 million. 

The number of visitors from the U.S. East, Hawaii's second-largest visitor market, remained flat. However, increased daily spending boosted U.S. East total visitor expenditures by 15.1 percent to $347.8 million.  

Japanese arrivals, the state's largest international market, grew 21.5 percent to 135,764 visitors. Spending by these visitors rose 31.6 percent to $248.8 million.

Canadian arrivals, considered to be one of Hawaii's more mature international markets, were flat in July. Likewise, spending only grew by 1.8 percent to $46.3 million. 

Arrivals from all other markets, which include South Korea, China and Taiwan, grew by 24.6 percent to 93,086. Spending by these visitors also grew 29.9 percent to $203.4 million.

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