HONOLULU — Kaua‘i welcomed 138,130 visitors in July, down slightly from the same month last year (139,157, -0.7%).
Visitor spending was $238.9 million compared to $201.3 million (+18.7%) in July 2019. The average daily census on Kaua‘i was 34,864 visitors in July 2022, up from 33,336 visitors (+4.6%) in July 2019.
Through the first seven months of 2022, there were 782,268 visitors to Kaua‘i compared to 825,696 visitors (-5.3%) in the first seven months of 2019. For the first seven months of 2022, total visitor spending was $1.29 billion compared to $1.17 billion (+11.1%) in the first seven months of 2019.
If the average of nearly 112,000 visitors a month over the first seven months holds steady, Kaua‘i will welcome around 1,340,000 visitors in calendar 2022.
And the state Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism does not forecast full recovery of the visitor industry until 2025.
According to preliminary visitor statistics released by the DBEDT, a total of 919,154 visitors came to the islands in July 2022, representing a 92.4 percent recovery from July 2019. This is the highest monthly visitor count since Jan. 2020. Visitors spent $1.94 billion in the state in July 2022, an increase of 14.3 percent compared to the $1.70 billion reported for July 2019.
August numbers should be released soon.
“As we pass the middle half of 2022 and compare the state’s economic recovery through tourism with 2019, visitors spent 5.8% or $610.1 million more during the same period with arrivals to Hawai‘i lower by 13.2% or -815,906 for the first seven months. We are currently 86.8% recovered from 2019,” said Mike McCartneey, DBEDT director.
“Therefore, as we move forward together, we must strive to achieve a healthy balance between our community, the environment and the visitor industry. This balance also includes bringing back our international markets later this year. Tourism is an economic opportunity for individuals, businesses and communities to uplift and strengthen our home,” he said.
“Meaningful economic recovery continued during the peak summer month of July as Hawai‘i saw significant increases in total visitor spending from the U.S. and Canada markets compared to July 2019,” said John De Fries, Hawai‘i Tourism Authority president and CEO.
“Travel demand from Japan is anticipated to gradually increase as we head into the fall and winter seasons, with the recent resumption of air service between Tokyo-Kona and Tokyo-Honolulu adding to the steady return of international flights,” De Fries said.
“Our destination-management work will continue to focus on educating visitors about traveling within our islands in a manner that is mindful, as we seek to balance the economic vitality of our industry with the health of our natural environment and the well-being of our communities. Travelers from around the world have come to know and appreciate that Hawai‘i is indeed a special place where dreams do come true,” said De Fries.
Source: The Garden Island