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Domestic passenger count exceeds 800,000 at Lihu‘e Airport in 2023

LIHU‘E — The domestic passenger count at Lihu‘e Airport notched its second highest total on record in 2023, despite a year-over-year drop in the number of people getting off those flights to the island of Kaua‘i.

The passenger count weighed in at 832,739 for the 12-month period ended Dec. 31, 2023, compared with 910,558 for the 12-month period ended Dec. 31, 2022.

That marked a decrease of 8.54 percent in the period, according to data compiled by the state of Hawai‘i’s Department of Business, Economic Development & Tourism. Data subject to revision.

The beginning of the 2023 travel season started off with a bang, as 62,903 travelers off-boarded domestic flights in January. That marked the highest total at the airport for the month of January.

But the rising tide changed course in February 2023, and lagged further behind the record-setting pace of 2022 as the months progressed. The month of July was the busiest in 2023 with a passenger count of 84,191, while February was the slowest with 55,966.

The passenger count also ended the year on a down note with a total of 69,000 in December 2023, which was off 9.42 percent from a count of 75,505 in December 2022.

Of note, the December 2023 figure ranked fourth all-time for the month, while the December 2022 total sits atop the rankings.

The count only includes passengers from direct domestic flights, including Kaua‘i residents returning home, and excludes the thousands of visitors who arrive by inter-island air each month.

That means visitors who arrive from neighboring islands aren’t accounted for in the domestic deplanement total even if their flight originated in the Lower 48, nor are passengers on flights from Canada.
Source: The Garden Island

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