January of 2013 offered the same positive momentum the State of Hawaii has seen in recent history. This trend actually continues the upward momentum on record for every month since January, 2011. Both total arrivals and overall expenditures increased during the month of January, 2013.
For the first month of 2013, total arrivals into the state increased by nearly 6% overall compared to January of 2012. Total visitor expenditures grew by nearly the same number. The US West region arrivals grew by 9% and expenditures increased by over 14%. Total arrivals from the US Eastern market increased by almost 2% while visitor spending improved by nearly 11%. Arrivals from the Japan market continued its eighteen month consecutive run, improving by nearly 8%. Expenditures increased by nearly 4%. Canadian visitors continued their support, offering over 5% additional visitors and almost 2% higher spending compared to January, 2012.
Each of the major Hawaiian Islands had increases with arrivals and visitor spending this last January. Kauai led the charge followed by the Big Island of Hawaii, then Maui and finally Oahu.
Chinese visitors decreased overall due to a shift in the Lunar New Year from February this year to January of last year. February should show improvements for that specific market. Though there were fewer visitors getting married on the islands this past month, honeymoon arrivals did increase by over 8%. Incentive trip arrivals increased however convention and corporate meeting visitors did decline compared to last year.
Guests staying in condos vs. hotels did increase for the month, improving by nearly 6%. Guests selecting hotel accommodations increased by almost 5% compared to January, 2012. These numbers are not surprising given the vacation rental market has been extremely busy over the past few months.
As we move further into 2013, business levels continue to improve. The Hawaiian Islands are busier than ever and the trend appears to be holding steady. The economy of Hawaii welcomes this continued success and we look forward to the future.