News Releases

Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority Launches Mākaukau Maui Campaign to Foster Economic Recovery on Maui

For Immediate Release: March 20, 2024
HTA Release (24-07)

24-07 Makaukau Maui.pdf

HONOLULU – The Hawaiʻi Tourism Authority (HTA) has launched “Mākaukau Maui,” a campaign that aims to revitalize Maui’s economy in the aftermath of last year’s devastating wildfires. Apart from the fire-affected areas of Lahaina Town, the campaign signals that Maui is ready to welcome visitors back to the island.

Prior to the wildfires, 70% of every dollar in Maui County was directly or indirectly generated from tourism, according to the Maui Economic Development Board. According to the Hawaiʻi State Department of Business, Economic Development and Tourism (DBEDT), Maui saw a 23.5% decrease in visitor arrivals and a 19.4% drop in visitor spending, equating to $121.4 million in lost revenue, in January 2024 compared to the same month the previous year. The non-seasonally adjusted unemployment rate for the island of Maui was 6.2% in January 2024, compared to 3% in January 2023, according to DBEDT.

“Mākaukau Maui,” meaning “Maui is Ready,” is designed to inspire hope and optimism for Maui’s future, generate support among the community, and convey the island’s readiness to share its culture and beauty with the world once again. It gives a voice to the residents and business owners who are ready to get back to work and provide for their families.

“Our aim is to ensure that residents have the jobs and financial opportunities to heal and thrive,” said Mufi Hannemann, HTA Board Chair. “Job and financial security are directly tied to housing and food security, which are vital to physical and psychological recovery. It’s our sincere hope to restore a sense of security and normalcy to Maui residents after they’ve faced such extreme loss and uncertainty.”

“Mākaukau Maui is part of the community’s journey to recovery after the devastating wildfires last year,” said Daniel Nāho‘opi‘i, HTA’s interim president and CEO. “As we continue to rebuild our economy and welcome visitors back to Maui and the rest of the state, our goal is to stabilize travel demand among our key markets while encouraging travelers to come with respect and compassion.”

HTA is implementing its “Tourism’s Support for Maui’s Recovery” action plan, which identifies seven key areas and initiatives called for by Maui’s residents, including the Mākaukau Maui campaign. The action plan is designed to fulfill tourism’s responsibilities in alliance with the leadership established by Governor Josh Green, M.D. and within the broader scope of Maui’s recovery efforts being conducted by DBEDT and other state agencies. It includes strategies as well as short-, mid- and long-term recommendations provided to DBEDT in its role coordinating the state’s Economic Recovery Support Functions.

For more information about the Mākaukau Maui campaign, visit, which includes links to resources for businesses and community members on Maui, as well as information about Mālama Maui, HTA’s comprehensive efforts to educate visitors on how they can support Maui in its recovery.

Media Contacts:

T. Ilihia Gionson
Public Affairs Officer
Hawai‘i Tourism Authority
(808) 973-2255 (o)
[email protected]