Visitor spending keeps climbing

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    Chef Loea Kamibayashi of Living Foods leads the efforts in creating sliders for waiting patrons, Wednesday during the Kauai Culinary Market at The Shops at Kukuiula.

  • Dennis Fujimoto/The Garden Island

    Edy and Wendy Fernandez of California, visiting Kauai for the first time, enjoy an iced coconut, Wednesday at the Kauai Culinary Market in The Shops at Kukuiula.

Despite major flooding damage to the North Shore following mid-April’s epic rainfall, visitors continue flocking to Kauai.

The Hawaii Tourism Authority reported that for June, Kauai had 135,484 visitors, up 9.1 percent from June 2017.

For the first six months of the year, Kauai has had 698,375 guests, up 11.5 percent from the first six months of 2017.

And those visitors are spending lots of money.

In June, visitors spent $195.3 million, up 13.1 percent from June 2017. For the first six months of the year, visitors spent $1.04 billion on Kauai, a 9.2 percent increase over the first six months of 2017.

The state of Hawaii is doing just as well when it comes to tourism, HTA reported.

Visitors to the Hawaiian Islands spent a total of $9.3 billion in the first half of 2018, an increase of 10.8 percent compared to the first half of last year.

“Hawaii’s tourism industry did extremely well in the first half of 2018 in all key categories,” said George D. Szigeti, president and CEO of the HTA. “Most significantly, visitor spending and the state tax revenue that tourism generated were both up by 10.8 percent to $9.26 billion and $1.08 billion, respectively. These totals represent increases of $901 million in visitor spending and $105 million in state tax revenue compared to the first half of 2017.”

He said Hawaii’s peak summer travel season began with a strong month of June. All of the islands recorded double-digit increases in visitor spending, except for the island of Hawaii, which was down by less than 1 percent.

“The ongoing eruption of Kilauea volcano clearly made an impact on travel to the island, particularly with a nearly 20 percent drop in day trips during June,” Szigeti said.

Hawaii’s four largest visitor markets, U.S. West (+10.5 percent to $3.38 billion), U.S. East (+11 percent to $2.46 billion), Japan (+7.1 percent to $1.14 billion) and Canada (+6.8 percent to $650 million) all reported gains in visitor spending in the first half versus the same period last year.

All four larger Hawaiian Islands realized growth in visitor spending and arrivals in the first half compared to last year.


Visitor numbers were corrected in this story.

  1. kauaiis fun August 3, 2018 2:15 am Reply

    All that tourism money and they cannot fund clean public bathrooms, decent parking lots near beaches, and invest in infrastructure?

  2. burnt toast August 3, 2018 9:39 am Reply

    The chef is creating sliders looks like plain burger patty on a grill.

  3. The Real Wario August 5, 2018 8:42 am Reply

    God I hate tourists. They’re the cancer of the island

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


By participating in online discussions you acknowledge that you have agreed to the TERMS OF SERVICE. An insightful discussion of ideas and viewpoints is encouraged, but comments must be civil and in good taste, with no personal attacks. If your comments are inappropriate, you may be banned from posting. To report comments that you believe do not follow our guidelines, send us an email.