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Letter from Mike McCartney


We’re well into the last quarter of the year, and we wanted to update you on the efforts that the Hawaii Tourism Authority, together with all of you, our industry, global marketing and community partners, are undertaking to preserve the vitality of Hawaii’s tourism economy.  Most recently, we shared positive news when we released our August visitor statistics, based on data collected for the first eight months of 2011, and compared to the same period last year:
•    Arrivals are up 2.5 percent
•    Total visitor days are  up 4.0 percent
•    Total visitor expenditures are up 16.1 percent to $8.25 billion, up nearly $1 billion over the same period

We are also confident that we will meet our target of $12.6 billion in visitor expenditures and 7.47 million visitors by the end of the year, which translates into $1.12 billion of state tax revenue.   The following information will provide insight into how we expect to be successful:

Increased Airlift from Asia to Australia
Contributing to the momentum is continuing growth through 2012 in airlift from Asia and Oceania markets:
•    China Eastern Airlines – Shanghai, China
•    Asiana Airlines – Seoul, South Korea
•    Hawaiian Airlines – Osaka and Fukuoka, Japan; daily service to Sydney, Australia
•    Delta Air Lines – Fukuoka and Osaka, Japan
•    Japan Airlines – Nagoya, Japan
•    Increased charter service out of Japan
•    New and increased service from Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney, Australia  

Preserving Hawaii’s Brand, Preserving Hawaii’s Jobs
The HTA is guided by Hawaiian values and remains committed to the following:
•    Increasing access – air seats and routes – to enable travel to and from the Hawaiian Islands
•    Implementing brand marketing programs to drive demand
•    Supporting unique Hawaii experiences
•    Contributing to a good quality of life, including providing more than 150,000 jobs or 19% of all Hawaii jobs, for residents
•    Providing opportunities for increased commerce and diversified economic development through tourism

To learn more about Hawaii’s official state agency for tourism, click here to watch a short video.

HTA’s Budget and Brand Management Work
The HTA board of directors also approved $74,971,400 for the FY 2012 HTA budget on August 25, 2011.   Behind this budget is the recently approved HTA Strategic Plan: 2010-2013, which includes new targets for 2012, and a new framework from which our agency will continue to operate to sustain Hawaii’s world renowned brand.  This organizational realignment better connects marketing and experiences, and enables HTA to achieve greater brand marketing efficiencies as well as cultivate quality programs and products that are unique to the Hawaii experience.  

We are pleased to be able to share our budget statement, and two-page description of how HTA is working with all visitor industry stakeholders to sustain Hawaii’s tourism economy.

Working Together, Working for Hawaii
We look forward to working in partnership with you, and continuing to have success. There is much work to do and many challenges to face but together, we feel confident that we will persevere and contribute successfully to Hawaii remaining as the special place that it is. Mahalo for all that you do.

As always, we’ll keep you posted on the results of our efforts through news releases, the HTA E-bulletin, tweets and news posted on our website.  If you haven’t done so already, visit our website (link to, “like” us on Facebook (link to, and/or follow us on Twitter (link to

With my respect and aloha,

Mike McCartney


DIACRITICALS recognizes the use of diacritical markings of the (modern) Hawaiian language including the `okina [`] or glottal stop and the kahakō [ō] or macron (e.g., in place names of Hawai`i such as Lāna'i). However, you may notice these diacritical markings have been omitted throughout the website to ensure the best online experience for our visitors. recognizes the importance of using these markings to preserve the language and culture of Hawaii and respectfully uses them in all communications beyond the online platform.

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Honolulu, Hawaii 96815
Phone: (808) 973-2255
Fax: (808) 973-2253

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