As 2022 came to a close, we found the end of your statistics to be very interesting compared to what we experienced as a company. We will look at it in comparison to 2019 because that was the last full year that tourism was open for the entire year.
Overall arrivals were down 11% in 2022 compared to 2019. This decrease seemed to be directly related to Asian travel with travel down from Japan 83%. With these guests traditionally preferring hotels, it does not have a significant direct impact on vacation rentals.
Average length of stay
The average length of stay increased by 6%. International travelers were responsible for the majority of the increase due to their average stay increasing by over 50%. This is likely due to the process they had to go through in order to get out of country with existing COVID19 protocols in place in their country.
Even with the 11% decrease in overall tourism, there was a 9% increase in total expenditures. While this is great, it seems to be more fitting than some of the hotel rates you can find online at times. It goes to show that hotels are not consistently getting the outrageous rates that some people have heard of.
Comparison of Hawaiian Islands
The Big Island did the best in comparison to the other major islands, but just slightly better than Maui. Oahu fared the worst by a large amount in comparison Maui and the Big Island. This is probably related to most of the travelers from Asia stay on Oahu.
Accommodation of Choice
While for the last 10 years the popularity of vacation rentals has grown from year to year, this was the first year there was an actual decline from 2021 to 2022. This should have been expected given that in early 2021 some of the hotels were just opening back up and there was a higher demand for vacation rentals during COVID19 as many people felt they offered a safer environment. We do not expect this downward trend to continue.
Flights and Capacity
Two of the biggest factors moving forward for Hawaii tourism are flight schedules and capacity. Most airlines have not increased their flights back to Hawaii to the same numbers of 2019. This also more than likely played a role in the decreased overall tourism. Most of this is related to the island of Oahu, but even the Big Island and Maui saw increases of less than 2%, which there seemed to be more demand.
The amount of people on the planes decreased by close to 5%. Most people believe this is mostly related to last minute cancellations due to COVID19 or other reasons as many airlines have not reestablished their cancellation policies from 2019.
Once people come to Hawaii it seems to be a preferred destination. Over 75% of travelers to Hawaii have been to Hawaii before. The average number of times a traveler has been to Hawaii is 6. We have also experienced similar numbers in that once people come to Hawaii and find a vacation rental company they are comfortable with and a vacation rental that they like, they typically continue to come back.