From Kona to Kapalua to Kalakaua avenue in Waikiki, the crowds of visitors are smaller this summer. And the latest counts suggest the gap over last year is widening. 2008 arrivals by air will reach 4.4 million tomorrow, and that’s a lot of tourists, spending a lot of money. But not compared to last year.
Statewide arrivals so far this month are down 16%, the biggest gap so far this year. Japanese arrivals are down 12%. Mainland arrivals are down in double-digit percentages to Oahu, the Big Island and Maui county.
We’re down 100-thousand visitors to oahu so far this month, down 20-thousand on Maui, down 5-thousand to the Big Island. Kauai is bucking the trend, with roughly a fifth more visitors than last summer, a few hundred more arriving daily. Factors?
The mainland economy, room rate sticker shock, the hassle of flying, and vog.